All of the main characters in “Much Ado About Nothing” are the victims of deception, and because they’ve been deceived is the reason they act in the ways that they do. Even though the central deception is directed against Claudio in an attempt to destroy his relationship with Hero, it is the deception pertaining to Beatrice and Benedick which is the play's main focus. Almost every character in the play at some point has to make interpretations from what he or she sees, has been told or overheard. At the same time, nearly every character in the play at some point plays a part of consciously pretending to be what they are not.
(Act I, Scene I)
”Thou wilt be like a lover presently and tire the hearer with a book of words. If thou dost love fair Hero, cherish ...view middle of the document...
Deception is one of the focal themes throughout the play which grows out of the love game. Deceit is not evil in nature; it can be used for the purpose good or bad outcomes. “In Much Ado About Nothing” the deception of Beatrice and Benedick being duped into falling in love would be considered a good form of deception and Don John's deceptive plan to disrupt Claudio and Hero's relationship would be a bad form of deception.
(Act II, Scene III)
”Come hither, Leonato. What was it you told me of to-day, that your niece Beatrice was in love with
In these lines is when Benedick is overhearing the conversation between Leonato, Don Pedro and Claudio in an attempt to fool Benedick into thinking that Beatrice actually has feelings for him. This is the part of the play where the dramatic irony happens in regards to the audience knowing the plot and the character doesn’t. Beatrice and Benedick start off energetic and witty but towards the end of the play they have gained self-knowledge and earned each other.
(Act III, Scene II)
” The word is too good to paint out her wickedness; I could say she were worse: think you of a worse title, and I will fit her to it. Wonder not till further warrant: go but with me to-night, you shall
see her chamber-window entered, even the night before her wedding-day: if you love her then, to-morrow wed her; but it would better fit your honour to change your mind.”
In these lines of the play the deception of Claudio and Don Pedro results in Hero's apparent exploitation. Don Jon the bastard uses malevolent deceit to trick Claudio into thinking Hero has been disloyal and has lost her virginity to his right-hand-man Borachio. This malicious deception leads to Hero's corruption.