The Comedy of Errors in English Short Stories by William Shakespeare books and stories PDF | The Comedy of Errors

The Comedy of Errors

The Comedy of Errors

The Works of William Shakespeare

-: Writer :-

William Shakespeare


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Act I

Scene 1 - A hall in the Duke’s palace.

Scene 2 - The Mart.

Act II

Scene 1 - The house of Antipholus of Ephesus.

Scene 2 - A public place.


Scene 1 - Before the house of Antipholus of Ephesus.

Scene 2 - The same.

Act IV

Scene 1 - A public place.

Scene 2 - The house of Antipholus of Ephesus.

Scene 3 - A public place.

Scene 4 - A street.

Act V

Scene 1 - A street before a Priory.

End notes

Texts Used (from general preface)


Scene 1

A hall in the Duke’s palace.

Enter Duke, Egeon, Gaoler, Officers, and other Attendants.

Ege. Proceed, Solinus, to procure my fall,

And by the doom of death end woes and all.

Duke. Merchant of Syracusa, plead no more;

I am not partial to infringe our laws:

The enmity and discord which of late

Sprung from the rancorous outrage of your duke

To merchants, our well-dealing countrymen,

Who, wanting guilders to redeem their lives,

Have seal’d his rigorous statutes with their bloods,

Excludes all pity from our threatening looks.

For, since the mortal and intestine jars

’Twixt thy seditious countrymen and us,

It hath in solemn synods been decreed,

Both by the Syracusians and ourselves,

To admit no traffic to our adverse towns:

Nay, more,

If any born at Ephesus be seen

At any Syracusian marts and fairs;

Again: if any Syracusian born

Come to the bay of Ephesus, he dies,

His goods confiscate to the duke’s dispose;

Unless a thousand marks be levied,

To quit the penalty and to ransom him.

Thy substance, valued at the highest rate,

Cannot amount unto a hundred marks;

Therefore by law thou art condemn’d to die.

Ege. Yet this my comfort: when your words are done,

My woes end likewise with the evening sun.

Duke. Well, Syracusian, say, in brief, the cause

Why thou departed’st from thy native home,

And for what cause thou camest to Ephesus.

Ege. A heavier task could not have been imposed

Than I to speak my griefs unspeakable:

Yet, that the world may witness that my end

Was wrought by nature, not by vile offence,

I’ll utter what my sorrow gives me leave.

In Syracusa was I born; and wed

Unto a woman, happy but for me,

And by me, had not our hap been bad.

With her I lived in joy; our wealth increased

By prosperous voyages I often made

To Epidamnum; till my factor’s death,

And the great care of goods at random left,

Drew me from kind embracements of my spouse:

From whom my absence was not six months old,

Before herself, almost at fainting under

The pleasing punishment that women bear,

Had made provision for her following me,

And soon and safe arrived where I was.

There had she not been long but she became

A joyful mother of two goodly sons;

And, which was strange, the one so like the other

As could not be distinguish’d but by names.

That very hour, and in the self-same inn,

A meaner woman was delivered

Of such a burden, male twins, both alike:

Those, for their parents were exceeding poor,

I bought, and brought up to attend my sons.

My wife, not meanly proud of two such boys,

Made daily motions for our home return:

Unwilling I agreed; alas! too soon

We came aboard.

A league from Epidamnum had we sail’d,

Before the always-wind-obeying deep

Gave any tragic instance of our harm:

But longer did we not retain much hope;

For what obscured light the heavens did grant

Did but convey unto our fearful minds

A doubtful warrant of immediate death;

Which though myself would gladly have embraced,

Yet the incessant weepings of my wife,

Weeping before for what she saw must come,

And piteous plainings of the pretty babes,

That mourn’d for fashion, ignorant what to fear,

Forced me to seek delays for them and me.

And this it was, for other means was none:

The sailors sought for safety by our boat,

And left the ship, then sinking-ripe, to us:

My wife, more careful for the latter-born,

Had fasten’d him unto a small spare mast,

Such as seafaring men provide for storms;

To him one of the other twins was bound,

Whilst I had been like heedful of the other:

The children thus disposed, my wife and I,

Fixing our eyes on whom our care was fix’d,

Fasten’d ourselves at either end the mast;

And floating straight, obedient to the stream,

Was carried towards Corinth, as we thought.

At length the sun, gazing upon the earth,

Dispersed those vapours that offended us;

And, by the benefit of his wished light,

The seas wax’d calm, and we discovered

Two ships from far making amain to us,

Of Corinth that, of Epidaurus this:

But ere they came,—O, let me say no more!

Gather the sequel by that went before.

Duke. Nay, forward, old man; do not break off so;

For we may pity, though not pardon thee.

Ege. O, had the gods done so, I had not now

Worthily term’d them merciless to us!

For, ere the ships could meet by twice five leagues,

We were encounter’d by a mighty rock;

Which being violently borne upon,

Our helpful ship was splitted in the midst;

So that, in this unjust divorce of us,

Fortune had left to both of us alike

What to delight in, what to sorrow for.

Her part, poor soul! seeming as burdened

With lesser weight, but not with lesser woe,

Was carried with more speed before the wind;

And in our sight they three were taken up

By fishermen of Corinth, as we thought.

At length, another ship had seized on us;

And, knowing whom it was their hap to save,

Gave healthful welcome to their shipwreck’d guests;

And would have reft the fishers of their prey,

Had not their bark been very slow of sail;

And therefore homeward did they bend their course.

Thus have you heard me sever’d from my bliss;

That by misfortunes was my life prolong’d,

To tell sad stories of my own mishaps.

Duke. And, for the sake of them thou sorrowest for,

Do me the favour to dilate at full

What hath befall’n of them and thee till now.

Ege. My youngest boy, and yet my eldest care,

At eighteen years became inquisitive

After his brother: and importuned me

That his attendant—so his case was like,

Reft of his brother, but retain’d his name—

Might bear him company in the quest of him:

Whom whilst I labour’d of a love to see,

I hazarded the loss of whom I loved.

Five summers have I spent in furthest Greece,

Roaming clean through the bounds of Asia,

And, coasting homeward, came to Ephesus;

Hopeless to find, yet loath to leave unsought

Or that, or any place that harbours men.

But here must end the story of my life;

And happy were I in my timely death,

Could all my travels warrant me they live.

Duke. Hapless Egeon, whom the fates have mark’d

To bear the extremity of dire mishap!

Now, trust me, were it not against our laws,

Against my crown, my oath, my dignity,

Which princes, would they, may not disannul,

My soul should sue as advocate for thee.

But, though thou art adjudged to the death,

And passed sentence may not be recall’d

But to our honour’s great disparagement,

Yet will I favour thee in what I can.

Therefore, merchant, I’ll limit thee this day

To seek thy help by beneficial help:

Try all the friends thou hast in Ephesus;

Beg thou, or borrow, to make up the sum,

And live; if no, then thou art doom’d to die.

Gaoler, take him to thy custody.

Gaol. I will, my lord.

Ege. Hopeless and helpless doth Egeon wend,

But to procrastinate his lifeless end.


Scene 2

The Mart

Enter Antipholus of Syracuse, Dromio of Syracuse, and First Merchant.

First Mer. Therefore give out you are of Epidamnum,

Lest that your goods too soon be confiscate.

This very day a Syracusian merchant

Is apprehended for arrival here;

And, not being able to buy out his life,

According to the statute of the town,

Dies ere the weary sun set in the west.

There is your money that I had to keep.

Ant. S. Go bear it to the Centaur, where we host,

And stay there, Dromio, till I come to thee.

Within this hour it will be dinner-time:

Till that. I’ll view the manners of the town,

Peruse the traders, gaze upon the buildings,

And then return, and sleep within mine inn;

For with long travel I am stiff and weary.

Get thee away.

Dro. S. Many a man would take you at your word,

And go indeed, having so good a mean. Exit.

Ant. S. A trusty villain, sir; that very oft,

When I am dull with care and melancholy,

Lightens my humour with his merry jests.

What, will you walk with me about the town,

And then go to my inn, and dine with me?

First Mer. I am invited, sir, to certain merchants,

Of whom I hope to make much benefit;

I crave your pardon. Soon at five o’clock,

Please you, I’ll meet with you upon the mart,

And afterward consort you till bed-time:

My present business calls me from you now.

Ant. S. Farewell till then: I will go lose myself,

And wander up and down to view the city.

First Mer. Sir, I commend you to your own content. Exit.

Ant. S. He that commends me to mine own content

Commends me to the thing I cannot get.

I to the world am like a drop of water,

That in the ocean seeks another drop;

Who, falling there to find his fellow forth,

Unseen, inquisitive, confounds himself:

So I, to find a mother and a brother,

In quest of them, unhappy, lose myself.

Enter Dromio of Ephesus.

Here comes the almanac of my true date.

What now? how chance thou art return’d so soon?

Dro. E. Return’d so soon! rather approach’d too late:

The capon burns, the pig falls from the spit;

The clock hath strucken twelve upon the bell;

My mistress made it one upon my cheek:

She is so hot, because the meat is cold;

The meat is cold, because you come not home;

You come not home, because you have no stomach;

You have no stomach, having broke your fast;

But we, that know what ’tis to fast and pray,

Are penitent for your default to-day.

Ant. S. Stop in your wind, sir: tell me this, I pray:

Where have you left the money that I gave you?

Dro. E. O,—sixpence, that I had o’ Wednesday last

To pay the saddler for my mistress’ crupper?

The saddler had it, sir; I kept it not.

Ant. S. I am not in a sportive humour now:

Tell me, and dally not, where is the money?

We being strangers here, how darest thou trust

So great a charge from thine own custody?

Dro. E. I pray you, jest, sir, as you sit at dinner:

I from my mistress come to you in post;

If I return, I shall be post indeed,

For she will score your fault upon my pate.

Methinks your maw, like mine, should be your clock,

And strike you home without a messenger.

Ant. S. Come, Dromio, come, these jests are out of season;

Reserve them till a merrier hour than this.

Where is the gold I gave in charge to thee?

Dro. E. To me, sir? why, you gave no gold to me.

Ant. S. Come on, sir knave, have done your foolishness,

And tell me how thou hast disposed thy charge.

Dro. E. My charge was but to fetch you from the mart

Home to your house, the Phœnix, sir, to dinner:

My mistress and her sister stays for you.

Ant. S. Now, as I am a Christian, answer me,

In what safe place you have bestow’d my money;

Or I shall break that merry sconce of yours,

That stands on tricks when I am undisposed:

Where is the thousand marks thou hadst of me?

Dro. E. I have some marks of yours upon my pate,

Some of my mistress’ marks upon my shoulders;

But not a thousand marks between you both.

If I should pay your worship those again,

Perchance you will not bear them patiently.

Ant. S. Thy mistress’ marks? what mistress, slave, hast thou?

Dro. E. Your worship’s wife, my mistress at the Phœnix;

She that doth fast till you come home to dinner,

And prays that you will hie you home to dinner.

Ant. S. What, wilt thou flout me thus unto my face,

Being forbid? There, take you that, sir knave.

Dro. E. What mean you, sir? for God’s sake, hold your hands!

Nay, an you will not, sir, I’ll take my heels. Exit.

Ant. S. Upon my life, by some device or other

The villain is o’er-raught of all my money.

They say this town is full of cozenage;

As, nimble jugglers that deceive the eye,

Dark-working sorcerers that change the mind.

Soul-killing witches that deform the body,

Disguised cheaters, prating mountebanks,

And many such-like liberties of sin:

If it prove so, I will be gone the sooner.

I’ll to the Centaur, to go seek this slave:

I greatly fear my money is not safe. Exit.


Scene 1

The house of Antipholus of Ephesus

Enter Adriana and Luciana.

Adr. Neither my husband nor the slave return’d,

That in such haste I sent to seek his master!

Sure, Luciana, it is two o’clock.

Luc. Perhaps some merchant hath invited him,

And from the mart he’s somewhere gone to dinner.

Good sister, let us dine, and never fret:

A man is master of his liberty:

Time is their master; and when they see time,

They’ll go or come: if so, be patient, sister.

Adr. Why should their liberty than ours be more?

Luc. Because their business still lies out o’ door.

Adr. Look, when I serve him so, he takes it ill.

Luc. O, know he is the bridle of your will.

Adr. There’s none but asses will be bridled so.

Luc. Why, headstrong liberty is lash’d with woe.

There’s nothing situate under heaven’s eye

But hath his bound, in earth, in sea, in sky:

The beasts, the fishes, and the winged fowls,

Are their males’ subjects and at their controls:

Men, more divine, the masters of all these,

Lords of the wide world and wild watery seas,

Indued with intellectual sense and souls,

Of more pre-eminence than fish and fowls,

Are masters to their females, and their lords:

Then let your will attend on their accords.

Adr. This servitude makes you to keep unwed.

Luc. Not this, but troubles of the marriage-bed.

Adr. But, were you wedded, you would bear some sway.

Luc. Ere I learn love, I’ll practise to obey.

Adr. How if your husband start some other where?

Luc. Till he come home again, I would forbear.

Adr. Patience unmoved! no marvel though she pause;

They can be meek that have no other cause.

A wretched soul, bruised with adversity,

We bid be quiet when we hear it cry;

But were we burden’d with like weight of pain,

As much, or more, we should ourselves complain:

So thou, that hast no unkind mate to grieve thee,

With urging helpless patience wouldst relieve me;

But, if thou live to see like right bereft,

This fool-begg’d patience in thee will be left.

Luc. Well, I will marry one day, but to try.

Here comes your man; now is your husband nigh.

Enter Dromio of Ephesus.

Adr. Say, is your tardy master now at hand?

Dro. E. Nay, he’s at two hands with me, and that my two ears can witness.

Adr. Say, didst thou speak with him? know’st thou his mind?

Dro. E. Ay, ay, he told his mind upon mine ear:

Beshrew his hand, I scarce could understand it.

Luc. Spake he so doubtfully, thou couldst not feel his meaning?

Dro. E. Nay, he struck so plainly, I could too well feel his blows; and withal so doubtfully, that I could scarce understand them.

Adr. But say, I prithee, is he coming home?

It seems he hath great care to please his wife.

Dro. E. Why, mistress, sure my master is horn-mad.

Adr. Horn-mad, thou villain!

Dro. E.

I mean not cuckold-mad;

But, sure, he is stark mad.

When I desired him to come home to dinner,

He ask’d me for a thousand marks in gold:

‘’Tis dinner-time,’ quoth I; ‘My gold!’ quoth he:

‘Your meat doth burn,’ quoth I; ‘My gold!’ quoth he:

‘Will you come home?’ quoth I; ‘My gold!’ quoth he,

‘Where is the thousand marks I gave thee, villain?’

‘The pig,’ quoth I, ‘is burn’d;’ ‘My gold!’ quoth he:

‘My mistress, sir,’ quoth I; ‘Hang up thy mistress!

I know not thy mistress; out on thy mistress!’

Luc. Quoth who?

Dro. E. Quoth my master:

‘I know,’ quoth he, ‘no house, no wife, no mistress.’

So that my errand, due unto my tongue,

I thank him, I bare home upon my shoulders;

For, in conclusion, he did beat me there.

Adr. Go back again, thou slave, and fetch him home.

Dro. E. Go back again, and be new beaten home?

For God’s sake, send some other messenger.

Adr. Back, slave, or I will break thy pate across.

Dro. E. And he will bless that cross with other beating:

Between you I shall have a holy head.

Adr. Hence, prating peasant! fetch thy master home.

Dro. E. Am I so round with you as you with me,

That like a football you do spurn me thus?

You spurn me hence, and he will spurn me hither:

If I last in this service, you must case me in leather. Exit.

Luc. Fie, how impatience lowereth in your face!

Adr. His company must do his minions grace,

Whilst I at home starve for a merry look.

Hath homely age the alluring beauty took

From my poor cheek? then he hath wasted it:

Are my discourses dull? barren my wit?

If voluble and sharp discourse be marr’d,

Unkindness blunts it more than marble hard:

Do their gay vestments his affections bait?

That’s not my fault; he’s master of my state:

What ruins are in me that can be found,

By him not ruin’d? then is he the ground

Of my defeatures. My decayed fair

A sunny look of his would soon repair:

But, too unruly deer, he breaks the pale,

And feeds from home; poor I am but his stale.

Luc. Self-harming jealousy! fie, beat it hence!

Adr. Unfeeling fools can with such wrongs dispense.

I know his eye doth homage otherwhere;

Or else what lets it but he would be here?

Sister, you know he promised me a chain;

Would that alone, alone he would detain,

So he would keep fair quarter with his bed!

I see the jewel best enamelled

Will lose his beauty; yet the gold bides still,

That others touch, and often touching will

Wear gold: and no man that hath a name,

By falsehood and corruption doth it shame.

Since that my beauty cannot please his eye,

I’ll weep what’s left away, and weeping die.

Luc. How many fond fools serve mad jealousy!


Scene 2

A public place

Enter Antipholus of Syracuse.

Ant. S. The gold I gave to Dromio is laid up

Safe at the Centaur; and the heedful slave

Is wander’d forth, in care to seek me out

By computation and mine host’s report.

I could not speak with Dromio since at first

I sent him from the mart. See, here he comes.

Enter Dromio of Syracuse.

How now, sir! is your merry humour alter’d?

As you love strokes, so jest with me again.

You know no Centaur? you receiv’d no gold?

Your mistress sent to have me home to dinner?

My house was at the Phœnix? Wast thou mad,

That thus so madly thou didst answer me?

Dro. S. What answer, sir? when spake I such a word?

Ant. S. Even now, even here, not half an hour since.

Dro. S. I did not see you since you sent me hence,

Home to the Centaur, with the gold you gave me.

Ant. S. Villain, thou didst deny the gold’s receipt,

And told’st me of a mistress and a dinner;

For which, I hope, thou felt’st I was displeased.

Dro. S. I am glad to see you in this merry vein:

What means this jest? I pray you, master, tell me.

Ant. S. Yea, dost thou jeer and flout me in the teeth?

Think’st thou I jest? Hold, take thou that, and that. Beating him.

Dro. S. Hold, sir, for God’s sake! now your jest is earnest:

Upon what bargain do you give it me?

Ant. S. Because that I familiarly sometimes

Do use you for my fool, and chat with you,

Your sauciness will jest upon my love,

And make a common of my serious hours.

When the sun shines let foolish gnats make sport,

But creep in crannies when he hides his beams.

If you will jest with me, know my aspect,

And fashion your demeanour to my looks,

Or I will beat this method in your sconce.

Dro. S. Sconce call you it? so you would leave battering, I had rather have it a head: an you use these blows long, I must get a sconce for my head, and insconce it too; or else I shall seek my wit in my shoulders. But, I pray, sir, why am I beaten?

Ant. S. Dost thou not know?

Dro. S. Nothing, sir, but that I am beaten.

Ant. S. Shall I tell you why?

Dro. S. Ay, sir, and wherefore; for they say every why hath a wherefore.

Ant. S. Why, first,—for flouting me; and then, wherefore,—

For urging it the second time to me.

Dro. S. Was there ever any man thus beaten out of season,

When in the why and the wherefore is neither rhyme nor reason?

Well, sir, I thank you.

Ant. S. Thank me, sir! for what?

Dro. S. Marry, sir, for this something that you gave me for nothing.

Ant. S. I’ll make you amends next, to give you nothing for something. But say, sir, is it dinner-time?

Dro. S. No, sir: I think the meat wants that I have.

Ant. S. In good time, sir; what’s that?

Dro. S. Basting.

Ant. S. Well, sir, then ’twill be dry.

Dro. S. If it be, sir, I pray you, eat none of it.

Ant. S. Your reason?

Dro. S. Lest it make you choleric, and purchase me another dry basting.

Ant. S. Well, sir, learn to jest in good time: there’s a time for all things.

Dro. S. I durst have denied that, before you were so choleric.

Ant. S. By what rule, sir?

Dro. S. Marry, sir, by a rule as plain as the plain bald pate of father Time himself.

Ant. S. Let’s hear it.

Dro. S. There’s no time for a man to recover his hair that grows bald by nature.

Ant. S. May he not do it by fine and recovery?

Dro. S. Yes, to pay a fine for a periwig, and recover 75 the lost hair of another man.

Ant. S. Why is Time such a niggard of hair, being, as it is, so plentiful an excrement?

Dro. S. Because it is a blessing that he bestows on beasts: and what he hath scanted men in hair, he hath 80 given them in wit.

Ant. S. Why, but there’s many a man hath more hair than wit.

Dro. S. Not a man of those but he hath the wit to lose his hair.

Ant. S. Why, thou didst conclude hairy men plain dealers without wit.

Dro. S. The plainer dealer, the sooner lost: yet he loseth it in a kind of jollity.

Ant. S. For what reason?

Dro. S. For two; and sound ones too.

Ant. S. Nay, not sound, I pray you.

Dro. S. Sure ones, then.

Ant. S. Nay, not sure, in a thing falsing.

Dro. S. Certain ones, then.

Ant. S. Name them.

Dro. S. The one, to save the money that he spends in trimming; the other, that at dinner they should not drop in his porridge.

Ant. S. You would all this time have proved there is 100 no time for all things.

Dro. S. Marry, and did, sir; namely, no time to recover hair lost by nature.

Ant. S. But your reason was not substantial, why there is no time to recover.

Dro. S. Thus I mend it: Time himself is bald, and therefore to the world’s end will have bald followers.

Ant. S. I knew ’twould be a bald conclusion:

But, soft! who wafts us yonder?

Enter Adriana and Luciana.

Adr. Ay, ay, Antipholus, look strange and frown:

Some other mistress hath thy sweet aspects;

I am not Adriana nor thy wife.

The time was once when thou unurged wouldst vow

That never words were music to thine ear,

That never object pleasing in thine eye,

That never touch well welcome to thy hand,

That never meat sweet-savour’d in thy taste,

Unless I spake, or look’d, or touch’d, or carved to thee.

How comes it now, my husband, O, how comes it,

That thou art then estranged from thyself?

Thyself I call it, being strange to me,

That, undividable, incorporate,

Am better than thy dear self’s better part.

Ah, do not tear away thyself from me!

For know, my love, as easy mayst thou fall

A drop of water in the breaking gulf,

And take unmingled thence that drop again,

Without addition or diminishing,

As take from me thyself, and not me too.

How dearly would it touch thee to the quick,

Shouldst thou but hear I were licentious,

And that this body, consecrate to thee,

By ruffian lust should be contaminate!

Wouldst thou not spit at me and spurn at me,

And hurl the name of husband in my face,

And tear the stain’d skin off my harlot-brow,

And from my false hand cut the wedding-ring,

And break it with a deep-divorcing vow?

I know thou canst; and therefore see thou do it.

I am possess’d with an adulterate blot;

My blood is mingled with the crime of lust:

For if we two be one, and thou play false,

I do digest the poison of thy flesh,

Being strumpeted by thy contagion.

Keep, then, fair league and truce with thy true bed;

I live distain’d, thou undishonoured.

Ant. S. Plead you to me, fair dame? I know you not:

In Ephesus I am but two hours old,

As strange unto your town as to your talk;

Who, every word by all my wit being scann’d,

Wants wit in all one word to understand.

Luc. Fie, brother! how the world is changed with you!

When were you wont to use my sister thus?

She sent for you by Dromio home to dinner.

Ant. S. By Dromio?

Dro. S. By me?

Adr. By thee; and this thou didst return from him,

That he did buffet thee, and, in his blows,

Denied my house for his, me for his wife.

Ant. S. Did you converse, sir, with this gentlewoman?

What is the course and drift of your compact?

Dro. S. I, sir? I never saw her till this time.

Ant. S. Villain, thou liest; for even her very words

Didst thou deliver to me on the mart.

Dro. S. I never spake with her in all my life.

Ant. S. How can she thus, then, call us by our names,

Unless it be by inspiration.

Adr. How ill agrees it with your gravity

To counterfeit thus grossly with your slave,

Abetting him to thwart me in my mood!

Be it my wrong you are from me exempt,

But wrong not that wrong with a more contempt.

Come, I will fasten on this sleeve of thine:

Thou art an elm, my husband, I a vine,

Whose weakness, married to thy stronger state,

Makes me with thy strength to communicate:

If aught possess thee from me, it is dross,

Usurping ivy, brier, or idle moss;

Who, all for want of pruning, with intrusion

Infect thy sap, and live on thy confusion.

Ant. S. To me she speaks; she moves me for her theme:

What, was I married to her in my dream?

Or sleep I now, and think I hear all this?

What error drives our eyes and ears amiss?

Until I know this sure uncertainty,

I’ll entertain the offer’d fallacy.

Luc. Dromio, go bid the servants spread for dinner.

Dro. S. O, for my beads! I cross me for a sinner.

This is the fairy land;—O spite of spites!

We talk with goblins, owls, and sprites:

If we obey them not, this will ensue,

They’ll suck our breath, or pinch us black and blue.

Luc. Why pratest thou to thyself, and answer’st not?

Dromio, thou drone, thou snail, thou slug, thou sot!

Dro. S. I am transformed, master, am I not?

Ant. S. I think thou art in mind, and so am I.

Dro. S. Nay, master, both in mind and in my shape.

Ant. S. Thou hast thine own form.

Dro. S.

No, I am an ape.

Luc. If thou art chang’d to aught, ’tis to an ass.

Dro. S. ’Tis true; she rides me, and I long for grass.

’Tis so, I am an ass; else it could never be

But I should know her as well as she knows me.

Adr. Come, come, no longer will I be a fool,

To put the finger in the eye and weep,

Whilst man and master laughs my woes to scorn.

Come, sir, to dinner. Dromio, keep the gate.

Husband, I’ll dine above with you to-day,

And shrive you of a thousand idle pranks.

Sirrah, if any ask you for your master,

Say he dines forth, and let no creature enter.

Come, sister. Dromio, play the porter well.

Ant. S. Am I in earth, in heaven, or in hell?

Sleeping or waking? mad or well-advised?

Known unto these, and to myself disguised!

I’ll say as they say, and persever so,

And in this mist at all adventures go.

Dro. S. Master, shall I be porter at the gate?

Adr. Ay; and let none enter, lest I break your pate.

Luc. Come, come, Antipholus, we dine too late.



Scene 1

Before the house of Antipholus of Ephesus

Enter Antipholus of Ephesus, Dromio of Ephesus, Angelo, and Balthazar.

Ant. E. Good Signior Angelo, you must excuse us all;

My wife is shrewish when I keep not hours:

Say that I linger’d with you at your shop

To see the making of her carcanet,

And that to-morrow you will bring it home.

But here’s a villain that would face me down

He met me on the mart, and that I beat him,

And charged him with a thousand marks in gold,

And that I did deny my wife and house.

Thou drunkard, thou, what didst thou mean by this?

Dro. E. Say what you will, sir, but I know what I know;

That you beat me at the mart, I have your hand to show:

If the skin were parchment, and the blows you gave were ink,

Your own handwriting would tell you what I think.

Ant. E. I think thou art an ass.

Dro. E.

Marry, so it doth appear

By the wrongs I suffer, and the blows I bear.

I should kick, being kick’d; and, being at that pass,

You would keep from my heels, and beware of an ass.

Ant. E. You’re sad, Signior Balthazar: pray God our cheer

May answer my good will and your good welcome here.

Bal. I hold your dainties cheap, sir, and your welcome dear.

Ant. E. O, Signior Balthazar, either at flesh or fish,

A table full of welcome makes scarce one dainty dish.

Bal. Good meat, sir, is common; that every churl affords.

Ant. E. And welcome more common; for that’s nothing but words.

Bal. Small cheer and great welcome makes a merry feast.

Ant. E. Ay to a niggardly host and more sparing guest:

But though my cates be mean, take them in good part;

Better cheer may you have, but not with better heart.

But, soft! my door is lock’d.—Go bid them let us in.

Dro. E. Maud, Bridget, Marian, Cicely, Gillian, Ginn!

Dro. S. [Within] Mome, malt-horse, capon, coxcomb, idiot, patch!

Either get thee from the door, or sit down at the hatch.

Dost thou conjure for wenches, that thou call’st for such store,

When one is one too many? Go get thee from the door,

Dro. E. What patch is made our porter? My master stays in the street.

Dro. S. [Within] Let him walk from whence he came, lest he catch cold on’s feet.

Ant. E. Who talks within there? ho, open the door!

Dro. S. [Within] Right, sir; I’ll tell you when, an you’ll tell me wherefore.

Ant. E. Wherefore? for my dinner: I have not dined to-day.

Dro. S. [Within] Nor to-day here you must not; come again when you may.

Ant. E. What art thou that keepest me out from the house I owe?

Dro. S. [Within] The porter for this time, sir, and my name is Dromio.

Dro. E. O villain, thou hast stolen both mine office and my name!

The one ne’er got me credit, the other mickle blame.

If thou hadst been Dromio to-day in my place,

Thou wouldst have changed thy face for a name, or thy name for an ass.

Luce. [Within] What a coil is there, Dromio? who are those at the gate?

Dro. E. Let my master in, Luce.


[Within] Faith, no; he comes too late;

And so tell your master.

Dro. E.

O Lord, I must laugh!

Have at you with a proverb;—Shall I set in my staff?

Luce. [Within] Have at you with another; that’s, —When? can you tell?

Dro. S. [Within] If thy name be call’d Luce, —Luce, thou hast answer’d him well.

Ant. E. Do you hear, you minion? you’ll let us in, I hope?

Luce. [Within] I thought to have ask’d you.

Dro. S.

[Within] And you said no.

Dro. E. So, come, help:—well struck! there was blow for blow.

Ant. E. Thou baggage, let me in.


[Within] Can you tell for whose sake?

Dro. E. Master, knock the door hard.


[Within] Let him knock till it ache.

Ant. E. You’ll cry for this, minion, if I beat the door down.

Luce. [Within] What needs all that, and a pair of stocks in the town?

Adr. [Within] Who is that at the door that keeps all this noise?

Dro. S. [Within] By my troth, your town is troubled with unruly boys.

Ant. E. Are you, there, wife? you might have come before.

Adr. [Within] Your wife, sir knave! go get you from the door.

Dro. E. If you went in pain, master, this ‘knave’ would go sore.

Aug. Here is neither cheer, sir, nor welcome: we would fain have either.

Bal. In debating which was best, we shall part with neither.

Dro. E. They stand at the door, master; bid them welcome hither.

Ant. E. There is something in the wind, that we cannot get in.

Dro. E. You would say so, master, if your garments were thin.

Your cake here is warm within; you stand here in the cold:

It would make a man mad as a buck, to be so bought and sold.

Ant. E. Go fetch me something: I’ll break ope the gate.

Dro. S. [Within] Break any breaking here, and I’ll break your knave’s pate.

Dro. E. A man may break a word with you, sir; and words are but wind;

Ay, and break it in your face, so he break it not behind.

Dro. S. [Within] It seems thou want’st breaking: out upon thee, hind!

Dro. E. Here’s too much ‘out upon thee!’ I pray thee, let me in.

Dro. S. [Within] Ay, when fowls have no feathers, and fish have no fin.

Ant. E. Well, I’ll break in:—go borrow me a crow.

Dro. E. A crow without feather? Master, mean you so?

For a fish without a fin, there’s a fowl without a feather:

If a crow help us in, sirrah, we’ll pluck a crow together.

Ant. E. Go get thee gone; fetch me an iron crow.

Bal. Have patience, sir; O, let it not be so!

Herein you war against your reputation,

And draw within the compass of suspect

Th’ unviolated honour of your wife.

Once this,—your long experience of her wisdom,

Her sober virtue, years, and modesty,

Plead on her part some cause to you unknown;

And doubt not, sir, but she will well excuse

Why at this time the doors are made against you.

Be ruled by me: depart in patience,

And let us to the Tiger all to dinner;

And about evening come yourself alone

To know the reason of this strange restraint.

If by strong hand you offer to break in

Now in the stirring passage of the day,

A vulgar comment will be made of it,

And that supposed by the common rout

Against your yet ungalled estimation,

That may with foul intrusion enter in,

And dwell upon your grave when you are dead;

For slander lives upon succession,

For ever housed where it gets possession.

Ant. E. You have prevail’d: I will depart in quiet,

And, in despite of mirth, mean to be merry.

I know a wench of excellent discourse,

Pretty and witty; wild, and yet, too, gentle:

There will we dine. This woman that I mean,

My wife—but, I protest, without desert—

Hath oftentimes upbraided me withal:

To her will we to dinner. [To Ang.] Get you home,

And fetch the chain; by this I know ’tis made:

Bring it, I pray you, to the Porpentine;

For there’s the house: that chain will I bestow—

Be it for nothing but to spite my wife—

Upon mine hostess there: good sir, make haste.

Since mine own doors refuse to entertain me,

I’ll knock elsewhere, to see if they’ll disdain me.

Ang. I’ll meet you at that place some hour hence.

Ant. E. Do so. This jest shall cost me some expense.


Scene 2

The same

Enter Luciana and Antipholus of Syracuse.

Luc. And may it be that you have quite forgot

A husband’s office? shall, Antipholus,

Even in the spring of love, thy love-springs rot?

Shall love, in building, grow so ruinous?

If you did wed my sister for her wealth,

Then for her wealth’s sake use her with more kindness:

Or if you like elsewhere, do it by stealth;

Muffle your false love with some show of blindness:

Let not my sister read it in your eye;

Be not thy tongue thy own shame’s orator;

Look sweet, speak fair, become disloyalty;

Apparel vice like virtue’s harbinger;

Bear a fair presence, though your heart be tainted;

Teach sin the carriage of a holy saint;

Be secret-false: what need she be acquainted?

What simple thief brags of his own attaint?

’Tis double wrong, to truant with your bed,

And let her read it in thy looks at board:

Shame hath a bastard fame, well managed;

Ill deeds are doubled with an evil word.

Alas, poor women! make us but believe,

Being compact of credit, that you love us;

Though others have the arm, show us the sleeve;

We in your motion turn, and you may move us.

Then, gentle brother, get you in again;

Comfort my sister, cheer her, call her wife:

’Tis holy sport, to be a little vain,

When the sweet breath of flattery conquers strife.

Ant. S. Sweet mistress,—what your name is else, I know not,

Nor by what wonder you do hit of mine,—

Less in your knowledge and your grace you show not

Than our earth’s wonder; more than earth divine.

Teach me, dear creature, how to think and speak;

Lay open to my earthy-gross conceit,

Smother’d in errors, feeble, shallow, weak,

The folded meaning of your words’ deceit.

Against my soul’s pure truth why labour you

To make it wander in an unknown field?

Are you a god? would you create me new?

Transform me, then, and to your power I’ll yield.

But if that I am I, then well I know

Your weeping sister is no wife of mine,

Nor to her bed no homage do I owe:

Far more, far more to you do I decline.

O, train me not, sweet mermaid, with thy note,

To drown me in thy sister flood of tears:

Sing, siren, for thyself, and I will dote:

Spread o’er the silver waves thy golden hairs,

And as a bed I’ll take them, and there lie;

And, in that glorious supposition, think

He gains by death that hath such means to die:

Let Love, being light, be drowned if she sink!

Luc. What, are you mad, that you do reason so?

Ant. S. Not mad, but mated; how, I do not know.

Luc. It is a fault that springeth from your eye.

Ant. S. For gazing on your beams, fair sun, being by.

Luc. Gaze where you should, and that will clear your sight.

Ant. S. As good to wink, sweet love, as look on night.

Luc. Why call you me love? call my sister so.

Ant. S. Thy sister’s sister.


That’s my sister.

Ant. S.


It is thyself, mine own self’s better part,

Mine eye’s clear eye, my dear heart’s dearer heart,

My food, my fortune, and my sweet hope’s aim,

My sole earth’s heaven, and my heaven’s claim.

Luc. All this my sister is, or else should be.

Ant. S. Call thyself sister, sweet, for I am thee.

Thee will I love, and with thee lead my life:

Thou hast no husband yet, nor I no wife.

Give me thy hand.


O, soft, sir! hold you still:

I’ll fetch my sister, to get her good will. Exit.

Enter Dromio of Syracuse.

Ant. S. Why, how now, Dromio! where runn’st thou so fast?

Dro. S. Do you know me, sir? am I Dromio? am I your man? am I myself?

Ant. S. Thou art Dromio, thou art my man, thou art thyself.

Dro. S. I am an ass, I am a woman’s man, and besides myself.

Ant. S. What woman’s man? and how besides thyself?

Dro. S. Marry, sir, besides myself, I am due to a woman; one that claims me, one that haunts me, one that will have me.

Ant. S. What claim lays she to thee?

Dro. S. Marry, sir, such claim as you would lay to 85 your horse; and she would have me as a beast: not that, I being a beast, she would have me; but that she, being a very beastly creature, lays claim to me.

Ant. S. What is she?

Dro. S. A very reverent body; ay, such a one as a man 90 may not speak of, without he say Sir-reverence. I have but lean luck in the match, and yet is she a wondrous fat marriage.

Ant. S. How dost thou mean a fat marriage?

Dro. S. Marry, sir, she’s the kitchen-wench, and all 95 grease; and I know not what use to put her to, but to make a lamp of her, and run from her by her own light. I warrant, her rags, and the tallow in them, will burn a Poland winter: if she lives till doomsday, she’ll burn a week longer than the whole world.

Ant. S. What complexion is she of?

Dro. S. Swart, like my shoe, but her face nothing like so clean kept: for why she sweats; a man may go over shoes in the grime of it.

Ant. S. That’s a fault that water will mend.

Dro. S. No, sir, ’tis in grain; Noah’s flood could not do it.

Ant. S. What’s her name?

Dro. S. Nell, sir; but her name and three quarters, that’s an ell and three quarters, will not measure her from 110 hip to hip.

Ant. S. Then she bears some breadth?

Dro. S. No longer from head to foot than from hip to hip: she is spherical, like a globe; I could find out countries in her.

Ant. S. In what part of her body stands Ireland?

Dro. S. Marry, sir, in her buttocks: I found it out by the bogs.

Ant. S. Where Scotland?

Dro. S. I found it by the barrenness; hard in the palm 120 of the hand.

Ant. S. Where France?

Dro. S. In her forehead; armed and reverted, making war against her heir.

Ant. S. Where England?

Dro. S. I looked for the chalky cliffs, but I could find no whiteness in them; but I guess it stood in her chin, by the salt rheum that ran between France and it.

Ant. S. Where Spain?

Dro. S. Faith, I saw it not; but I felt it hot in her 130 breath.

Ant. S. Where America, the Indies?

Dro. S. Oh, sir, upon her nose, all o’er embellished with rubies, carbuncles, sapphires, declining their rich aspect to the hot breath of Spain; who sent whole armadoes 135 of caracks to be ballast at her nose.

Ant. S. Where stood Belgia, the Netherlands?

Dro. S. Oh, sir, I did not look so low. To conclude, this drudge, or diviner, laid claim to me; called me Dromio; swore I was assured to her; told me what privy 140 marks I had about me, as, the mark of my shoulder, the mole in my neck, the great wart on my left arm, that I, amazed, ran from her as a witch:

And, I think, if my breast had not been made of faith, and my heart of steel,

She had transform’d me to a curtal dog, and made me turn i’ the wheel.

Ant. S. Go hie thee presently, post to the road:—

An if the wind blow any way from shore,

I will not harbour in this town to-night:—

If any bark put forth, come to the mart,

Where I will walk till thou return to me.

If every one knows us, and we know none,

’Tis time, I think, to trudge, pack, and be gone.

Dro. S. As from a bear a man would run for life,

So fly I from her that would be my wife. Exit.

Ant. S. There’s none but witches do inhabit here;

And therefore ’tis high time that I were hence.

She that doth call me husband, even my soul

Doth for a wife abhor. But her fair sister,

Possess’d with such a gentle sovereign grace,

Of such enchanting presence and discourse,

Hath almost made me traitor to myself:

But, lest myself be guilty to self-wrong,

I’ll stop mine ears against the mermaid’s song.

Enter Angelo with the chain.

Ang. Master Antipholus,—

Ant. S.

Ay, that’s my name.

Ang. I know it well, sir:—lo, here is the chain.

I thought to have ta’en you at the Porpentine:

The chain unfinish’d made me stay thus long.

Ant. S. What is your will that I shall do with this?

Ang. What please yourself, sir: I have made it for you.

Ant. S. Made it for me, sir! I bespoke it not.

Ang. Not once, nor twice, but twenty times you have.

Go home with it, and please your wife withal;

And soon at supper-time I’ll visit you,

And then receive my money for the chain.

Ant. S. I pray you, sir, receive the money now,

For fear you ne’er see chain nor money more.

Ang. You are a merry man, sir: fare you well. Exit.

Ant. S. What I should think of this, I cannot tell:

But this I think, there’s no man is so vain

That would refuse so fair an offer’d chain.

I see a man here needs not live by shifts,

When in the streets he meets such golden gifts.

I’ll to the mart, and there for Dromio stay:

If any ship put out, then straight away. Exit.


Scene 1

A public place

Enter Second Merchant, Angelo, and an Officer.

Sec. Mer. You know since Pentecost the sum is due,

And since I have not much importuned you;

Nor now I had not, but that I am bound

To Persia, and want guilders for my voyage:

Therefore make present satisfaction,

Or I’ll attach you by this officer.

Ang. Even just the sum that I do owe to you

Is growing to me by Antipholus;

And in the instant that I met with you

He had of me a chain: at five o’clock

I shall receive the money for the same.

Pleaseth you walk with me down to his house,

I will discharge my bond, and thank you too.

Enter Antipholus of Ephesus and Dromio of Ephesus from the courtezan’s.

Off. That labour may you save: see where he comes.

Ant. E. While I go to the goldsmith’s house, go thou

And buy a rope’s end: that will I bestow

Among my wife and her confederates,

For locking me out of my doors by day.—

But, soft! I see the goldsmith. Get thee gone;

Buy thou a rope, and bring it home to me.

Dro. E. I buy a thousand pound a year: I buy a rope. Exit.

Ant. E. A man is well holp up that trusts to you:

I promised your presence and the chain;

But neither chain nor goldsmith came to me.

Belike you thought our love would last too long,

If it were chain’d together, and therefore came not.

Ang. Saving your merry humour, here’s the note

How much your chain weighs to the utmost carat,

The fineness of the gold, and chargeful fashion,

Which doth amount to three odd ducats more

Than I stand debted to this gentleman:

I pray you, see him presently discharged,

For he is bound to sea, and stays but for it.

Ant. E. I am not furnish’d with the present money;

Besides, I have some business in the town.

Good signior, take the stranger to my house,

And with you take the chain, and bid my wife

Disburse the sum on the receipt thereof:

Perchance I will be there as soon as you.

Ang. Then you will bring the chain to her yourself?

Ant. E. No; bear it with you, lest I come not time enough.

Ang. Well, sir, I will. Have you the chain about you?

Ant. E. An if I have not, sir, I hope you have;

Or else you may return without your money.

Ang. Nay, come, I pray you, sir, give me the chain:

Both wind and tide stays for this gentleman,

And I, to blame, have held him here too long.

Ant. E. Good Lord! you use this dalliance to excuse

Your breach of promise to the Porpentine.

I should have chid you for not bringing it,

But, like a shrew, you first begin to brawl.

Sec. Mer. The hour steals on; I pray you, sir, dispatch.

Ang. You hear how he importunes me;—the chain!

Ant. E. Why, give it to my wife, and fetch your money.

Ang. Come, come, you know I gave it you even now.

Either send the chain, or send me by some token.

Ant. E. Fie, now you run this humour out of breath.

Come, where’s the chain? I pray you, let me see it.

Sec. Mer. My business cannot brook this dalliance.

Good sir, say whether you’ll answer me or no:

If not, I’ll leave him to the officer.

Ant. E. I answer you! what should I answer you?

Ang. The money that you owe me for the chain.

Ant. E. I owe you none till I receive the chain.

Ang. You know I gave it you half an hour since.

Ant. E. You gave me none: you wrong me much to say so.

Ang. You wrong me more, sir, in denying it:

Consider how it stands upon my credit.

Sec. Mer. Well, officer, arrest him at my suit.

Off. I do; and charge you in the duke’s name to obey me.

Ang. This touches me in reputation.

Either consent to pay this sum for me,

Or I attach you by this officer.

Ant. E. Consent to pay thee that I never had!

Arrest me, foolish fellow, if thou darest.

Ang. Here is thy fee; arrest him, officer.

I would not spare my brother in this case,

If he should scorn me so apparently.

Off. I do arrest you, sir: you hear the suit.

Ant. E. I do obey thee till I give thee bail.

But, sirrah, you shall buy this sport as dear

As all the metal in your shop will answer.

Ang. Sir, sir, I shall have law in Ephesus,

To your notorious shame; I doubt it not.

Enter Dromio of Syracuse, from the bay.

Dro. S. Master, there is a bark of Epidamnum

That stays but till her owner comes aboard,

And then, sir, she bears away. Our fraughtage, sir,

I have convey’d aboard; and I have bought

The oil, the balsamum, and aqua-vitæ.

The ship is in her trim; the merry wind

Blows fair from land: they stay for nought at all

But for their owner, master, and yourself.

Ant. E. How now! a madman! Why, thou peevish sheep,

What ship of Epidamnum stays for me?

Dro. S. A ship you sent me to, to hire waftage.

Ant. E. Thou drunken slave, I sent thee for a rope,

And told thee to what purpose and what end.

Dro. S. You sent me for a rope’s end as soon:

You sent me to the bay, sir, for a bark.

Ant. E. I will debate this matter at more leisure,

And teach your ears to list me with more heed.

To Adriana, villain, hie thee straight:

Give her this key, and tell her, in the desk

That’s cover’d o’er with Turkish tapestry

There is a purse of ducats; let her send it:

Tell her I am arrested in the street,

And that shall bail me: hie thee, slave, be gone!

On, officer, to prison till it come.

Exeunt Sec. Merchant, Angelo, Officer, and Ant. E.

Dro. S. To Adriana! that is where we dined,

Where Dowsabel did claim me for her husband:

She is too big, I hope, for me to compass.

Thither I must, although against my will,

For servants must their masters’ minds fulfil. Exit.

Scene 2

The house of Antipholus of Ephesus

Enter Adriana and Luciana.

Adr. Ah, Luciana, did he tempt thee so?

Mightst thou perceive austerely in his eye

That he did plead in earnest? yea or no?

Look’d he or red or pale, or sad or merrily?

What observation madest thou, in this case,

Of his heart’s meteors tilting in his face?

Luc. First he denied you had in him no right.

Adr. He meant he did me none; the more my spite.

Luc. Then swore he that he was a stranger here.

Adr. And true he swore, though yet forsworn he were.

Luc. Then pleaded I for you.


And what said he?

Luc. That love I begg’d for you he begg’d of me.

Adr. With what persuasion did he tempt thy love?

Luc. With words that in an honest suit might move.

First he did praise my beauty, then my speech.

Adr. Didst speak him fair?


Have patience, I beseech.

Adr. I cannot, nor I will not, hold me still;

My tongue, though not my heart, shall have his will.

He is deformed, crooked, old, and sere,

Ill-faced, worse bodied, shapeless everywhere;

Vicious, ungentle, foolish, blunt, unkind;

Stigmatical in making, worse in mind.

Luc. Who would be jealous, then, of such a one?

No evil lost is wail’d when it is gone.

Adr. Ah, but I think him better than I say,

And yet would herein others’ eyes were worse.

Far from her nest the lapwing cries away:

My heart prays for him, though my tongue do curse.

Enter Dromio of Syracuse.

Dro. S. Here! go; the desk, the purse! sweet, now, make haste.

Luc. How hast thou lost thy breath?

Dro. S.

By running fast.

Adr. Where is thy master, Dromio? is he well?

Dro. S. No, he’s in Tartar limbo, worse than hell.

A devil in an everlasting garment hath him;

One whose hard heart is button’d up with steel;

A fiend, a fury, pitiless and rough;

A wolf, nay, worse; a fellow all in buff;

A back-friend, a shoulder-clapper, one that countermands

The passages of alleys, creeks, and narrow lands;

A hound that runs counter, and yet draws dry-foot well;

One that, before the Judgment, carries poor souls to hell.

Adr. Why, man, what is the matter?

Dro. S. I do not know the matter: he is ’rested on the case.

Adr. What, is he arrested? Tell me at whose suit.

Dro. S. I know not at whose suit he is arrested well;

But he’s in a suit of buff which ’rested him, that can I tell.

Will you send him, mistress, redemption, the money in his desk?

Adr. Go fetch it, sister. [Exit Luciana.] This I wonder at,

That he, unknown to me, should be in debt.

Tell me, was he arrested on a band?

Dro. S. Not on a band, but on a stronger thing;

A chain, a chain! Do you not hear it ring?

Adr. What, the chain?

Dro. S. No, no, the bell: ’tis time that I were gone:

It was two ere I left him, and now the clock strikes one.

Adr. The hours come back! that did I never hear.

Dro. S. O, yes; if any hour meet a sergeant, ’a turns back for very fear.

Adr. As if Time were in debt! how fondly dost thou reason!

Dro. S. Time is a very bankrupt, and owes more than he’s worth to season.

Nay, he’s a thief too: have you not heard men say,

That Time comes stealing on by night and day?

If Time be in debt and theft, and a sergeant in the way,

Hath he not reason to turn back an hour in a day?

Re-enter Luciana with a purse.

Adr. Go, Dromio; there’s the money, bear it straight;

And bring thy master home immediately.

Come, sister: I am press’d down with conceit,—

Conceit, my comfort and my injury.


Scene 3

A public place

Enter Antipholus of Syracuse.

Ant. S. There’s not a man I meet but doth salute me

As if I were their well-acquainted friend;

And every one doth call me by my name.

Some tender money to me; some invite me;

Some other give me thanks for kindnesses;

Some offer me commodities to buy;—

Even now a tailor call’d me in his shop,

And show’d me silks that he had bought for me,

And therewithal took measure of my body.

Sure, these are but imaginary wiles,

And Lapland sorcerers inhabit here.

Enter Dromio of Syracuse.

Dro. S. Master, here’s the gold you sent me for.—

What, have you got the picture of old Adam new-apparelled?

Ant. S. What gold is this? what Adam dost thou mean?

Dro. S. Not that Adam that kept the Paradise, but that Adam that keeps the prison: he that goes in the calf’s skin that was killed for the Prodigal; he that came behind you, sir, like an evil angel, and bid you forsake your liberty.

Ant. S. I understand thee not.

Dro. S. No? why, ’tis a plain case: he that went, like a base-viol, in a case of leather; the man, sir, that, when gentlemen are tired, gives them a sob, and ’rests them; he, sir, that takes pity on decayed men, and gives them suits of durance; he that sets up his rest to do more exploits with his mace than a morris-pike.

Ant. S. What, thou meanest an officer?

Dro. S. Ay, sir, the sergeant of the band; he that brings any man to answer it that breaks his band; one that thinks a man always going to bed, and says, ’God give you good rest!’

Ant. S. Well, sir, there rest in your foolery. Is there any ship puts forth to-night? may we be gone?

Dro. S. Why, sir, I brought you word an hour since, that the bark Expedition put forth to-night; and then were you hindered by the sergeant, to tarry for the hoy Delay. Here are the angels that you sent for to deliver you.

Ant. S. The fellow is distract, and so am I;

And here we wander in illusions:

Some blessed power deliver us from hence!

Enter a Courtezan.

Cour. Well met, well met, Master Antipholus.

I see, sir, you have found the goldsmith now:

Is that the chain you promised me to-day?

Ant. S. Satan, avoid! I charge thee, tempt me not.

Dro. S. Master, is this Mistress Satan?

Ant. S. It is the devil.

Dro. S. Nay, she is worse, she is the devil’s dam; and here she comes in the habit of a light wench: and thereof comes that the wenches say, ‘God damn me;’ that’s as much to say, ‘God make me a light wench.’ It is written, they appear to men like angels of light: light is an effect of fire, and fire will burn; ergo, light wenches will burn. Come not near her.

Cour. Your man and you are marvellous merry, sir.

Will you go with me? We’ll mend our dinner here?

Dro. S. Master, if you do, expect spoon-meat; or bespeak a long spoon.

Ant. S. Why, Dromio?

Dro. S. Marry, he must have a long spoon that must eat with the devil.

Ant. S. Avoid then, fiend! what tell’st thou me of supping?

Thou art, as you are all, a sorceress:

I conjure thee to leave me and be gone.

Cour. Give me the ring of mine you had at dinner,

Or, for my diamond, the chain you promised,

And I’ll be gone, sir, and not trouble you.

Dro. S. Some devils ask but the parings of one’s nail,

A rush, a hair, a drop of blood, a pin,

A nut, a cherry-stone;

But she, more covetous, would have a chain.

Master, be wise: an if you give it her,

The devil will shake her chain, and fright us with it.

Cour. I pray you, sir, my ring, or else the chain:

I hope you do not mean to cheat me so.

Ant. S. Avaunt, thou witch! —Come, Dromio, let us go.

Dro. S. ‘Fly pride,’ says the peacock: mistress, that you know.

Exeunt Ant. S. and Dro. S.

Cour. Now, out of doubt Antipholus is mad,

Else would he never so demean himself.

A ring he hath of mine worth forty ducats,

And for the same he promised me a chain:

Both one and other he denies me now.

The reason that I gather he is mad,—

Besides this present instance of his rage,—

Is a mad tale he told to-day at dinner,

Of his own doors being shut against his entrance.

Belike his wife, acquainted with his fits,

On purpose shut the doors against his way.

My way is now to his home to his house,

And tell his wife that, being lunatic,

He rush’d into my house, and took perforce

My ring away. This course I fittest choose;

For forty ducats is too much to lose. Exit.

Scene 4

A street

Enter Antipholus of Ephesus and the Officer.

Ant. E. Fear me not, man; I will not break away:

I’ll give thee, ere I leave thee, so much money,

To warrant thee, as I am ’rested for.

My wife is in a wayward mood to-day,

And will not lightly trust the messenger.

That I should be attach’d in Ephesus,

I tell you, ’twill sound harshly in her ears.

Enter Dromio of Ephesus with a ropes-end.

Here comes my man; I think he brings the money.

How now, sir! have you that I sent you for?

Dro. E. Here’s that, I warrant you, will pay them all.

Ant. E. But where’s the money?

Dro. E. Why, sir, I gave the money for the rope.

Ant. E. Five hundred ducats, villain, for a rope?

Dro. E. I’ll serve you, sir, five hundred at the rate.

Ant. E. To what end did I bid thee hie thee home?

Dro. E. To a rope’s-end, sir; and to that end am I returned.

Ant. E. And to that end, sir, I will welcome you. Beating him.

Off. Good sir, be patient.

Dro. E. Nay, ’tis for me to be patient; I am in adversity.

Off. Good, now, hold thy tongue.

Dro. E. Nay, rather persuade him to hold his hands.

Ant. E. Thou whoreson, senseless villain!

Dro. E. I would I were senseless, sir, that I might not feel your blows.

Ant. E. Thou art sensible in nothing but blows, and so is an ass.

Dro. E. I am an ass, indeed; you may prove it by my long ears. I have served him from the hour of my nativity to this instant, and have nothing at his hands for my service but blows. When I am cold, he heats me with beating; when I am warm, he cools me with beating: I am waked with it when I sleep; raised with it when I sit; driven out of doors with it when I go from home; welcomed home with it when I return: nay, I bear it on my shoulders, as a beggar wont her brat; and, I think, when he hath lamed me, I shall beg with it from door to door.

Ant. E. Come, go along; my wife is coming yonder.

Enter Adriana, Luciana, the Courtezan, and Pinch.

Dro. E. Mistress, ‘respice finem,’ respect your end; or rather, the prophecy like the parrot, ‘beware the rope’s-end.’

Ant. E. Wilt thou still talk? Beating him.

Cour. How say you now? is not your husband mad?

Adr. His incivility confirms no less.

Good Doctor Pinch, you are a conjurer;

Establish him in his true sense again,

And I will please you what you will demand.

Luc. Alas, how fiery and how sharp he looks!

Cour. Mark how he trembles in his ecstasy!

Pinch. Give me your hand, and let me feel your pulse.

Ant. E. There is my hand, and let it feel your ear. Striking him.

Pinch. I charge thee, Satan, housed within this man,

To yield possession to my holy prayers,

And to thy state of darkness his thee straight:

I conjure thee by all the saints in heaven!

Ant. E. Peace, doting wizard, peace! I am not mad.

Adr. O, that thou wert not, poor distressed soul!

Ant. E. You minion, you, are these your customers?

Did this companion with the saffron face

Revel and feast it at my house to-day,

Whilst upon me the guilty doors were shut,

And I denied to enter in my house?

Adr. O husband, God doth know you dined at home;

Where would you had remain’d until this time,

Free from these slanders and this open shame!

Ant. E. Dined at home!—Thou villain, what sayest thou?

Dro. E. Sir, sooth to say, you did not dine at home.

Ant. E. Were not my doors lock’d up, and I shut out?

Dro. E. Perdie, your doors were lock’d, and you shut out.

Ant. E. And did not she herself revile me there?

Dro. E. Sans fable, she herself reviled you there.

Ant. E. Did not her kitchen-maid rail, taunt, and scorn me?

Dro. E. Certes, she did; the kitchen-vestal scorn’d you.

Ant. E. And did not I in rage depart from thence?

Dro. E. In verity you did; my bones bear witness,

That since have felt the vigour of his rage.

Adr. Is’t good to soothe him in these contraries?

Pinch. It is no shame: the fellow finds his vein,

And, yielding to him, humours well his frenzy.

Ant. E. Thou hast suborn’d the goldsmith to arrest me.

Adr. Alas, I sent you money to redeem you,

By Dromio here, who came in haste for it.

Dro. E. Money by me! heart and good-will you might;

But surely, master, not a rag of money.

Ant. E. Went’st not thou to her for a purse of ducats?

Adr. He came to me, and I deliver’d it.

Luc. And I am witness with her that she did.

Dro. E. God and the rope-maker bear me witness

That I was sent for nothing but a rope!

Pinch. Mistress, both man and master is possess’d;

I know it by their pale and deadly looks:

They must be bound, and laid in some dark room.

Ant. E. Say, wherefore didst them lock me forth to-day?

And why dost thou deny the bag of gold?

Adr. I did not, gentle husband, lock thee forth.

Dro. E. And, gentle master, I received no gold;

But I confess, sir, that we were lock’d out.

Adr. Dissembling villain, them speak’st false in both.

Ant. E. Dissembling harlot, them art false in all,

And art confederate with a damned pack

To make a loathsome abject scorn of me:

But with these nails I’ll pluck out these false eyes,

That would behold in me this shameful sport.

Enter three or four, and offer to bind him. He strives.

Adr. O, bind him, bind him! let him not come near me.

Pinch. More company! The fiend is strong within him.

Luc. Ay me, poor man, how pale and wan he looks!

Ant. E. What, will you murder me? Thou gaoler, thou,

I am thy prisoner: wilt thou suffer them

To make a rescue?


Masters, let him go:

He is my prisoner, and you shall not have him.

Pinch. Go bind this man, for he is frantic too. They offer to bind Dro. E.

Adr. What wilt thou do, thou peevish officer?

Hast thou delight to see a wretched man

Do outrage and displeasure to himself?

Off. He is my prisoner: if I let him go,

The debt he owes will be required of me.

Adr. I will discharge thee ere I go from thee:

Bear me forthwith unto his creditor,

And, knowing how the debt grows, I will pay it.

Good master doctor, see him safe convey’d

Home to my house. O most unhappy day!

Ant. E. O most unhappy strumpet!

Dro. E. Master, I am here entered in bond for you.

Ant. E. Out on thee, villain! wherefore dost thou mad me?

Dro. E. Will you be bound for nothing? be mad, good 125 master: cry, The devil!

Luc. God help, poor souls, how idly do they talk!

Adr. Go bear him hence. Sister, go you with me.

Exeunt all but Adriana, Luciana, Officer and Courtezan.

Say now; whose suit is he arrested at?

Off. One Angelo, a goldsmith: do you know him?

Adr. I know the man. What is the sum he owes?

Off. Two hundred ducats.


Say, how grows it due?

Off. Due for a chain your husband had of him.

Adr. He did bespeak a chain for me, but had it not.

Cour. When as your husband, all in rage, to-day

Came to my house, and took away my ring,—

The ring I saw upon his finger now,—

Straight after did I meet him with a chain.

Adr. It may be so, but I did never see it.

Come, gaoler, bring me where the goldsmith is:

I long to know the truth hereof at large.

Enter Antipholus of Syracuse with his rapier drawn, and Dromio of Syracuse.

Luc. God, for thy mercy! they are loose again.

Adr. And come with naked swords.

Let’s call more help to have them bound again.

Off. Away! they’ll kill us.

Exeunt all but Ant. S. and Dro. S.

Ant. S. I see these witches are afraid of swords.

Dro. S. She that would be your wife now ran from you.

Ant. S. Come to the Centaur; fetch our stuff from thence:

I long that we were safe and sound aboard.

Dro. S. Faith, stay here this night; they will surely do 150 us no harm: you saw they speak us fair, give us gold: methinks they are such a gentle nation, that, but for the mountain of mad flesh that claims marriage of me, I could find in my heart to stay here still, and turn witch.

Ant. S. I will not stay to-night for all the town;

Therefore away, to get our stuff aboard.



Scene 1

A street before a Priory

Enter Second Merchant and Angelo.

Ang. I am sorry, sir, that I have hinder’d you;

But, I protest, he had the chain of me,

Though most dishonestly he doth deny it.

Sec. Mer. How is the man esteem’d here in the city?

Ang. Of very reverent reputation, sir,

Of credit infinite, highly beloved,

Second to none that lives here in the city:

His word might bear my wealth at any time.

Sec. Mer. Speak softly: yonder, as I think, he walks.

Enter Antipholus of Syracuse and Dromio of Syracuse.

Ang. ’Tis so; and that self chain about his neck,

Which he forswore most monstrously to have.

Good sir, draw near to me, I’ll speak to him;

Signior Antipholus, I wonder much

That you would put me to this shame and trouble;

And, not without some scandal to yourself,

With circumstance and oaths so to deny

This chain which now you wear so openly:

Beside the charge, the shame, imprisonment,

You have done wrong to this my honest friend;

Who, but for staying on our controversy,

Had hoisted sail and put to sea to-day:

This chain you had of me; can you deny it?

Ant. S. I think I had; I never did deny it.

Sec. Mer. Yes, that you did, sir, and forswore it too.

Ant. S. Who heard me to deny it or forswear it?

Sec. Mer. These ears of mine, thou know’st, did hear thee.

Fie on thee, wretch! ’tis pity that thou livest

To walk where any honest men resort.

Ant. S. Thou art a villain to impeach me thus:

I’ll prove mine honour and mine honesty

Against thee presently, if thou darest stand.

Sec. Mer. I dare, and do defy thee for a villain. They draw.

Enter Adriana, Luciana, the Courtezan, and others.

Adr. Hold, hurt him not, for God’s sake! he is mad.

Some get within him, take his sword away:

Bind Dromio too, and bear them to my house.

Dro. S. Run, master, run; for God’s sake, take a house!

This is some priory.—In, or we are spoil’d!

Exeunt Ant. S. and Dro. S. to the Priory.

Enter the Lady Abbess.

Abb. Be quiet, people. Wherefore throng you hither?

Adr. To fetch my poor distracted husband hence.

Let us come in, that we may bind him fast,

And bear him home for his recovery.

Ang. I knew he was not in his perfect wits.

Sec. Mer. I am sorry now that I did draw on him.

Abb. How long hath this possession held the man?

Adr. This week he hath been heavy, sour, sad,

And much different from the man he was;

But till this afternoon his passion

Ne’er brake into extremity of rage.

Abb. Hath he not lost much wealth by wreck of sea?

Buried some dear friend? Hath not else his eye

Stray’d his affection in unlawful love?

A sin prevailing much in youthful men,

Who give their eyes the liberty of gazing.

Which of these sorrows is he subject to?

Adr. To none of these, except it be the last;

Namely, some love that drew him oft from home.

Abb. You should for that have reprehended him.

Adr. Why, so I did.


Ay, but not rough enough.

Adr. As roughly as my modesty would let me.

Abb. Haply, in private.


And in assemblies too.

Abb. Ay, but not enough.

Adr. It was the copy of our conference:

In bed, he slept not for my urging it;

At board, he fed not for my urging it;

Alone, it was the subject of my theme;

In company I often glanced it;

Still did I tell him it was vile and bad.

Abb. And thereof came it that the man was mad:—

The venom clamours of a jealous woman,

Poisons more deadly than a mad dog’s tooth.

It seems his sleeps were hinder’d by thy railing:

And thereof comes it that his head is light.

Thou say’st his meat was sauced with thy upbraidings:

Unquiet meals make ill digestions;

Thereof the raging fire of fever bred;

And what’s a fever but a fit of madness?

Thou say’st his sports were hinder’d by thy brawls:

Sweet recreation barr’d, what doth ensue

But moody and dull melancholy,

Kinsman to grim and comfortless despair;

And at her heels a huge infectious troop

Of pale distemperatures and foes to life?

In food, in sport, and life-preserving rest

To be disturb’d, would mad or man or beast:

The consequence is, then, thy jealous fits

Have scared thy husband from the use of wits.

Luc. She never reprehended him but mildly,

When he demean’d himself rough, rude, and wildly.

Why bear you these rebukes, and answer not?

Adr. She did betray me to my own reproof.

Good people, enter, and lay hold on him.

Abb. No, not a creature enters in my house.

Adr. Then let your servants bring my husband forth.

Abb. Neither: he took this place for sanctuary,

And it shall privilege him from your hands

Till I have brought him to his wits again,

Or lose my labour in assaying it.

Adr. I will attend my husband, be his nurse,

Diet his sickness, for it is my office,

And will have no attorney but myself;

And therefore let me have him home with me.

Abb. Be patient; for I will not let him stir

Till I have used the approved means I have,

With wholesome syrups, drugs and holy prayers,

To make of him a formal man again:

It is a branch and parcel of mine oath,

A charitable duty of my order.

Therefore depart, and leave him here with me.

Adr. I will not hence, and leave my husband here:

And ill it doth beseem your holiness

To separate the husband and the wife.

Abb. Be quiet, and depart: thou shalt not have him. Exit.

Luc. Complain unto the Duke of this indignity.

Adr. Come, go: I will fall prostrate at his feet,

And never rise until my tears and prayers

Have won his Grace to come in person hither,

And take perforce my husband from the abbess.

Sec. Mer. By this, I think, the dial points at five:

Anon, I’m sure, the Duke himself in person

Comes this way to the melancholy vale,

The place of death and sorry execution,

Behind the ditches of the abbey here.

Ang. Upon what cause?

Sec. Mer. To see a reverend Syracusian merchant,

Who put unluckily into this bay

Against the laws and statutes of this town,

Beheaded publicly for his offence.

Ang. See where they come: we will behold his death.

Luc. Kneel to the Duke before he pass the abbey.

Enter Duke, attended; Ægeon bareheaded; with the Headsman and other Officers.

Duke. Yet once again proclaim it publicly,

If any friend will pay the sum for him,

He shall not die; so much we tender him.

Adr. Justice, most sacred Duke, against the abbess!

Duke. She is a virtuous and a reverend lady:

It cannot be that she hath done thee wrong.

Adr. May it please your Grace, Antipholus my husband,—

Whom I made lord of me and all I had,

At your important letters,—this ill day

A most outrageous fit of madness took him;

That desperately he hurried through the street,—

With him his bondman, all as mad as he,—

Doing displeasure to the citizens

By rushing in their houses, bearing thence

Rings, jewels, any thing his rage did like.

Once did I get him bound, and sent him home,

Whilst to take order for the wrongs I went,

That here and there his fury had committed.

Anon, I wot not by what strong escape,

He broke from those that had the guard of him;

And with his mad attendant and himself,

Each one with ireful passion, with drawn swords,

Met us again, and, madly bent on us,

Chased us away; till, raising of more aid,

We came again to bind them. Then they fled

Into this abbey, whither we pursued them;

And here the abbess shuts the gates on us,

And will not suffer us to fetch him out,

Nor send him forth, that we may bear him hence.

Therefore, most gracious Duke, with thy command

Let him be brought forth, and borne hence for help.

Duke. Long since thy husband served me in my wars;

And I to thee engaged a prince’s word,

When thou didst make him master of thy bed,

To do him all the grace and good I could.

Go, some of you, knock at the abbey-gate,

And bid the lady abbess come to me.

I will determine this before I stir.

Enter a Servant.

Serv. O mistress, mistress, shift and save yourself!

My master and his man are both broke loose,

Beaten the maids a-row, and bound the doctor,

Whose beard they have singed off with brands of fire;

And ever, as it blazed, they threw on him

Great pails of puddled mire to quench the hair:

My master preaches patience to him, and the while

His man with scissors nicks him like a fool;

And sure, unless you send some present help,

Between them they will kill the conjurer.

Adr. Peace, fool! thy master and his man are here;

And that is false thou dost report to us.

Serv. Mistress, upon my life, I tell you true;

I have not breathed almost since I did see it.

He cries for you, and vows, if he can take you,

To scorch your face and to disfigure you. Cry within.

Hark, hark! I hear him, mistress: fly, be gone!

Duke. Come, stand by me; fear nothing. Guard with halberds!

Adr. Ay me, it is my husband! Witness you,

That he is borne about invisible:

Even now we housed him in the abbey here;

And now he’s there, past thought of human reason.

Enter Antipholus of Ephesus and Dromio of Ephesus.

Ant. E. Justice, most gracious Duke, O, grant me justice!

Even for the service that long since I did thee,

When I bestrid thee in the wars, and took

Deep scars to save thy life; even for the blood

That then I lost for thee, now grant me justice.

Æge. Unless the fear of death doth make me dote,

I see my son Antipholus, and Dromio.

Ant. E. Justice, sweet prince, against that woman there!

She whom thou gavest to me to be my wife,

That hath abused and dishonour’d me

Even in the strength and height of injury:

Beyond imagination is the wrong

That she this day hath shameless thrown on me.

Duke. Discover how, and thou shalt find me just.

Ant. E. This day, great Duke, she shut the doors upon me,

While she with harlots feasted in my house.

Duke. A grievous fault! Say, woman, didst thou so?

Adr. No, my good lord: myself, he and my sister

To-day did dine together. So befal my soul

As this is false he burdens me withal!

Luc. Ne’er may I look on day, nor sleep on night,

But she tells to your Highness simple truth!

Ang. O perjured woman! They are both forsworn:

In this the madman justly chargeth them.

Ant. E. My liege, I am advised what I say;

Neither disturbed with the effect of wine,

Nor heady-rash, provoked with raging ire,

Albeit my wrongs might make one wiser mad.

This woman lock’d me out this day from dinner:

That goldsmith there, were he not pack’d with her,

Could witness it, for he was with me then;

Who parted with me to go fetch a chain,

Promising to bring it to the Porpentine,

Where Balthazar and I did dine together.

Our dinner done, and he not coming thither,

I went to seek him: in the street I met him,

And in his company that gentleman.

There did this perjured goldsmith swear me down

That I this day of him received the chain,

Which, God he knows, I saw not: for the which

He did arrest me with an officer.

I did obey; and sent my peasant home

For certain ducats: he with none return’d.

Then fairly I bespoke the officer

To go in person with me to my house.

By the way we met my wife, her sister, and a rabble more

Of vile confederates. Along with them

They brought one Pinch, a hungry lean-faced villain,

A mere anatomy, a mountebank,

A threadbare juggler, and a fortune-teller,

A needy, hollow-eyed, sharp-looking wretch,

A living-dead man: this pernicious slave,

Forsooth, took on him as a conjurer;

And, gazing in mine eyes, feeling my pulse,

And with no face, as ’twere, outfacing me,

Cries out, I was possess’d. Then all together

They fell upon me, bound me, bore me thence,

And in a dark and dankish vault at home

There left me and my man, both bound together;

Till, gnawing with my teeth my bonds in sunder,

I gain’d my freedom, and immediately

Ran hither to your Grace; whom I beseech

To give me ample satisfaction

For these deep shames and great indignities.

Ang. My lord, in truth, thus far I witness with him,

That he dined not at home, but was lock’d out.

Duke. But had he such a chain of thee or no?

Ang. He had, my lord: and when he ran in here,

These people saw the chain about his neck.

Sec. Mer. Besides, I will be sworn these ears of mine

Heard you confess you had the chain of him,

After you first forswore it on the mart:

And thereupon I drew my sword on you;

And then you fled into this abbey here,

From whence, I think, you are come by miracle.

Ant. E. I never came within these abbey-walls;

Nor ever didst thou draw thy sword on me:

I never saw the chain, so help me Heaven:

And this is false you burden me withal!

Duke. Why, what an intricate impeach is this!

I think you all have drunk of Circe’s cup.

If here you housed him, here he would have been;

If he were mad, he would not plead so coldly:

You say he dined at home; the goldsmith here

Denies that saying. Sirrah, what say you?

Dro. E. Sir, he dined with her there, at the Porpentine.

Cour. He did; and from my finger snatch’d that ring.

Ant. E. ’Tis true, my liege; this ring I had of her.

Duke. Saw’st thou him enter at the abbey here?

Cour. As sure, my liege, as I do see your Grace.

Duke. Why, this is strange. Go call the abbess hither.

I think you are all mated, or stark mad.

Exit one to the Abbess.

Æge. Most mighty Duke, vouchsafe me speak a word:

Haply I see a friend will save my life,

And pay the sum that may deliver me.

Duke. Speak freely, Syracusian, what thou wilt.

Æge. Is not your name, sir, call’d Antipholus?

And is not that your bondman, Dromio?

Dro. E. Within this hour I was his bondman, sir,

But he, I thank him, gnaw’d in two my cords:

Now am I Dromio, and his man unbound.

Æge. I am sure you both of you remember me.

Dro. E. Ourselves we do remember, sir, by you;

For lately we were bound, as you are now.

You are not Pinch’s patient, are you, sir?

Æge. Why look you strange on me? you know me well.

Ant. E. I never saw you in my life till now.

Æge. O, grief hath changed me since you saw me last,

And careful hours with time’s deformed hand

Have written strange defeatures in my face:

But tell me yet, dost thou not know my voice?

Ant. E. Neither.

Æge. Dromio, nor thou?

Dro. E.

No, trust me, sir, nor I.

Æge. I am sure thou dost.

Dro. E. Ay, sir, but I am sure I do not; and whatsoever 305 a man denies, you are now bound to believe him.

Æge. Not know my voice! O time’s extremity,

Hast thou so crack’d and splitted my poor tongue

In seven short years, that here my only son

Knows not my feeble key of untuned cares?

Though now this grained face of mine be hid

In sap-consuming winter’s drizzled snow,

And all the conduits of my blood froze up,

Yet hath my night of life some memory,

My wasting lamps some fading glimmer left,

My dull deaf ears a little use to hear:

All these old witnesses—I cannot err—

Tell me thou art my son Antipholus.

Ant. E. I never saw my father in my life.

Æge. But seven years since, in Syracusa, boy,

Thou know’st we parted: but perhaps, my son,

Thou shamest to acknowledge me in misery.

Ant. E. The Duke and all that know me in the city

Can witness with me that it is not so:

I ne’er saw Syracusa in my life.

Duke. I tell thee, Syracusian, twenty years

Have I been patron to Antipholus,

During which time he ne’er saw Syracusa:

I see thy age and dangers make thee dote.

Re-enter Abbess, with Antipholus of Syracuse and Dromio of Syracuse.

Abb. Most mighty Duke, behold a man much wrong’d.

All gather to see them.

Adr. I see two husbands, or mine eyes deceive me.

Duke. One of these men is Genius to the other;

And so of these. Which is the natural man,

And which the spirit? who deciphers them?

Dro. S. I, sir, am Dromio: command him away.

Dro. E. I, sir, am Dromio: pray, let me stay.

Ant. S. Ægeon art thou not? or else his ghost?

Dro. S. O, my old master! who hath bound him here?

Abb. Whoever bound him, I will loose his bonds,

And gain a husband by his liberty.

Speak, old Ægeon, if thou be’st the man

That hadst a wife once call’d Æmilia,

That bore thee at a burden two fair sons:

O, if thou be’st the same Ægeon, speak,

And speak unto the same Æmilia!

Æge. If I dream not, thou art Æmilia:

If thou art she, tell me where is that son

That floated with thee on the fatal raft?

Abb. By men of Epidamnum he and I

And the twin Dromio, all were taken up;

But by and by rude fishermen of Corinth

By force took Dromio and my son from them,

And me they left with those of Epidamnum.

What then became of them I cannot tell;

I to this fortune that you see me in.

Duke. Why, here begins his morning story right:

These two Antipholuses, these two so like,

And these two Dromios, one in semblance,—

Besides her urging of her wreck at sea,—

These are the parents to these children,

Which accidentally are met together.

Antipholus, thou camest from Corinth first?

Ant. S. No, sir, not I; I came from Syracuse.

Duke. Stay, stand apart; I know not which is which.

Ant. E. I came from Corinth, my most gracious lord,—

Dro. E. And I with him.

Ant. E. Brought to this town by that most famous warrior.

Duke Menaphon, your most renowned uncle.

Adr. Which of you two did dine with me to-day?

Ant. S. I, gentle mistress.


And are not you my husband?

Ant. E. No; I say nay to that.

Ant. S. And so do I; yet did she call me so:

And this fair gentlewoman, her sister here,

Did call me brother. [To Lucia.] What I told you then,

I hope I shall have leisure to make good;

If this be not a dream I see and hear.

Ang. That is the chain, sir, which you had of me.

Ant. S. I think it be, sir; I deny it not.

Ant. E. And you, sir, for this chain arrested me.

Ang. I think I did, sir; I deny it not.

Adr. I sent you money, sir, to be your bail,

By Dromio; but I think he brought it not.

Dro. E. No, none by me.

Ant. S. This purse of ducats I received from you,

And Dromio my man did bring them me.

I see we still did meet each other’s man;

And I was ta’en for him, and he for me;

And thereupon these ERRORS are arose.

Ant. E. These ducats pawn I for my father here.

Duke. It shall not need; thy father hath his life.

Cour. Sir, I must have that diamond from you.

Ant. E. There, take it; and much thanks for my good cheer.

Abb. Renowned Duke, vouchsafe to take the pains

To go with us into the abbey here,

And hear at large discoursed all our fortunes;—

And all that are assembled in this place,

That by this sympathized one day’s error

Have suffer’d wrong, go keep us company,

And we shall make full satisfaction.—

Thirty-three years have I but gone in travail

Of you, my sons; and till this present hour

My heavy burthen ne’er delivered.

The Duke, my husband, and my children both,

And you the calendars of their nativity,

Go to a gossips’ feast, and go with me;

After so long grief, such nativity!

Duke. With all my heart, I’ll gossip at this feast.

Exeunt all but Ant. S., Ant. E., Dro. S., and Dro. E.

Dro. S. Master, shall I fetch your stuff from ship-board?

Ant. E. Dromio, what stuff of mine hast thou embark’d?

Dro. S. Your goods that lay at host, sir, in the Centaur.

Ant. S. He speaks to me. —I am your master, Dromio:

Come, go with us; we’ll look to that anon:

Embrace thy brother there; rejoice with him.

Exeunt Ant. S. and Ant. E.

Dro. S. There is a fat friend at your master’s house,

That kitchen’d me for you to-day at dinner:

She now shall be my sister, not my wife.

Dro. E. Methinks you are my glass, and not my brother:

I see by you I am a sweet-faced youth.

Will you walk in to see their gossiping?

Dro. S. Not I, sir; you are my elder.

Dro. E. That’s a question: how shall we try it?

Dro. S. We’ll draw cuts for the senior: till then lead thou first.

Dro. E. Nay, then, thus:—

We came into the world like brother and brother;

And now let’s go hand in hand, not one before another.



Note I.

In the spelling of the name of ‘Solinus’ we have followed the first Folio. In the subsequent Folios it was altered, most probably by an accident in F2 to ‘Salinus.’ The name occurs only once in the copies, and that in the first line of the text. The name which we have given as ‘Antipholus’ is spelt indifferently thus, and ‘Antipholis’ in the Folios. It will hardly be doubted that the lines in the rhyming passage, III. 2. 2, 4, where the Folios read ‘Antipholus,’ are correctly amended by Capell, and prove that ‘Antipholus’ is the spelling of Shakespeare. Either word is evidently corrupted from ‘Antiphilus.’ These names are merely arbitrary, but the surnames, ‘Erotes’ and ‘Sereptus,’ are most probably errors for ‘Errans,’ or ‘Erraticus’ and ‘Surreptus,’ of which the latter is plainly derived from Plautus’ Menæchmus Surreptus, a well-known character in Shakespeare’s day: see Brian Melbancke’s Philotimus (1582), p. 160: ‘Thou art like Menechmus Subreptus his wife ... whose “husband shall not neede to be justice of peace” for she “will have a charter to make her justice of coram.”’ See Merry Wives, I. 1. 4, 5. In spelling ‘Syracusian’ instead of ‘Syracusan’ we follow the practice of the Folios in an indifferent matter. ‘Epidamnum’ not ‘Epidamium’ is found in the English translation of the Menæchmi, 1595, so the latter form in F1 is probably a printer’s error.

Note II.

I. 2. 1. That this scene is laid at the Mart appears from Antipholus’s allusion to this place in II. 2. 5, 6:

‘I could not speak with Dromio since at first I sent him from the mart.’

As this play is derived from a classical prototype, Capell has supposed no change of scene, but lays the whole action in ‘a Publick Place;’ evidently with much inconvenience to the Persons.

Note III.

II. 1. 30. Johnson’s ingenious conjecture may have been suggested to him by a passage in As you like it, IV. 3. 17:

‘Her love is not the hare that I do hunt.’

But the received reading of the Folios is perhaps confirmed by a line in the present play, III. 2. 7:

‘Or if you like elsewhere, do it by stealth.’

Note IV.

II. 1. 108 sqq. The only correction of this passage which we believe to be quite free from doubt is that in line 112, ‘Wear’ for ‘Where.’ Accordingly, with this exception, we have retained the precise words of the first Folio.

Note V.

IV. 2. 38. Grey’s conjecture of ‘lanes’ for ‘lands’ is made somewhat more probable by the existence of copies of F1 in which the word appears ‘lans.’ A corrector would naturally change this rather to ‘lands’ than to ‘lanes,’ because of the rhyme.

Note VI.

IV. 2. 46. The Folios have ‘send him Mistris redemption,’ and Rowe, by his punctuation and capital R, made Dromio call Luciana ‘Redemption.’ Pope and Theobald seem to have followed him, though they give the small r. The Folios cannot be made chargeable with this error, for the comma does not regularly follow vocatives in these editions where we expect it. There is no comma, for instance, following the word ‘Mistress’ in IV. 3. 75 or in IV. 4. 39.

Note VII.

IV. 4. 29. The word ‘ears’ might probably be better printed ‘’ears’ for ‘years;’ for a pun—hitherto, however, unnoticed—seems to be indicated by the following words. A very farfetched explanation has been offered by Steevens, and accepted by Delius and, we believe, by all the modern editors, namely, that Antipholus has wrung Dromio’s ears so often that they have attained a length like an ass’s.

Note VIII.

V. 1. 1. Shakespeare uses the words ‘Priory’ and ‘Abbey’ as synonymous. Compare V. 1. 37 and V. 1. 122.

Note IX.

V. 1. 235. It might possibly be better to print this line as two lines, the first being broken:

‘By the way we met

My wife....’

But the place is probably corrupt.

Note X.

V. 1. 399. The number Thirty-three has been altered by editors to bring the figures into harmony with other periods named in the play. From I. 1. 126, 133 the age of Antipholus has been computed at twenty-three; from I. 1. 126 and V. 1. 308 we derive twenty-five. The Duke says he has been patron to Antipholus for twenty years, V. 1. 325; but three or five seems too small an age to assign for the commencement of this patronage. Antipholus saved the Duke’s life in the wars ‘long since,’ V. 1. 161, 191. His ‘long experience’ of his wife’s ‘wisdom’ and her ‘years’ are mentioned, III. 1. 89, 90. But Shakespeare probably did not compute the result of his own figures with any great care or accuracy.

Act I: Scene 1

A hall ... palace.] Malone. The Duke’s palace. Theobald. A publick Place. Capell.

Ægeon,] Rowe. with the Merchant of Siracusa, Ff.

Officers,] Capell. Officer, Staunton. om. Ff.

1. Solinus] F1. Salinus F2 F3 F4.

10. looks] books Anon. conj.

14. Syracusians] F4. Siracusians F1 F2 F3. Syracusans Pope. See note (I).

16, 17, 18. Nay more If ... seen At any] Malone. Nay, more, if ... Ephesus Be seen at any Ff.

18. any] om. Pope.

23. to ransom] F1. ransom F2 F3 F4.

27. this] ’tis Hanmer.

33. griefs] F1. griefe F2. grief F3 F4.

35. nature] fortune Collier MS.

39. by me] F1. by me too F2 F3 F4.

42. Epidamnum] Pope. Epidamium Ff. Epidamnium Rowe. See note (I).

43. the] then Edd. conj.

the ... care ... left] Theobald. he ... care ... left F1. he ... store ... leaving F2 F3 F4. heed ... caves ... left Jackson conj.

random] F3 F4. randone F1 F2.

50. had she] Ff. she had Rowe.

55. meaner] Delius (S. Walker conj.). meane F1. poor meane F2. poor mean F3 F4.

56. burden, male twins] burthen male, twins F1.

61, 62. So Pope. One line in Ff.

61. soon] soon!] Pope. soon. Capell.

70. gladly] gently Collier MS.

71. weepings] F1. weeping F2 F3 F4.

76. this] thus Collier MS.

79. latter-] elder- Rowe.

86. either end the mast] th’ end of either mast Hanmer.

87, 88. And ... Was] Ff. And ... Were Rowe. Which ... Was Capell.

91. wished] F1. wish’d F2 F3 F4.

92. seas wax’d] seas waxt F1. seas waxe F2. seas wax F3. seas was F4. sea was Rowe.

94. Epidaurus] Epidarus F1. Epidamnus Theobald conj.

103. upon] Pope. up F1 up upon F2 F3 F4.

104. helpful] helpless Rowe.

113. another] the other Hanmer.

115. healthful] F1. helpful F2 F3 F4.

117. bark] backe F1.

120. That] Thus Hanmer. Yet Anon. conj.

122. sake] F1. sakes F2 F3 F4.

124. hath ... thee] have ... they F1.

of] om. F4.

128. so] F1. for F2 F3 F4.

130. the] om. Pope.

131. I labour’d of a] he labour’d of all Collier MS.

144, 145. These lines inverted by Hanmer.

145. princes, would they, may] Hanmer. Princes would they may F1. Princes would, they may F2 F3 F4.

151. Therefore, merchant, I’ll] Ff. Therefore merchant, I Rowe. I, therefore, merchant Pope. I’ll, therefore, merchant Capell.

152. help ... help] Ff. life ... help Pope. help ... means Steevens conj. hope ... help Collier. fine ... help Singer.

by] thy Jackson conj.

155. no] not Rowe.

156. Gaoler,] Jailor, now Hanmer. So, jailer, Capell.

159. lifeless] Warburton. liveless Ff.

Act I: Scene 2

Scene ii.] Pope. No division in Ff.

The Mart.] Edd. A public place. Capell. The Street. Pope. See note (II).

Enter ...] Enter Antipholis Erotes, a Marchant, and Dromio. Ff.

4. arrival] a rivall F1.

10. till] tell F2.

11, 12. The order of these lines is inverted by F2 F3 F4.

12. that] then Collier MS.

18. mean] F1. means F2 F3 F4.

23. my] F1. the F2 F3 F4.

28. consort] consort with Malone conj.

30. myself] F1. my life F2 F3 F4.

33. Scene iii. Pope.

mine] F1. my F2 F3 F4.

37. falling] failing Barron Field conj.

37, 38. fellow forth, Unseen,] fellow, for Th’ unseen Anon. conj.

38. Unseen,] In search Spedding conj.

Unseen, inquisitive,] Unseen inquisitive! Staunton.

40. them] F1. him F2 F3 F4.

unhappy,] F2 F3 F4. (unhappie a) F1. unhappier, Edd. conj.

65. score] Rowe. scoure F1 F2 F3. scour F4.

66. your clock] Pope. your cooke F1. you cooke F2. your cook F3 F4.

76. stays] stay Rowe.

86. will] would Collier MS.

93. God’s] Hanmer. God Ff.

96. o’er-raught] Hanmer. ore-wrought Ff.

99. Dark-working] Drug-working Warburton.

99, 100. Dark-working ... Soul-killing] Soul-killing ... Dark-working Johnson conj.

100. Soul-killing] Soul-selling Hanmer.

102. liberties] libertines Hanmer.

Act II: Scene 1

The house ... Ephesus.] Pope. The same (i.e. A publick place). Capell, and passim.

11. o’ door] Capell. adore F1 F2 F3. adoor F4.

12. ill] F2 F3 F4. thus F1.

15. lash’d] leashed “a learned lady” conj. ap. Steevens. lach’d or lac’d Becket conj.

17. bound, ... sky:] bound: ... sky, Anon. conj.

19. subjects] subject Capell.

20, 21. Men ... masters ... Lords] Hanmer. Man ... master ... Lord Ff.

21. wild watery] wilde watry F1. wide watry F2 F3 F4.

22, 23. souls ... fowls] F1. soul ... fowl F2 F3 F4.

30. husband start] husband’s heart’s Jackson conj.

other where] other hare Johnson conj. See note (III).

31. home] om. Boswell (ed. 1821).

39. wouldst] Rowe. would Ff.

40. see] be Hanmer.

41. fool-begg’d] fool-egg’d Jackson conj. fool-bagg’d Staunton conj. fool-badged Id. conj.

44. Scene ii. Pope.

now] yet Capell.

45. Nay] At hand? Nay Capell.

and] om. Capell.

45, 46. two ... two] too ... two F1.

50-53. doubtfully] doubly Collier MS.

53. withal] therewithal Capell.

that] om. Capell, who prints lines 50-54 as four verses ending feel ... I ... therewithal ... them.

59. he is] he’s Pope. om. Hanmer.

61. a thousand] F4. a hundred F1 a 1000 F2 F3.

64. home] Hanmer. om. Ff.

68. I know not thy mistress] Thy mistress I know not Hanmer. I know not of thy mistress Capell. I know thy mistress not Seymour conj.

out on thy mistress] F1 F4. out on my mistress F2 F3. ’out on thy mistress,’ Quoth he Capell. I know no mistress; out upon thy mistress Steevens conj.

70. Quoth] Why, quoth Hanmer.

71-74. Printed as prose in Ff. Corrected by Pope.

73. bare] bear Steevens.

my] thy F2.

74. there] thence Capell conj.

85. I last] I’m to last Anon. conj.

[Exit.] F2.

87. Scene iii. Pope.

93. blunts] F1. blots F2 F3 F4.

107. alone, alone] F2 F3 F4. alone, a love F1. alone, alas! Hanmer. alone, O love, Capell conj. alone a lone Nicholson conj.

110. yet the] Ff. and the Theobald. and tho’ Hanmer. yet though Collier.

111. That others touch] The tester’s touch Anon. (Fras. Mag.) conj. The triers’ touch Singer.

and] Ff. yet Theobald. an Collier. though Heath conj.

111, 112. will Wear] Theobald (Warburton). will, Where] F1.

112, 113. F2 F3 F4 omit these two lines. See note (IV).

112. and no man] F1. and so no man Theobald. and e’en so man Capell. and so a man Heath conj.

113. By] F1. But Theobald.

115. what’s left away] (what’s left away) F1. (what’s left) away F2 F3 F4.

Act II: Scene 2

Scene ii.] Capell. Scene iv. Pope.

A public place.] Capell. A street. Pope.

3, 4, 5. out By ... report. I] F1 F2 F3. out By ... report, I F4. out. By ... report, I Rowe.

12. didst] did didst F1.

23. Beating him] Beats Dro. Ff.

28. jest] jet Dyce.

29. common] comedy Hanmer.

35-107. Pope marks as spurious.

38. else] om. Capell.

45. Why, first] First, why Capell.

53. next, to] next time, Capell conj.

to] and Collier MS.

59. none] F1. not F2 F3 F4.

76. hair] hair to men Capell.

79. men] Pope, ed. 2 (Theobald). them Ff.

91. sound] F1. sound ones F2 F3 F4.

93. falsing] falling Heath conj.

97. trimming] Rowe. trying Ff. tyring Pope. ’tiring Collier.

101. no time] F2 F3 F4. in no time F1. e’en no time Collier (Malone conj.).

110. thy] F1. some F2 F3 F4.

111. not ... nor] but ... and Capell conj.

112. unurged] unurg’dst Pope.

117. or look’d, or] look’d, Steevens.

to thee] om. Pope. thee S. Walker conj.

119. then] thus Rowe.

130. but] F1. om. F2 F3 F4.

135. off] Hanmer. of Ff.

138. canst] wouldst Hanmer.

140. crime] grime Warburton.

142. thy] F1. my F2 F3 F4.

143. contagion] catagion F4.

145. distain’d] unstain’d Hanmer (Theobald conj.). dis-stain’d Theobald. distained Heath conj.

undishonoured] dishonoured Heath conj.

149, 150. Marked as spurious by Pope.

Who, ... Wants] Whose every ..., Want Becket conj.

150. Wants] Ff. Want Johnson.

155. By me?] Pope. By me. Ff.

156. this] F1, Capell. thus F2 F3 F4.

167. your] you F2.

174. stronger] F4. stranger F1 F2 F3.

180-185. Marked ‘aside’ by Capell.

180. moves] means Collier MS.

183. drives] draws Collier MS.

184. sure uncertainty] sure: uncertainly Becket conj.

185. offer’d] Capell. free’d Ff. favour’d Pope. proffered Collier MS.

187-201. Marked as spurious by Pope.

189. talk] walk and talk Anon. conj.

goblins] ghosts and goblins Lettsom conj.

owls] ouphs Theobald.

sprites] F1. elves sprites F2 F3 F4. elvish sprites Rowe (ed. 2). elves and sprites Collier MS.

191. or] and Theobald.

192. and answer’st not?] F1. om. F2 F3 F4.

193. Dromio, thou drone, thou snail] Theobald. Dromio, thou Dromio, thou snaile F1. Dromio, thou Dromio, snaile F2 F3 F4.

194. am I not?] Ff. am not I? Theobald.

203. the eye] thy eye F2 F3.

204. laughs] Ff. laugh Pope.

211-215. Marked as ‘aside’ by Capell.

Act III: Scene 1

Scene i. Angelo and Balthazar.] Angelo the Goldsmith and Balthasar the Merchant. Ff.

1. all] om. Pope.

11-14. Put in the margin as spurious by Pope.

11. Say] you must say Capell.

13. the skin] my skin Collier MS.

14. own] F1. om. F2 F3 F4.

you] you for certain Collier MS.

15. doth] dont Theobald.

19. You’re] Y’are Ff. you are Capell.

20. here] om. Pope.

21-29. Put in the margin as spurious by Pope.

31. Ginn] om. Pope. Jen’ Malone. Gin’ Collier. Jin Dyce.

36-60. Put in the margin as spurious by Pope.

32, sqq. [Within] Rowe.

46. been] F1. bid F2 F3 F4.

47. an ass] a face Collier MS.

48. Luce. [Within] Rowe. Enter Luce. Ff.

there, Dromio? who] there! Dromio, who Capell.

54. hope] trow Theobald. Malone supposes a line omitted ending rope.

61. Adr. [Within]. Rowe. Enter Adriana. Ff.

65-83. Put in the margin as spurious by Pope.

67. part] have part Warburton.

71. cake here] cake Capell. cake there Anon. conj.

72. mad] F1. as mad F2 F3 F4.

as a buck] om. Capell.

75. you,] your F1.

85. so] thus Pope.

89. Once this] Own this Malone conj. This once Anon. conj.

her] Rowe. your Ff.

91. her] Rowe. your Ff.

93. made] barr’d Pope.

105. slander] lasting slander Johnson conj.

upon] upon its own Capell conj.

106. housed ... gets] Collier. hous’d ... gets F1. hous’d ... once gets F2 F3 F4. hous’d where ’t gets Steevens.

108. mirth] wrath Theobald.

116. Porpentine] Ff. Porcupine Rowe (and passim).

117. will I] F1. I will F2 F3 F4.

119. mine] F1. my F2 F3 F4.

122. hour] F1. hour, sir F2 F3 F4.

Act III: Scene 2

Scene ii. Enter Luciana] F2. Enter Juliana F1.

1. Luc.] Rowe. Julia Ff.

2. Antipholus] Antipholis, hate Theobald. Antipholis, thus Id. conj. a nipping hate Heath conj. unkind debate Collier MS.

4. building] Theobald. buildings Ff.

ruinous] Capell (Theobald conj.). ruinate Ff.

16. attaint] Rowe. attaine F1 F2 F3. attain F4.

20. are] F2 F3 F4. is F1.

21. but] Theobald. not Ff.

26. wife] wise F1.

35. shallow] F1. shaddow F2 F3. shadow F4.

43. no] F1. a F2 F3 F4.

44. decline] incline Collier MS.

46. sister] F1. sister’s F2 F3 F4.

49. bed] F2 F3 F4. bud F1. bride Dyce.

them] Capell (Edwards conj.). thee Ff.

52. she] he Capell.

57. where] Pope. when Ff.

66. am] mean Pope. aim Capell.

71. Scene iii. Pope.

93. How] What Capell.

97. Poland] Lapland Warburton.

108. and] Theobald (Thirlby conj). is Ff.

120. the] Ff. her Rowe.

122. forehead] sore head Jackson conj.

reverted] revolted Grant White.

123. heir] heire F1. haire F2 F3. hair F4.

125. chalky] chalkle F1.

135. caracks] Hanmer. carrects F1. carracts F2 F3 F4.

ballast] ballasted Capell.

138. drudge, or] drudge of the Devil, this Warburton.

or diviner] this divine one Capell conj.

140. mark] marke F1. marks F2 F3 F4.

143. faith] flint Hanmer.

143, 144. Printed as prose in Ff. As verse first by Knight.

144. curtal] F4. curtull F1. curtall F2 F3. cur-tail Hanmer.

146. An] Capell. And Ff.

150. knows us] know us Johnson.

154. Scene iv. Pope.

161. to] of Pope.

164. here is] Pope. here’s Ff.

177. Ant. S.] Ant. F1 F4. Dro. F2 F3.

181. streets] street Capell conj.

Act IV: Scene 1

8. growing] owing Pope.

12. Pleaseth you] Ff. Please you but Pope. Please it you Anon. conj.

14. may you] F1 F2 F3. you may F4.

17. her] Rowe. their Ff. these Collier MS.

26. and] om. Pope.

28. carat] Pope. charect F1. Raccat F2 F3 F4. caract Collier.

29. chargeful] charge for Anon. conj.

41. time enough] in time Hanmer.

46. stays] stay Pope.

this] F1. the F2 F3 F4.

47. to blame] F3. too blame F1 F2 F4.

53. the chain!] Dyce. the chain, Ff. the chain— Johnson.

56. Either] Or Pope.

me by] by me Heath conj.

60. whether] whe’r Ff. where Rowe. if Pope.

62. what] F1. why F2 F3 F4.

67. more] F1. om. F2 F3 F4.

70. Printed as verse by Capell.

73. this] F1. the F2 F3 F4.

74. thee] F1. om. F2 F3 F4. for Rowe.

85. Scene ii. Pope.

there is] Pope. there’s Ff.

87. And then, sir,] F1. Then, sir, F2 F3 F4. And then Capell.

she] om. Steevens.

88. bought] F1. brought F2 F3 F4.

98. You sent me] A rope! You sent me Capell. You sent me, Sir, Steevens.

Act IV: Scene 2

Scene ii.] Scene iii. Pope.

2. austerely] assuredly Heath conj.

4. or sad or] sad Capell.

merrily] merry Collier MS.

6. Of] F2 F3 F4. Oh, F1.

7. you] you; you Capell.

no] a Rowe.

18. his] it’s Rowe.

22. in mind] F1. the mind F2 F3 F4.

26. herein] he in Hanmer.

29. Scene iv. Pope.

sweet] swift Collier MS.

33. hath him] hath him fell Collier MS. hath him by the heel Spedding conj.

34. One] F2 F3 F4. On F1.

After this line Collier MS. inserts: Who knows no touch of mercy, cannot feel.

35. fury] Pope, ed. 2 (Theobald). Fairie Ff.

37. countermands] commands Theobald.

38. of] and Collier MS.

alleys] allies Ff.

lands] lanes Grey conj. See note (V).

37, 38. countermands The ... lands] his court maintains I’ the ... lanes Becket conj.

42, 45. ’rested] Theobald. rested Ff.

43. Tell] Well, tell Edd. conj.

44. arrested well;] F1. arrested, well; F2 F3. arrested: well: F4.

45. But he’s] F3 F4. But is F1 F2. But ’a’s Edd. conj.

can I] F1 F2. I can F3 F4.

46. mistress, redemption] Hanmer. Mistris redemption F1 F2 F3. Mistris Redemption F4. See note (VI).

48. That] Thus F1.

49, 50. band] bond Rowe.

50. but on] but Pope.

54-62. Put in the margin as spurious by Pope.

55. hear] here F1.

56. ’a turns] it turns Pope. he turns Capell.

58. bankrupt] bankrout Ff.

to season] om. Pope.

61. Time] Rowe. I Ff. he Malone. ’a Staunton.

62. an hour] any hour Collier MS.

Act IV: Scene 3

Scene iii.] Scene v. Pope.

13. What, have] Pope. What have Ff.

got] got rid of Theobald. not Anon. conj.

16. calf’s skin] calves-skin Ff.

22. sob] fob Rowe. bob Hanmer. sop Dyce conj. stop Grant White.

’rests] Warburton. rests Ff.

25. morris] Moris Ff. Maurice Hanmer (Warburton).

28. band] bond Rowe.

29. says] Capell. saies F1. saieth F2. saith F3 F4.

32. ship] F2 F3 F4. ships F1.

34. put] puts Pope.

40. Scene vi. Pope.

44-62. Put in the margin as spurious by Pope.

47-49. and ... wench.’] Marked as spurious by Capell, MS.

48, 49. as much] as much as Pope.

54. me? ... here?] me, ... here? Ff. me? ... here. Steevens.

55. if you do, expect] F2 F3 F4. if do expect F1.

or] om. Rowe. so Capell. either stay away, or Malone conj. and Ritson conj. Oh! Anon. conj.

60. then] F1 F2 F3. thou F4. thee Dyce.

61. are all] all are Boswell.

66-71. Printed as prose by Ff, as verse by Capell, ending the third line at covetous.

75. Put in the margin as spurious by Pope.

76. Scene vii. Pope.

84. doors] door Johnson.

Act IV: Scene 4

Scene iv.] Scene viii. Pope.

and the Officer.] Capell. with a Jailor. Ff.

5, 6. messenger. That ... Ephesus,] Rowe. messenger, That ... Ephesus, F1 F2 F3. messenger; That ... Ephesus, F4. messenger, That ... Ephesus: Capell.

14. Dro. E.] Off. Edd. conj.

15. hie] high F2.

17. returned] come Anon. conj.

18. [Beating him.] Capell. [Beats Dro. Pope. om. Ff.

29. ears] See note (VII).

38. Scene ix. Pope. The stage direction ‘Enter ... Pinch,’ precedes line 38 in Ff, and all editions till Dyce’s.

Pinch.] a schoolmaster, call’d Pinch. Ff.

40. the prophecy] the prophesie F1 F2 F3 F4. prophesie Rowe. to prophesy Dyce.

39-41. or rather ... talk?] or rather, ‘prospice funem,’ beware the rope’s end. Ant. E. Wilt thou still talk like the parrot? Edd. conj.

41. [Beating him.] [Beats Dro. Ff.

46. what] in what Hanmer.

65. Dined] Din’d I Theobald. I din’d Capell.

72. Certes] Pope. certis Ff.

74. bear] beares F1.

75. vigour] rigour Collier MS.

his] your Pope.

83. master] mistress Dyce conj.

rag] bag Becket conj.

84. not thou] thou not Capell.

87. bear] do bear Pope. now bear Collier MS.

89. is] are Rowe.

101. these false] Ff. those false Rowe.

102. [Flying at his wife. Capell.

Enter ...] The stage direction is transferred by Dyce to follow 105.

106. me? Thou ... thou,] Rowe. me, thou ... thou? Ff.

110. [They ... Dro. E.] Edd. om. Ff.

117. [They bind Ant. and Dro. Rowe.

124. nothing?] nothing thus? Hanmer, reading as verse.

126. help, poor] Theobald. help poor Ff.

idly] Pope. idlely Ff.

127. go] stay Pope.

[Exeunt all but ...] Exeunt. Manet ... Ff (after line 128).

129. Scene x. Pope.

133. for me] om. Hanmer.

141. Scene xi. Pope.

143. [Runne all out. Ff.

144. [Exeunt ...] Exeunt omnes, as fast as may be, frighted. Ff.

150. saw ... speak us ... give] F1. saw ... spake us ... give F2 F3 F4. saw ... spake to us ... give Rowe. saw ... spake us ... gave Pope. see ... speak us ... give Capell.

Act V: Scene 1

Scene i. A street ... Priory] Pope. See note (VIII).

3. doth] F1. did F2 F3 F4.

9. Enter ...] Enter Antipholis and Dromio againe. Ff.

12. to me] with me Collier MS.

18. Beside] Ff. Besides Pope.

26. know’st ... thee.] Ff. knowest ... thee. Pope. knowest well ... thee. Hanmer. know’st ... thee, sir. Capell. know’st ... thee swear Grant White conj.

30. mine honesty] F1 F2 F3. my honesty F4.

33. Scene ii. Pope.

33, 36. God’s ... God’s] F3 F4. God ... God’s F1 F2.

38. quiet, people.] Theobald. quiet people. Ff.

45. sour] Rowe. sower Ff.

46. much] F1 F4. much, much F2 F3.

49. of sea] F1. at sea F2 F3 F4.

50. Hath not else his eye] Hath nought else his eye? Anon. conj.

51. his ... in] in ... and Anon. conj.

61. Ay] Ay, ay Hanmer.

66. it] at it Pope.

69. venom] venome F1 F2. venomous F3 F4. venom’d Pope.

woman,] woman Pope.

69, 70. clamours ... Poisons] clamours ... Poison Pope. clamour ... Poisons Capell.

72, 75. thereof] therefore Johnson.

74. make] F1. makes F2 F3 F4.

77. by] with Pope.

79. moody] F1. muddy F2 F3 F4.] moody, moping Hanmer. moody sadness Singer conj.

melancholy] melancholia Anon. conj.

80. Kinsman] kins-woman Capell. ending line 79 at kins-. A’kin Hanmer.

Warburton marks this line as spurious.

81. her] their Malone (Heath conj.).

86. Have] F2 F3 F4. Hath F1.

88. wildly] wild Capell.

89. these] F1 F2. those F3 F4.

112. [Exit.] Theobald.

117. [Exeunt. Enter Merchant and Goldsmith. F2.

121. death] F3 F4. depth F1 F2.

sorry] solemn Collier MS.

124. reverend F3 F4. reverent F1 F2.

128. Enter Adriana and Lucia. F2.

130. Scene iii. Pope.

attended] Theobald.

132. Enter Adriana. F2.

134. reverend] Ff.

137. Whom] F2 F3 F4. Who F1.

138. important] F1. impoteant F2. impotent F3 F4. all-potent Rowe.

letters] F1 F2 F3. letter F4.

148. strong] strange Malone conj.

150. with] here Capell. then Ritson conj.

and himself] mad himself Warburton.

158. hence] F1 F2. thence F3 F4.

168. Scene iv. Pope.

Enter a servant.] Capell. Enter a Messenger. Ff.

174. to him] om. Capell.

and] om. Hanmer. and the om. Steevens.

176. some] F1 some other F2 F3 F4.

179. to] F1 F3 F4. of F2.

183. scorch] scotch Warburton.

205. While] F1 Whilst F2 F3 F4.

208. To-day] om. Hanmer.

So befal] So fall Capell.

212, 213. [To Mer. Capell.

228. of] F1. from F2 F3 F4.

235. By the way] To which he yielded: by the way Capell, making two verses of 235. See note (IX).

235, 236. Pope ends these lines and ... confederates.

236. Along with them] om. Pope.

247. And in] Into Lettsom conj.

248. There] They Collier MS.

249. in sunder] F1. asunder F2 F3 F4.

267, 268. chain, so ... Heaven: And] chain. So ... heaven As Dyce.

281. mad] made F2.

[Exit ...] F1 F2. [Enter ... F3 F4.

291. you both] F1. both F2 F3 F4.

298. deformed] deforming Capell.

304. Ay, sir,] Capell. I sir, Ff. I, sir? Pope. Ay, sir? Malone.

304, 305. Printed as verse by Capell: But ... whatsoever A ... him.

307. crack’d and splitted] crack’d my voice, split Collier MS.

309. of untuned cares] untuned of cares Anon. conj.

cares] ears Anon. conj.

314. lamps] lamp Pope.

316. All] And all Rowe.

old] hold Warburton.

witnesses—I cannot err—] witnesses, I cannot erre. Ff.

319. Syracusa, boy] Capell. Syracusa boy Ff. Syracusa bay Rowe. Syracusa’s bay Hanmer.

329. Scene vii. Pope.

[All ... them.] [All ... him. Warburton.

332. these. Which] these, which Ff.

355-360. Why ... together] Ff insert this speech after 344. The alteration is due to Capell.

355. his] F1 F2. this F3 F4. the Pope.

story right] story’s light Capell.

356. Antipholuses, these] Antipholus, these F1. Antipholis, these F2 F3 F4. Antipholis’s Hanmer. See note (I).

357. these] F1 F4. those F2 F3.

semblance] semblance prove Capell.

358. Besides her urging of her]

Both sides emerging from their Hanmer.

Besides his urging of his Collier MS.

Besides his urging of her Dyce conj.

Malone supposes a line, beginning with These, lost after 358.

wreck at sea,—] wreck,—all say, Jackson conj.

359. These are] These plainly are Pope.

361. Ff prefix ‘Duke.’

372. her sister] F1. om. F2 F3 F4.

373. [To Lucia.] [Aside to Lucia. Staunton conj.

387. are arose] Ff. all arose Rowe. rare arose Staunton. here arose Anon. conj.

394. hear] here Johnson.

398. we shall make] ye shalt have Pope.

399. Thirty-three] Ff. Twenty-five Theobald. Twenty-three Capell. See note (X).

but] F1. been F2 F3 F4. om. Hanmer.

400. and till] nor till Theobald. until Malone (Boaden conj.). and at Collier MS.

401. burthen ne’er] Dyce. burthen are F1. burthens are F2 F3 F4. burden not Capell. burden undelivered Collier. burden here Grant White. burden has Anon. conj. (ap. Halliwell).

404. Go ... and go] Hence ... along Lettsom conj. So ... all go Edd. conj.

and go] F1 F3 F4. and goe F2. and gaud Warburton. and joy Heath conj. and gout Jackson conj. and see Anon. conj.

405. nativity] Ff. felicity Hanmer. festivity Dyce (Johnson conj.).

such nativity!] suits festivity. Anon. conj.

406. [Exeunt ...] [Exeunt omnes. Manet the two Dromio’s and two brothers. Ff.

407. Scene viii. Pope.

fetch] go fetch S. Walker conj.

ship-board] shipboard for you Capell conj.

412. [Exeunt ...] [Exit. Ff.

420. we try it?] we trie it. F1 I try it. F2 F3 F4. we try it, brother? Capell.

421. We’ll] We will Capell, ending lines 419-421 at question ... draw ... first.

senior] Pope. signior F1 F2. signiority F3 F4.

422. [embracing. Rowe.

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