Viola in William Shakespeare's "Twelfth Night" | Owlcation
Q. What does Viola call herself when she dresses up as a man? Q. Who loves Orsino secretly? Q. What is Sir Toby Belch's relationship with Olivia?. Duke Orsino believes he is in love with Olivia, but Olivia falls in love with Viola, who is pretending to be Cesario. Meanwhile, Viola also falls in love with Orsino. Their relationship is played out on the global stage, dominated by A tangled love triangle emerges in which Viola loves Orsino, Orsino loves.
Viola is, afterall, not Hamlet who felt that he was the chosen one to set the world right. Viola is practical enough to recognize the authority of Time over the consequences of human actions.
She might wear a visible disguise, but she is clearer in conscience and true to her own self than others who wear the mask over their very souls. Both Orsino, in his assumptions of love, and Olivia, in her mistaken perceptions serve to be inferior contrasts to Viola.
Even, towards the end of the play, when she meets Sebastian, she actually confirms the reality by interrogations before she exults in being re-united with her brother. However, to assume that Viola is made only of practical wisdom would be a mistake as it would overlook the essential Romantic element in her character. She is never at home in her disguise and never for a moment forgets that she is playing a part of being conscious of a constant conflict between Cesario and Viola, between appearance and reality: Wherein the pregnant enemy does much.
How easy is it for the proper false. In women's waxen hearts to set their forms!
Twelfth Night Characters review at Absolute Shakespeare
At the same time, she herself teaches Orsino as well as Olivia the true lessons of love. Whether Duke Orsino really deserves such a patient, sincere and truthful partner is a valid question. There is always a sense of imbalance, of inadequacy in Orsino. However, Shakespeare had already established the duke as an efficient ruler and adequately gifted in other fields of life.
Love in Twelfth Night by Shakespeare
Being in company of Viola has the promise of a correction and hence it makes the match between Viola and Orsino justified. Hence Viola had to cast off her disguise and assume the feminine role secured for her. She has resigned herself to seven years solitude following the loss of first her father and then her much loved brother.
- Viola in William Shakespeare's "Twelfth Night"
Spurning love in all its forms, she shuns Orsino's romantic overtures, but at the sight of Cesario, falls deeply in love, causing many problems for Cesario really Viola. She later marries Sebastian, who looking exactly like Cesario, also steals Lady Olivia's heart. When the ship he and Viola were traveling on sinks, he fears his sister dead, as her sister does of him. Frequently mistaken for Cesario, Sebastian eventually is reunited with his sister, earlier taking the hand the willing Countess Olivia as his wife.
Nonetheless he accompanies Sebastian in his travels. Memorable for the expression, "That danger shall seem sport Sir Toby Belch, Uncle to Olivia: As Olivia's uncle, Sir Toby passes away his time drinking in Olivia's house with fellow drinker Sir Andrew Aguecheek, much to the displeasure of Olivia, her servant Maria and Olivia's uptight and humorless steward Malvolio.
A great schemer of practical jokes, Sir Toby enjoys playing tricks on Malvolio, his friend Sir Andrew and anyone else who captures his fleeting attention.
The drinking partner of Sir Toby, he too pushes Lady Olivia's patience and hospitality with his continuously loud and lewd behavior. Described by Sir Toby as being "as tall a man as any's in Illyria", Sir Andrew is not overly intelligent, Sir Andrew like Sir Toby having little love for the annoying Malvolio and is party to a practical joke against him.
Sir Andrew however is greatly valued by Sir Toby since he is rich, earning some "three thousand ducats a year. Naive by nature, he is manipulated by Sir Toby into pursuing Lady Olivia since this will maintain Sir Toby's drinking lifestyle. As Lady Olivia's steward, Malvolio sees himself in a somewhat grandiose light, imagining Olivia to love him and wishing to be more than his current rank.
This and his continuous disapproval of Sir Toby and Sir Andrew's drinking, earn him their hatred and he quickly becomes their pawn in a complex romantic ruse. Lady Olivia's woman, she is patient and tactful where Malvolio is brash and insulting.