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 The Winter's Tale Study Guide (Choose to Continue)

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The Winter's Tale: Novel Summary: Act 2 Scene 2

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Act 2 Scene 2
Paulina, Antigonus's wife, demands that the jailer allow her to see Hermoine. He says he is not allowed to do so. Instead, he brings Emilia, one of Hermoine's maids, to see Paulina. Emilia enters with the news that Hermoine has given birth to a girl. The sharp-tongued Paulina takes it upon herself to show the baby to Leontes. She plans to be Hermoine's advocate and to express her anger to the king.
Analysis
Paulina is the second of the three important female characters in the play, all of whom are very different in their natures. Hermoine's steadfast dignity is here contrasted with the practical, no-nonsense attitude of Paulina. She is the kind of woman who expresses her opinions boldly, and gets things accomplished. She is not going to be intimidated by Leontes just because he is the king.




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