'Tis Pity She's a Whore

by

John Ford

Teachers and parents! Struggling with distance learning? Our Teacher Edition on 'Tis Pity She's a Whore can help.

Puttana Character Analysis

Annabella’s guardian and confidant, Puttana’s name literally means “whore” in Italian. Puttana helps Annabella keep her various suitors at a distance, but when she sees the love that Annabella feels for Giovanni, she does not judge them. She encourages Annabella’s sexuality. At the end of the play, she is judged harshly for her crimes. She is said to be complicit in their incest, and is gagged, blinded, and eventually burned to death. This cruel punishment reinforces the harsh violence against women and women’s sexuality in the play.

Puttana Quotes in 'Tis Pity She's a Whore

The 'Tis Pity She's a Whore quotes below are all either spoken by Puttana or refer to Puttana. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Passion, Lust, and Bloodlust Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Penguin Publishers edition of 'Tis Pity She's a Whore published in 2014.
Act 1, Scene 2 Quotes

The rich magnifico that is below with your father, charge, Signor Donado his uncle, for that he means to make this his cousin a golden calf, thinks that you will be a right Israelite and fall down to him presently; but I hope I have tutored you better.

Related Characters: Puttana (speaker), Annabella, Donado, Bergetto
Related Symbols: The Golden Calf
Page Number: 1.2.118-122
Explanation and Analysis:
Act 2, Scene 1 Quotes

Nay, what a paradise of joy have you passed under! Why, now I commend thee, charge. Fear nothing, sweetheart. What, though he be your brother? Your brother’s a man, I hope; and I say still, if a young wench feel the fit upon her, let her take anybody: father or brother, all is one.

Related Characters: Puttana (speaker), Giovanni, Annabella
Page Number: 2.1.41-45
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire 'Tis Pity She's a Whore LitChart as a printable PDF.
'Tis Pity She's a Whore PDF

Puttana Character Timeline in 'Tis Pity She's a Whore

The timeline below shows where the character Puttana appears in 'Tis Pity She's a Whore. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Act 1, Scene 2
Passion, Lust, and Bloodlust Theme Icon
Injustice Theme Icon
Florio asks what the cause of the argument is as Annabella and Puttana enter on the balcony of the house, unseen. Soranzo chimes in that he asked Vasquez... (full context)
Desire vs. Duty Theme Icon
Female Sexuality vs. Social Expectation Theme Icon
Annabella and Puttana, meanwhile, have been listening in on the conversation from the balcony. Puttana asks Annabella how... (full context)
Passion, Lust, and Bloodlust Theme Icon
Female Sexuality vs. Social Expectation Theme Icon
Puttana describes Annabella’s potential suitors. There’s Grimaldi, the well-built soldier, whom Puttana does not like because... (full context)
Religious Piety vs. False Idols Theme Icon
Female Sexuality vs. Social Expectation Theme Icon
Bergetto and Poggio enter below. Puttana reveals that Bergetto is another one of Annabella’s suitors, and remarks that he is an... (full context)
Religious Piety vs. False Idols Theme Icon
Female Sexuality vs. Social Expectation Theme Icon
Annabella and Puttana remark on how idiotic Bergetto is. Puttana tells her that Bergetto’s uncle, Donado, means to... (full context)
Desire vs. Duty Theme Icon
Female Sexuality vs. Social Expectation Theme Icon
...“celestial creature.” She wonders who it is, and comments on how he looks quite sad. Puttana sees that it is her brother. Annabella is surprised, then worried that he looks so... (full context)
Desire vs. Duty Theme Icon
Religious Piety vs. False Idols Theme Icon
Female Sexuality vs. Social Expectation Theme Icon
Annabella and Puttana reenter, and Annabella asks Giovanni if he will tell her what is wrong. They dismiss... (full context)
Act 2, Scene 1
Passion, Lust, and Bloodlust Theme Icon
Female Sexuality vs. Social Expectation Theme Icon
Puttana enters, seeming already to know that Annabella has lost her virginity to Giovanni. Puttana tells... (full context)
Act 2, Scene 6
Religious Piety vs. False Idols Theme Icon
...jewel for her (a ring). He describes how much Bergetto is in love with Annabella. Puttana tells Donado that she has been commending Bergetto to Annabella every night. Donado gives Puttana... (full context)
Act 3, Scene 2
Desire vs. Duty Theme Icon
Female Sexuality vs. Social Expectation Theme Icon
Florio, Giovanni, Annabella, Puttana, Soranzo, and Vasquez are all gathered. Florio says that although there have been many suitors... (full context)
Desire vs. Duty Theme Icon
Female Sexuality vs. Social Expectation Theme Icon
...the balcony to come down. Soranzo calls for help within the house. Florio, Giovanni, and Puttana enter. Giovanni takes her in his arms and asks her how she is doing. Florio... (full context)
Act 3, Scene 3
Desire vs. Duty Theme Icon
Female Sexuality vs. Social Expectation Theme Icon
Puttana and Giovanni are outside Annabella’s chambers. Puttana is in great distress, saying that Annabella is... (full context)
Female Sexuality vs. Social Expectation Theme Icon
Giovanni asks how Annabella’s condition is. Puttana says that she is fine, but that this fainting and vomiting will continue to happen.... (full context)
Act 4, Scene 3
Passion, Lust, and Bloodlust Theme Icon
Female Sexuality vs. Social Expectation Theme Icon
While Vasquez muses on how to find out who impregnated Annabella, Puttana enters, crying. Vasquez sympathizes with her that Soranzo can be furious and demanding. He admits... (full context)
Desire vs. Duty Theme Icon
Female Sexuality vs. Social Expectation Theme Icon
Vasquez tells Puttana that all Soranzo wants is to find out who did it, and then he wouldn’t... (full context)
Injustice Theme Icon
As soon as Puttana says Giovanni’s name, Vasquez calls on the Banditti (a gang of Italian outlaws and robbers).... (full context)
Act 5, Scene 1
Injustice Theme Icon
Religious Piety vs. False Idols Theme Icon
...him that she is imprisoned in her chamber and is not even allowed to see Putttana, and that he should not trust Soranzo. The Friar agrees to do so. (full context)
Act 5, Scene 6
Passion, Lust, and Bloodlust Theme Icon
Injustice Theme Icon
Female Sexuality vs. Social Expectation Theme Icon
...Cardinal asks if anyone else was complicit in this incest. Vasquez tells the Cardinal of Puttana, and says that he blinded her and kept her alive to confirm Giovanni’s story. The... (full context)