Twelfth Night Act I, Scene 4 Summary and Analysis

William Shakespeare

Act I, Scene 4 Summary and Analysis

We find Viola (now named “Cesario”) on her fourth day in the Duke’s palace, her disguise having gained her the access she wished. Valentine is amazed, in fact, at how much favor she has already gained with the Duke.

The Duke assigns Cesario the task of pursuing Olivia for him. He urges him to be aggressive: “Be clamorous and leap all civil bounds.” The Duke is confident that Cesario can effectively persuade Olivia to respond to his true passion. Cesario is doubtful.

Part of the Duke’s confidence owes to his intuition of Cesario’s real feminine qualities. He implies, in other words, that she can play the womanly matchmaker role well. He promises him a reward if he is...

(The entire section is 440 words.)