It is often said when writers write of what emotional state they are in, their words form the essence of their works. Shakespeare’s moods, whether dark or romantic, have brought about many excellent plays that still touch the hearts of many to this day. (Kellog 225 -256)An example of his romantic mood is found in his play Romeo & Juliet. The strong love between the two reflected Shakespeare’s love for his wife Anne. The bonds of love drive the “two star-crossed lovers” to disobey their families in hopes that their true love will unites the mortal enemies forever. In turn it pushes everyone to the edge.
Juliet’s father partially disowns her because she refuses to marry the suitor he has chosen for her. In effort to keep her and Romeo’s love alive, Juliet takes a drug that makes her seem as though she were dead. (O’ Conner 69)In the hour of her “fake” funeral, Romeo’s friend Balthasar misinterprets Juliet’s death. He flees to Mantua, which is where Romeo is exiled for slaying Tybalt. Romeo, not knowing of Juliet and the priest’s actions, believes that story he was told to be true.
He then returns to Verona a sad and forlorned man. (o’ conner 127)Upon his return, Romeo purchases poison so that he may join his true love at the gates of heaven. He arrives at the church and approaches the supposedly dead Juliet. He allows himself one last hug and kiss before they are to meet again. As Romeo drinks the poison, Juliet awakens to find her love dying before her.
When Romeo dies, Juliet feels the only way they can be together is in death. Therefore, Juliet falls on Romeo’s sword so they can reunite again. Romeo ; Juliet is one of Shakespeare’s most famous romantic tragedies. (O’ conner 217)Another characteristic that Shakespeare posses and gives to his female characters is religious beliefs. During the Renaissance period, women were very active in religion.
They were only allowed to speak their minds in church so that is where they spent most of their time (sachs 17). The belief of the Renaissance time was that men ruled over their wives, as parents did children, as kings did coutries, and as God rules over all. Shakespeare shows the dark and light side of religion in many of his plays. Shakespeare shows the lurid side of religion in his play Macbeth. This play is filled with references to Satan, hell, and damnation (Baker 332). Lady macbeth persuades her husband to kill the king so he can take over the thrown.
To get him to do so, she questions his manhood. When he begins to question whether they should do it or not, Lady Macbeth calls on the demons of hell to unsex her so that she can preform the sin (o’ conner 145 -146). Even though she asks hel to do so, she can not kill the king. She believs that he looks too much like her own father so she sends Macbeth to do it. The calling of the fiery hell helps set the horrid effects of damnation and Satan in Macbeth.
(Baker 332) Shakespeare shows the bright side of religion throughtout his play Hamlet. In the play, Shakespeare has Ophelia crying, “Oh help him, you sweet heavens! Heavenly power restore him!” (Boyce 267). In Hamlet, Shakespeare brings out the allusions of the heavens. In this play, Shakespeare has Ophelia calling to the heavens for many different reason.
one reason is that her father had died and she needed to confide in the angels for guidance. One other reason is that Hamlet denies his love for her. The final reason is that she knows not what to do about Hamlet’s atrocious behavior. (201)In conclusion, Shakespeare shows many of his own characteristics through the personalities of his female characters. Juliet, Lady Macbeth, and Ophelia each represent an important characteristic of Shakespeare.