Flashcards in Themes/Quotes - The Tempest Deck (30):
C - "this island is mine, by Sycorax my mother, / Which thou tak'st from me"
M - "tis a villain, sir, / I do not love to look on"
P - "we'll visit Caliban my slave [who] does make our fire, / Fetch in our wood and serves in offices / That profit us"
T - "jesting monkey" - implies he sees Caliban as a freak to be looked at, for entertainment purposes
T - "Were / I in England now [...] and had but this fish painted, not a holiday -fool there but would give a piece of silver" / "when they will not give a doit to relieve a lame beggar, they will lay out ten to see a dead Indian" - unrecognisable, Alien, Other, different, his humanity is so unrecognised that he's not considered human at all
P - "a born devil, on whose nature / Nurture can never stick" - Prospero suggests Caliban is incapable of being civilised, a common belief in colonial periods, and by separating lines between "nature" and "nurture" and the juxtaposition of them shows the disparity between the savage and the civilised
C - "when thou cam'st first / Thou stok'st me and made much of me, wouldst give me / Water with berries in't, and teach me how / To name the bigger light [...] And then I loved thee / And showed thee all the qualities o'th'isle, / The fresh springs, brine-pits, barren place and fertile - / Cursèd be that I did so
C - "the isle is full of noises, / Sands, and sweet airs, that give delight and hurt not" - his receptiveness to it expresses a spirituality which raises him above base humanity, he touches the hearts of listeners/readers with his beautiful, fragile, and sweet language
Caliban is called a "monster", "devil", "debauched fish", "puppy-headed monster", "monkey jester", "hag-seed", "tortoise", "earth" - all animal, and earthly images portraying him as a lower, physical form in the great chain of being
C - "this island is mine, by Sycorax my mother, / Which thou tak'st from me"
G - "how lush and lusty the grass looks / How green!" - exotic, alien, foreign land
C - "i'll show thee every fertile inch of'th'island [...] i'll show thee the best springs; i'll pluck thee berries; I'll fish for thee, and get thee, and get thee wood enough" - caliban knows the secret intricacies of his native island, demonstrates an intellect which Prospero/colonisers deny. The imagery of fertility and beauty of his prose presents him as humane, with compassion and feeling.
G - "I'th commonwealth I would by contraries / Execute all things; for no kind of traffic / Would I admit; no name of magistrate; / Letters should not be known; riches, poverty, /And use of service, none [...] No use of metal, corn, or wine, or oil; / No occupation; all men idle, all; / And women too, but innocent and pure; / No sovereignty" - he pictures a society in which ownership of everything is shared, heavily influenced by Montaigne's essay: 'On Cannibals'
he contradicts himself by saying if he were king of the island he wouldn't have any sovereignty
G - "I would with such perfection govern, sir, / T'excel the Golden Age"
"these are people of the island - / who though they are of monstrous shape, yet note / Their manners are more gentle, kind, than of / our human generation you shall find"
"few in millions / Can speak like us [...] weigh / our sorrow with our comfort"
"here is everything advantageous to life"
"how lush and lusty the grass looks"
"that our garments being, as they were, drenched in the sea, / hold notwithstanding their freshness and glosses" ---> suggests he has been reborn, fresher and clearer thoughts - biblical reference: rebirth
"me thinks our garments are now as fresh as when we put them on first in Afric, at the marriage of the King's fair daughter Claribel to the King of Tunis"
A - "the ground indeed is tawny"
A - "the latter end of his commonwealth forgets the beginning"
S - "no marrying among his subjects"
A - "non, man, all idle; whores and knaves"
Master and Servant relationship
C - "I will kiss thy / foot - Prithee be my god " / "I'll swear myself thy subject"
C - "I'll bear him no more sticks but follow thee" - displays his he is reliant upon a master
Despite finding a new master he rejoices from relieving himself from Prospero's grip - "Caliban has a new master [...] freedom, high-day, high-day freedom"
C - "I'll be wise hereafter / And seek for Grace" - after he ceases to serve Trinculo he then serves God
A - "All hail, great master, grave sir, hail! I come / To answer thy best pleasure"
Caliban's receptiveness to the island
“Be not afeared; the isle is full of noises, / sounds and sweet airs that give delight and hurt not. / Sometimes a thousand twangling instruments / Will hum about mine ears; and sometime voices, / That if I then had waked after long sleep, / Will make me sleep again; and then in dreaming, / The clouds methought would open, and show riches / Ready to drop upon me, that when I waked / I cried to dream again”
– suggests that Caliban’s receptiveness to it expresses a spirituality which raises him above base humanity. He touches the hearts of listeners with his beautiful, fragile, and sweet language. Explanation of the isle’s mysterious qualities. This speech is generally considered to be one of the most poetic in the play, and it is remarkable that Shakespeare chose to put it in the mouth of the drunken man-monster. Thus his speech conveys the wondrous beauty of the island and the depth of his attachment to it, as well as a certain amount of respect and love for Prospero’s magic
relationship between the coloniser and the colonised
C - You taught me language, and my profit on’t / Is I know how to curse. The red plague rid you / For learning me your language! -Language, for Prospero and Miranda, is a means to knowing oneself, and Caliban has in their view shown nothing but scorn for this precious gift. Self-knowledge for Caliban, however, is not empowering. It is only a constant reminder of how he is different from Miranda and Prospero and how they have changed him from what he was. Caliban’s only hope for an identity separate from those who have invaded his home is to use what they have given him against them.
Miranda is bold and promiscuous
M - "But this is trifling,
And all the more it seeks to hide itself
The bigger bulk it shows"
"I am your wife, if you will marry me/ If not, I’ll die your maid"
"I’ll be your servant
Whether you will or no"
"Do you love me?"
- submissive yet she demands marriage (bold). Miranda declares her sexual independence, using a metaphor that suggests both an erection and pregnancy (the “bigger bulk” trying to hide itself)
Miranda seems, to a certain extent, a slave to her desires.
P - "Our revels now are ended. These our actors,
As I foretold you, were all spirits, and
Are melted into air, into thin air;" - repetition has an echo-like effect enhancing the dream and hallucinatory feel, making the whole play feel like a fantasy
P - "the great globe itself,
Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve;" - the dreamy lexis e.g. "melted", "air" and "dissolve" all works to create an hallucinatory feel
P - "We are such stuff
As dreams are made on, and our little life
Is rounded with a sleep." - play feels like a dream
- His mention of the “great globe,” which to an audience in 1611 would certainly suggest the Globe Theatre, calls attention to Prospero’s theatricality—to the way in which he controls events like a director or a playwright. His dream-like language conflate (combines) the theatre and Prospero’s island. When Prospero gives up his magic, the play will end, and the audience, like Prospero, will return to real life. No trace of the magical island will be left behind, not even of the shipwreck, for even the shipwreck was only an illusion.
Full of words with strong theatrical associations: 'revels' 'actors' 'baseless fabric' 'globe' 'pageant' - just as actors have vanished into thin air, so will everyone and everything else - speech is metatheatrical (creating links between the theatre and
P - "What seest thou else
In the dark backward and abysm of time?"
P - "The creatures that were mine I say or changed 'em, / Or else new formed 'em [...] set all hearts i'th'state / To what tune pleased his ear"
F - "This music crept by me upon the waters,
Allaying both their fury and my passion
With its sweet air: thence I have follow'd it"
C - "Be not afeared; the isle is full of noises, / Sounds, and sweet airs, that give delight and hurt not. Sometime a thousand twangling instruments / Will hum about mine ears; and sometime voices, / That if i then had waked after long sleep, / Will make me sleep again"
Harmony is restored
P - "I do forgive / thy rankest fault - all of them - and require / my dukedom of thee, which perforce I know / thou must restore"
P - "release me from my bands / With the help of your good hands" - use of rhyming couplet was a typical ending to Shakespeare's plays - enhances feel of balance and harmony being restored
Prospero - Magic
A - "your charm so strongly works 'em / that if you now beheld them your affections would become tender [...] mine would sir were I human"
P - "by my so potent art. This rough magic / I here abjure"
P - "I have be dimmed / the noontide sun, called forth the mutinous winds [...] and rugged Jove's stout oak / with his bolt" - the grand and impactful language adds to Prospero's awe of omnipotence
F - "your father's in some passion / That works him strongly"
Prospero relinquishes his power
"I'll break my staff, / bury it certain fathoms in the earth. / and deeper than did ever plummet sound / I'll drown my book" - syntactical parallelism displays the impact and importance of his decisions
example of the Boatswain assuming authority
- "I pray now keep below [...] keep your cabins"
- "if by your dearest art, my dearest father, you have / Put the wild waters in this roar, allay them" - use of imperative displays her authority
M - "oh dear father, / Make too not rash a trial of him, for / He's gentle, and not fearful" - repetition of "dear father" shows she is still submissive
P - "what, I say, / My foot my tutor?"
Antonio usurps Prospero's dukedom
P - "in my false brother / Awaked an evil nature"
P - "he did believe / He was indeed the duke [...] And executing th'outward face of royalty / With all prerogative"
P - "This King of Naples, being an enemy / To me inveterate, hearkens my brother's suit"
Prospero's use of magic in manipulating his characters
P - "Thou art inclined to sleep, 'Tis a good dullness, / And give it way; I know thou canst not choose"
link to St Elmo's fire
A - "I flamed amazement" - St Elmo's fire was the strange effect of light well known to sailors caught in storms at sea
Ariel exerts authority
the reference to Jove's lightning and Neptune (the king of the sea) is suggestive of his meddles with nature and acting as god in the manipulation of it
A - "not a hair perished; / On their sustaining garments not a blemish, / But fresher than before" - biblical references
P - "I have done nothing but in care of thee"
C - "When thou cam'st first / Thou strok'st me and made much of me; would give me / Water with berries in't, and teach me how / To name the bigger light"
Ariel and Caliban's enslavement
A - "Let me remember thee what thou hast promised, / Which is not yet performed me [...] My liberty [...] remember I have done thee worthy service"
Prospero's brutality and punishment of Ariel and Caliban
P - "if thou murmur'st, I will rend an oak / And peg thee in his knotty entrails till / Thou hast howled away twelve winters"
C - "sometime am I / All wound with adders, who with cloven tongues / Do hiss me into madness"
C - "lo, now lo! / Here comes a spirit of his, and to torment me / For bringing wood in slowly"
Miranda's ignorance and naivety
P - "who / Art ignorant of what thou art"
P - "tis new to thee"
P - "your piteous heart"
M - "O wonder! / How many goodly creatures are there? / How beauteous mankind is! O brave new world / That has such people in't" - use of apostrophe displays her exasperation
theatricality called to attention
"Our revels now are ended; these our actors, / As I foretold you, were all spirits, and / Are melted into air, into thin air"
"the great globe itself [...] shall dissolve"
"release me from my bands / With the help of your good hands"
"we are such stuff / As dreams are made on; and our little life / Is rounded with a sleep" - Dramatic illusion in turn becomes a metaphor for the "real" world outside the Globe, which is equally fleeting. Towers, palaces, temples, the Globe theater, the Earth—all will crumble and dissolve, leaving not even a wisp of cloud (a "rack") behind. Prospero's "pageant" is the innermost Chinese box: a play within a play (The Tempest) within a play (the so-called "real" world).
Prospero as Shakespeare
"we are such stuff / As dreams are made on; and our little life / Is rounded with a sleep" - Prospero becomes increasingly self aware, reflective and philosophical reflecting the end of Shakespeare's literary career and his life
Prospero's dark magic
P - "I will rend an oak / And peg thee in his knotty entrails till / Thou hast howled away twelve years"
P - "Sometime am I / All wound with adders, who with cloven tongues / Do hiss me into madness"
P - "Graves at my command / Have waked their sleepers [...] By my so potent art"