Die Heuning Pot Literature Guide
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Intro

Brave new world

I'm Miranda. I'm fourteen years old and I'm empathetic and oh so naïve. I get excited pretty easily. I'm a princess but I only just learned that at the beginning of the play. And you know what I think?

O, wonder!
How many goodly creatures are there here!
How beauteous mankind is! O brave new world,
That has such people in't! (5.1.182-184)

Who Said It and Where

You might call The Tempest's Miranda sheltered. After spending a dozen years on a remote island with only her old man, a spirit, and the hideous slave Caliban, Miranda hasn't exactly been around the block.

Then, a ship washes up on shore brimming with men. Jackpot. So it's no surprise when she falls head over heels the moment she lays her eyes on the oh-so-dreamy Prince of Naples. He's separated from his shipmates, and he just so happens to be the first man she's seen in her entire life (aside from her dad—who doesn't really count—and an evil, deformed slave.) But don't go thinking she's gonna play it shy and coy with her crush. What's cool about Miranda is that she's not at all bashful when she tells her dad she thinks Prince Ferdinand is hot.

She doesn't miss a beat. She makes no secret of her attraction to the guy himself either. So much for playing hard to get. But hey—it works: by the end of the play, Miranda and Ferdinand are happily engaged. And the fact that he's the heir to the throne of Naples is just gravy.

So. You can imagine Miranda's surprise when she finds out Ferdinand isn't the only male on the planet. While Miranda and Ferdinand have been kickin' it playing chess, her dad has been talking to all the other men from the ship that brought Ferdinand over to the island.

(We should tell you that Ferdinand thought his father and fellow shipmates had died because there was a huge tempest (storm) that shipwrecked them. In fact, that's what brought them to the island in the first place. And it was caused by Prospero—Miranda's dad—on purpose so the crew could come to the island.)

When Miranda finds out there are other men in the world, she's straight up shocked. It's hard to imagine, but she's never been anywhere but this tiny island, and she's never met anyone but the same three people. So when she says this line upon seeing the rest of the men for the first time, it's no wonder she's super excited.

And yep, we mean that in the somewhat dirty sense. As you can see, there's a lot of repressed sexuality beneath the surface here.

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