Discuss the experience of Bottom in the forest. Is Bottom's experience similar or different than that of Hermia & LysanderThis is from A Midsummer Night's Dream. 

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lkhernandez eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Bottom, Hermia, and Lysander all fall victim to fairy magic for the purpose of entertaining the fairies. Puck is not fond of the type of person Bottom is so he decides to have fun by changing his head to what Puck considers a more appropriate representation of Bottom's character. Bottom is loud, bossy, and pompous so essentially he is an "ass." Puck finds it highly entertaining to mess with Bottom and scare the other workmen, or "fools" away.

While Hermia and Lysander's experience is similar to Bottom's in relation to the magic they fall victim to, the purpose of the magic is different. Oberon aims to help Helena because he sees how lovestruck she is, and how disdainful Demetrius is towards the lady. Puck accidentally puts the juice of the flower into the wrong young man's eyes and therein lies the conflict in the forest between the four young people. Hermia and Lysander are also victims of fairy magic, but Puck's purpose in this case was not to have fun with them, but to follow Oberon's orders to help the young people.

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A Midsummer Night's Dream

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