Beatrice has been hurt by Benedick before the play begins. This has colored her view of marriage. A highly intelligent and witty woman, she claims that she rejects marriage as an option for herself, noting she has been "sunburnt" (burned or hurt) by love. Benedick calls her "Lady Disdain," and she lives up to that label, keeping him at a distance. She uses her scathing and witty words to protect herself emotionally.
As the play progresses, we realize that underneath her scathing exterior she is a warm and vulnerable person. For all her harsh words, she loves Benedick, the avowed woman-hater who says he will always remain a bachelor.
We come to understand that Beatrice doesn't so much reject marriage as reject marriage without love. She desires a marriage based on mutual esteem. When she realizes that, underneath it all, Benedick loves her, we see the full depths of her own love for him. She states,
I love you with so much of my heart that none is left to protest.
In the end, the woman who...
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