Love Relationships in Shakespearean Plays

An examination of three of William Shakespeare’s love relationships in his work.

This paper examines how, in the writings of Shakespeare, there are many great loves and how some of the greatest are also the greatest examples of love for a purpose. It looks at how the love between a man and a women is often the avenue by which intrigue transpires into change by examining and comparing three of his plays. The love between Ferdinand and Miranda in The Tempest acts as the starting point from which the other two are compared. The second couple is Queen Margaret and the Duke of Suffolk in Henry VI, and the third Desdemona and Othello in Othello. It shows how it is partly through these three couples that Shakespeare proves his literary prowess, as he uses love as a tool to increase the dramatic depth of the work and how, in the character development of these six individuals, is the demonstration of love as an avenue for intrigue and intrigue as an avenue for love.
Miranda’s first sight, of Ferdinand sets in stone her love and admiration for him, as does his of her. Prospero hopes that through the trickery of the storm and the union of these two young people he will be able to regain his rightful place as the Duke of Milan. Ferdinand is so equally bewitched by Miranda that he is blinded of even the grief he should now be feeling for his father and his shipmates. He asks the Goddess if Miranda is real: Most sure, the goddess / On whom these airs attend! Vouchsafe my prayer May know if you remain upon this island;/And that you will some good instruction give/ How I may bear me here: my prime request,/ Which I do last pronounce, is, O you wonder!/ If you be maid or no? (Tempest Act 1 Scene II) He wishes even with his last wish, and when he should be wishing for the safety of his father, to know if Miranda is truly a maid or if she is simply a spirit come to trick him.