Difference Between Comedy vs. Tragedy

Main Difference

Literature is one of the richest heritage from one generation to another or from one era to another. One can examine the happenings in a certain time with knowing about the literature of that time. Comedy and Tragedy are two famous genres of literature which aim to reflect and educate the society with carrying on with their modesty. Comedy is the genre which has a happy and a vibrant ending, whereas tragedy is the genre which has a depressed or sorrowful ending. Generally, the literature of each genre contains some strong elements right form the word go. As one not studying till the end can even know about the genre as story unfolds. Comedy has elements like lighthearted talks, lively characters, amusing display of incidents and much more, while tragedy has elements like serious crisis or troubles. The literature possessing both, the tragedy and comedy are called tragicomedy.

Comparison Chart

BasisComedyTragedy
EndingComedy is the genre which has a happy and a vibrant ending.Tragedy is the genre which has a depressed or sorrowful ending.
ElementsComedy has elements like lighthearted talks, lively characters, amusing display of incidents.Tragedy has elements like serious crisis or troubles.
ProtagonistThe protagonist of a comedy is called comic hero.The protagonist of a tragedy is called tragic hero.
ExampleA Midsummer Night’s Dream, The importance of Being Earnest, The Front Page, The 39 Steps are few of the famous comedy plays.Hamlet, MacBeth, Romeo and Juliet, Othello, King Lear, Titus Andronicus are few of the famous tragedy plays.

What is Comedy?

Comedy is the genre of literature which amuses the audience by humor and goes on with happy ending. Comedies are not only part of bringing laughter they also educate people but in a pleasant environment. They also do have troubles and climax but they never create chaos among audience and even the antagonist is not as ferocious as in the genre of tragedy. It mostly circulates around smaller social issues and the incidents happening around educate and make them laugh at the same time. A comedy can further be divided in these sub-genres satire, burlesque, comedy of manners, and farce. All of them serve the similar purpose with their distinguish features. A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The importance of Being Earnest, The Front Page, The 39 Steps are few of famous comedy plays.

What is Tragedy?

Tragedy is the genre of literature which has serious story with a sad ending. It is an intense kind of story which is all about the crucial, evils or troubles. Generally, in tragedy the antagonist is ferocious than in comedies. Hamlet, MacBeth, Romeo and Juliet, Othello, King Lear, Titus Andronicus are few of the famous tragedy plays being written by Shakespeare. Through the story it has some certain seriousness as it shows the protagonist in troubles, but as the story unfolds it even gets more troubling, resulting as the sad and depressed ending. Tragedy usually sets in some battlefield, a dark and mysterious palace, or any devastated place.

Comedy vs. Tragedy

  1. Comedy is the genre which has a happy and a vibrant ending, whereas tragedy is the genre which has a depressed or sorrowful ending.
  2. Comedy has elements like lighthearted talks, lively characters, amusing display of incidents and much more, while tragedy has elements like serious crisis or troubles.
  3. The literature possessing both, the tragedy and comedy are called tragicomedy.
  4. The protagonist of a comedy is called comic hero, whereas the protagonist of a tragedy is called tragic hero.
  5. A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The importance of Being Earnest, The Front Page, The 39 Steps are few of famous comedy plays, whereas Hamlet, MacBeth, Romeo and Juliet, Othello, King Lear, Titus Andronicus are few of the famous tragedy plays.
  6. A comedy can further be divided in these sub-genres satire, burlesque, comedy of manners, and farce.
  7. Comedy opens in some pleasant and calm surroundings, whereas tragedy usually sets in some battlefield, a dark and mysterious palace, or any devastated place.

Comparison Video