Essay Shakespeare: Magic and Supernatural Occurances

Words: 1701
Pages: 7

Magic and supernatural occurrences in Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Richard III, and The Tempest are used to create a surreal world to confuse and resolve conflicts in each play. Magic provides the audience with an escape from reality and the comfort of the play’s unrealistic nature. In A Midsummer Night’s Dream, a love potion from a magical flower is used and misused to provide comic relief and resolution to love’s difficulties, supernatural ghosts are used to condemn a horrific murderer in Richard III to ensure his downfall and deserved death and finally, magic from Prospero’s book in The Tempest is used for his righteous revenge and harmony amongst the characters. The Duke of Athens, Theseus, states, “the best in this kind …show more content…
145). Instead of being joyful that he has achieved his goal, he is filled with moral loathing and regret. This psychological undermining caused by the ghosts and his recognition of his inner demon is the very reason that caused his downfall in battle. Furthuring Richard and Richmond’s differences, Richmond asked his men to remember the beauty of the land that they are protecting from a tyrant. Richard on the other hand, told his nobleman that might makes right, and that “[c]onscience is but a word that cowards use, / Devised at first to keep the strong in awe” ( 39-40), even though he, himself has been recently tortured by his corrupted conscience. Shakespeare’s use of the 11 ghosts and psychological measures to shake up and torment a villain shows the power of the supernatural and human thought. The 11 ghosts served as an equivalent to 11 curses on Richard to ensure his downfall, but his uncertainty with whom he is inside was what ultimately shook him and uncovered the inescapable fact that the end is near. The Tempest, in my opinion, presents the most magic and supernatural forces out of all of Shakespeare’s works. Prospero, the protagonist, is a very clever, intelligent, and reasonable man contrasted with his ability to control characters and situations through his magic. Prospero and his daughter Miranda have been trapped on an island for 12 years after his brother, Antonio, conspiring with Alonso,