Check out my Women Beware Women book summary and review  that I created to help you understand the basics of this great book.Women Beware Women is a tragedy by the English playwright Thomas Middleton, first published in 1657 but presumably written between 1612 and 1627. 

Women Beware Women book

 

Women Beware Women book summary


 Bianca is a beautiful and rich young woman who runs away from her father's house to marry poor Leantio. Jealous and insecure, Leantio orders his mother to keep his wife under lock and key while she is away from home, thus causing his own damage: the Duke of Fiorenze sees the beautiful Bianca at the window,

 falls in love with her and begins to court her, with the help of widow Livia. But the duke's intentions are more obscure than they appeared and the Florentine aristocrat rapes in white. Following the rape, Bianca becomes cynical, falls out of love with Laentio due to her poverty and becomes the Duke's lover.

 Meanwhile, Ippolito, Livia's brother, is tormented by the mad desire he feels for his niece Isabella, already engaged to a foolish young man. Livia reciprocates the feelings of her uncle and, when Livia explains to her that she is illegitimate and therefore not related to Ippolito, she immediately begins a clandestine relationship with her man who is older than her. Facilitating the love of others, Livia realizes that she is still able to love and so she embarks on a secret relationship herself, becoming Leantio's lover.

When Ippolito discovers that his sister is having an affair with a man of lower social class, he kills Leantio. Shocked by her pain, Livia confesses to Isabella that she had lied to her before her: Hippolytus is her uncle. Now that Bianca is a widow,

the Duke decides to marry her, but during the masquerade organized for her celebrations, the situation degenerates into a bloodbath. The actors who play the cherubs in the masquerade shoot poisoned arrows at Hippolytus and, to quickly put an end to his suffering,

the man lets himself fall on his sword. Isabella and Livia kill each other and Bianca accidentally poisons the Duke in an attempt to eliminate her future brother-in-law, the Cardinal. Realizing her mistake, Bianca drinks from the poisoned goblet and dies.

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