Sunday, 14 October 2012

Foreshadow in The Winter's Tale

Foreshadowing within The Winter’s Tale

          Shakespeare has utilized the literary technique of foreshadow in his play The Winter’s Tale in order to uncover key aspects and future details to the audience/readers.
          Shakespeare’s first use of foreshadow is done by manipulating the setting of the play. He has made it winter and this foreshadows sad events. Even the young prince Mamillius has established this by saying, “a sad tale's best for winter.”  We are then made to see how the plot unfolds with Leontes jealous passion casing the death of both Mamillius and Queen Hermione and the abandonment of Perdita. He is also indirectly responsible for the death of Antigonus.
            In Act 3 scene3, Antigonus tells baby Perdita of a dream he had where Queen Hermione appeared to him. In this dream along with giving him instructions she tells him that he will not see his home again. This dream foreshadows the events in this scene. Antigonus was  killed by a bear after laying Perdita down. Therefore, it can clearly be seen how Antigonus' dream acted as a foreshadow because in fact he did not return home. 
          Additionally, Shakespeare also manipulates the setting later in the play in Bohemia. It is spring and this acts as foreshadow. Spring symbolizes rebirth and new life. The audience/readers will now see a change in event and the gloom created by the King’s folly will now be overshadowed by the happiness and good events to come. Foreshadowing in this instance lets the audience know that the play will have a happy ending opposed to its beginning. 

1 comment:

  1. Just as a harmless correction, the literary device is foreshadowing not foreshadow. Also, there are many other examples of foreshadowing in the play that you have eliminated.For example, the dialogue which begins the play foreshadows the end of the relationship between the two kings etc.