“What’s meant to be will always find a way” – Yearwood, Trisha. Quotefancy. com. Web. 13 May 2016. This quote supports the theme in A Midsummer’s Night Dream. The quote states that if something is meant to be, it will be. For example, Lysander and Hermia’s relationship. The couple were forbidden to be together, but in the end, they found a way. Lysander says to Hermia, “The course of love never did run smooth” (). The quotation means that love takes a rigid course. In the play, Egeus, Hermia’s father, wishes Hermia to marry Demetrius (who loves Hermia), but Hermia is in love with Lysander and refuses to comply.
Hermia’s friend, Helena, is jealous that the man she loves, Demetrius, is in love with Hermia. She shares Lysanders and Hermia’s run away plan with Demetrius. This leads to Demetrius following the couple all day. Which is when a group of totally different characters, including fairies, and their king and queen, Oberon and Titania come in. The king quickly sees Demetrius and Helena, and overhears Helena declaring her love for Demetrius, and Demetrius being cruel towards her.
The king of the fairies orders his servant to induce Demetrius under a love juice to fall in love with Helena. However, the plan goes terribly wrong. Consequently, this leads to all the characters in quarrel. Throughout the play, A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare, displays the obstacles faced in romantic relationships. This is shown through Helena and Demetrius, Titania and Oberon, and finally, Hermia and Lysander. First, Demetrius and Helena experience many love complications. For example, Demetrius does not respond or want Helena’s love for him.
For instance, when Helena follows Demitrius into the woods when he is on his search for Hermia and Lysander, Demetrius says to her, “Do I speak you fair? / Or rather do I not in plainest truth/ Tell you I do not nor I cannot love you” (II. i. 23). Later, he continues to spurn her, saying, “ I’ll run from thee, and hid me in the brakes. / And leave thee to the mercy of wild beasts” (II. i. 24). These quotations are evidence of a love problem because Demetrius wants nothing to do with Helena, and he finds her never ending love for him vexatious. Thus, there is no possibility of a relationship.
In fact, not only are the things Demetrius says to Helena show that he feels no affection for her, but they are cruel as well, as seen when he shows no remorse for her being eaten by wild animals. Next, another complexity in their love is when Puck puts love juice on Demetrius’ eyes and he falls in love with Helena. When Oberon witnesses an interchange between Helena and Demetrius, he feels sorry for her and instructs Puck to use the juice of a magic flower to sway Demetrius’ affections.
Later, when the four couples are found by Theseus, Demetrius explicates: But my good lord, I wot not by what power (But by some power it is), my love to Hermia (Melted as the snow) seems to me now As the remembrance of an idle gaud, Which in my childhood I did dote upon; And all faith, the virtue of my heart, The object and the pleasure of mine eye, Is only Helena (IV. i. 163-170). As the quotation proves, the love potion worked, and he is deeply in love with Helena and has absolutely no love for Hermia– saying it “melted like snow. ” This change of affection presents a problem due to the fact that his love is forced and not authentic.
In her article “The Complexities of Love” Shakespearian Critic Catherine Belsey concurs that the love between Demetrius and Helena is contrived, “It is also delightfully absurd, when we bear in mind that it is the instant effect of Robin Goodfellow’s love-juice, and represents a vision of Helena that Demetrius was quite unable to see his sight was bewitched” (Belsey 118). What Besley is saying is, looking at it from an outside view, it is quite ironic and absurd that Demetrius would be completely in love with Helena, but for all the wrong reasons.
Belsey says that their love is not real love, and that in itself is an example of love not taking a smooth course. Helena being in love with a man who does not love her, facing Demetrius’ cruelty, and finally the ersatz love Demetrius has for Helena demonstrates complications in love. Additionally, another example of love not running smooth is Oberon and Titania’s relationship. To start, Oberon is extremely jealous of Titania’s Indian boy. Oberon argues, “Do you amend it then; it lies in you. / Why should Titania cross her Oberon? / I do but beg a little changeling boy, / To be my henchman” (II. i. 18-121). ) Oberon is jealous that Titania has the boy, and not his.
Not only is he jealous of his good looks and desire to have the boy instead of his wife, but he is jealous that he cannot have Titania all to himself. It is obvious that Oberon is jealous, as anyone would be if their lover had a deep attraction to someone else. Titania says she “never had so sweet a changeling” (II. i. 22). She “Crowns him with flowers and makes him all her joy” (II. i. 27). Titania then goes to explain that the boy’s mother was a votaress of her order. Meaning that the boy’s mother was one of her most devoted worshipers.
She explains that the boy’s mother has died, and he is the closest thing left to her. Surprisingly, this angers Oberon and makes him more jealous. He then not only wants to have the boy to himself, but he now craves the bond that Titania had with the child’s mother. Oberon thinks now that the mother has died, she is not capable to give him her full affection. His jealously leads to a fight between the two, which angers Oberon enough to want to put a spell on her. Oberon orders: Having once this juice, I’ll watch Titania when she is asleep, And drop the liquor of it in her eyes; The next thing she waking looks upon Be it a lion, a bear, or wolf, or bull, On meddling monkey, or on busy ape). She shall pursue it with the soul of love.
And ere I take this charm from off her sight (II. i. 177-183) Consequently from the fight, Oberon has his servant, Puck, induce a love spell on Titania. However, not a love spell to fall in a deeper love with him, but instead a spell to fall in love with the first thing she awakes to. Oberon not only does this out of his own jealously, but so he can get the Indian boy to himself. The ongoing quarrel between the lovers are so harsh, that the season take to effect, the summers become winters and so on.
A shakespearian critic Catherine Belsey noted the fighting within the play, “The king and queen of the fairies are old (or rather ageless) married lovers, and they are quarrelling. The play does not ignore the trace of violence that exists within the love when the other person fails to conform to the lover’s idealized image” (Belsey 120). Belsey makes the point that even though couples get married, and are old, they still fight. She also says that in the play violence, or fighting, is prevalent due to one person not being able to fulfill another’s needs or wants.
For this play, that is Titania failing to give Oberon her full, undivided attention due to the Indian boy. The jealousy and fighting between the two proves the difficulties in love’s course. Lastly, another example of a love that does not run an easy course is the young lovers Lysander and Hermia. One example is Hermia’s father has decided that she must marry Demetrius, who she is not in love with. Egeus threatens: To stubborn harshness. And my gracious Duke Be it so she will not here before you Grace Consent to marry with Demetrius, I beg the ancient privilege of Athens: As she is mine, I may dispose of her;
Which shall either be to this gentlemen, Or to her death, according to our law Immediately provided in that case. (I. i. 38-45) Hermia is in love with Lysander, not Demetrius. However in Athens, women follow what their fathers want, and if she refuses her father’s wishes, she will be punished by the law– which is death. A critic who wrote the article, “The Lover’s Transformation”, Alexander Leggatt, explained, “When Hermia and Egeus look at each other, they see two different people, for she sees with the eyes of love, and he with the eyes of cantankerous old age, obsessed with its own authority” (Leggatt 126).
The critic is writing specifically about the part of the play when Hermia says that she wishes her father could see Lysander through her eyes. The way that Hermia and her father look at Lysander are completely different, as Hermia sees him with love, and Egeus sees him with his old eyes, knowing that he has total power over Hermia and Lysander’s relationship. One last problem that the couple face is when Lysander falls in love with Helena. Lysander harshfully says: Ay, by my life; And never did desire to see thee more. Therefore be out of hope, of question, of doubt;
Be certain! Nothing truer; ‘tis no jest That I do hate thee, and love Helena. (III. ii. 49) The quotation shows Shakespeare’s idea to complicate issues further. Which is when Oberon has Puck put a love potion on a young boy eyes to fall in love with the first thing he awakes to, which Oberon meant Demetrius, as Oberon saw that Helena loves him deeply, and Demetrius is ungrateful. However, Puck thinks that the boy Oberon is talking about must be Lysander, and quickly put the potion on his eyes. Comically, the first thing Lysander wakes up to is Helena.
The rigorous path that love has taken with Hermia and Lysander, as they go through Hermia’s father forbidding her to be with her lover, Egeus not understanding Hermia’s love for Lysander, and Lysander falling in love with Hermia’s best friend, Helena, goes to show that love never takes an easy route. In conclusion, the course of love is twisted, complicated, and does not go as expected. Just like Lysander said, “The course of love never did run smooth” (). Shakespeare shows this in the novel through Hermia and Lysander, Helena and Demetrius, and Oberon and Titania.
It is also displayed in the play that “What’s meant to be will always find a way”- Yearwood, Trisha. Quotefancy. com. Web. 13 May 2016. The lovers that were meant to be ended up together. Some examples being Hermia and Lysander were able to be together and Helena got her lover. Throughout the play we can see Shakespeare mess with the theme of love as he changes who the characters love very frequently. He shows what appears to be true love can be changed and manipulated. The changing of love and fighting between the couples show that the course of true love never does run smooth but when there is actually true love then it will prevail.