Olivia in Twelfth Night: Character Analysis & Quotes

Olivia in Twelfth Night: Character Analysis & Quotes
Coming up next: Othello: Character Analysis, Description & Sketch

You're on a roll. Keep up the good work!

Take Quiz Watch Next Lesson
Your next lesson will play in 10 seconds
  • 0:02 Olivia in Twelfth Night
  • 0:47 Character Analysis
  • 2:30 Lesson Summary
Add to Add to Add to

Want to watch this again later?

Log in or sign up to add this lesson to a Custom Course.

Log in or Sign up


Recommended Lessons and Courses for You

Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Shamekia Thomas

Shamekia has taught English at the secondary level and has her doctoral degree in clinical psychology.

Olivia is one of the main characters in William Shakespeare's novel 'Twelfth Night'. Olivia spends most of her time mourning the loss of her brother until she meets a 'man'. Learn more about the character Olivia in this lesson.

Olivia in Twelfth Night

Grief is a process. After the loss of our closest loved ones, we all experience a period of grief, a time when we mourn and remember the ones we've loved. After a while, it is natural to move on with your life and re-establish normalcy in your life. For some, it takes a while to overcome grief. Their lives are at a standstill and they don't feel like doing anything or being around anyone until something or someone reaches them on a different level.

Twelfth Night is a comedy written by William Shakespeare. One of the characters in the play, Olivia, experiences overwhelming feelings of grief following the loss of her brother. Olivia remains in a period of mourning until her curiosity is piqued by a young man who comes to her gate.

Character Analysis

Olivia is a beautiful woman with strong emotional reactions and no male guidance; she is not married and no longer has a father or brother. Several of the men in the play feel Olivia needs a man to help her manage her life and fortune, but she is too overcome with emotions to give them a chance at pursuing her.

At times, Olivia can be emotional and dramatic. Olivia mourns the recent loss of her brother. Instead of expressing interest in others she drowns herself in her sorrows. She mourns in a dramatic way by dressing in black. When she cries, her tears are compared to a 'brine' that 'seasons' her 'brother's dead love' (Act 1, Scene 1).

To unlock this lesson you must be a Member.
Create your account

Register to view this lesson

Are you a student or a teacher?

Unlock Your Education

See for yourself why 30 million people use

Become a member and start learning now.
Become a Member  Back
What teachers are saying about
Try it risk-free for 30 days

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 200 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Create an account to start this course today
Try it risk-free for 30 days!
Create an account