Tempest & Tempus

The word “tempest” sounds very close to the Latin word “tempus” which is time, ¬†linguistic study shows that that word did originate from “tempus” in medieval Latin for weather. The work by William Shakespeare is certainly a great work of many times, not only could it be interpreted as a “exeunt” way (Pun*) to exit the stage (yet another joke), but it can also be used as a reflection on the changing times and also how things change with time. There are dozens of ways the work has been used to address¬†issues in the contemporary world especially on equality and human rights and such, however not as common do we hear on the news of some former leader stranded on an island plotting revenge. What we can learn most about time from the Tempest, is that all storms will die out, and as in the play, time itself fades the storm in Prospero’s head and finally reconciles with the entire event by being restored to his dukedom.

1 thought on “Tempest & Tempus

  1. Christina Hendricks

    Your post made me think about the storm being possibly also (besides a political reference) something going on in Prospero’s head. There is one part of the play where he mentions that his mind is disordered–4.1.140 (p. 179) is when it starts, where he notes that he has forgotten the plot against him by Caliban and others. Miranda and Ferdinand note that he seems “distempered,” and at 4.1.159 (p. 181) he says that his “old brain is troubled” and that he needs to walk to “still [his] beating mind.” Which is interesting because he is the one who is causing trouble to the brains of others on the island, and here is a moment of weakness for him.

    Maybe the interpretation of the storm as being a psychological one, at least for some of the characters, makes sense. I need to think about that one some more!


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