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ADDITIONAL READINGS

From the complete play of The Tempest.
The Storm.
I, i, ii, 1–15.1

V, i, 216–240.
Miranda and Ferdinand.

I, ii, 1–186, 210–224, 375-end (502).
III, i.
IV, i, 1–163.
V, i, 172–215.

Alonso and Antonio.

I, ii, 66–151, 210–220.
II, i.
III, iii.
V, i, 1-215.

1 The line numbers refer to The Macmillan Pocket Classics edition of The T'empest.

BENEDICK AND BEATRICE

A Play in Miniature, from
MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING

THE CHARACTERS

DON PEDRO (don pē'dro), Prince of Aragon.
Don JOĦN (don jön), his half brother.
CLAUDIO (Clô'di-7), a young lord of Florence.
BENEDICK (běn'ě-dľk), a young lord of Padua.
LEONATO (lē-7-nā'to), governor of Messina.
BORACHIO (bā-răch'1-7), a follower of Don John.
FRIAR FRANCIS (fri'ěr frăn'sys).
HERO (hē'rā), daughter to Leonato.
BEATRICE (bē'a-trys), niece to Leonato.

MARGARET * {märgå-rët), } gentlewomen attending on Hero.

URSULA (ûr'sū-lå), 11 reading parts.*

SETTING: Messina (mě-sē'na), Sicily.

SYNOPSIS

Act I. Scene. The garden to Leonato's house.

Episode 1. The visit of Prince Don Pedro of Aragon.

Episode 2. Don John's plot against Claudio and Hero.
ACT II. Scene, the same. The next day.

Episode 1. Morning. The twig is limed for Benedick.
Episode 2. Afternoon. The net is spread for Beatrice.

Episode 3. Evening. Don John.
ACT III. Scene. A church.
Act IV. Scene. The garden to Leonato's house.

Episode 1. Benedick and Beatrice.
Episode 2. Benedick, the married man!

The number of rôles may be reduced to ten by omitting the first two speeches in Episode 2 of Act II, thus eliminating the rôle of Margaret.

*

PROLOG-INTRODUCTION 1 One of the finest matches of wit - ending in one of the wittiest of matches that can be found in any play — is that of Benedick and Beatrice in one of Shakespeare's earlier comedies, Much Ado about Nothing.

Benedick is a soldier in the train of a Spanish prince Don Pedro. The Prince comes to visit Leonato, Governor of Messina, Sicily, on his way home from war.

The Governor has a niece, Beatrice, who is the sauciest, most delightful, puckeringly-humorous girl that Shakespeare ever drew. She makes one's mouth water at her tart wit. Benedick and she had measured swords, or rather words, before. The wit on either side had struck as quick as lightning, and pelted as thick and fast as rain in a cloudburst, at least on Benedick.

Benedick's own wit is like a ray of sunlight after a storm, but he quivers at the recollection of the former wordy war though whether from excitement or out of admiration for Beatrice, he probably never has learned.

The Prince, to fill up the time between the engagement of the Governor's daughter Hero to Claudio and the marriage of that pair, hits upon a happy scheme of getting Benedick and Beatrice in love. They are already halfway in love, but in the excitement of wit contests, neither would discover it, were it not for the plotting of the Prince and of another Spanish gentleman.

Don John, the Prince's jealous, dark-souled brother, plotting to trick Claudio, brings disgrace upon his gentle, innocent fiancée. It is a sad plot, and in our miniature we shall skip one night, in which Don John at midnight shows the Prince and Claudio a lady talking out of Hero's window to a man. Claudio thinks that the lady is Hero and that she is faithless to her vows of love.

But this strain of sadness, which does not last long, is brightened by the merry tilts of Benedick and Beatrice, who cannot lose a chance to deal each other wordy blows, even when the Prince's trick has worked and each believes the other in love. The gracefulness of Beatrice and the chivalry of Benedick are as charming as their

1 Claudio may take the Prolog lines.

wit, and the two stand out as the leading characters in the great play. The Prince is a fine character, the Governor, a dignified old gentleman, and there are other folk enough to make another playlet as sparkling and entertaining as this one.

The first to enter are the Prince and the Governor, with Hero, the Governor's daughter, and Beatrice.

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ACT I [Prolog.] The visit of Prince Don Pedro of Aragon to Governor Leonato, of Messina, Sicily.

[Exit.] Scene. The garden to Leonato's house

Episode 1 (Enter Don Pedro, Beatrice, Leonato, and Hero, C.] Beatrice. I pray you, is Signior Benedick returned from the

wars? Don Pedro. O, he's returned; and as pleasant as ever he was. Beatrice. I pray you, how many hath he killed and eaten in

these wars? But how many hath he killed? for indeed I

promised to eat all of his killing. Leonato. There is a kind of merry war betwixt Signior

Benedick and her. They never meet but there's a skirmish of wit between them.

Beatrice. Alas! he gets nothing by that. In our last con

flict four of his five wits went limping off. - Who is his companion now? He hath every month a new sworn

brother. Don Pedro. He is most in the company of my right noble

Claudio. Beatrice. O, he will hang upon him like a disease. Heaven

help the noble Claudio! If he have caught the Benedick, it will cost him a thousand pounds ere he be cured.

Don John enters (C.] rather reservedly, while Benedick just behind him detains Claudio a moment in the entrance way to finish a story. I wonder that you will still be talking, Signior Benedick.

Nobody marks you." Benedick. What, my dear Lady Disdain! are you yet living? Beatrice. Is it possible disdain should die while she hath such

food to feed it as Signior Benedick? Benedick. It is certain I am loved of all ladies, only you

excepted; and I would I could find in my heart that I had

not a hard heart, for, truly, I love none. Beatrice. I am of your humor for that. I had rather hear

my dog bark at a crow than a man swear he loves me. Benedick. Heaven keep your ladyship still in that mind!

So some gentleman or other shall escape a scratched face. Beatrice. Scratching could not make it worse, if it were such

a face as yours. Benedick. I would my horse had the speed of your tongue.

But keep your way, in Heaven's name; I have done. Don Pedro. Signior Claudio and Signior Benedick, my dear

friend Leonato hath invited you all. I tell him we shall stay here at least a month.

Nobody marks you: no one is listening to you. There is some little justification in the remark, for Claudio has been looking at Hero even if he has been listening to Benedick.

? I have lune: I am through.

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