Midsummer Night’s Dream Study Guides

How is Hippolyta’s reasoning concerning how quickly the next four days will pass different from that of Theseus? Hippolyta was calm and thought the days would go by fast. Theseus thought it would be forever.
Why has Egeus brought his daughter and her two suitors to Theseus? What does expect him to do? Egeus wants Theseus to force his daughter to marry Demetrius because Demetrius is Egeus’ choice.
What was the proper role for women/daughters in Athenian society according to Egeus and Theseus? To obey their fathers/husbands.
What is Theseus’ ruling concerning Hermia? She can either die, marry Demetrius, or live a life of chastity. The decision has to be made by the day of the wedding.
How does Lysander’s comment about Demetrius’ previous love affair with Helena complicate things? This makes complicated because this proves Demetrius as a bad husband for Hermia.
What do Lysander and Hermia plan to do about this seemingly impossible situation? They plan to run away and leave the Athens and get married. They are going to live with Lysander’s aunt.
Why do they tell Helena what they plan to do? Helena is Hermia’s best friend and they hope to make Helena happier because Hermia will be gone.
Even though Helena loves Demetrius and is Hermia’s best friend, why does she decide to tell Demetrius of Hermia and Lysander’s plans? She thinks that if she tells him their plans then he is forced to like her now since Hermia will be leaving. She also got the chance to talk to him.
Why does Nick Bottom want to play all the parts? Bottom is arrogant and thinks that he is the BEST.
How do you suppose the threat of being hanged if they scare the ladies will affect the artisans’ interpretation of the tragedy of Pyramus and Thisbe? It will be funny.
In what way is this scene funny? Why do you suppose Shakespeare include this scene? The boys are playing characters that are totally opposite of what they are like. Shakespeare did this to make it funnier or to foreshadow.
Where are the actors to meet the following night? Who else is meeting in these same woods at the same time? The actors are going to meet at the Duke’s oak tree. Helena, Demetrius, Lysander, and Hermia are all going to be meeting there, too.
What does the reader find out about the current relationship between Oberon, King of fairies, and Titania, Queen of the fairies, from Puck and Fairy? They are fighting over an Indian boy, a changeling.
How have Oberon and Titania been involved in the past with Theseus and Hippolyta, and why have they come to the Athens? Titania loved Theseus and Oberon loved Hippolyta.
What effect has their quarrel had on nature, on the seasons, and on humans?
Why won’t Titania give up the changeling to Oberon? Titania was friends with the boy’s mom who died during his birth.
What does Oberon send Puck to find? A pansy flower, known as the “love-in-idleness,” that was struck by cupid’s arrow.
What are Oberon’s plans for Titania? He is going to put the flower juice on Titania’s eyes to make her fall in love with a hideous creature. He is going to try to get her to give up the changeling.
How does Helena react to Demetrius’ verbal abuse? She just wants him to let her follow him.
What is her response to his threats of physical abuse? She thinks it would be an honor if he gave her any attention, even negative attention.
In what way is Helena’s behavior inappropriate for Athenian women? Women are supposed to obey men; Helena does not listen to Demetrius
What does Oberon tell Puck to do about Demetrius and Helena? He tells Puck to smear the flower juice on Demetrius’ eyes to fall in love with Helena.
Why does Oberon want Titania to wake and fall in love with something vile? To use the antidote against her to get the changeling.
Why does Hermia insist Lysander sleep a little ways from her? They aren’t married.
Why does Puck anoint Lysander’s eyes? Puck thinks Lysander is Demetrius because he is wearing Athenian clothes.
How does Helena react to Lysander’s sudden love for her when he awakes? She is mad.
How is Hermia’s dream a reflection of reality? The snake represents Lysander which ate away at her heart. This means he broke her heart.
How are the actors going to keep from scaring the ladies when Pyramus kills himself or when the lion roars? They are going to have a prologue. They will say that Pyramus is just acting, he is not really going to kill himself. The lion is going to be showing part of his face to assure people he is not really a lion.
How are the actors going to manage the setting/scenery such as moonlight and the wall? They are going to use a lantern for the moon and cover an actor in plaster for the wall.
Why do the rest of the actors run off when Bottom appears? Bottom’s head has been turned into a donkey head.
What does Puck plan to do when he follows after the other actors? Puck is going to scare them with a lot of creatures all around the woods and make noises.
How does Bottom react to Titania and the other fairies? Bottom just wants to leave and he is kind of weirded out at first.
Bottom says, “… reason and love keep little company together nowadays.” Why is this such an apt statement at the point in the play? Everyone is being unfaithful to their original lovers and because their isn’t real love there.
What does Hermia accuse Demetrius of doing? She accuses him of killing Lysander.
How are Puck and Oberon going to correct Puck’s earlier mistake? Put the love in idleness juice on Demetrius’ eyes to fall in love with Helena.
Why is Helena upset when Demetrius says he loves her? Isn’t this what she had wanted all along? Helena thinks that Demetrius is mocking her.
Of what does Helena accuse Hermia? Making fun of her along with Lysander and Demetrius
How close had Hermia and Helena been in the past? They were like sisters; they had a deep connection
How does Lysander treat Hermia? Why can’t she believe what he says? Lysander says he hates Hermia and he is being very mean; He loved her the night before.
Why is Helena afraid of Hermia? Hermia was a vixen in school; she had evil intentions
What are Lysander and Demetrius going off to do? to fight
What does Oberon tell Puck to do about the two young men? He tells Puck to crush an herb into Lysander’s eyes to remove all errors and make him see like he used to.
What is Oberon going to do about Titania? Beg her for the Indian boy
Why doesn’t Oberon fear the coming of the day? He says he can look like a forester; he can disguise himself
How well does Puck’s trickery work? It works well.
How has Bottom adjusted to the attention of Titania and her fairies? In the reading, Bottom begins to use the fairies as his personal servants. He has them fetch food and other things for him. Titania and Bottom also slept together.
What is Oberon’s reaction to Titania’s infatuation with Bottom? Oberon gets jealous of Bottom.
What sort of explanation does Oberon make to Titania’s question about what happened to her? Do you think he will tell her the truth? Oberon will tell Titania that she was dreaming. He will not tell her the truth.
Why are Theseus, Hippolyta, Egeus, and the others out in the woods so early in the morning? They are hunting.
What is Theseus’ first explanation of why the young people are asleep in the woods? Theseus thought they were out there to celebrate with them.
What explanation does Demetrius make? Why does he compare his love for Hermia to an illness? Demetrius said he followed Hermia and Lysander out into the woods and Helena followed him. Demetrius fell out of his illness of loving Hermia and now loves Helena.
What is Theseus’ decision concerning the four, young people? They should get married.
Why can’t the young people be sure whether they are awake or dreaming? The young people’s vision is blurry and they weren’t sure if the duke and Hermia’s father was actually there or not.
Bottom believes he too has had a dream. How is he going to use that dream to entertain the duke? Bottom is going to make his dream into a ballad and sing at the end of the play.
What opinion do the other mechanicals now have of Bottom since they think he is lost? The mechanicals said he has more talent than any other Athenian working man and that he has the best physique.
What do they regret losing by not being able to perform the play? They are not going to get paid.
Why must the mechanicals hurry to the duke’s palace? They must hurry because their play has been chosen.

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