Winter's Tale

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In the Winter’s Tale, Mamillius states that “a sad tale’s best for winter” (2.1.33). William Shakespeare’s ominous beginning immediately arouses the attention of the audience to believe that this play is a tragedy. Unlike many of Shakespeare’s earlier works, which consist of more tragedy as the play continues, the Winter’s Tale contains a tragic beginning and a happy ending. The play consists of strong elements of both tragedy and comedy; hence, making the Winter’s Tale a problem play. Throughout the play, the relationship between the characters and Nature or her representatives seems to be a prominent occurrence. In other words, the “law and process of great nature” is prevalent as it appears to be present when associating with the characters and specific events in the play. In the beginning of the play, images of nature and natural life are portrayed through the reference of the childhood between Polixenes and Leontes, when “they were trained together in their childhoods, and there rooted betwixt them then such an affection which cannot choose but branch now” (1.1.23-24). When they were both young, there were no suspicions or inappropriate assumptions between the two friends because they were innocent and naive. It is simply nature that young ones are not aware of the evils that are apparent in the world that everyone lives in. This is particularly why little ones are considered or called “angels” because they unknowingly act due to their immaturity. Little kids are “angels”, who learn to distinguish from right and wrong as they mature, acquire wisdom with age, and are taught by their parents. Leontes and Polixenes most likely went from playing pretend with swords to actually fighting in accord to their lives and kingdom. The first three acts of the Winter’s Tale consist of tragedies because of Leontes’ suspicions of Hermione’s infidelity with his close friend Polixenes. His suspicions come from the observation that “at [his] request [Polixenes] would not...
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