Shakespeare on Music as the Food of Love

If music be the food of love“If music be the food of love, play on;
Give me excess of it; that surfeiting
The appetite may sicken and so die.
(Twelfth Night act 1, sc. 1)

Tips for use. Answer to ‘Would you like to listen to some music?’ in a romantic setting. Music occupies the void that words cannot fill. Though not everyone has held the same favorable attitude on the matter. It had a bad effect on the virtues of ladies, especially if they were inclined to poetry.  In “The Anatomie of Abuse”, Philip Stubbes (1583-1591) writes,I say of Musick as Plato, Aristotle, Galen and many others haue said of it: that it is very il for young heds, for a certaine kinde of nice, smoothe sweetness in alluring the auditorie to effeminacie, pusillanimity, and lothsomnes of life… and made apt to all wantonness and sinne. And thefore Writers affirme Sappho to haue been expert in musick, and therefore whorish.”
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In the play. Orsino, the Duke of Illyria loves Olivia who does not return his love. He asks attending musicians to play for him

Image Source. http://akiwiinparis.blogspot.com/2012/02/you-have-to-have-end.html

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