However, he we want to consider The Duchess of Malfi as a Revenge Tragedy, we need to know what we mean by revenge tragedy and its major conventions. Duchess of Malfi Answer: The revenge play or revenge tragedy is a tragedy in which a murder victim is avenged, often by a younger kinsmen. ‘DUCHESS OF MALFI’ AS A REVENGE TRAGEDY | The main aim of this work is to point out series of revenge that occurs in the text and find.

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He too is cynical z love and is the most insightful of the characters when it comes to seeing through disguises; he recognizes Helena dressed as a boy, and gives away Belville’s disguise earlier in the same scene.

Please enable it to get a better experience of this site. In the act where the Duchess, her children, and mallfi maid are executed many devices are used by the author for the aim of creating horror which is a common taint of Senecan revenge tragedy.

Following the Senecan model, madness is shown. The characteristics of Revenge Tragedy are: Webster introduces the espionage to be a new characteristic of revenge tragedy.

Later the tradition was practiced by other playwrights before Webster. Evil in The Duchess of Malfi is a xuchess and pervasive force that manages to destroy almost all that is good, but it is not all-powerful.

The rake- hero is a descendant of earlier comedic male characters who were rogues, but he is a sign of the times in that during this period he supplanted the traditional romantic hero in many of the age’s theatrical productions. Hence their deeds of revenge are not a wild kind of justice but monstrous wrong.

In this Webster has shown vital concern for an artistic atmosphere of supernatural. He starts even to attack his own shadow. Synopsis The heart of the story is the relationship between the widowed Duchess and her steward, Antonio, whom she secretly marries, defying both social convention and the wishes of her brothers, the Cardinal and Ferdinand, her twin.


Revegne, speaking in a modern day sense, are not a common occurrence. The next horror is mentioned in the series of murders committee by Bosola.

However, if we want to consider The Duchess of Malfi as a Revenge Tragedy, we need to know what we mean by revenge tragedy and its major conventions.


The unruly dance of the mad men before the Duchess, the appearance of Bosola as a tomb makes and a bell man and the appearance of the executioners with bell and core in procession, too are intended to create horror. The character of the rake-hero is a product of Restoration society. In The Duchess of Malfithe theme of insanity is multi-layered. For example, in 5.

In summing up we can say that yragedy Duchess of Malfi” is a revenge tragedy. Thayer does point out that Basola can be viewed as the protagonist.

“The Duchess of Malfi” as a Jacobean Revenge Tragedy

Years pass before they discover the truth about her marriage, which is uncovered by the spy Daniel de Bosola. This includes scenes of dark humour, such as when Ferdinand convinces the Duchess that Antonio is dead by giving what he says is Antonio’s severed hand, but is actually a duchezs figure. Firstly, the tragic protagonist is a woman. The narrative should involve in complex plotting. In addition to this, I have to disagree with your points on the supernatural in ‘Malfi’.

Webster tires to make the spirit of his dead protagonists. They think that the Duchess has destroyed the reputation and status of their family. In this drama, we find people taking revenge and are murdering others. In presenting the supernatural too, Webster deviates from the tradition or modifies the tradition.

The play concludes with the presentation of Antonio’s son, who is the sole surviving member of the family The play is based on the true story of Giovanna of Aragon, Duchess of Malfi, who was widowed at revsnge 20 years old and then secretly wed Antonio Bologna in a service witnessed only by her waiting-woman, a similar situation to that which Webster dramatized.

There is absolutely nothing unrealistically supernatural in the play.

While it is not explicitly stated that this is a ghostly voice, it is implied that the echo is in fact the voice of the Duchess as one of Antonio’s echoed phrases is “I, wife’s voice”. Still, just be careful when you make bold statements.


He had threatened to use in the play’s first scene: The last horror comes when Julia is poisoned in a most cold-blooded manner. In this play we see madness of these mad people. Another aspect of a revenge tragedy is that the persons involve oc the revenge ultimately feels remorse for what they have done and in most cases it leads to their damnation. The narrative should incorporate ghosts, skulls and madness.

This play is considered as one of the best plays of Webster and as a Revenge Tragedy, it is considered as the best tragedy duches Shakespeare’s containing almost all the characteristics of Revenge Tragedy. It doesn’t become clear why revenge is taken on the Duchess.

Overall interesting article but I do have some issues that I’d like to bring up. Bosola then attacks the Cardinal, but is himself attacked by Ferdinand. The revenge tragedy has a hero whose honour has been wronged; in this play, the brothers seek revenge on the Duchess, who has done them no harm.

In these dramatic presentations, all of these female characters seem to reflect an effort by women in Restoration society to both step up from the rfvenge gutter and down from the pedestal and no doubt corresponds with the slow but continuing move in Britain from gragedy religious aw with their dogmatic views on the nature of women, to a secular society.

We can’t find JavaScript: However, The Duchess of Malfi contains full of such terrifying, hair-raising situations from the beginning to the end. The spectacle of waxen images of the dead bodies of Antonio and children presented before the Duchess is another horrid scene.