Arcadia


(permanent link) added: 2008-11-17 17:54:35 sponsor: Goldfritha (last reply: 2008-11-17 17:54:35)

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Come live with me and be my Love,
And we will all the pleasures prove
That hills and valleys, dale and field,
And all the craggy mountains yield.
Marlowe "The Passionate Shepherd to his Love"

The gentle, quiet life of the countryside, peopled by souls of wise simplicity. Traditionally populated by shepherds and shepherdesses. Idealized, often to the point of Utopia, but unlike most Utopias, it is not a place that is built. Indeed, it is generally portrayed as where people are still wise enough to stick to the old ways that make for happiness, rather than be trapped in the city's bustle.

Arcadia is a real region, but during the Roman Empire, poets (including Virgil) cast it as the idyllic land of the pastoral.

The Country Mouse often comes from a (more or less idealized) Arcadia.

Closely related to Ghibli Hills, but inhabited. (They may, in fact, be next to each other in the same story.)

Examples

Literature
  • William Shakespeare used it more than once: in Cymbeline and Winter's Tale, the royal foundlings are raised by shepherds, and in As You Like It, Rosalind, fleeing her uncle's corrupt court.
  • Sir Philip Sidney's Arcadia
  • The Christopher Marlowe poem "The Passionate Shepherd to his Love". Walter Raleigh's response "The Nymph's Reply to the Shepherd" is a Deconstruction.
  • In Don Quixote, at the end of the book, Quixote considers leaving being a knight to become an arcadian shepherd instead.
  • In Aesop's The City Mouse and the Country Mouse, the City Mouse scorns the country life as simple, but when the Country Mouse visits, he discovers that the city is dangerous, and he is better off content in the country.
Theater
  • Strephon from Iolanthe is an Arcadian shepherd. He's also half fairy.
Anime Role-Playing Games
  • The Arcadia of Changeling: the Dreaming is the home of all fae, a place of limitless imagination that exists at the far end of the Dreaming (Earth's collective imagination). The changelings of the game have been cut off from Arcadia for centuries, and many await the coming of Spring, when the bridge between Arcadia and Earth is repaired (if it ever ends up coming...).
Video Games

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