Sir Toby Belch: Just Desserts Received Essay, Research Paper
Sir Toby Belch undoubtedly receives exactly what he deserves in the end of Twelfth Night. Toby s drunken behavior disrupts the order of life for everyone. He writes a very hurtful letter to Malvolio and also sets up a sword fight between Viola and Toby s very unknightly friend, Sir Andrew Aguecheek. These disturbing acts make Toby deserving for whatever may come his way.
Toby disrupts life for his family with his drinking. At the beginning of the play Maria finds Toby drunk and tells him, Your cousin, my lady, takes great exceptions to your ill hours (Shakespeare 1.3.5). Olivia is disturbed by Toby s constant disturbance at late hours and has Malvolio bring Toby s problem to his attention by saying, If you can separate yourself and your misdemeanors, you are welcome to the house. If not she is very willing to bid you farewell (2.3.98). Toby s choice of hours and his disturbances all upset Olivia, to the point of her bidding him adieu.
Toby and associates also deceive Malvolio with the only thing he really wants. Toby, Maria, and Fabian all conspire to hurt Malvolio with a falsified love letter. Toby says, He shall think by the letters that thou wilt drop that they come from my niece, and that she is in love with him (2.3.164). This letter scheme which Toby takes part in ultimately causes Malvolio very much hurt and ill regards from Olivia. Even at the end of the play when everyone understands the letter scheme, Malvolio still feels in disrepair.
Sir Toby Belch constructs a sword fight between two very inept swordsmen, which could have proven disastrous. Toby gets Viola and Sir Andrew to fight with swords, even though Toby knew Andrew had very inept swordsmanship skills. He acted as Andrew s friend, yet he still put Andrew in this fight. He then goes on to scare Andrew by saying a devil, I have not seen such a firago when speaking of Viola (3.4.284). Toby horrified Viola by telling her; she would be fighting the most skillful, bloody, and fatal opposite in any part of Illyria (3.4.276). Scaring Andrew and Viola only makes the situation even more tense and less pleasant for them both.
At the end of Twelfth Night, Toby gets exactly what he deserves. These three points make Toby deserving: disrupting life for everyone through drinking, deceiving Malvolio, and getting Viola and Andrew to fight. Toby ends of getting beaten by Sebastian and weakly limps off stage in defeat. His plan of having Andrew marry Olivia never came to pass and everyone discovers his letter scheme. Toby also ends up marrying Maria, which can be either looked at as a reward or punishment based on one s opinion of Maria.