Midsummer Night’s Dream is a play written by William Shakespeare in 1593, during the Elizabethan era. Midsummer Night was a holiday during the late 1500s that celebrated the summer solstice. It begun on the night of June 23rd and ended on June. The day was characterized with bonfires, sexual love, singing and dancing. The festival was also tied with the presence of supernatural occurrences. By the late 1500s, its significance and celebration had begun to decrease with the increased presence of Christianity. In England, it was rebranded as St. John’s Day. While the festival is not explicitly cited in the play, it is clear through its title that Shakespeare draws on this tradition. The play also relies heavily on Greek mythology, especially by setting the scene in Athens with the oncoming wedding of Theseus and Hippolyta. Categorized as a comedy, the play also features the love triangle between Hermia, Lysander, Helena and Demetrius. There is also the ongoing dispute over a child between the king and queen of the fairies, Oberon and Titania.
- Midsummer’s Day
- “Midsummer’s Day.” Mysterious Britain Ireland, 2 Jan. 2019, https://www.mysteriousbritain.co.uk/festivals/midsummers-day/. Accessed Dec. 12, 2021