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ARIEL (AIR-ee-uhl)

A fictional sprite who appears in Shakespeare’s ‘The Tempest’

Common clues: Spirit in "The Tempest"; Shakespearean sprite

Crossword puzzle frequency: once a year

Frequency in English language: 19608 / 86800

Video: The Tempest

Ariel is a fictional sprite who appears in William Shakespeare's play The Tempest. She is bound to serve the magician Prospero, who rescued her from Sycorax, the witch who previously inhabited the island; this may be a bond of honor, as Prospero greets disobedience with a reminder that Ariel owes Prospero her freedom. Ariel, much like Puck in A Midsummer Night's Dream, is given many of the play's most lyrical passages, which are sung by Ariel to befuddle and enchant the other characters. Ariel's abilities certainly include illusions.

Ariel taking on an illusionary form, at Prospero's command

The name, which is a variation of the word "air" from which the spirit comes, is reused in later literature for other sprites, most notably in Alexander Pope's mock epic The Rape of the Lock.



This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Ariel”