1 Answer | Add Yours
Several of Shakespeare's plays deal with the phenomenon of love at first sight: As You Like It; Twelfth Night; and Romeo & Juliet, to name a few. If you read much of his work, it does appear that Shakespeare has particularly strong feelings about love at first sight. In his comedies, he treats it as frivolous and silly. It seems as if the characters simply love the idea of being in love as much as they love the actual object of their attentions. For instance, Touchstone falls in love at first sight with Audrey, a girl with whom he has very little in common. Rosalind falls in love with Orlando when she sees him fighting at court; Celia falls in love with Orlando's brother simply because it seems he is the only one around for her to be with.
In Twelfth Night, love plays out much the same way. Olivia falls for Viola in a man's disguise. When she can't tell the difference between Viola and her brother, it doesn't seem to matter. She's fine with Sebastian. So then Orsino, who has been Viola's employer and who has thought she was a boy, conveniently falls in love with her.
In Romeo and Juliet, it still appears that Shakespeare doesn't think much of love at first sight. It turns out rather badly for both of the young lovers, who barely get to know each other before they kill themselves for love. He seems to indicate that it is not all it is supposed to be, but just an illusion, whether funny or tragic.
We’ve answered 319,200 questions. We can answer yours, too.Ask a question