May 2

The lunatic, the lover and the poet / Are of imagination all compact

Lovers and madmen have such seething brains,
Such shaping fantasies, that apprehend
More than cool reason ever comprehends.
The lunatic, the lover and the poet
Are of imagination all compact:
One sees more devils than vast hell can hold,
That is, the madman: the lover, all as frantic,
Sees Helen’s beauty in a brow of Egypt:
The poet’s eye, in fine frenzy rolling,
Doth glance from heaven to earth, from earth to heaven;
And as imagination bodies forth
The forms of things unknown, the poet’s pen
Turns them to shapes and gives to airy nothing
A local habitation and a name.
Such tricks hath strong imagination,
That if it would but apprehend some joy,
It comprehends some bringer of that joy;
Or in the night, imagining some fear,
How easy is a bush supposed a bear!

Paraphrase Theseus’ speech at the beginning  Act V, scene i.

Then, analyze it.  Take your time.  This is a complicated speech.  Explain what you think Shakespeare is really trying to teach the audience member or reader in this speech.

As always, please follow the rules of standard written English, and don’t forget to respond to at least one other classmate’s response in this thread.

MND #6
 


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Posted May 2, 2019 by equinson in category A Midsummer Night's Dream

26 thoughts on “The lunatic, the lover and the poet / Are of imagination all compact

  1. jane

    Lovers and madman have similar minds that show imaginative fantasies,
    Logic and reason can’t understand.
    The lunatic, lover and poet are all frauds.
    They see more monsters than the ones in hell.
    The madman does. But the lover is just as crazy.
    The lover sees beauty in ugly things.
    The poet looks from earth to heaven and his imagination goes wild.
    They write and make things that are unreal seem important and give purpose to nothingness.
    The tricks need imagination,
    If it would give joy, it understands who gives the joy.
    Or imagining fear or seeing a bush as a bear.

    Shakespeare’s speech is very deep and says many things. What stood out to me was what he said about poets. He relates them to lunatics, and says they are made up. That they put purpose in things that aren’t important and use they’re imaginations a lot. I thought it was also interesting that he says lovers are frauds, especially since he writes a lot about love. He says that they find beauty in things that aren’t beautiful, which is why they’re insane, but I think that this can be related to the rest of the play. The love potion made Bottom fall in love with Titania, but then when he reflects on his love, he just says it must have never happened because it was so crazy and not logical. I think Shakespeare takes the key elements of his plays and says they’re crazy to make the readers take a step back and realize that the characters they get so invested in aren’t real.

    Reply
  2. Emma Garbowitz

    Lovers and madmen has such hectic brains,
    such as constructing fantasies, that comprehend
    more than straight reason could ever understand.
    The crazy man, the lover and the poet
    are all made up of imagination:
    One sees more devils than there are in hell,
    who is, the madman: the lover, who is distraught,
    can find beauty in even the ugliest of things:
    The poet’s eye, rolling excitedly,
    Does look from heaven to earth and from earth to heaven;
    And is beginning to imagine things
    The form of all things unknown, the poet’s pen
    turns the unknown shapes into something and gives things that seem like nothing
    a purpose.
    Such tricks have strong imagination
    That is it would, perceive some happiness,
    It understands the person who brought that joy;
    Or in the night, imagining some fear,
    how easy is a bush is seen as a bear!

    Shakespeare’s speech through Theseus contains some very intriguing and interesting ideas. For the majority of the speech he is talking about how poets, lovers, and madmen, all have something in common: being imaginative. However, as a poet himself, Shakespeare had a very interesting depiction in the way he describes poets. He is explaining that they basically have the power of creating something magical or wonderful out of nothing. However, poets can also create pictures of darkness and evil. In the end of Theseus’ (or Shakespeare’s) speech, he is talking about the idea of how things can be looked upon in different ways. For example of how a bush can look like a bear during the night. Imagination doesn’t necessarily have to always be for lovely things such as books or dreams they could also cause fear and nightmares. In my opinion, imagination is an interesting but deceiving topic. Sometimes, your imagination can cause you to look or seem like a fool; just like Bottom. He wouldn’t dare tell anyone about what he THOUGHT happened that night. He couldn’t tell if it was true or not. It is difficult to separate your imagination from reality because you do not know one hundred percent if something is true. The most unimaginable thing happened to Bottom in this play yet he doesn’t even know if it truly happened. Therefore, it is hard to determine what is the truth and what you are imagining because at this point in the play, anything can happen, which is what Shakespeare is trying to tell us.

    Reply
    1. caseyz

      I agree, Bottom finds what happened extremely hard to believe so he decided it was a dream. I think he had a hard time figuring out if the queen of fairies really fell in love with him, or if it was all just a figment of his imagination.

      Reply
    2. trinityt

      I agree. Your imagination can sometimes deceive you from reality, which makes it hard to tell reality from imaginations, just like Bottom after he woke up from his “dream” in the play.

      Reply
  3. maxwellw

    Yes, strange and totally made up too.
    I’ll never believe any of these old legends or fairy tales.
    Lovers and madmen hallucinate about things that sane people just can’t understand.
    Lunatics, lovers, and poets all are ruled by their overactive imaginations.
    some people think they see devils and monsters everywhere—and they’re lunatics. Lovers are just as crazy, and think a dark-skinned gypsy is the most gorgeous woman in the world.
    Poets are always looking around like they’re having a fit, confusing the mundane with the otherworldly, and describing things in their writing that don’t exist.
    All these people have such strong imaginations that, when they feel happy, they assume a god or some other supernatural being is bringing that happiness to them.
    Or if they’re afraid of something at night, they look at the shrubbery and imagine it’s a wild bear!

    In this speech, Theseus explains that one’s perception, whether a lunatic, lover or poet, colors his or her beliefs in what he sees. Theseus believes that imagination governs all three of these areas in that imagination deals with a person’s perceptions. For example, if someone perceives he is loved, regardless of whether it is true, he believes it and acts accordingly. The lunatic and poet also deal with life based upon perceptions, which Theseus credits to imagination. If this is the case, that people respond to situations, and therefore each other, based not upon a reality, but upon what they imagine to the case. One might ask what the other person who is the object of such affection is supposed to do if there is not a real love, but simply someone else’s perception of love.

    Reply
  4. caseyz

    Theseus:

    People in love and madmen don’t always think straight,
    They can imagine many things
    More than anyone can understand.
    The lunatic the lover and the poet
    All have an imagination:
    Some people think they see a lot of devils,
    These are the madmen, The lover, who is just as crazy,
    Who still manages to see beauty despite the true ugliness:
    The poet has an intense imagination,
    They look at everything;
    As they let their imaginations go,
    They make stuff up, and as the poet writes,
    They can create things that don’t exist
    And gives them a name that becomes common.
    They have such strong imaginations,
    That when they are happy,
    They believe that someone brought that joy;
    Or at night if they are scared,
    They can believe that a bush is actually a bear.

    In this speech, Shakespeare is explaining that lovers, madmen and poets are actually very similar. He says that they all use their imagination to create things that aren’t there. Madmen are able to do this simply because they are hallucinating but lovers and poets are different. Lovers can be so blinded by love that they can make themselves believe that something that is relatively ugly or undesirable is actually perfect. Poets have the ability to create new things by manipulating words. This goes back to the whole theme of the play which has something to do with the difference between fantasy and reality.

    Reply
  5. Mylesn

    Lovers and madmen have similar minds,
    in creating dreams, that understand
    more than simple reason and logic can.
    The lunatic, the lover and the poet
    Are of similar thinking:
    One sees more devils than hell itself,
    That is, the madman: the lover, all are distraught,
    Sees beauty in an ugly thing
    The poet’s eye, in a frenzy of motion
    He glances from heaven to earth, from earth to heaven;
    And as thoughts come forth,
    and forms things of unknown, the poet’s pen
    Turns them to words and gives to nothing
    A form and a name.
    Such tricks have strong imagination,
    That if it would but give some joy,
    It comprehends the bringer of that joy;
    Or in the night, imagining some fear,
    How easy is a bush supposed a bear!

    This speech by Theseus is Shakespeare talking to the reader. This speech describes three very different people and shows that they share one thing, their mindset. All three people, the lover, the poet, and the madman, all share their imaginative mindset. I believe each of these people represent an aspect of the story. The lover, this represents the aristocratic lovers who in there adventures in the woods lead them to be caught in the meddling of Fairies. Love is something that cannot be explained with reason. Supposedly Lysander was in love with Hermia, but one potion changed that in an instant. That had no reasoning behind it at all. Dimitrius was originally in love with Hermia and in the end he loved Helena. None of this was caused by reason or logic, it was simply because of Fairies. The poet, I believe this to be both Shakespeare and Bottom. The imagination of a poet leads them to write works of literature from nothing, a cloud in the sky could inspire a two hour long play. A misadventure in the forest and an interaction with fairies could lead a poet, Shakespeare and Bottom, to write a play to explain this. And finally the madman, if you had an encounter with fairies and you tried to tell someone, would they believe you? Or something completely unbelievable happened, and you cannot say what it is so you try to express it in another way. This is exactly what Bottom says he will do. This is how I believe that the madman, the poet, and the lover are all connected in this story.

    Reply
  6. angelicac1

    Lovers and madmen have wild brains,
    Such active imaginations that
    Reason won’t understand.
    The lunatic, the lover, and the poet
    Are controlled by really active imaginations:
    Those who see more devils that hell can hold,
    They would be madmen: Lovers are frantic too,
    For they see Helen’s beauty in the ugly:
    Poets are always looking around as if in a frenzy fit,
    Always connecting earthy and heavenly things;
    This is what the imagination does
    It forms detailed fantasies from a simple pen
    They turn things from their imagination
    And write them as if they were actual things.
    Tricks like these need an imagination,
    That if they would recognize joy,
    Then they view joy bigger than it is;
    Or in the night, when imagining fear,
    They just imagined a bush as a bear

    Shakespeare is trying to give the message that lovers, poets, and madmen suffer from too much imagination. However the way that they use their wide imaginations is as a trick to understand the world around them by turning certain things “into shapes.” Fundamentally, Shakespeare is saying ideas about reality and imagination. That lovers, madmen, and poets have too much imagination to the point where they are unable to see the hard truth and reality, while their realities to them are much more interesting. On the other hand, those without much of an imagination see the world plainly and more realistically. Shakespeare’s message is to say that imagination changes people’s perspectives about reality and the world around them.

    Reply
  7. Laila

    Lovers and maniacs have such weird minds,
    They create fantasies that consist of
    No known logic.
    The lunatic, the lover, and the poet
    Are made up entirely of imagination:
    One of these men will see more devils that hell can hold,
    that would be the maniac: the lover, just as frantic,
    Sees extreme beauty in ugliness:
    The poet’s eye, looks around frantically,
    Glances from heaven to earth, from earth to heaven;
    and as imagination comes through
    the poet creates things that don’t exist, and
    turns them to shapes, and gives non-existent things
    a home and a name.
    These tricks have a lot of creativity too
    That if one were to feel joy,
    they’d believe it was someone granting them such joy
    or in the night, imagining fear,
    How easy it is to mistake a bush for a bear!

    In this speach, Shakespeare speaks of imagination. He takes three different people: a lover, a madman, and a poet, and shows what they have in common: they all have strong imaginations. The madman imagines things such as devils that aren’t really there. The lover imagines beauty in things that aren’t beautiful. Lastly, the poets imagination is able to create almost anything and bring it to life. At the end of this speech, Shakespeare speaks about how it is so easy to mistake one thing for another because of our imaginations, like a bush and a bear. This leads us back to the theme of dream versus reality. Just like Bottom believed reality was a dream, the way our minds perceive dreams and reality can often trick us. Sometimes, there isn’t a clear line between what’s real and what’s fake.

    Reply
    1. Mikayla Friedman

      I really like your take on what Shakespeare is saying! Now that I think about it, all three of these people definitely have strong imaginations, which makes them who they are.

      Reply
  8. trinityt

    Lovers and madmen has such agitated minds,
    Such as creating fantasies, that comprehend
    More than actual reason ever comprehends.
    The lunatic, the lover, and the poet
    are all made up of imagination:
    One sees more devils than hell can hold:
    That’s the madman. The lover, just as insane,
    Sees beauties even in the most ugliest thing.
    The poet’s eyes, in a frenzy rolling,
    Glance from the heaven to earth, from earth to heaven,
    And as imagination brings forth
    The unknowns, the poet’s pen
    Turns them into shapes and gives the nothingness
    A meaning and a name.
    Such people have such strong imagination
    That, if it receive some joy,
    It would try to figure out the bringer of that joy.
    Or in the night, imagining some fear,
    Sees a bush as a bear!

    The speech of Theseus (or Shakespeare’s) in Act V, scene i, provided some interesting ideas. The speech talks about how similar the madman, the lover, and the poet are by all of them having imaginative minds. Being a poet himself, Shakespeare describes poet in an interesting way in this speech. According to the speech, poets has the power to make something special out of nothing. The speech also discussed that imaginations can be both bad and good. Usually, people think of imaginations as something good, like books and dreams. However, it could also be interpreted as fears. For example, when you’re feeling scared at night, you can imagine a bush as a bear. Something harmless, like a bush, can be seen as something that’s potentially dangerous, like a bear. It’s just like how in the speech it said that the lover can see something ugly as something beautiful. Therefore, sometimes your imagination can deceive you from reality, and makes it hard to tell which is which, imagination or reality. I think Shakespeare is trying to tell the readers/audience that at this point in the play, it’s hard to determine what is the truth and that anything could happen.

    Reply
  9. Emily Rurak

    People in love and crazy have such strange brains,
    making fantasies that
    someone with a normal brain could not ever imagine.
    The crazy person, the lover, and the writer
    all have the same imagination:
    One sees more monsters than hell has,
    that is the crazy person: the lover, is just as frantic,
    Sees beauty in everything:
    The poet looks at heaven and earth,
    and eath to heaven;
    And imagines something from both
    Things that aren’t there, the writers pen
    makes them into shapes from nothing
    All of these people have such a strong imagination,
    that when they are happy,
    they think something brings them joy;
    or in the night, when they are scared,
    it is easy to think a bush is a bear!

    Theseus is saying that in many ways lovers, crazy people, and writers are all the same. All of them create something that is not really there, and just in their minds. For crazy people, this may be the monsters that haunt them. The monsters do not really exist, they are just in their mind. In the case of lovers, he is saying that they find beauty in things that are not really there. He is particularly talking about the lovers in this play, who had a strange story about how everyone changed their mind about who they loved overnight. He does not believe them, as much as he would believe a child saying there is a monster under their bed. Moreover he is saying that poets create something out of nothing. This is an interesting idea since in means that Shakesphere is saying that he created this very play out of something that is not there. In many crucial scenes the audience is left to contemplate what is reality, and this quote adds to that. If Shakesphere is saying that his play was created out of nothing then it leaves to question if parts of his play are actually even happening. We know that fairies in real life aren’t real, but what if they are just an illusion in the play itself. Perhaps Bottom really did just have a dream and the lovers were just confused in the forest.

    Reply
  10. Hannah P.

    Lovers and madman have similar minds that show fantasies straight from their imaginations, that logic and reason would never understand.
    The lunatic, lover and poet are all frauds, for they see more monsters than the ones in hell than the madman does.
    But the lover is just as crazy as the others, for the lover sees beauty in ugly things.
    The poet looks from earth to heaven and his imagination goes wild.
    They write and make things that are unreal seem like it is part of reality and gives purpose to nothingness.
    The tricks need imagination.
    If it would give joy, it understands who gives the joy.
    Or imagining fear as if one is seeing a bush as a bear.

    Shakespeare is telling the audience about three different people: a madman, a lover, and a poet. He claims that they all have one thing in common: an imaginative mind. The madman pretends to see things that aren’t really there, almost like a hallucination. The lover makes beauty out of ugliness, because to them, it is what is on the inside that counts. The poet explores ideas and creates ideas out of nothingness. This is somthing that applies to the entirety of the play because of the multiple different storylines. The madman is shown when Bottom believed that last night was just a dream and everyone thought he was crazy. The four lovers represent the lovers because they, minus Hermia and Helena, fall in love with different people at different points in the play. The poet is shown from above, when Shakepeare created the wonderful world that A Midsummer Night’s Dream takes place in.

    Reply
  11. Zoe

    lovers and madman have such similar and imaginative minds
    Such dreams can never truly be understood through reason
    The crazy person, the lover, and the poet
    all have such similar minds
    one sees the many crazy things more than anyone else does
    That is the crazy person; the lover is frantic,
    and sees the beauty in things that are ugly
    The poet glances from heaven to earth and sees everything
    and as imagination creates many new things, the poet’s pen
    turns them into tangible things and gives them a new name
    such things are created from imagination
    That it brings such joy
    And they understand who brought this joy
    Or during the night where the poet brings fear
    And can make a bush seem as scary as a bear

    Shakespeare creates a whole monologue of his own thoughts through the character Theseus about poets, lovers, and madmen. He notes how all of these people are absorbed by their own imagination. The madman is insane because he is mentally ill, the lover is completely in love with someone else in his own mind, and the poet illustrates these kinds of characters by coming up with a story using his mind. The three characters are also connected because they are involved in stories. The poet is needed for the script and the lover and madman are needed to make the story interesting. Shakespeare reaches out to the audience through characters’ lines more at the end of the play then I’ve seen in either Romeo and Juliet or the entire beginning of our story.

    Reply
  12. Sunna

    Lovers and madmen have similar thoughts that show their fantasies
    That logic cannot understand
    The lunatix, the lover, and the poet are all imaginative
    The first one sees more devils than they have in hell
    This is the madman: the lover, who is distressed,
    Sees the beauty in everything
    The poet, who is excited
    He sees life as it is;
    And as he imagines what could be
    He begins to imagine and writes his thoughts down
    He turns them into reality
    These people have a strong imagination
    That it would bring joy
    Or bring about fear
    It is easy to mistake a bush for a bear!

    In this speech, Theseus is talking about how different people see the world. The madman sees the world negatively, as though it is full of devils and horrible things. The lover sees the world in a “glass half full” way. These are the types of people who can see the beauty in everything. They see the world as a wonderful and joyful place, and they are constantly optimistic. The poet sees the world in a realistic way. They don’t delude themselves into thinking that the world is a completely horrible place or a completely perfect place. They are also able to put their thoughts on paper, and are able to create a story with their imagination.

    Reply
  13. Sunna

    Lovers and madmen have similar thoughts that show their fantasies
    That logic cannot understand
    The lunatix, the lover, and the poet are all imaginative
    The first one sees more devils than they have in hell
    This is the madman: the lover, who is distressed,
    Sees the beauty in everything
    The poet, who is excited
    He sees life as it is;
    And as he imagines what could be
    He begins to imagine and writes his thoughts down
    He turns them into reality
    These people have a strong imagination
    That it would bring joy
    Or bring about fear
    It is easy to mistake a bush for a bear!

    In this speech, Theseus is talking about how different people see the world. The madman sees the world negatively, as though it is full of devils and horrible things. The lover sees the world in a “glass half full” way. These are the types of people who can see the beauty in everything. They see the world as a wonderful and joyful place, and they are constantly optimistic. The poet sees the world in a realistic way. They don’t delude themselves into thinking that the world is a completely horrible place or a completely perfect place. They are also able to put all of their thoughts on paper, and are able to create a story with their imagination.

    Reply
  14. Mikayla Friedman

    Lovers and madmen have angry minds,
    Creative imaginations that conceive
    More than reason and logic ever understands.
    The lunatic, the lover, and the poet
    Are made up entirely of imagination.
    One who sees more devils than are in hell:
    That is the madman. The lover, just as insane,
    Sees beauty like that of Helen of Troy in ugliness.
    The poet’s eye, which is always rolling crazily,
    Glances from heaven to earth, from earth to heaven,
    And as the imagination imagines
    The form of unknown things, the poet’s pen
    Turns them into shapes and gives a home and a name to nothing.
    Such skills require strong imagination
    That, if it would create some happiness,
    It includes the bringer of that happiness.
    Or in the night, if you imagine fear,
    It is easy to mistake a bush for a bear!

    Although lunatics, lovers, and poets are all so different, Shakespeare says they are all products of the imagination. What I think Shakespeare means by this is that there is no such thing as someone only being crazy, or only being beautiful, or only being a poet. Everyone has a little bit of all of these people in them. This is why someone who is only one of these things can only be created by the imagination. This can be shown by various characters in a Midsummer Night’s Dream. Helena, Hermia, Demetrius, and Lysander are all lovers, but they can be crazy at times. Helena was nuts when she begged Demetrius to love her, even though he didn’t. She was willing to do anything for her! Titania and Oberon remind me of the poets because they are magical and they are of a high social class. The way Shakespeare describes a poet almost makes it sound like the poet has some otherworldly powers that allow him to make something out of nothing. But Titania and Oberon are also lovers, and they also act crazy over possession of the Indian boy. I think Shakespeare is ultimately saying that people cannot be defined by one thing. Everyone has different aspects to their personality and that is what makes everyone unique.

    Reply
    1. Emma Garbowitz

      I like how you made connections to all of the character’s relationships with each other such as Titania and Oberon and Demetrius and Helena. I wonder if their love is true or if it’s all just a part of their imagination.

      Reply
  15. kate m

    Lovers and crazy people have such odd brains
    Such unique fantasies, that learns
    More than cool reason ever understands.
    The lunatic, the lover and the poet
    They are of their overactive imagination:
    One sees more devils than the broad hell has,
    That is, the lunatic: the lover, all as delirious,
    Sees Helen’s beauty in a face of a egyptian woman:
    The poet’s eye, is always rolling
    It glances from heaven to earth, from earth to heaven;
    And as their strong imagination comes forward
    The unknown delusions, the poet’s pen
    Turns them to shapes and gives life out of nothing
    A setting and a name.
    Such tactics brings strong imagination,
    That if it would have some joy,
    It amplifies that joy;
    Or in the night, imagining fear,
    How easy they see a bush as a bear!

    In this speech, Theseus refers to lovers, lunatics and poets all having similar minds. His main reasoning for this claim is because they all use their imaginations to come up with thoughts or feelings that were derived from nothing and are not real. For instance, poets use their imaginations to write a story out of nothing. Madmen have visions with their imaginations that are not true. Lastly, lovers find beauty in their partner even if others do not. Theseus says that there is no such thing as a lover,poet or madman, he says that everyone is the same in a way and your imagination is what defines you. Basically, shakespeare comes out and says that everything is all in your head. This alludes to the whole point of the book, everyone is just imagining it. Maybe Shakespeare refers to the two couples in the woods as the lovers, the actors as the madmen and himself as the poet.

    Reply
  16. josepha4

    Lovers and Madmen have crazy brains.
    They make stories nobody else can comprehend.
    The lunatic, the lover and the poet are all similar.
    One sees to many devils that not even hell could hold.
    The lover can see beauty where no one else can.
    The poet looks from the ground to the sky and
    imagines crazy things out of nothing.
    If he could give joy to others they would believe
    some one granted them that joy.
    Or imagining fear in the night of a bush being a bear.

    In Shakespeare’s Monologue he compares the personalities of three different types of people: The poet, The lunatic and the lover. He thinks they are all full of imagination and their heads are up in the clouds. The lunatic imagines devils everywhere and is pictured as crazy. The lover imagines beauty in everyone even where there is ugliness. And the Poet can create a bear from a bush! He looks all around and can create story’s from things all around him. Maybe Shakespeare is saying that none of these types of people are trustworthy? But Shakespeare is a poet as well. He created the A Midsummer Night’s Dream from his surroundings so he is describing himself. Maybe The lovers are Lysander and Demetrius because nobody loved Helena and they “found” love there. The lunatic may be portrayed through Bottom. He has seen the fairies and the crazy dream he had which was really the prank that Puck and Oberon played on him. And if he told the “dream’ he had he would be labeled a lunatic. Shakespeare reached out to the audience through Theseus and made the reader question everything that was being said through the novel which brings back the original question of what is reality and what is fantasy?

    Reply
  17. johnh1

    Madmen and lovers all have crazy minds
    they create fantasies that do more
    than logic can explain
    the lunatic, the lover, and the poet
    are all parts of how imagination is
    one sees countless demons
    that is the madman, the lover is as crazy
    and sees beauty in even ugliness
    the poet’s eye looks about
    it looks at the ground and the sky
    and as imagination starts to exist
    the poet’s pen causes things that have never existed
    to become shapes and gives nothingness
    existence and a name
    this is a strong kind of imagination
    these things cause joy and
    understand the one who made the joy
    or they can cause fear
    a bush can easily look like a bear

    What I think Shakespeare is trying to say is that some of the most. Beautiful things in life are really crazy. He compares Lovers and Poets. Love and poetry are typically considered to be nice things that bring joy. He even talks about how poetry makes something out of nothing. However, he also talks about Lunatics. He describes how crazy people see devils. These seem like different things but according to the text they are all part of Imagination. What I think Shakespeare is trying to say is that without the craziness the world would be a less beautiful thing.

    Reply
  18. stephaniec

    Lovers and madmen have such intense brains,
    that they make up fantasies, that are too difficult to understand.
    The Lunatic, the lover and the poet
    are controlled by their wild imaginations.
    One sees more monsters than there are in hell,
    That is, the lunatic: the lover, just as messed-up and distraught,
    Sees beauty in the ugly:
    The poet’s eye looking all around,
    Glances up, then down.
    And as their imagination spins, the poet’s pen
    Turns them to shapes an creates something out of nothing
    Such tricks have strong imagination
    That if it would, spread joy
    It would understand who it gives it to
    Or in the night, imagining some fear,
    How easy is it for a bush to look like a bear.

    In this speech, Shakespeare is emphasizing imagination. He is saying how lunatics, lovers, and even poets all have a wild, insane, and creative imagination that exceeds the normal imagination. In the play, Shakespeare expresses this idea by using potions to make people fall madly in love with someone who is considered ugly, like Helena or Bottom with a head of an ass. In addition, Shakespeare and Bottom are both the poets. Shakespeare wrote the play that consist of fairies, magic flowers, and complicated relationships. Meanwhile, Bottom believes all that occurred was a dream, and as he tries to explain it he sounds delusional. Finally, together Oberon and Puck could be seen as lunatics because they were the puppet masters behind the scenes causing chaos in people’s relationships and causing his own wife to fall in love with an ass all so that he could take a child away from her.

    Reply
  19. Maddie

    Loving people and crazy people have such strange minds,
    Such crazy imaginations, that learn
    More than logical reasons ever understand.
    The crazy man, the loving person and the poet
    Are completely made up:
    One can see the devil,
    That is, the crazy person: the loving one, just as crazy,
    Sees beauty in things that are ugly:
    The poet’s eye, looking all over the Earth,
    Looks from the sky to the ground, and from the ground to the sky;
    And comes up with ideas
    Of things no one knows, and the poet’s pen
    Turns them into substance and gives meaning to anything
    That ability is strong imagination,
    And if it would be joyful,
    It imagines a bringer of joy;
    Or at night, imagining fear,
    How easily a bush is confused with a bear!

    I think in this speech Shakespeare is trying to teach us that there are three types of people in the world. There are loving people, crazy people, and poets. In his eyes, poets seem to be the most important people according to Shakespeare, which makes sense because he is a poet. He says that poets observe all of their surroundings and can make anything meaningful. Shakespeare is trying to convince us readers that poets are the most important and useful people.

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  20. Madi R.

    Lovers and madmen have such chaotic brains,
    Such as building fantasies, that capture
    Instead of reasoning to grasp the concept.
    The lunatic, the lover and the poet
    Are made up entirely of imagination:
    Some people see devils and monsters everywhere,
    That person is a lunatic: the lovers, just as crazy,
    Think even the ugliest people are beautiful:
    Poets are always looking all around in a frenzy,
    Looking from earth to heaven making their head spin;
    And as they use their imaginations
    They form things, And make them seem important
    A place with a name.
    These tricks need a strong imagination,
    It does bring some joy,
    But it consumes the bringer of that joy;
    Like in the night, imagining fears,
    Or thinking a bush is a bear.

    In the speech, Shakespeare compares three types of people the Lunatic, the lover and the poet. He states that these three people are all imagination and they do some crazy things. A lunatic sees devils and monsters everywhere. Such as every person unlike yourself is a threat or monster until they earn your trust. Or how a lover finds love in the ugliest things. Like how archaeologists look for artifacts and skeletons because they enjoy it. The poet forms different things and make them seem important. Such as when a person uses propaganda to persuade people to buy something they really don’t need. He ends the monologue by explaining how using your imagination brings joy but also fears. Like a child afraid of the dark and imagining scary things and their worst fears. Could the lunatic, the lover and the poet be character traits of one normal everyday person?

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  21. Brishti

    Lovers and madmen both have a lot going on in their brains,
    Such active imaginations, that understand
    More than normal, rational people understand.
    The lunatic, the lover and the poet
    Are made up of imagination:
    The one who views the world with devils,
    That’s the madman: the lover, just as wild,
    Sees a gypsy and thinks it is as beautiful as Helen of Troy:
    The poet, looking all over,
    Glances back and forth from the earthly and heavenly;
    And while their imagination comes to life
    In the form of unknown things, the poet writes them and
    Gives them to life like they have
    A place and a name.
    These ideas play tricks on imagination,
    If it brings joy to a person,
    That person thanks a heavenly being for bringing that joy;
    Or if they are stricken by fear in the night,
    It is very easy to mistake a bush for a bear!

    This idea of Shakespeare conveying his feelings about poets reminds me of a quote from another famous playwrite/poet. Oscar Wilde said: “Man is least himself when he talks in his own person. Give him a mask, and he will tell you the truth.” Shakespeare, a poet, is essentially conveying his own feelings about the world, and more specifically, poets, through Theseus, which is his mask. In this speech, Theseus talks of three types of people in this world: the madmen, the lovers, and the poets. First, he describes the madmen. These are the people who only sift through life with the darks in mind. They pass through life with a cynical and pessimistic view, and lead a life believing that everyone is a devil. The next type he describes are the lovers. Shakespeare describes the lovers as being “all as frantic” as the madmen. Based on how Shakespeare generally writes of lovers, it is almost certain that he thinks they are “frantic”. An obvious example is in Romeo and Juliet, but in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, almost all of the lovers behave really impulsive, hectic, and dramatic. But what is even more interesting is how Shakespeare says that the lovers “See Helen’s beauty in a brow of Egypt”. Instead of looking at the world through cynical lens, the lovers think of the world as being full of beauty. While this may sound good, it could sometimes lead to consequences where they are too young and naive to know about the seriousness and the lasting consequences of their actions, like almost all of the main cast in Romeo and Juliet. Finally, Shakespeare describes the poet. In the most basic terms, Shakespeare is writting about how poets see the world with deeper meaning. He tells of how they look “from heaven to earth, from earth to heaven.” Here, he says that they look in all possible directions, and connects both the gods of the heavens and the mortals of the earth. The second important point Shakespeare makes about poets is how they take their imagination and “Turns them to shapes and gives to airy nothing A local habitation and a name.” Shakespeare is saying that poets do more than simply write about things they see; they give it a whole new life and being that has a home and which has a distinct character. Poets give the world a new sense of life. And Shakespeare does just that. He writes sonnets and makes it more than just words on a paper- he makes them into an expirience that the reader gets to go through when they read it. By connecting the two dots of looking at the deeper meaning and actually bringing that meaning to life, Shakespeare shows that it is a rare ability, which makes the poets stand out from the rest. At this point, it is no longer Theseus speaking any longer; it is Shakespeare. Behind the poem, it is the poet with the pen. At the end of the speech, Shakespeare makes it clear that the way you are depends on the way you view the world. The lover may thank the heavenly angels for their success, and the madmen might mistake a bush for a bear. But a poet will think deeper and extract the knowledge from their minds and use it to birth life from the tip of their pens. All three of these peole are made up of imagination, and Shakespeare leaves it up to the audience to decide how to channel that imagination into your own perception of your encounters in the world.

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