Archetypes In Mid Summer Essay Research Paper

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Archetypes In Mid Summer Essay, Research Paper Archetypes present in Midsummer Night?s Dream A Midsummer Night?s Dream was written and produced during a period of English history that was not the most productive for farming. In fact it was a time when nature was anything but typical. During the years of 1594 ? 97, England had undergone four bad harvests in a row, an odd weather pattern turned normally warm summer days into chilly winter ones. The overwhelming number of peasant farmers, most times superstitious looked for an answer to this unfortunate weather pattern. Due to the fact that these farmers? meals and futures of their families rested in the hands of good harvests, a positive relationship with the forces and spirits of nature was perceived as crucial to their

existence. And this invariably led to what was often termed the ?religion of the soil?. Always wishing to please his target audience, the goundlings, while, of course placating the crown, Shakespeare drew upon these notions of ?fairydom? to further confuse the drama that transpired between reality and appearance. This also gave something or someone for the commoner?s to blame (i.e. Puck) The myth of fairies is one that has existed in countless cultures since the dawn of time. Each culture has its own version of these entities in some form or fashion. The original fairies or faeries, granted gifts to newborn children, such as beauty wealth or kindness. But as time went on and word of mouth increased almost invariably these fairies became diverse in their functions. Great many

cultures continued to have this benevolent approach to fairies but more and more started to believe their activities expanded into other types of meddling in human affairs. The English term ?fairy? originally comes from the Old French faerie, from the Latin fata, which means fate. This means that the very roots of the word are with the classical Greek Fates, believed to control the destiny of the human race on a whole. Nevertheless, the roots of fairies are rather tangled. The notable historians of medieval religion and magic, conclude that ancestral spirits, ghosts, sleeping heroes, fertility spirits and pagan gods can all be discerned in the heterogeneous fairy lore of medieval England. Most traditional folklore suggests that they can only be seen clearly by animals and very

seldomly by humans, although if lucky enough one might catch a fleeting glimpse. These supernatural entities found homes in all manner of places, from underneath the ground to inside of trees and inside bogs and swamplands to on rocks in the guise of other animals such as toads. The stories vary from culture to cultural but all retain very similar elements in each. In mostly Teutonic and Norse folklore, fairies became known as elves, which were originally the spirits of the dead who brought fertility. These elves later became supernatural beings, shaped as humans that were either extremely beautiful or very ugly. This belief that fairies were invisible beings is almost universal. There has been in almost every recorded culture at one time or another a belief in the existence of

the world inhabited by unseen entities. In Scotland they were known as brown elves, brownies, or goblins that lived in farmhouses and other country dwellings. While the people slept they would perform labors for them. They were known as protective creatures and would become attached to a particular place or family. Paracelus, a medieval scholar, described these creatures as gnomes, a race of small, misshapen, dwarf-like creatures, which lived underneath the earth. In France fairies became known as goblins, a slightly more grotesque version of gnomes. Goblins were known to be playful at times, but more often then not evil in their tricks, which could seriously harm people. Goblin smiles were known to curdle blood and their laughs caused milk to sour and fruit to fall from trees.