Analysis of Characters in Twelfth Night- CSEC English B


The interactions and relationships among these diverse characters contribute to the comedic and thematic richness of Twelfth Night, exploring themes such as love, mistaken identity, social class, and the revelry associated with the festive occasion of Twelfth Night.

For sample CSEC essay questions, check out:

Here is an analysis of some key characters:

  1. Viola/Cesario:

    • Viola is the central character, shipwrecked in Illyria and disguised as Cesario. She is quick-witted, resourceful, and deeply in love with Orsino.
    • As Cesario, Viola serves as a messenger for Orsino, leading to a series of mistaken identity situations. Her character explores themes of gender identity and the complexities of love.
  2. Duke Orsino:

    • Orsino is the Duke of Illyria, a romantic figure who is infatuated with Countess Olivia. Despite his noble status, he is portrayed as somewhat self-indulgent and melodramatic.
    • His love for Olivia drives much of the plot, and his eventual realization of his feelings for Viola adds a layer of irony and resolution.
  3. Countess Olivia:

    • Olivia is a wealthy and grieving countess who becomes the object of Orsino’s affection and later falls in love with Viola (disguised as Cesario).
    • Her mourning for her brother sets the stage for the mistaken identity, and her character undergoes a transformation from mourning to romantic pursuit.
  4. Sir Toby Belch:

    • Sir Toby is Olivia’s uncle, a boisterous and fun-loving character. He plays a central role in the subplot involving the trickery of Malvolio.
    • Sir Toby’s revelry and schemes contribute to the play’s comedic elements, and his relationships with Maria and Sir Andrew Aguecheek add layers of humour.
  5. Maria:

    • Maria is Olivia’s clever and mischievous maid. She is instrumental in orchestrating the prank on Malvolio by using his own puritanical nature against him.
    • Maria’s wit and intelligence make her a standout character in the subplot, and her eventual marriage to Sir Toby provides a comic resolution.
  6. Malvolio:

    • Malvolio is Olivia’s steward, a puritanical and self-important character. He becomes the target of a prank orchestrated by Maria, Sir Toby, and others.
    • Malvolio’s character adds a darker, more satirical element to the play, exploring themes of social hierarchy, self-deception, and the consequences of strict adherence to societal norms.
  7. Sir Andrew Aguecheek:

    • Sir Andrew is a foolish, wealthy suitor of Olivia who is easily manipulated by Sir Toby. His comedic ineptitude and futile attempts to win Olivia’s love contribute to the play’s humour.
    • Sir Andrew’s character serves as a foil to other characters, highlighting the absurdity of the romantic pursuits in the play.
  8. Feste:

    • Feste is the witty and wise fool in Olivia’s household. He provides comic relief, musical interludes, and insightful commentary on the events of the play.
    • Feste’s character adds a layer of depth to the narrative, offering a different perspective on love, identity, and the nature of life.


One thought on “Analysis of Characters in Twelfth Night- CSEC English B”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *