A Midsummer Night's Dream
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THESEUS, Duke of Athens: Engaged to Hippolyta. Theseus represents power and order throughout the course of the play. He appears only at the beginning and end of the story, and seems to be removed from the dreamlike events of the forest. EGEUS, Father to Hermia: Egeus has given Demetrius permission to marry Hermia, but Hermia, who's in love with Lysander, refuses to marry Demetrius. Egeus’s insists that Hermia should either respect his wishes or be held accountable to Athenian law that places him squarely outside the whimsical dream of the forest. LYSANDER, in love with Hermia: Lysander’s relationship with Hermia shows the theme of the difficulty of love. For example, he cannot marry her openly because Egeus, her father, wishes her to wed Demetrius, and when Lysander and Hermia run away into the forest, Lysander becomes the victim of misapplied magic and wakes up in love with Helena. DEMETRIUS, in love with Hermia: Demetrius’s obstinate pursuit of Hermia throws love out of balance among the quartet of Athenian children and precludes a two-couple arrangement. PHILOSTRATE, Master of the Revels to Theseus: He is responsible for organizing the entertainment for the duke’s marriage celebration. QUINCE, the Carpenter: He's the main leader of the craftsmen’s attempt to put on a play for Theseus’s marriage celebration. Quince is often shoved aside by the confident Bottom. During the craftsmen’s play, Quince recites the Prologue. SNUG, the Joiner: He plays the lion in the craftsmen’s play for Theseus’s marriage celebration. However, Snug worries that his roaring will frighten the ladies in the audience. BOTTOM, the Weaver: He plays Pyramus in the craftsmen’s play for Theseus’s marriage celebration. Bottom is full of advice and self-confidence, but he frequently makes silly mistakes and uses the wrong type of language. FLUTE, the Bellows-mender: He plays Thisbe in the craftsmen’s play for Theseus’s marriage celebration. Because he is forced to play a young girl in love, Flute determines to speak his lines in a high, squeaky voice. SNOUT, the Tinker: Plays Pyramus’s father in the craftsmen’s play for Theseus’s marriage celebration, and he ends up playing the part of Wall, which divides the two lovers. STARVELING, the Tailor: Plays Thisbe’s mother in the craftsmen’s play for Theseus’s marriage celebration, and ends up playing the part of Moonshine. HIPPOLYTA, Queen of the Amazons, bethrothed to Theseus: She is engaged to Theseus, and similar to Theseus, she symbolizes order. HERMIA, daughter to Egeus, in love with Lysander: A young woman of Athens. Hermia's a childhood friend of Helena. As a result of the fairies’ mischief with Oberon’s love potion, both Lysander and Demetrius suddenly fall in love with Helena. Self-conscious about her short stature, Hermia suspects that Helena has wooed the men with her height. By morning, Puck has sorted matters out with the love potion, and Lysander’s love for Hermia is restored. HELENA, in love with Demetrius: Demetrius and Helena were once married, but when Demetrius met Helena’s friend Hermia, he fell in love with her and abandoned Helena. Lacking confidence in her looks, Helena thinks that Demetrius and Lysander are mocking her when the fairies’ mischief causes them to fall in love with her. OBERON, King of the Fairies: The king of the fairies, Oberon is initially at odds with his wife, Titania, because she refuses to relinquish control of a young Indian prince whom he wants for a knight. Oberon’s desire for revenge on Titania leads him to send Puck to obtain the love-potion flower that creates so much of the play’s confusion and farce. TITANIA, Queen of the Fairies: Titania resists the attempts of her husband, Oberon, to make a knight of the young Indian prince that she has been given. Titania’s...
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