Benedick & Beatrice – are they really in love?

When you’re reading throughout the play, there are times when you can’t tell t that Benedick & Beatrice are in love or they are just friendly rivals. In act IV and V you can see this between their main interaction on page 1455. Here, Benedick does try and prove to Beatrice that he actually does love her – despite what Don John & the others lied about. Benedick states that he, “protest I love thee,”(1455 line 280) where protest means affirm. He also writes a love sonnet stating how much he loves her – which shows how he is head over heels for her. He tries his best to show this – and completely believes she loves him despite her saying no. He even mentions how they will “be friends first.” (1455 line 295). Benedick is making an effort to change – and to show Beatrice that they could fall in love  and be together.

The question is, is this really love? Even if Benedick is making love songs and trying to please her, does she truly love him? Or can she not? Beatrice mentions how she does not love him and only likes him in “friendly recompense” (1469 line 83). And yet, Hero mentions how Beatrice apparently written a letter. But does that letter really offer proof that she does love him, and they are this close? Does it really show their true feelings for one another? Yes, we can argue that it does based on the lines in Benedick’s song that he does try to portray that he does love her using “lady,” “baby,” and says, “my poor self in love.” (1465). The question is, is this enough proof to show that they do love each-other, and the fact that their love is genuine and not fake?

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One thought on “Benedick & Beatrice – are they really in love?

  1. n02392155

    I agree there is ambiguity about the sincerity of Beatrice and Benedick’s relationship. Given that it was based from the beginning on the deception of others, there seems little solid foundation. From Benedick’s immediate reaction to hearing Beatrice loves him, one could argue he’s more in love with the idea of being in love than he is with her. Evidence of Beatrice’s misgivings towards love would be the fact that she immediately uses his affections to convince him to duel Claudio. Such obvious leveraging and insubstantial foundations make a long, happy relationship unrealistic.

    Reply

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