1st November 1611 Shakespeares Tempest performed for the King

The actors performed the Play the ‘Tempest’ by William Shakespeare for King James I on the 1st November 1611


On the day of ‘All Hallows’ otherwise known as ‘All Saints day’ on the 1st November 1611, the evening was complete with Shakespearian play ‘The Tempest’. The acting company “The Kingsmen” performed the play at the king’s court, Whitehall Palace. The play is thought to be based on a Greek Neoclassical theme. 

What is the Shakespeare play, The Tempest all about? 

A Tempest is a violent wind gushing storm. 

The Play features an Island off the coast of Italy. Exploring family connections, magic, betrayal, love, freedom, power and control. It is considered reflecting the many realities of Colonialism.  Introspection about who the rightful masters should be.  People being beholden to someone. The Price tag on freedom.  The play is about power and control not only of land but being in control of others, as well as controlling their own destinies

It was Shakespeare’s last play comparisons of how the playwright also masterminded plots, created spellbinding characters for the audiences.

Characters / Cast of the Tempest by William Shakespeare

Prospero was the Duke of Milan

Miranda: Daughter of Prospero

Caliban: a witch a slave to Prospero
Ariel: Prospero’s servant spirit of the Island
Ferdinand: Prince of Naples’ son of Alonso
Trinculo: Jester to Alonso friend to the Butler
Stephano: Butler to Alonso friends with Trinculo
Alonso: King of Naples and Ferdinands father
Gonzalo: Trusted advisor advocate of Alonso
Antonio: Brother to Prospero succeeded being the Duke of Milan after his brother was overthrown

The outline summary of the play ‘The Tempest’

Prospero the former Duke of Milan was overthrown by his brother Antonio who was helped by King of Naples.
Prospero was sent to sea and marooned on an island for 12 years with his young daughter Miranda. They came to learn that it is a magical Island.

The men who betrayed Prospero were one day in a ship by the island. Prospero casts some magic with the aid of his spirit friend Ariel, to create a  Tempest and soon a stormy sea seizes the ship. 

Miranda asked her father to calm the storm and wash the men safely to sea. She does not know what these men did in her past to her and her father so Prospero tells her. 

Alonso the King and his son Ferdinand are separated. Prospero plots to match make a groom for his daughter and sets eyes on the Kings son.  So Miranda and Ferdinand fall in love. Prospero sets a test to determine if Ferdinand’s love is real when the couple seeks marriage.

Meanwhile, the Slave that Prospero uses Caliban, who once had control of the island and helped Prospero thrive, finds there are other men from the shipwrecked by the storm. These men Stephano and Trinculo are the Kings Alonso’s Servants. Caliban wonders if they can help him break free and reclaim the island back as he resents being controlled and being a slave. The mother of Caliban imprisoned Arial who Prospero set free.  Arial also wants to be free but is locked into being controlled by Prospero a debt to having been rescued by Prospero.

Spirit Ariel punishes Caliban for trying to betray Prospero. Ariel tells Alonso that they are in this situation as punishment for how they treated Prospero. 

The Outcome and the grand finale of the play ‘The Tempest’

After the plotting scheming the punishment of taking revenge and psychological distortion, there is resolution forgiveness and hope. 

Alonso thought his son Ferdinand might have died in the storm but Prospero tells him that he plans to marry his daughter.

Alonso makes amends and makes Prospero Duke again, Ariel is set free.


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