Related Analysis Pages
Facts in The Tempest
Facts Examples in The Tempest:
Act I - Scene II
"red plague..." See in text (Act I - Scene II)
The “red plague” is another term for smallpox, a human disease that is characterized by skin loss, pustules, and scars. It is believed to have been eradicated globally by widespread vaccination in the 20th century. Caliban invokes this disease here to emphasize his hatred of Prospero and the cruel and painful death he wishes on him.
"Neptune..." See in text (Act I - Scene II)
Neptune is the Roman god of the sea, the equivalent of Poseidon in Greek mythology. Since Neptune is considered a very powerful god, Ariel’s assertion that he created a storm that would make even Neptune “tremble” suggests that it was a terrifying storm.
"Venus or her son..." See in text (Act IV)
Venus is the Roman goddess of love, beauty, and fertility. Her son, Cupid, is the god of desire, attraction and affection. The gods and goddesses that Prospero calls upon throughout this scene are all able to bless different aspects of Ferdinand and Miranda’s relationship: prosperity, fertility, love, honor, etc.
"Queen o'th’Sky..." See in text (Act IV)
“Queen o’th’Sky” refers to Juno, the Roman goddess of the heavens and protector of the state. Juno is said to have looked carefully after the women of Rome. In Greek mythology, Juno’s equivalent if the goddess Hera.
"Ceres..." See in text (Act IV)
In Roman mythology, Ceres was the god of agriculture and fertility. Prospero has her join in the celebration and bless Miranda and Ferdinand’s union. In Greek mythology, Ceres is known as Demeter.