The Comedy of Errors

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One of the twin servants of Aegeon’s family, who ends up in Ephesus with Antipholus of Ephesus after the shipwreck. He is obedient but, due to all the confused identities during the play, is often made the scapegoat of various mix-ups and suffers beatings as a punishment. Like his twin, he is clever with words, puns, and riddles.

Dromio of Ephesus Quotes in The Comedy of Errors

The The Comedy of Errors quotes below are all either spoken by Dromio of Ephesus or refer to Dromio of Ephesus. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Commerce and Exchange Theme Icon
). Note: all page and citation info for the quotes below refers to the Simon & Schuster edition of The Comedy of Errors published in 2005.
Act 1, Scene 2 Quotes

Where is the gold I gave in charge to thee?

To me, sir? Why, you gave no gold to me.

Come on, sir knave, have done your foolishness,
And tell me how thou hast disposed thy charge.

My charge was but to fetch you from the mart
Home to your house, the Phoenix, sir, to dinner:
My mistress and her sister stays for you.

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?

Related Characters: Antipholus of Syracuse (speaker), Dromio of Ephesus (speaker)
Related Symbols: The Gold Necklace, Bail Money, and Diamond Ring
Page Number: 1.2.71-82
Explanation and Analysis:

Dromio of Ephesus has entered the stage immediately after Antipholus of Syracuse finished his soliloquy. Dromio of Ephesus mistakes this Antipholus for his master, Antipholus of Ephesus, and tells Antipholus of Syracuse that it's time to come home dinner. Antipholus of Syracuse is confused, thinking that the Dromio he is speaking with is Dromio of Syracuse, the servant he just sent to the Centaur Inn with money. Thus at the beginning of the quote, Antipholus asks the wrong Dromio where is the gold that he gave to his own Dromio. Dromio of Ephesus is confused, and responds as such, since Antipholus of Syracuse only gave money to Dromio of Syracuse. The two continue to mistake each other for their twins, one asking for his money, the other asking his master to come home for dinner.

This interaction is the first of many, many confusing scenes of mistaken identities. Note that the social hierarchy dominates the interaction. In the dialogue that follows the quote, Dromio puns on "marks," saying he has received physical marks from beatings as opposed to marks as currency. Throughout the play, both master Antipholuses beat their (and their twin's) Dromio. The masters constantly blame the servants for the misunderstandings, and this scene shows early on how the dynamic will work in the play.

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Act 2, Scene 1 Quotes

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!’

Related Characters: Dromio of Ephesus (speaker)
Related Symbols: The Gold Necklace, Bail Money, and Diamond Ring
Page Number: 2.1.62-72
Explanation and Analysis:

After Luciana and Adriana continue to argue about men, power, and marriage—with Luciana arguing that men are masters of nature and their wives—Dromio of Ephesus enters. Remember that Dromio of Ephesus was sent by Adriana to summon Antipholus of Ephesus, but Dromio accidentally called on Antiopholus of Syracuse. Here Dromio of Ephesus tells his mistress Adriana about the confusing interaction he had with the man they believe to be her husband. Dromio humorously stages a mini-dialogue, giving both his voice and the responses from Antipholus of Syracuse. Thus on stage we see the first case of mistaken identity played out for a second time.

Dromio's impersonation of Antipholus consists mainly of one line: "My gold!" This emphasizes commerce and Antipholus's demand for his money, which will be transferred around and demanded again and again throughout the play. Finally, Antipholus speaks out against Dromio's "mistress," giving the impression that he is claiming not to know his own wife. This strange behavior makes Adriana believe that Antipholus of Ephesus is cheating on her (outlined below) and shows a potential for another family split, echoing the original division of Aegeon's family.

Dromio reports that he was beaten and that Antipholus spoke only of his gold, but Adriana sends him out to fetch Antipholus again, and also probably to receive more beatings.

Act 4, Scene 4 Quotes

Alas, I sent you money to redeem you,
By Dromio here, who came in haste for it.

Money by me! Heart and good-will you might;
But surely, master, not a rag of money.

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

He came to me, and I deliver’d it.

And I am witness with her that she did.

God and the rope-maker bear me witness
That I was sent for nothing but a rope!

Related Characters: Antipholus of Ephesus (speaker), Dromio of Ephesus (speaker), Adriana (speaker), Luciana (speaker)
Related Symbols: The Gold Necklace, Bail Money, and Diamond Ring
Page Number: 4.4.88-96
Explanation and Analysis:

Dromio of Ephesus returns to the arrested Antipholus of Ephesus with the rope that was requested for Adriana. However, since that command, Antipholus has told Dromio of Syracuse to get the bail money. Thus when Dromio of Ephesus shows up with only a rope, Antipholus is furious. Adriana and Luciana then enter, along with the Courtesan. They think that Antipholus is mad, and argue about if Antipholus and Adriana ate dinner together or not. Here, Adriana says that she sent bail money with Dromio. She has, of course, sent it with the other Dromio, so Dromio of Ephesus begins to look insane, too, since he claims only to have been sent for a rope. The confusion in this scene is especially knotted and humorous since Antipholus of Ephesus has given commands to both Dromios. Every character is confused, so the mistakes and false identities continue in their absurdities.

In this scene Adriana pays Antipholus's bail and decides to shut him and Dromio up inside, but moments after their exit, Antipholus and Dromio of Syracuse enter the stage. At this sight, Adriana is convinced that Antipholus and Dromio of Ephesus have escaped. Now, even people are exchanged as commodities, and of course the exchange of persons is also confounded and filled with error. Antipholus and Dromio of Syracuse escape and get ready to leave Ephesus. 

Act 5, Scene 1 Quotes

I am sure you both of you remember me.

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?

Why look you so strange on me? You know me well.

I never saw you in my life till now.

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?

Neither.

Dromio, nor thou?

No, trust me, sir, nor I.

I am sure thou dost.

Related Characters: Aegeon (speaker), Antipholus of Ephesus (speaker), Dromio of Ephesus (speaker)
Page Number: 5.1.300-314
Explanation and Analysis:

Most of the characters are on stage at this point near the end of the play; the Duke has been brought in to try and resolve the issue. Antipholus and Dromio of Ephesus have escaped from Adriana's house, causing everyone to think that they have just escaped from the abbey. Aegeon has been brought on with the Duke in the last hope of coming up with payment to stop his execution, and he has spoken a brief aside indicating that he recognizes Antipholus and Dromio of Ephesus, believing them to be his son and son's servant from Syracuse. Which, of course, they aren't.

But in all this confusion, Antipholus of Ephesus gains some clarity of his own: opposing the previous states of confusion and self-doubt, he says they do remember themselves and who they are, making a joke that they were just bound in Adriana's home as Aegeon is now imprisoned. When the sons continue to say they don't recognize him, Aegeon begins to believe that grief and time have changed him, textually writing new features on his face in the time since he has last seen Antipholus and Dromio of Syracuse. He tries to appeal to another sense, asking if they remember his voice, but they still do not.

At this moment the tension and dramatic irony peak. Aegeon is looking for his long lost son, and has met him, but even now he confuses this lost son for the son he raised and has only been apart from for a few years. While every other character in the play has assumed that Antipholus of Ephesus is himself (other than Dromio of Syracuse), Aegeon mistakes him for Antipholus of Syracuse. Mistaken identity and errors cross even family lines, and the plots cannot be resolved until both pairs of twins are physically on the stage at the same time.

We came into the world like brother and brother;
And now let’s go hand in hand, not one before another.

Related Characters: Dromio of Ephesus (speaker)
Page Number: 5.1.439-441
Explanation and Analysis:

These are the final lines of the play, after all of the resolutions; the only characters remaining on stage are Dromio of Syracuse and Dromio of Ephesus, who gets the last word of the show. Dromio of Syracuse remarks that the woman who claimed to be his wife (Nell) will now become his sister-in-law, and the two brothers observe the oddity of meeting their mirror-like twin. They decide to follow the rest of the characters offstage into the abbey, not one by one, but "hand in hand" as brothers, like they came into the world, equal to each other, though they are still social inferiors to their masters. Their small family, too, has been reunited.

Note also that Dromio of Ephesus is not yet married to Nell, as Antipholus of Syracuse is not yet married to Luciana. These marriages are implied by the comedy, which usually ends in marriage, but are not staged nor certain. Instead, this play stages the restoration of two fractured marriages, first the idealized marriage between Aegeon and Aemilia, who have been apart for decades, and second the marriage between Adriana and Antipholus of Ephesus, which has suffered under Fate's coincidences since Antipholus and Dromio of Syracuse first landed in Ephesus.

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Dromio of Ephesus Character Timeline in The Comedy of Errors

The timeline below shows where the character Dromio of Ephesus appears in The Comedy of Errors. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Act 1, Scene 2
Commerce and Exchange Theme Icon
Marriage and Family Theme Icon
Appearances and Identity Theme Icon
Mistakes and Coincidences Theme Icon
...brother but cannot seem to find them. Just then, the servant of Antipholus’ lost brother, Dromio of Ephesus , arrives and tells Antipholus (whom he mistakes for his identical twin) to come home... (full context)
Commerce and Exchange Theme Icon
Marriage and Family Theme Icon
Appearances and Identity Theme Icon
Mistakes and Coincidences Theme Icon
Dromio of Ephesus is confused by the question and again tells Antipholus to come home for dinner, or... (full context)
Act 2, Scene 1
Commerce and Exchange Theme Icon
Marriage and Family Theme Icon
...married, she would think differently, because she would be “burdened with like weight of pain.” Dromio of Ephesus enters and tells his mistress that Antipholus refused to come home and acted as if... (full context)
Act 2, Scene 2
Appearances and Identity Theme Icon
Mistakes and Coincidences Theme Icon
Scapegoats and Social Hierarchy Theme Icon
...he has never seen Luciana or Adriana before. Antipholus calls him a liar, thinking of Dromio of Ephesus , who did bring the message to him earlier. (full context)
Act 3, Scene 1
...the house already) to leave. Antipholus is ready to break down the door, and tells Dromio of Ephesus to get “an iron crow” for this purpose. (full context)
Act 4, Scene 1
Commerce and Exchange Theme Icon
Appearances and Identity Theme Icon
Mistakes and Coincidences Theme Icon
Just then, Antipholus of Ephesus enters with Dromio of Ephesus . He tells Dromio to go get a rope so that he can give it... (full context)
Act 4, Scene 4
Commerce and Exchange Theme Icon
Appearances and Identity Theme Icon
Mistakes and Coincidences Theme Icon
Scapegoats and Social Hierarchy Theme Icon
Antipholus of Ephesus is still under arrest by the officer. Dromio of Ephesus finds him, and Antipholus is hopeful that he will have the money for his bail.... (full context)
Appearances and Identity Theme Icon
Mistakes and Coincidences Theme Icon
Adriana and Luciana think they are Antipholus and Dromio of Ephesus , just escaped from Pinch, and they flee along with the courtesan and the officer.... (full context)
Act 5, Scene 1
Appearances and Identity Theme Icon
Mistakes and Coincidences Theme Icon
Just then, Antipholus of Ephesus and Dromio of Ephesus arrive, and Adriana is frightened. She exclaims that he “is borne about invisible.” Antipholus asks... (full context)
Appearances and Identity Theme Icon
Mistakes and Coincidences Theme Icon
...his long lost wife. She explains that after the shipwreck, Corinthian fishermen took Antipholus and Dromio of Ephesus from her and left her with people from Epidamnum. She then became an abbess. (full context)
Commerce and Exchange Theme Icon
Marriage and Family Theme Icon
Appearances and Identity Theme Icon
Mistakes and Coincidences Theme Icon
Everyone but Dromio of Ephesus and Dromio of Syracuse leaves to go into the abbey. Dromio of Syracuse says that... (full context)