Deception or What You Will

Deception is the act of misleading someone using a false appearance or statement

This is mostly shown through the characters of Viola, Maria, and Feste

Viola/ Cesario

The play begins with Viola and a captain being washed ashore on the coast of Illyria

Violas twin brother Sebastian is nowhere to be found and is thought to be dead

The Captain tells Viola of the Duke named Orsino who is already the object of Viola's affection

Viola hatches a plan to pose as a Eunuch to serve the Duke

Viola does this and quickly becomes one of the Dukes favorites and gains the trust of Orsino so much that he confides his thoughts and emotions to "Cesario" (the name Viola gave to "himself")

Orsino trusting Cesario sends "him" to the countess Olivia to attempt to get her to return Orsino's love for her

Visiting Olivia for Orsino does not work the way Viola planned it too. Olivia is now in love with Cesario, who is actually Viola

Viola's brother Sebastian who is not actually dead is accidentally wed to Olivia who thinks that Sebastian is Cesario

Viola's deception of dressing as a man tricks Orsino into allowing "him" to work in Orsino's court and Olivia into falling in love with "him"

Sir Toby, Sir Andrew, Maria, Feste, and a forged letter

One night of drunken fun at Olivia's house is interrupted by Malvolio telling them to be quiet

This makes them very angry with Malvolio. For their pure enjoyment and out of anger, Maria writes a letter she knows Malvolio will think is from Olivia to Malvolio confessing her "love" for him.

Malvolio is deceived by these letters. He is also deceived by Feste disguised as Sir Topas (a curate) who makes Malvolio believe he has gone insane

At the end of the play Malvolio finds out that it was not Olivia who wrote the letters and also that it was not actually Sir Topas but instead Feste who decieved him into thinking he had gone crazy

Plot Device

Deception is used as a plot device to make the play more interesting

The return of Sebastian, Viola's twin brother who looks exactly like "Cesario" causes a lot of confusion between the characters and many awkward situations for both Sebastian and Viola

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