Centuries of Passion
Please read a practical note .
"Mariana of the moated Grange" first appears as a character in Shakespeare's
play Measure for Measure. Much later Alfred Lord Tennyson wrote a poem
about her, and at about the same time Sir John Everett Millais painted
her. Thus the character has aroused interest through generations. The question(s)
is/are: What sort of character is she in Shakespeare's play - what does
she represent? What layers of interpretation of her have Tennyson and Millais
added to the image of her?
Write an essay entitled
"Mariana - interpretations of passion".
If you would like to see the bard! (104Kb)
Having enjoyed the engraving and Ben Johnson's poem, you are ready to
You can work with this material is various ways. The most obvious way
is to describe and analyse Mariana i Shakespeare's play "Measure
for Measure". The play is available for downloading one act at a time.
Just click the title. If you are working on-line you can find a hypertext
version of the play with links to explanations of archaic words and
Once you have acquired the text of the play you should load it into
an editor, print it and read it. You may want to use the editor's Search
function to find all the places where Mariana is mentioned. A short summary
of the play is here. Especially Act III, Scene 1 is interesting. For Danish
students a glossary of this scene is here.
The questions you should answer are - among others -:
1. What is the main theme of the play?
2. Describe Mariana's role in relation/contrast to this theme.
3. Characterize her.
Alfred Lord Tennyson
Tennyson's poem and a drawing
(93Kb) of him is here. Download it. and print it. If you are a Danish
student a Glossary is available.
Another poem, The
Lady of Shalott, might also be interesting to study in this context.
The text is available here.
1.Write an interpretation of the poem.
2. Discuss the interpretation of Mariana Tennyson gives.
3.Think of reasons why this interpretation is different from Shakespeare's.
Sir John Everett Millais
A portrait of Millais is here (26Kb).
Now you are ready to look at the painting of Mariana
But before you get down to really serious work you might like to look
at another Pre-Raphaelite study of Shakespeare's play: Claudio
Now study Mariana closely and compare Millais' interpretation of her
to Shakespeare and Tennyson's.
If you get stuck with Shakespeare you might try to submit a request for
more information at World Wide Web's
Shakespeare server. Another good Shakespeare site is
MIT's. A glossary
is also accessible on the net. You might also want to use some of the other
search-engines on the Internet. A good one is Yahoo.
Finally: When your essay is ready off your wordprocessor save
it and mail is as an attachment to email@example.com.
You can also submit requests for assistance at this address.
This page is copyright. Hans
J. Klarskov Mortensen, 1995.