Much Ado About Nothing, Act 4 Scene 1 Analysis

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Essay: Much Ado About Nothing

In Act 4 Scene 1, Shakespeare employs numerous dramatic techniques to create a remarkable and memorable moment in the play. The techniques include: the positioning of the scene in the context of the play as a whole; the successful characterization of the key players, including Leonato, Claudio and Hero in particular; and the use of poetic and descriptive language.

To begin with the structure of the play as a whole, the audience would already feel tense because of the previous scene in which Dogberry and Verges failed to communicate the message of Borachio and Conrade's arrest. Shakespeare does this not just to create suspense, but also to catch the audience's attention in the play and make them want to keep watching. In this scene Dogberry and his sidekick, Verges, visit Leonato to tell him about the arrest of Borachio and Conrade. Leonato receives their confused report, but is in too much of a hurry to investigate further. Leonato says: “Neighbours, you are tedious.” as they try to explain him why they are here. Leonato is getting bored and irritated because the two men cannot get to the point. Finally, just when it seems that the truth is about to come out, a messenger enters and tells Leonato to hurry for there is his daughter waiting to get married. He then sends the two to investigate further on this issue; this leaves the audience in a moment of anxiety for they know that there is something wrong going on.

To explore the character of Leonato and his impact on the drama in the scene, at the beginning we can see Leonato's hurry in having his daughter wed Claudio: “Come, Friar Francis, be brief: only to plain forms of marriage, and you shall recount their particular duties afterwards”. Here, Leonato is wanting to speed up the process of the wedding, it possibly might be because he wants to be sure that her daughter is going to have a good position in future. This creates drama and makes more realistic the fact that Leonato...
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