Twelfth Night

Back to List of Characters


William Shakespeare's play Twelfth Night features a diverse cast of characters, each with their own unique traits and personalities. One such character is the Priest, a minor character who plays a crucial role in the comedic chaos that ensues throughout the play.

The Role of the Priest

The Priest appears in Act IV, Scene III of Twelfth Night and is called upon by the character Sebastian to officiate his wedding to Olivia. Despite his brief appearance, the Priest's role is significant as he symbolizes the importance of social norms and the institution of marriage in the play.

In this scene, the Priest provides a sense of legitimacy to the impulsive decision made by Sebastian and Olivia to marry each other. He represents the societal expectations and religious traditions that were prevalent in Shakespearean society.

Furthermore, the Priest's presence highlights the contrast between the chaotic events that have unfolded throughout the play and the traditional values that still hold sway. His appearance adds a touch of seriousness and order amidst the confusion and mistaken identities that dominate the plot.

Despite the Priest's limited stage time, his character serves as a reminder of the consequences of rash decisions and the importance of social conventions. He emphasizes the significance of marriage as a sacred institution, even in the midst of the comedic chaos that defines Twelfth Night.

Overall, the Priest's character in Twelfth Night may be brief, but he serves an essential purpose in highlighting the societal expectations and traditional values that underpin the play's plot. His presence adds depth to the narrative and serves as a reminder of the importance of social norms, even in the midst of a comedy.