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Much Ado About Nothing

Much Ado About Nothing

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Much Ado About Nothing Maturity Quotes

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Quote #1

LEONATO Tush, tush, man! never fleer and jest at me I speak not like a dotard nor a fool, As under privilege of age to brag What I have done being young, or what would do, Were I not old. Know, Claudio, to thy head, Thou hast so wrong'd mine innocent child and me That I am forc'd to lay my reverence by And, with grey hairs and bruise of many days, Do challenge thee to trial of a man. (5.1.58)


Leonato lays out the two sides of aging: On one hand, age demands respect, but on the other hand, old age also makes people weaker, which lets young punks abuse them.

Quote #2

CLAUDIO We had lik'd to have had our two noses snapp'd off with two old men without teeth. (5.1.58)


To Leonato’s face, Claudio makes a big show of respecting his age, but it’s clear from this comment that Claudio is not exactly Mr. Reverence. Age doesn’t seem to command respect for Claudio; he approaches it more as a weakness than a reason for reverence, which is pretty immature of him. It’s another strike against Claudio’s character.

Quote #3

BENEDICK In brief, since I do purpose to marry, I will think nothing to any purpose that the world can say against it; and therefore never flout at me for what I have said against it; for man is a giddy thing, and this is my conclusion. (5.4.104)


Benedick exhibits real maturity in his thinking. Here, he admits that he might seem like a hypocrite, but has decided that his love is more important than his ideological consistency.

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