Taking a Spin on Shakespeare
Much Ado About Nothing Summary:
|Much Ado About Nothing Summary||
Leonato, a nobleman, lives in an Italian town called Messina. Leonato lives with his young daughter, Hero, his niece, Beatrice, and his brother, Antonio. They learn from a messenger that Don Pedro had just won a victory in a battle and was coming home. He arrives with Claudio, Benedick, and Pedro’s nasty brother, Don John. The first time Claudio sees Hero, he falls in love. Benedick and Beatrice are arguing and exchanging witticisms. Claudio talks Benedick aside and tells him of his love for Hero. Don Pedro, pledging to help Claudio, disguises himself as Claudio to woo Hero. Antonio, Leonato’s brother, overhears Don Pedro and Claudio, and thinks that Don Pedro is in love with Hero. Antonio tells Leonato of this and they plan to tell Hero. Meanwhile, Don John’s servant Conrade informs Don John of Don Pedro and Claudio’s plans. Don John, being the man that he is, decides to foil their plans.
When at dinner, they discuss husbands. Beatrice is sworn never to marry, copying what Benedick says earlier. After, the men arrive in masks. Hero and Don Pedro dance, Benedick and Beatrice dance (at this time Beatrice is making fun of Benedick), and Don John appears to Claudio, who says he is Benedick even though Don John knows it is Claudio. Don John tells him that Don Pedro is in love with Hero, this makes Claudio upset and depressed. Benedick talks to him about this and causes him to be more depressed. As he finds out, Don Pedro unites Claudio and Hero to marriage. Now, Don Pedro plans to get Benedick and Beatrice to marry, even though both have sworn never to marry. Meanwhile, Don John finds out that Claudio and Hero are to be married. Still wanting to foil the wedding plans, he and his servant Borachio plan to brand Hero as a prostitute and ruin the upcoming marriage. In the orchard Don Pedro, Leonato, and Claudio discuss how Beatrice is madly in love with Benedick. Benedick is hiding in the bushes as bait to their plan. Benedick believes them.
Very similar to what Claudio, Leonato, and Don Pedro do, Hero and her servant Ursula discuss how Benedick is madly in love with Beatrice. Beatrice is hiding and listening to them. She falls right into their plan. Don John tells Don Pedro and Claudio about being a prostitute, and he will give proof the night before the wedding. At nightfall Dogberry and Verges tell the watch to take watch over the city. In hiding, they hear Borachio (drunk) and Conrade talk about how Borachio wooed Margaret in Hero’s room. Claudio and Don Pedro are deceived by this, and think that Hero is a prostitute. The next day, Claudio plans to denounce the wedding. The watch arrests Borachio and Conrade, and Dogberry and Verges come to Leonato and tell him about the arrests. He impatiently shrugs them off.
At the wedding, Don Pedro and Claudio accuse Hero of being a prostitute. Leonato swares that this is true. The Friar then suggests that Hero should pretend to die from the accusations, so if it is a lie, the people responsible should feel guilty and tell the truth, then Hero will come back and everything would be back to normal. Secretly, Benedick and Beatrice show their love for each other. Beatrice says for Benedick to prove his love for her, he must kill Claudio for wronging Hero. In prison, Dogberry is trying to get the truth out of Borachio and Conrade. The Sexton (recorder) plans to tell Leonato of their crimes.
In the orchard, Benedick charges Claudio to a duel. Before the duel starts, Dogberry brings Borachio to admit his wrong doings to Hero. Leonato, still thinking that Hero is dead, tells Claudio to come to his house in the morning. He tells Claudio to marry Hero’s almost identical cousin, (which is actually her). Benedick and Beatrice continue to fall in love. Claudio goes to the tomb and reads and epitaph to Hero. In the morning Benedick asks Leonato for Beatrice to marry him. Hero and Claudio are to be married. Lastly, Don John is sent to prison for his deceit.
This picture is from the play.
Beatrice and Benedick at the master ball
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