How does Sir Andrew feel about Cesario in Shakespeare's Twelfth Night?

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Tamara K. H. eNotes educator| Certified Educator

One place we learn of Sir Andrew's opinion of Cesario is in Act 3, Scene 1, the first scene in which Sir Andrew meets Cesario. Here, we learn that Sir Andrew is very impressed by Cesario. He sees Cesario's manners and intellect as being very high above his own. First, Viola as Cesario demonstrates her cultural equality by answering Sir Andrew in return in French. Then, she proves her superiority through the clever things she says as Cesario. For example, she compliments Olivia by praising her scent in the line,     "[T]he heavens rain odours on you!" (III.i.81).  Viola as Cesario next impresses Sir Andrew by cleverly using the word "pregnant" to mean "expert" or "clever," saying that only Olivia's "expert" ear can hear what Viola has to tell her from Duke Orsino, as we see in Viola's lines, "My matter hath no voice, lady, but to your own most pregnant and vouchsafed ear" (eNotes, 84-85). When Sir Andrew hears Viola as Cesario speaking so cleverly, he quickly recognizes her education and breeding and says to himself, "That youth's a rare courtier," meaning "an aristocrat" (eNotes, 83).

We later learn that Sir Andrew feels insulted by Cesario. Sir Toby brought Sir Andrew into the house hoping that Olivia would accept him as a suitor. But now Sir Andrew sees Olivia paying a great deal of attention to Cesario who, aristocratic as he may be, is only supposed to be a mere servant to Orsino. He feels so insulted that he is resolved to leave, but Sir Toby and Fabian encourage Sir Andrew to challenge Cesario to a duel, saying that it will attract Olivia's attention.

Hence, we see that Sir Andrew admires Cesario, recognizing her to be superior in intellect and breeding, but also feels insulted by her and jealous.

msfuryal | Student
Sir andrew’s role in the play is that of the traditional gull. That is of a simple personwho is befooled and exploited by the others .the fact that he is a coward makes it all the more amusing.he is redered even more foolish by his aspirations of marrying Olivia who cold shoulders even duke Orsino Sir Andrew is disgusted when he sees Olivia pusuing cesario infront of him , and cesario (viola ) did not respond favourably to her. Later he calls cesario a scoundrel and a rascal in his letter and challenges him to a duel because he thinks that cesario is even a greater coward than him. When sir toby lies about cesario to sir Andrew about what a good fighter he is then sir Andrew becomes afraid of him and tries to settle the matter by givinghim a gift ie his steed, a gray capilet. Sir Andrew understood that cesario could not fight ,so he started fighting him as he thought that cesario is a coward . Later on when he mistakenly attacks Sebastian , and Sebastian fights back ruthlessly , then he thinks that cesario (sebastian)is merciless and a vicious person and he runs away shouting and screaming. Later on he tries to tell what happened to Duke and Olivia and sir toby and sir Andrew seek for a doctor for their injuries. There sir toby finally tells sir Andrew what he thinks about him and sir Andrew finds out what has happened.
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Twelfth Night

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