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Clown in The Two Gentlemen of Verona and The Comedy of Errors (Term Paper Sample)


Papers should be typed, double-spaced, and carefully proofread before submission. The suggested length for this essay assignment is 7-8 pages. Please staple your essay in the top left corner, and refrain from submitting it within any kind of binder or folder. Do not use a separate title page; include your name, student number, the course number, and the date at the top of the first page. Following this, provide the title for the essay, which should be descriptive and not generic. Please leave a one-inch margin on all sides, which will allow the marker to comment on your work. Use a standard font (such as Times), and keep to a 12 point font size in consideration of your reader.
Evaluation Criteria:
1) Evidence of thoughtful study of the works treated
2) In-depth analysis of quotations and other evidence
3) Organization and development of argument
4) Effectiveness of writing
5) Correctness of format, presentation, and attention to detail
6) Use of consistent citation format (Chicago or MLA)
Assignment Topic:
For this essay I want you to think of the early Shakespeare as a playwright who is learning from and adapting/reworking his previous efforts, who is starting to develop a repertoire of scene-types that have apparently proven effective in theatrical performance.
Choose a scene, or a theatrical situation, or a particular style of language or linguistic idiom that occurs in one of the earlier plays, and show how Shakespeare re-uses such scenes, situations, or language in a later work that we have studied in this course. What kinds of changes is Shakespeare making to the earlier example, and why? What did he learn from the earlier example? Given space constraints,you should restrict yourself to two plays.


Clown in the Plays The Two Gentlemen of Verona and The Comedy of Errors
The use of comedy is one of the common styles of the plays of William Shakespeare. His ability to portray the characters as fools makes them more interesting to the audience and brings out the comic concept in the plays. However, as he advanced in writing plays, Shakespeare changed the manner in which he presented the different characters after learning on how to effectively use clown to present his characters in the plays. One of his earliest plays is The Two Gentlemen of Verona. This is one of the earliest plays of Shakespeare which were written around 1592 and only published in the year 1623, 7 years after the death of Shakespeare. Shakespeare wrote the play at the age of 27 years and it shows a conventionally plot construction, poor development of characters and the lack of well-developed philosophical deductive reasoning. This is very much unlike in his later play The Comedy of Errors which records indicate that it was written around 1594 based on the historical contexts of the play. This essay will evaluate the development in the two plays and the portrayals of the characters as fools through a critical analysis of various scenes where characters are portrayed as fools.
The Two Gentlemen of Verona
In The Two Gentlemen of Verona Launce and Speed are portrayed as some of the most interesting characters in the play not because of their ability to act but because of the way they combine witty in portraying the foolishness of their master. The two characters are portrayed as servants born to serve their masters, travel with their masters and who obey the directions of their masters and attend to Valentine and Proteus at their command. The two characters are portrayed as humorous and who are very observant at the actions of their masters and they always play around with words when talking to their masters. One of the most significant scenes is in the first act in the first scene where Speed communicates with a series of corrupted words which makes it incomprehensible to the other listeners. The corruption of these words such as pound and pinfold, sheep and ship, and the exclamation of “ay” to refer to the word “noddy” is what Porteus refers to as “silly”. These transliterations of words as done by Speed depicts his wit as these words only make it difficult for his listeners like Porteus to comprehend him hence making them appear as fools in the eyes of the audience. Porteus exclaims to Speed with a lot of sarcasm, he notes, “Beshrew me, but you have a quick wit," hearing Porteus comments Speed replies wittily and sarcastically: "And yet it cannot overtake your slow purse." Speed does not easily give in to the fact that Porteus has disapproved his way of communication but instead insists to show Porteus as a fool who cannot grasp meaning from his use of words that he considers simple and easily understood.
Another significant incident and portrayal of witty and clown of Speed can be demonstrated in the Scene 1 act 2. The dialogue between Valentine and Speed is concentrated on the theme of love. Speed has travelled and through the travel his wisdom and wit has been sharpened through observance and can express his ideas in a brighter manner than before. On the other hand, Valentine, the master, has been overtaken by the love emotions and rarely can comprehend the words of Speed. In the dialogue, Val wants to know how Speed got to know that he is in love, Speed replies in a witty combination of metaphors which make Valentine a fool who cannot comprehend Speed's simple combination of words. He says:
Marry, by these special marks. First, you have learn'd, like Sir Proteus, to wreath your ...

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