, Research Paper
Examination of twenty lines of VolponeIn lines 78 to 8 on page 28, Jonson s unique style of writing is present. Secondly, there is the characters themselves to analyse. As always, the whole of the story line is present within these lines.The first thing that I have to comment upon is line 78. Here, we see Volpone lying down ( keep you still sir ). This is a demonstration of how he makes his money. The position that he is assuming can be compared to that of a prostitute when making her money. Indeed, I put it to you that Volpone is nothing more then a prostitute. He is in fact compared to a common courtesan in the play. The only difference between the two is the fundamental actions that they do to accumulate their wealth. Lying down to create his wealth also shows us that he is so lazy that doing anything for his money is something that is just not conceivable to him. He states this earlier on in the play ( I wound no earth with ploughshares; fat no beasts to feed the shambles ). His opinion on working an honest days work is that it is bad and that what he is doing is right. This demonstrates that he has no conception of what is right and wrong.
Another analogy of this is that he is so corrupt and disabled by his greed that he is in fact an invalid whom can not do any more then he is already doing.
The arrival of Corbachio prompts Volpone to say the vultures gone and the old raven s come . This line in it s self exemplifies Jonson s writing of ncredible depth, as well as Volpone s ability to say bold things.Volpone and Mosca s ability to create such meaningful and vivid images in the story is partly why the audience feels so captivated by the play. The imagery that it creates is to put Volpone in the position of the living carrion (This is a comment upon what happens later on in the play my left leg gan to have the cramp ). This carrion is what the scavengers are attracted to and once they realise that there pray is indeed still alive, they leave at once.Giving the characters alternative names of animals in this play is a significant device that Jonson uses in that it shows us the very roots of their characters. Volpone s animal is the fox. This tells us a lot about his character even if we have not read the play. He is cunning and a predatory scavenger, much like a fox. This can be followed through the other characters as well (Mosca, the raven, vulture, crow and peregrine). Mosca s presence in this scene is also significant. His standing and circling Volpone is revealing of his character. It shows to us that he himself is also a scavenger. Not only that but the lowest of scavengers as he is scavenging off of a scavenger.The next line of significance is stand there and multiply . This is of course a corruption of Noah s quote ( go forth and multiply ). This is intended to be a light hearted joke that all of the audience would have understood and found funny, due to religion being more popular at the time. This said, it is also an important demonstration to the audience that even the purest of things (religion) seems to be polluted with greed when brought into Volpone.It is greedy because it is said to the plate and Mosca himself is trying to multiply his wealth, which of course will happen in the form of more gifts . Ridiculing religion by talking to the plate is almost blasphemous. This is part of Jonson’s appeal to the audience. It makes them wonder just how corrupt Mosca can be. This question is of course answered later on when we see him bribing Volpone to give him more money (in the court house).The next significant line in this is then this can feign to be. This is put there just to remind us that Volpone is feigning. It is also Jonson s way of preparing us for what comes later on in the play. By showing us just how much he is enjoying his feigning ( I glory more in the cunning purchase of my wealth ), when Volpone genuinely does have an ailment, the message that Jonson is trying to get across to us is much clearer. This message is that if you go around taking advantage, living under false pretences or if you do anything else wrong, your punishment shall later come back tenfold. we see this happening with all of the scavenger characters later on. We also see that the only really genuine character (Celia) comes out of the situation better then when she entered it. Her reward is having her dowry increased, as well as her disgusting husband sent away from her.The next line that is important is he is rather worse that s well . This line is a demonstration of just how far the corruption and greed of these people goes. They seem to be blinded by their greed because they can not see right from wrong, good from bad (as we have seen earlier with Volpone). Their obsession with material possessions is ultimately what leads to all of their downfalls. This line also shows us the reversed morals of the characters in the play.Throughout these lines, as well as the whole play, Volpone and Mosca s jokes are at the expense of others. Corbachio is referred to as impotent . This adds a comic perversion to the scene at the expense of another character. This fits in with their lifestyle of taking advantage of other peoples weakness and exploiting it to it s full potential. Humour does not necessarily need to have a real life victim but in the case of Mosca and Volpone, there is always one. This is of course how we would expect their humour to be and it is merely supporting the fact that they are unpleasant scavengers.