will be unfaithful. Their feelings show themselves
in the form of witty puns and ―a kindof merry war…‖ (1
.1.58). As the story progresses, their words become increasinglyvenomous. In Act 2 Scene 1, Benedick
exclaims, ―She [Beatrice] speaks
poniards, andevery word stabs,
(line 237). But their words are but a mask (motif) concealing theinsecurity each holds inside. The paradox of simultaneous love and fear shows that thetwo are concerned for their own welfare in addition to that of the other. How Benedick and Beatrice reconcile their conflicted selves illustrates a classic theme by nature.Likewise, characters of classic literature commonly risk themselves to find truthwithin and without. In this way, Beatrice and Benedick find each other, and their trueemotions. Yet such a feat requires some outside influence. Together with Don Pedro, asmall group of tricksters successfully dupe both Beatrice and Benedick into believing theother feels compassion for them. Ironically, the tricks turn out to be true, just spread outamong
In Act 2 Scene 3
, Benedick reasons that Beatrice’s love must be true,expressively crying out, ―Love me? Why, it must be requited… for I will be horribly inlove with her,‖ (lines 220
-221, 230-231). Beatrice reacts in much the same way.Moreover, the stubborn individual finds internal equilibrium by choosing to cool her hot-headed emotions down.
―And Benedick, love on; I will requite thee, taming my wildheart to thy loving hand,‖ (3.1.111
-112). But, almost as quickly as one problem isresolved, a new one arises.
Not too long after the bachelors are in love, Hero’s marriage to Claudio is
utterlydestroyed along with her overall integrity, with Don Pedro and Claudio to blame. DonPedro and Claudio believe they have seen Hero seducing another man, and publiclydisgrace the innocent young woman in front of the entire community at their wedding