There were too many episodes, events, reversals, and discoveries, most of them huddled in the last acts, and they demanded too much of the audience. Fainall discusses this plan with Foible, but this is overheard by Mrs.
The niece of the rich Lady Wishfort, she is also an heir in her own right and is looked upon with great favor by Witwoud, a kinsman of Lady Wishfort.
If it is at an end, why has it ceased? The latter is strikingly exhibited in the opening speeches of The Old Bachelour, a play that no doubt appealed to the audiences because it handled with a new brilliance themes they were familiar with.
In Restoration drama, exposition was usually straightforward; two characters might meet and gossip, or a man might talk to a servant; but in The Way of the World, exposition is highly ingenious and long withheld.
Ossa Certified Educator A comedy of manners is meant to present the typical dynamics of the upper classes while also showing what lies beneath the surface. Marwood and Lady Wishfort secretly loved Mirabell.
A Society for the Reformation of Manners was organized; laws were passed to suppress licentiousness. The relations between the court and the theater were more than merely casual.
Unfortunately, Lady Wishfort is a very bitter lady who despises Mirabell and wants her own nephew, Sir Wilfull, to wed Millamant.
Moreover, intelligent women like Millament allowed a crowd of admirers to a school of fools to gather around them in order to show their demand and worth. Very often what occurred in the play had to be thought of as a private joke, comprehensible only to those "in the know.
Fainall that he is marrying Millamant for money? Congreve and Henrietta probably met by and the duchess had a daughter, Mary —who was believed to be his child. Marwood, whom she thanks for unveiling the plot.
Congreve achieved fame in when he wrote some of the most popular English plays of the Restoration period. This is why the play was received with less than stellar reviews. The dissolute court of Charles II is well known in history and legend. Congreve, failing, fatigued, attacked by gout, and half-blind, did not feel equal to discussing the minutiae of comic writing or a play he had written some 30 years earlier.
Millamant is aware of the plot, probably through Foible. She has little use for the life around her, seeing through its shallow pretenses and its falsity, and yet she knows that it is the world in which she has to live. The Restoration period was an age of loose morals and, and was devoid of moral values.
Congreve continued to write, although his style changed greatly. He was a patron of the theater, attended frequently, and was fond of "a very merry play.
Fainall is left with no claim to make because Mrs.
Moreover, Fainall makes the legacy-conflict deeper through his cruel condition to Lady Wishfort. Congreve was not born until ten years after the Restoration; The Way of the World was first presented when he was thirty.
In consequence, Mirabell is hard put to devise a scheme whereby he might convince Lady Wishfort to consent to the marriage. When Foible informs her that she has tangible proof of the relationship between Fainall and Mrs.
Although it is now his least regarded drama, this tragedy, produced early inswelled his reputation enormously and became his most popular play.
In the s and s, the solid and wealthy middle class had ignored or deliberately avoided the theater; they now became an important part of the audience. But at the end of the play, it seems that she will continue to live with Fainall in an obviously very awkward domestic situation.
She will be entirely free of the cant and the hypocrisy of married life, which are only a cloak for the corruption or misery hidden underneath social custom. As Congreve progressed, his speeches became more modulated, more musical, but always sure in their cadence.
When Mirabell brings two servants to prove that Fainall and Mrs. Fainall gives all her property to Mirabell.
What Congreve did was to craft characters, more than just give comedians some funny lines to perform. Upon his death, he left his entire fortune to the Duchess of Marlborough.
Attempts to explain — if such a thing is possible — Restoration drama must consider other threads of influence as well. The revolution concerning the overthrow of James II created a new set of social codes primarily amongst the bourgeoisie.
This can be seen in the scene where Millamant and Mirabell effectively carry out a pre-nuptial agreement, Millamant insisting on having all manner of liberties and powers, quite unusual for the time.
In their wider contexts they read in English: He reportedly was particularly stung by a critique written by Jeremy Collier A Short View of the Immorality and Profaneness of the English Stageto the point that he wrote a long reply, "Amendments of Mr.
His wife, Mary IIwas, long before her death, a retiring person who did not appear much in public.The Way of the World William Congreve.
SHARE! Home; Literature Notes; The Way of the World; A Society for the Reformation of Manners was organized; laws were passed to suppress licentiousness. At the same time, the audience changed.
Although there seems to be the usual happy ending to this comedy, The Way of the World leaves a. Style, Wit, and Irony in The Way of the World Notes on Performance of The Way of the World The Reputation of Restoration Drama.
The Way of the World study guide contains a biography of William Congreve, literature essays, quiz questions, major themes, characters, and a full summary and analysis. One of the features of a Restoration comedy is the opposition of the witty and courtly William ().
The Way of the World. London, England: A & C Black Limited. Some analysis of the play as part of a college writing assignment Written by: William Congreve.
William Congreve: William Congreve, English dramatist who shaped the English comedy of manners through his brilliant comic dialogue, his satirical portrayal of the war of the sexes, and his ironic scrutiny of the affectations of his age.
His major plays were The Old Bachelour (), The Double-Dealer (), Love. William Congreve's Love for Love is a classic of Restoration comedy.
William Congreve's The Way of the World deals with themes of social class, money, and romance. Like many works of the period, it focuses on the ins and outs of social life.Download