Character Analysis: Mario Cavaradossi

Mario Cavaradossi: painter, lover, and revolutionist.


Mario Cavaradossi is a character from Tosca. For those of you who don't know the synopsis, you can go here and read it. 

Cavaradossi As A Painter

Mario Cavaradossi worked as a painter in the church of Sant' Andrea, so he obviously had a job as a painter. Despite the fact that Cavaradossi's main function was that of a revolutionist, you first meet Cavaradossi while he is painting. I think that the reason for that is because he is in love with Floria Tosca and she is an artist as well. Two artists in love is very dramatic. Almost immediately after you get used to Cavaradossi being a painter, you find out that he is hiding an escaped prisoner. At this moment, you find out that Cavaradossi is much more than an artist. 

Cavaradossi being a painter makes his character much more interesting. (As if a revolutionist isn't interesting enough!) Why did Sardou make Cavaradossi such a 'multi-tasking' person? Cavaradossi's full time 'job' is a revolutionist. But this guy has time to get a girlfriend and paint Madonnas! 

Cavaradossi As A Lover

As I mentioned in the previous entry, Cavaradossi manages to 'multi-task' all the time. He has a girlfriend and he even has time to converse with her and make plans. He even told her his plan and where Angelotti was hidden. Unfortunately, it would have been better if her hadn't told her anything... 

Cavaradossi and Tosca are both artists. She is an operatic singer and he is a painter. It couldn't have been more perfect. I don't have much to say about Cavaradossi being a painter. 

Cavaradossi As A Revolutionist

Cavaradossi's character strikes me as cunning, but not always. What does that mean? Judging by the opera (for I haven't read Sardou's play), Cavaradossi does not act 'smart' in Scarpia's office when he shouts 'Vittoria! Vittoria!'. Why in the world would he do that? That is probably the only time when I was dumbfounded by his behavior. I just found it completely unreasonable. Yes, he's a 'revolutionist' who is rooting for Napoleon, but acting in such a way got him into much more trouble than he was in already. 

His revolutionary character isn't the best. He doesn't act sensibly at critical moments making his own life much harder. It would have been better if he just stayed a painter and lover. Maybe he would have survived... 
      


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