Plot Overview, (RESUMEN DE LA OBRA):

Leonato, a kindly, respectable nobleman, lives in the idyllic Italian town of Messina. Leonato shares his house with his lovely young daughter, Hero, his playful, clever niece, Beatrice, and his elderly brother, Antonio. As the play begins, Leonato prepares to welcome some friends home from a war. The friends include Don Pedro, a prince who is a close friend of Leonato, and two fellow soldiers: Claudio, a well-respected young nobleman, and Benedick, a clever man who constantly makes witty jokes, often at the expense of his friends. Don John, Don Pedro’s illegitimate brother, is part of the crowd as well. Don John is sullen and bitter, and makes trouble for the others.

When the soldiers arrive at Leonato’s home, Claudio quickly falls in love with Hero. Meanwhile, Benedick and Beatrice resume the war of witty insults that they have carried on with each other in the past. Claudio and Hero pledge their love to one another and decide to be married. To pass the time in the week before the wedding, the lovers and their friends decide to play a game. They want to get Beatrice and Benedick, who are clearly meant for each other, to stop arguing and fall in love. Their tricks prove successful, and Beatrice and Benedick soon fall secretly in love with each other.

But Don John has decided to disrupt everyone’s happiness. He has his companion Borachio make love to Margaret, Hero’s serving woman, at Hero’s window in the darkness of the night, and he brings Don Pedro and Claudio to watch. Believing that he has seen Hero being unfaithful to him, the enraged Claudio humiliates Hero by suddenly accusing her of lechery on the day of their wedding and abandoning her at the altar. Hero’s stricken family members decide to pretend that she died suddenly of shock and grief and to hide her away while they wait for the truth about her innocence to come to light. In the aftermath of the rejection, Benedick and Beatrice finally confess their love to one another. Fortunately, the night watchmen overhear Borachio bragging about his crime. Dogberry and Verges, the heads of the local police, ultimately arrest both Borachio and Conrad, another of Don John’s followers. Everyone learns that Hero is really innocent, and Claudio, who believes she is dead, grieves for her.

Leonato tells Claudio that, as punishment, he wants Claudio to tell everybody in the city how innocent Hero was. He also wants Claudio to marry Leonato’s “niece”—a girl who, he says, looks much like the dead Hero. Claudio goes to church with the others, preparing to marry the mysterious, masked woman he thinks is Hero’s cousin. When Hero reveals herself as the masked woman, Claudio is overwhelmed with joy. Benedick then asks Beatrice if she will marry him, and after some arguing they agree. The joyful lovers all have a merry dance before they celebrate their double wedding.

1. Who refuses to marry in the beginning of the play?

(A) Hero
(B) Don Pedro and Don John
(C) Benedick and Beatrice
(D) Hero and Claudio

2. Where and when does the play take place?

(A) England, fourteenth century
(B) Florence, fifteenth century
(C) Sicily, sixteenth century
(D) Paris, seventeenth century

3. How does Claudio woo Hero?

(A) He doesn’t; Don Pedro does
(B) He writes her a sonnet
(C) He serenades her window at night
(D) He asks her father to tell her that he loves her

4. At the beginning of the play, what is Beatrice’s relationship to Benedick?

(A) Lover
(B) Enemy
(C) Wife
(D) Sister-in-law

5. Who is Leonato?

(A) Beatrice’s father
(B) Don Pedro and Don John’s father
(C) Claudio’s father
(D) Hero’s father

6. What does Don John want?

(A) To marry Hero
(B) To make Beatrice and Benedick fall in love
(C) To ruin Claudio
(D) To kill Dogberry and Verges

7. Who carries out Don John’s plan?

(A) Balthasar and Antonio
(B) Dogberry and Verges
(C) Claudio and Don Pedro
(D) Borachio and Margaret

8. What reason does Don John give for his sullenness?

(A) Too many people have wronged him
(B) It’s in his nature
(C) It’s an act to gain sympathy
(D) He thinks that noblewomen are attracted to brooding types

9. Who is said to be “an ass”?

(A) Dogberry
(B) Borachio
(C) Verges
(D) Conrad

10. Why does Claudio reject Hero at the altar?

(A) She smells like a rotten orange
(B) He thinks she lied to him about her wealth
(C) He thinks she cheated on him and lost her virginity
(D) He decides he just isn’t ready to get married

11. Who discovers Don John’s evil plot?

(A) Benedick
(B) Margaret
(C) Leonato’s household
(D) The Watch

12. What does Leonato’s household do to punish Claudio for shaming Hero?

(A) He pretends Hero is dead and challenges Claudio to a duel
(B) He drives Claudio out of town
(C) He violently beats Claudio
(D) Absolutely nothing at all

13. Which two characters write love sonnets?

(A) Claudio and Don Pedro
(B) Claudio and Hero
(C) Beatrice and Benedick
(D) Don Pedro and Beatrice

14. To whom does Don Pedro propose marriage?

(A) Hero
(B) Ursula
(C) Beatrice
(D) Margaret

15. Why is Margaret mistaken for Hero?

(A) She is wearing a mask
(B) She is wearing Hero’s makeup
(C) She is wearing a red sash
(D) She is wearing Hero’s clothes

16. Which character is sad at the end of the play?

(A) Don Pedro
(B) Don John
(C) Benedick
(D) Hero

17. What makes Claudio realize that he wrongly accused Hero?

(A) A note that she left him
(B) His utter remorse at having publicly shamed her
(C) Leonato’s harsh reprimands
(D) Borachio’s confession of Don John’s plot

18. When was this play probably first performed?

(A) 1850s
(B) 1580s
(C) 1623
(D) 1599

19. How do Don Pedro and Claudio make Benedick fall in love with Beatrice?

(A) They convince him of her virtues
(B) They have him overhear their conversation in which they assert that she is in love with him
(C) They force him to spend one evening locked in a room alone with her
(D) They insult, humiliate, and belittle him until he agrees to love her

20. Have Beatrice and Benedick courted before?

(A) Yes, but Benedick left her
(B) No, because they’re enemies
(C) Yes, but Beatrice left him
(D) They had a blind date when they were younger, but neither of them was interested

21. Why is it necessary for Hero to seem to die?

(A) Because she is very tired and worn out
(B) Because she is pregnant
(C) Because her reputation has been publicly tarnished
(D) Because she cheated on Claudio

22. What term best describes Dogberry’s verbal comedy?

(A) Slapstick
(B) Malapropism
(C) Witty banter
(D) Hyperbole

23. What is Balthasar’s song in Act II, scene iii about?

(A) The infidelity of men
(B) The infidelity of women
(C) The beauty of love
(D) The wind and the rain

24. What does the “savage bull” symbolize (I.i.213; V.iv.43)?

(A) Happiness in marriage
(B) A world without law
(C) A soldier’s honor
(D) The man unwilling to marry

25. Who is the most socially powerful person in the play?

(A) Leonato
(B) Beatrice
(C) Don Pedro
(D) Dogberry

KEYS: 1C,2C,3A,4B,5D,6C,7D,8B,9A,10C,11D,12A,13C,14C,15D,16A,17D,18D,19B,20A,21C,22B,23A,24D,25C

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