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Shvoong Home>Books>Classic Literature>Summary of William Shakespeare's-'the Seven Ages of Man' Review

Summary of William Shakespeare's-'the Seven Ages of Man'

Book Review   by:akso6o175     Original Author: Andy Kester Sawian
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‘The Seven Ages of Man’ is taken from William Shakespeare’s famous play, ‘As You Like It’ (Act-II, Scene-VII), describes the seven phases in a man’s life-from childhood to old age. The world is but a global stage and all men and women presented here are mere puppets in the hands of destiny. Just like the infrastructures of a stage, the world has its own entrances and exits. Every man in his full lifetime has many parts to play. His total number of acts in his lifetime is the seven ages.
                 The first and foremost act of every human being is the stage of infancy, where he makes his presence felt by crying at the top of his voice and many a times vomiting any food or drink that is repulsive, at the nursing arms of his mother. This period normally last till four years of age. The second stage is the ‘whining’ schoolboy where he learns to utter a plaintive, high-pitched, protracted sound, as in pain, fear, supplication, or complaint. His shiny morning face and his satchel; a small bag, sometimes with a shoulder strap; he creeps like a snail and not willing to go to school.
           The third stage is his early youth, the peak of love and high romance. He sighs like a burning furnace and sings the sad ballads of romance; full of woe; affected with, characterized by, or indicating woe: woeful melodies; to impress his lover’s heart. The impression of her reply can be seen in her eyebrows. The fourth stage is that of a soldier where life if full of obligations, commitments, compliances, oaths and vows.  His beard is like a leopard or panther. He endlessly fights for his honor, a full presence of mind which is sudden and quick in quarrel and a heart to maintain a dignified reputation.
          The fifth stage is the adult-hood where a man tries to live a fair and justified life. His belly becomes bigger than normal. He is conscious about his diet and consumes a good intake of ‘capon’; a cockerel castrated to improve the flesh for use as food. His eyes are severe with seriousness and his beard is leveled to a formal cut. He is to take a lot of correct decisions to keep up with the ever changing times. So this stage is the most powerful stage in life.
            The sixth stage is the middle-age. Here is where he prepares himself for the next level in life i.e. old age. He learns to relax from the hustles of life. His strength begins to weaken and spends more time within the roof of his house. He looks like a buffoon and an old fool in his rugged old slippers. He hangs his spectacles on his nose for reading and all his youthful hose; a flexible tube for conveying a liquid, as water, to a desired point; saved for the world too wide. His shank begins to shrink with time; the part of the lower limb in humans between the knee and the ankle; leg. Even his voice begins to descend to a lower tone. In his free time, he smokes his pipe and whistles his matured melodies.
           The last stage is the old-age where he enters his second childhood. It is also the beginning of the end of his eventful history. It is also the stage of oblivion; the state of being completely forgotten or unknown; the state of forgetting or of being oblivious; official disregard or overlooking of offenses; He is without everything; without teeth, eyes and taste.
Published: June 24, 2010   
Please Rate this Review : 1 2 3 4 5
  1. Answer   Question  :    please explain it briefly View All
  1. Answer   Question  :    explain the poem line by line? View All
  1. Answer   Question  :    please explain each stage one by one??? View All
  1. Answer   Question  :    what happened in the third age briefly define it ( 2 Answers ) View All
  1. Answer  :    in the third stage he sighs like a burning furnace and sings the sad ballads of romance. Saturday, March 29, 2014
  1. Answer  :    In the third age the person becomes a lover. He writes poems. sighs like furnace. He writes letters to his mistress and spends time with his lover. Wednesday, March 19, 2014
  1. Answer   Question  :    what is belly? ( 1 Answer ) View All
  1. Answer  :    belly means abdome Wednesday, March 19, 2014
  1. Answer   Question  :    why in old age he has no eyes ( 2 Answers ) View All
  1. Answer  :    it doesn't mean that he doesn't have eyes in his old age.it simply means that all the senses including sight get decreased as he steps into the old age.think this would be helpful. :-) Sunday, April 20, 2014
  1. Answer  :    it doesn't mean that he doesn't have eyes in his old age.it simply means that all the senses including sight gets decreased as he steps into the old age.think this would be helpful. :-) Sunday, April 20, 2014
  1. Answer   Question  :    can the 4th stage of man can be called as the age of taking decisions,resolving problems? ( 1 Answer ) View All
  1. Answer  :    yes Sunday, March 09, 2014
  1. Answer   Question  :    How is this possible View All
  1. Answer   Question  :    Thanks it is veryhelp for my 9th sa2 examination ( 1 Answer ) View All
  1. Answer  :    dont know ask in other website Saturday, March 08, 2014
  1. Answer   Question  :    Why is the last age being compared with second childhood? ( 2 Answers ) View All
  1. Answer  :    it is because ..in the last age the man becomes dependent on everyone for everything like he was during his infancy..hence the author termed the last age as the second childhood the one after infancy. Thursday, March 20, 2014
  1. Answer  :    Because the second age,that is the schoolboy is not able to do work for himself.He depends on others to fulfil his needs.The same character is excavated by the old man. Tuesday, March 04, 2014
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