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PinkMonkey.com-MonkeyNotes-The Comedy of Errors, by William Shakespeare


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The Comedy of Errors

By William Shakespeare QUOTATION: There’s a time for all things.
ATTRIBUTION: William Shakespeare (1564–1616), British dramatist, poet. Antipholus of Syracuse, in The Comedy of Errors, act 2, sc. 2, l. 65.

proverbial; from Ecclesiates, 3.1, “To every thing there is a season.”

QUOTATION: There’s many a man has more hair than wit.
ATTRIBUTION: William Shakespeare (1564–1616), British dramatist, poet. Antipholus of Syracuse, in The Comedy of Errors, act 2, sc. 2, l. 82-3.

“Wit” means intelligence or sense.

QUOTATION: 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.
ATTRIBUTION: William Shakespeare (1564–1616), British dramatist, poet. Antipholus of Syracuse, in The Comedy of Errors, act 1, sc. 2, l. 97-102.

The reputation of Ephesus, where Antipholus has just arrived; mountebanks were quack doctors or charlatans.

QUOTATION: When the sun shines, let foolish gnats make sport,
But creep in crannies, when he hides his beams.
ATTRIBUTION: William Shakespeare (1564–1616), British dramatist, poet. Antipholus of Syracuse, in The Comedy of Errors, act 2, sc. 2, l. 30-1.

QUOTATION: Unquiet meals make ill digestions.
ATTRIBUTION: William Shakespeare (1564–1616), British dramatist, poet. The Abbess, in The Comedy of Errors, act 5, sc. 1, l. 74.

QUOTATION: The venom clamors of a jealous woman
Poisons more deadly than a mad dog’s tooth.
ATTRIBUTION: William Shakespeare (1564–1616), British dramatist, poet. The Abbess, in The Comedy of Errors, act 5, sc. 1, l. 69-70.

QUOTATION: Sweet recreation barred, what doth ensue
But moody and dull melancholy,
Kinsman to grim and comfortless despair.
ATTRIBUTION: William Shakespeare (1564–1616), British dramatist, poet. The Abbess, in The Comedy of Errors, act 5, sc. 1, l. 78-80.

Showing Adriana the state to which she has supposedly driven her husband.

QUOTATION: I will not let him stir
Till I have used the approvèd means I have,
With wholesome syrups, drugs, and holy prayers,
To make of him a formal man again.
ATTRIBUTION: William Shakespeare (1564–1616), British dramatist, poet. The Abbess, in The Comedy of Errors, act 5, sc. 1, l. 102-5.

About Antipholus of Ephesus, who is supposedly mad; formal means sane.

QUOTATION: My decayèd fair
A sunny look of his would soon repair.
ATTRIBUTION: William Shakespeare (1564–1616), British dramatist, poet. Adriana, in The Comedy of Errors, act 2, sc. 1, l. 98-9.

Complaining about her absent husband.

QUOTATION: 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.
ATTRIBUTION: William Shakespeare (1564–1616), British dramatist, poet. Adriana, in The Comedy of Errors, act 2, sc. 2, l. 125-9.

An image of unity in marriage; “fall” means let fall.

QUOTATION: He is deformèd, crooked, old, and sere,
Ill-faced, worse bodied, shapeless every where;
Vicious, ungentle, foolish, blunt, unkind,
Stigmatical in making, worse in mind.
ATTRIBUTION: William Shakespeare (1564–1616), British dramatist, poet. Adriana, in The Comedy of Errors, act 4, sc. 2, l. 19-22.

On her husband, who, she thinks, has been wooing her sister Luciana; “stigmatical” means deformed.

QUOTATION: A wretched soul, bruised with adversity,
We bid be quiet when we hear it cry;
But were we burdened with like weight of pain,
As much, or more, we should ourselves complain.
ATTRIBUTION: William Shakespeare (1564–1616), British dramatist, poet. Adriana, in The Comedy of Errors, act 2, sc. 1, l. 34-7.

QUOTATION: Thy jealous fits
Have scared thy husband from the use of wits.
ATTRIBUTION: William Shakespeare (1564–1616), British dramatist, poet. The Abbess, in The Comedy of Errors, act 5, sc. 1, l. 85-6.

To Adriana, whose reproaches have supposedly driven her husband Antipholus mad.

QUOTATION: Unquiet meals make ill digestions.
ATTRIBUTION: William Shakespeare (1564–1616), British dramatist, poet. The Abbess, in The Comedy of Errors, act 5, sc. 1, l. 74.

To Adriana, who has been criticizing her husband.

QUOTATION: The venom clamors of a jealous woman
Poisons more deadly than a mad dog’s tooth.
ATTRIBUTION: William Shakespeare (1564–1616), British dramatist, poet. The Abbess, in The Comedy of Errors, act 5, sc. 1, l. 69-70.

The Abbess has drawn from Adriana the confession that she constantly reproached her husband about his unfaithfulness and supposedly drove him mad.

QUOTATION: Sweet recreation barred, what doth ensue
But moody and dull melancholy,
Kinsman to grim and comfortless despair.
ATTRIBUTION: William Shakespeare (1564–1616), British dramatist, poet. The Abbess, in The Comedy of Errors, act 5, sc. 1, l. 78-80.

Showing Adriana the state to which she has supposedly driven her husband.

QUOTATION: I will not let him stir
Till I have used the approvèd means I have,
With wholesome syrups, drugs, and holy prayers,
To make of him a formal man again.
ATTRIBUTION: William Shakespeare (1564–1616), British dramatist, poet. The Abbess, in The Comedy of Errors, act 5, sc. 1, l. 102-5.

About Antipholus of Ephesus, who is supposedly mad; formal means sane.

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