The Way of the World

The Way of the World


William Congreve

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The Way of the World: Act 4, Scene 3 Summary & Analysis

As Mrs. Fainall is about to leave the house, Sir Wilfull arrives. Mrs. Fainall greets him, telling him he has come at the right moment, and encourages him to woo Millamant right now. Wilfull responds that his aunt wants him to do the same, but that he is a little shy and needs something to drink first. He begins to leave, saying that some day he will be ready to woo Millamant. Mrs. Fainall chides Wilfull for being scared and pushes him into the room with Millamant. She locks the door behind him, telling him that she doesn’t want him to lose this opportunity.
Mrs. Fainall does not have the best interests of either Sir Wilfull or Millamant at heart by encouraging Sir Wilfull to propose to Millamant, when Millamant clearly doesn’t want to see him. Mrs. Fainall might be trying to throw the two together because she is frustrated with Millamant’s attitude toward Mirabell and secretly wants to get back at her for her privileged attitude.
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