'Tis Pity She's a Whore

by

John Ford

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'Tis Pity She's a Whore: Act 2, Scene 5 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
Later that same day, Giovanni returns to the Friar and confesses what he and Annabella have done. The Friar tells him that he has tried to pray on his behalf, but it is no use: Giovanni is surely marked for Hell. Giovanni tries to argue that the Friar is lacking in Christian love. He intends to prove that his actions are good.
Tension continues to build between Giovanni and the Friar as the Friar’s statements track how Giovanni is falling further and further away from Christian virtue, even going so far as to insult the Friar’s faith.
Themes
Religious Piety vs. False Idols Theme Icon
Giovanni argues that he learned in school that the composition of the mind was related to the composition of the body. Because Annabella is beautiful, she must also be virtuous in what she does, and love is the purest form of virtue. Thus, their love must be very virtuous.
Giovanni’s attempts to rationalize his love for Annabella merely serve as an attempt to cover up the passion and the lust that he has for her, particularly as they have now consummated their relationship.
Themes
Passion, Lust, and Bloodlust Theme Icon
The Friar tells Giovanni that if there were no God, no Heaven, and no Hell, Giovanni might have some defense. But because Giovanni and Annabella know of God, they know that what they have done is a sin. Giovanni once again argues that Annabella’s love is Heaven and that she is divine.
The Friar warns Giovanni against his actions and implies that Giovanni has lost his belief in God. Giovanni does little to disprove the Friar as he continues to worship Annabella as though she were divine herself.
Themes
Passion, Lust, and Bloodlust Theme Icon
Religious Piety vs. False Idols Theme Icon
The Friar, seeing how futile it is to try to persuade Giovanni from his sin, instead tries to persuade him to marry Annabella. Giovanni disagrees, saying that their marriage would prove her guilty of lust. The Friar then demands that Giovanni let him hear her confession. Giovanni assents, saying that she will tell the Friar how much she loves him as well, and that they are committed to love each other. The Friar resolves to visit her.
In counselling Giovanni and Annabella to marry, the Friar (and Giovanni with his response) is highlighting Annabella’s dilemma. Custom dictates that she should marry in order to make her child legitimate, but it also dictates that marrying her brother would be a sin.
Themes
Passion, Lust, and Bloodlust Theme Icon
Desire vs. Duty Theme Icon
Female Sexuality vs. Social Expectation Theme Icon
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