Puck’s Magic Flower

Generally the mention of Puck will immediately cause a belief that the story must be about Shakespeare’s play ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’, and so it is with ‘Puck’s Magic Flower’.

The Tale is focussed entirely on the troupe of actors in the play, and their interaction with the fairy King and Queen.

Oberon, the King of the Fairies, has an argument with his wife, Titania, over a young Indian child that Oberon wishes to have as a servant.  Titania refuses to relinquish him into his care and so he seeks revenge.

He sends an elf by the name of Puck deep into the forest to find a special flower called ‘Love-in-Idleness’ with magic properties.  It has the power to cause someone to fall hopelessly in love with the first living person they see when waking from sleep.  Although it is also his intention to unite some runaway lovers, he sees the chance to make Titania appear foolish.

When she falls asleep he squeezes the juice of the plant into her eyes.  At the same time we are introduced to a group of actors who have come into the forest to practice a play they intend to perform for the Duke of Athens on the occasion of his wedding the next day.   Amongst them is a character called Bottom.  He believes he is the most suitable person to play every part, so he is already something of a buffoon, but to further exacerbate the comedy, Puck casts a spell which causes him to have a donkey’s head.

Puck's Magic FLower example pages

Subsequently when Titania wakens she sees and falls in love with this absurd character.  He has already frightened away his actor friends as his head is now so grotesque, aided in no small way by Puck making fearsome noises behind them as they run, and although he cannot fathom how it is that the beautiful Titania is now giving him so much care, he luxuriates in the kindness he is shown.

The two main problems when constructing theTale from the play were to avoid any element of sexualising the reaction of Titania besotted by her being under the magic of the flower, and to avoid any indication that it is okay for someone to put a flower or its contents into anyone’s eyes.

Thus the flower is merely touched near Titania’s eyes, and the level of contact between the protagonists is clearly just overtly friendly and foolish.  The contents of the argument are similarly omitted to avoid portraying the exploitation of a child by mythical creatures.

It is from this play that the Shakespuss friend/character Bottom gets his name.

As a consequence he always plays comic parts!

Latest News

Introduction Video

Introduction Video

An animated introduction to William Shakespuss and his stories.

Read more

Radio Time!

Radio Time!

Today was a special day for Shakespuss as we made our debut on the airwaves.

Read more

Half Term Readings

Half Term Readings

Just where Shakespeare himself would have had his own story times!

Read more

Information cookies

Cookies are short reports that are sent and stored on the hard drive of the user's computer through your browser when it connects to a web. Cookies can be used to collect and store user data while connected to provide you the requested services and sometimes tend not to keep. Cookies can be themselves or others.

There are several types of cookies:

So when you access our website, in compliance with Article 22 of Law 34/2002 of the Information Society Services, in the analytical cookies treatment, we have requested your consent to their use. All of this is to improve our services. We use Google Analytics to collect anonymous statistical information such as the number of visitors to our site. Cookies added by Google Analytics are governed by the privacy policies of Google Analytics. If you want you can disable cookies from Google Analytics.

However, please note that you can enable or disable cookies by following the instructions of your browser.