donderdag 17 november 2011

measure for measure - synopsis

Vincentio, the Duke of Vienna, takes leave on a diplomatic mission and entrusts his rule to his deputy Angelo. In secret, Vincentio has planned to disguise himself as a friar in order to observe his city's affairs - and especially the actions of Angelo. Under Vincentio, the city's harsh laws against fornication have been laxly enforced and Vincentio intends to let Angelo, who is a known hard-liner, enforce them uncompromisingly. The plan works well and Claudio, a young nobleman who has impregnated his fiance Juliet, is sentenced to death by Angelo. Claudio's sister, the postulate nun Isabella intervenes on his behalf, and is offered a deal: Angelo will spare Claudio's life if Isabella will sleep with Angelo. Isabella refuses and also realizes that she will be unsuccessful if she makes a public accusation against Angelo. The disguised Vincentio finally intervenes and helps plan two tricks to thwart Angelo. Eventually Vincentio "returns" to Vienna and holds court on a petition against Angelo. The play ends with Vincentio revealing that he was in fact disguised as the friar and making right all the problems created by Angelo's rule.