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Thread: Measure For Measure : Angelo's monolgue in 2.2

  1. #1

    Question Measure For Measure : Angelo's monolgue in 2.2

    ANGELO: What's this? what's this? is this her fault or mine?
    The tempter, or the tempted, who sins most?
    Not she, nor doth she tempt; but it is I
    That, lying by the violet in the sun,
    Do as the carrion does, not as the flower,
    Corrupt with virtuous season. Can it be
    That modesty may more betray our sense
    Than woman's lightness? Having wasteground enough,
    Shall we desire to raze the sanctuary
    And pitch our evils there? O fie, fie, fie!
    What dost thou? or what are thou, Angelo?
    Dost thou desire her foully for those things
    That make her good? O, let her brother live:
    Thieves for their robbery have authority
    When judges steal themselves. What, do I love her,
    That I desire to hear her speak again,
    And feast upon her eyes? what is't I dream on?
    O cunning enemy that, to catch a saint,
    With saints dost bait thy hook: most dangerous
    Is that temptation that doth goad us on
    To sin in loving virtue. Never could the strumpet
    With all her double vigor, art and nature,
    Once stir my temper; but this virtuous maid
    Subdues me quite. Ever till now,
    When men were fond, I smiled and wondered how.

    I have to do an analysis for this text. But I have no idea what he is saying. If you have the time, can you reply with a literal meaning of this and an analysis. What is the tone, figurative language, form and structure and symbolic meaning. Thanks it would really be appreciated because I spent the last hour trying to find a website that translates and does anaylsis.

  2. #2
    In the fog Charles Darnay's Avatar
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    Dec 2005
    trapped in a prologue.
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    An hour and you have not found No Fear Shakespeare? You found this site before No Fear Shakespeare? Strange.

    Either way, if you read the play, or even just that scene, the context makes this short soliloquy very obvious.
    I wrote a poem on a leaf and it blew away...

  3. #3
    can you please share your thoughts then? I need a clear literal meaning

  4. #4
    Yes, I just went to no fear shakespeare they don't have a translation. I did not read the whole play, I was just given this exerpt. I'm also not smart in this stuff, if you can help me out.

  5. #5
    In the fog Charles Darnay's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    trapped in a prologue.
    Blog Entries
    Huh, NFS doesn't have Measure for Measure....bad form. Mea culpa on that front.

    THat being said, read Act 2, scene 2 of the play (it's not that long.) I don't know why you were given just this soliloquy and asked to write an analysis of it, that seems really unfair since this soliloquy is in reaction to what happens immediately before it. So either you were asked to read the play and decided not to, or something is amiss here. Either way, read Act 2, scene 2
    I wrote a poem on a leaf and it blew away...

  6. #6
    The basic meaning is: Angelo, who sees himself as virtuous, is having sinful thoughts about the virtuous Isabella. He doesn't know whether she is sinful for tempting him or whether he is sinful for having lustful thoughts about her.

    The rest is up to you.

  7. #7
    Registered User Calidore's Avatar
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    Mar 2011
    Heatwave's excellent song "Mind Blowing Decisions" would make a good background for thinking about this.
    You must be the change you wish to see in the world. -- Mahatma Gandhi

  8. #8
    Basically, "Hey I'm a moral man, even to the point of being a saint. What the hell, here comes this gorgeous gal, what is going on, I never had this feeling before, where is it coming from, the devil has got me in his grip. I've heard about this kind of love, but always disbelieved it. I've always been able to avoid tempation, but this is one powerful change going on here. I gotta see her again. I'm done in. I'm doomed."

  9. #9
    Registered User
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    Jul 2008
    Portland, Oregon
    Angelo is the prototype hypocrite who, however, in the silence of his soul has still some qualms of conscience - a rare thing these days.
    You may have an interest in visit the site
    for a somewhat different angle on Shakespeare quotations, from plays, poems and sonnets, including from Measure for Measure

  10. #10
    One of the best Shakespearean monologues.

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