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Theme of Love in Midsummer Night’s Dream | Literature Assignment Help

The plot starts with the preparation of a wedding where Theseus, duke of Athens, is set to marry Hippolyta, queen of the Amazons. Hermia, the daughter of Egeus, loves Lysander and is warned of the implications to follow should she chose to marry another man by the duke. Lysander and Hermia tell Helena, who loves Demetrius, of their impending plan to escape, and the youngsters run away into the woods. In the woods, Oberon, king of fairies, and his queen, Titania has a quarrel regarding possession of an Indian boy whom the queen is not eager to give away. Oberon sends out his servant to get a love potion to use on Demetria and Helena, who he overheard quarreling. He, however, places the love potion on the Demetria and Lysander, who both thereafter love Helena as she was the first person to see after waking up. Bottom is also placed under the love spell with Titania, and they enjoy the company of each other until morning, where their sights are restored, and Titania becomes spiteful of Bottom because of his ass head. The sight of Demetria and Lysander is restored, and they both find love in Helena and Hermia, respectively.

Character Analysis

The use of multiple plots in the play shows the varied treatment and experience in love. The play shows that love can be two-sided, whereas there is true love to be cherished; there is also a strong trace of darkness in how the relationships of the characters turn out. The theme of love is explored through character and plot development. The Bottom is a character that symbolizes the meaning of true love in the play as his intentions are pure and honest.

In the play, nearly all the male characters threaten their female counterparts with violence. Theseus won the courtship of Hippolyta by way of military conquest, not through love. He publicly claims to have wooed his love by his sword, drawing explicit connections between love and assault. Oberon humiliates Titania by way of subjecting her to the love portion and ends up with Bottom, who she loathes when the spell wears off. Oberon ploy is to humiliate Titania until she submits to his will (Watson 70). Bottom, on the other hand, was content with his love life and never threatened Titania when they were on both under the love spell. He symbolizes the effect of real love, where two parties are in harmony with each other.

The play offers insight into how people tend to fall in love with those that appear beautiful to them.  The characters in the play often portray love in terms of physical appearance. Helena was mad because she thought Demetria did not love her as she felt she was not as beautiful as Hermia while Lysander made fun of Hermia while under the love spell influence because she was short and Helena was tall. Titania was taken aback when she found out that she had spent the night with Bottom, whom she sees as unattractive. The idea of appearance affects the characters in a way that they blame their contrast in appearance when relationships do not work out. The play emphasizes on love not based on appearance as we see Titania falling in love with Bottom in spite of him describing himself as hairy and itchy.

The play shows the difference between love and infatuation in regard to Lysander and Helena. Lysander was placed under the love spell when Helena woke him up. He thereafter confesses his love for Helena as he describes her as radiant and beautiful. Also, Titania is infatuated towards Bottom as she fell in love with him based on his mellow voice. The feelings of infatuation differ with love as they idolize the person as being perfect with no flaws and are centered on selfishness, where one partner forbids the other from making their own decisions. This is exemplified where Titania forbids Bottom from leaving the forest (Garrison and Kyle 190). The couples in the play are infatuated by their partners as they focus on their personalized image in their minds rather than getting to know someone and find love.


The arguments about love portrayed in the play show how complicated it is, especially when experienced between youngsters as they act irrationally. Bottom character is, however, not deterred by the complicity of love as he endeavors to pursue true love not based on appearance. Most troubles in the play stem from the ignorance of the character’s understanding of love hence humiliate each other and break their internal relationships such as Helena and Hermia. The true hero of the theme of love is Bottom, as there was no incidence where he acted irresponsibly due to love.




Garrison, John, and Kyle Pivetti. “Pacifism and Performance in Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” Explorations in Renaissance Culture 44.2 (2018): 180-201.

Watson, Robert N. “The Ecology of Self in Midsummer Night’s Dream.” Ecocritical Shakespeare. Routledge, 2016. 57-80.

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Theme of Love in Midsummer Night’s Dream | Literature Assignment Help . (2022, July 21). Essay Writing . Retrieved September 27, 2022, from https://www.essay-writing.com/samples/theme-of-love-in-midsummer-nights-dream/
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