Much Ado About Nothing

Much Ado About Nothing Act 3, Scene 4 Summary & Analysis

Read our modern English translation of this scene.
Summary
Analysis
Margaret helps dress Hero for her wedding, complimenting her on her fashion and teasing her about soon being the “heavier for a husband.” (3.4.35) Beatrice enters, claiming to have a cold, and Margaret teases her as well. Accusing her of being in love, Margaret offers her the medicinal herb “Carduus Benedictus,” as a cure. Ursula arrives to fetch Hero to her wedding.
Margaret probably means to suggest that Hero will become pregnant, but what happens at the wedding makes her joke an ominous double-entendre: Hero will indeed be heavier (i.e. sadder) after her wedding.In the Renaissance, passionate love was often compared to, or even considered to be, a disease. Margaret’s offer of the medicinal herb “Carduus Benedictus,” is also a sly reference to Benedick’s name.
Themes
Courtship, Wit, and Warfare Theme Icon
Language, Perception and Reality Theme Icon
Marriage, Shame and Freedom Theme Icon