The Winter's Tale Act 4, Scene 2 Summary & Analysis
New! Understand every line of The Winter's Tale.Read our modern English translation of this scene.
At Polixenes’ palace in Bohemia, Camillo begs Polixenes to let him return to his homeland of Sicilia, since Leontes is “penitent” and has begged Camillo to return. Polixenes asks him not to go to Sicilia, still holding a grudge against Leontes and refusing to forgive him for causing the death of Hermione and Mamillius.
Now that Leontes has realized his mistake, Camillo wants to return to his rightful place in Sicilia. Polixenes refuses to forgive his former friend, though, and asks Camillo to remain loyal to him and stay in Bohemia.
Polixenes asks Camillo if he has seen Florizell recently, who has recently been spending much of his time at a shepherd’s cottage. He says that he worries about what is drawing Florizell to the shepherd’s home, and asks Camillo to accompany him in disguise to visit the shepherd and learn what is going on with Florizell. Camillo agrees, and they leave to find disguises.
Polixenes worries about his son, who is a prince, spending so much time outside of his natural place, at the cottage of a lowly shepherd. Camillo loyally agrees to help carry out Polixenes’ plan.