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As You Like It, by William Shakespeare
Transcript of As You Like It, by William Shakespeare
, by William Shakespeare
Dark times in the kingdom!
Two brothers, Duke Frederick and Duke Senior, have fought, and Duke Senior is usurped. He flees to the forest of Arden with his band of merry men.
As the Play opens . . .
We meet another set of battling brothers, the Rowland deBoy . . . boys. Orlando (the leading man) is angry that his eldest brother, Oliver, mistreats him and won't grant him his share o t family fortune.
Meanwhile, we see Rosalind and Celia looking for something to do. Touchstone enters and they decide to go watch the wrestling match.
It is at the match at Orlando and Rosalind meet and immediately fall in love! When Orlando wins, and Duke Frederick finds out that he is Sir Rowland's son, he snatches the prize money away, and is mad at Rosalind for supporting Orlando.
The next day, Rosalind and Celia, as themselves, enter with Hymen, the god of marriage (the guy in white with flowers in his hair). All of he confusion between who is really in love with whom, and why they can and can't marry each other is explained, and they all get ready to marry.
A Teacher's Guide to the Signet Classis Edition of William Shakespeare's
As You Like It.
To rid himself of his little brother, Oliver arranges for Orlando to be beaten in a match by Charles the Wrestler. And if he is accidentally killed, so much the better.
To add to Orlando's troubles, he is told by his old servant, Adam, that Oliver plans to burn down his house, and if he is in it, so much the better. Both Adam and Orlando run off to join Duke Senior in the forest of Arden.
Back in Duke Fredericks castle, he thinks that Rosalind has enormous influence over his daughter, Celia, and will out shine her in his court. Therefore, Duke Frederick banishes Rosalind from his lands, or she will face death.
Celia thinks her father is unfair, so both princesses decide to run away to the forest of Arden. They decide do travel in disguise in order to not to be mistreated along the way. Rosalind dresses as a man, called Ganymede,and Celia as a maiden, Aliena. They decide to have Touchstone come along with them.
Duke Frederick is angered that Rosalind has run away and took Celia and Touchstone with her. He learns that Rosalind loves Orlando, and thinks the ladies have gone to find him. The Duke evil duke then threatens Oliver with seizure of his lands if he does not deliver Orlando the him at once.
Skipping to the next main plot element, Celia and Rosalind buy a farm and they eventually decide meet up with Orlando.
After reading Orlando's bad poetry hung on trees in the forest, Rosalind, as Ganymede, decides to become Orlando's friend and advise him on how to woo his love, Rosalind. To make Orlando's practices sound even more convincing, Ganymede/Rosalind tells Orlando to call "him" Rosalind. Orlando agrees.
Around this time, the girls' friend, Touchstone meets Audrey, a local girl who he thinks will easily marry him. Duke Senior's philosopher friend, Jaques, talks him out of it.
While Rosalind and Celia wait for Orlando who is late for another lesson in "wooing," Rosalind meets Phoebe and Silvius.
Phoebe thinks Rosalind really is Ganymede, a guy, and she falls in love with "him" instantly. "Ganymede" tells Phoebe that "he" cannot love her. Silvius is heartbroken, and laments.
"Ganymede" orders Silvius to tell Phebe that "he" will he will never love her unless Phoebe loves Silvius. The poor sheep hearder is really confused now.
Here at the end of Act IV, Oliver finally makes another entrance. He tells Celia and Rosalind how Orlando found him sleeping under a tree and was about to be bitten by a snake. Then suddenly, a lion, who was watching, attacks!
Orlando, despite the awful things his brother Oliver did and said, couldn't let him be eaten. So he saves Oliver, and in turn, saves their relationship. All is forgiven.
Touchstone, who still is smitten with Audrey, realizes that he actually does love her when William, Audrey's old beau, comes along. He decides to marry her after all.
As Oliver tells this story of rescue to Celia and Rosalind, whom he knows as Aliena and Ganymede, Oliver and Celia/Aliena instantly fall in love!
Okay, let's recap who has fallen for whom and why . . .
1. Rosalind and Orlando fell in love in the first act when they met at the wrestling meet. They have been pining for each other throughout the whole play.
2, Touchstone meets Audrey in Act III, and wants to marry her, then is talked out of it, and then decides to marry her after all.
3. Phoebe falls in love instantly with Ganymede (Rosalind), and can't understand how such a nice guy would want her to marry a simpleton like Silvius. Ganymede/Rosalind tries in vain to dissuade her.
That is part of the comedy here.
Now . . . Seeing his brother in love with Aliena (Celia), Orlando laments to Ganymede (Rosaind) about how much he loves Rosalind, and how he wishes he could marry her.
Feeling badly about Orlando's situation, and believing he really does love her, Rosalind/Ganymede tells Orlando "he" has magic powers, and the Orlando will wed Rosalind tomorrow.
Ah, but wait!
There is one last surprise in the play! Oliver and Orlando's middle brother Jaques deBoys, suddenly appears with news! The evil Duke Frederick has had a sudden religious conversion, and returned the throne to Duke Senior, and all of Oliver's lands back to him.
The play ends with Rosalind's speech to the audience, telling them to applaud for the ladies and gentlemen of the play "As You Like It."
4. Oliver and Celia fall in love, after he was saved, and reconciled with Orlando.
Okay, now they all get married!