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The Comedy of Errors

The Comedy of Errors Translation Act 3, Scene 1

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Enter ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS, DROMIO OF EPHESUS, ANGELO, and BALTHASAR

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

Good Signior Angelo, you must excuse us all; My wife is shrewish when I keep not hours. Say that I lingered with you at your shop To see the making of her carcanet, And that tomorrow you will bring it home. But here’s a villain that would face me down He met me on the mart, and that I beat him And charged him with a thousand marks in gold, And that I did deny my wife and house.— Thou drunkard, thou, what didst thou mean by this?

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

Good sir Angelo, you must let us all go. My wife gets in a bad mood when I don't come home on time. Let's say that I was waiting at your shop to see her necklace made, and that you'll bring it to my house tomorrow. But this man's a villain that insists that he met me at the market, and claims that I beat him, asked him for a thousand gold marks, and told him I didn't have any wife or house. 

[To DROMIO OF EPHESUS] You drunkard, you, what did you mean by that?

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

Say what you will, sir, but I know what I know.That you beat me at the mart I have your hand to show;If the skin were parchment and the blows you gave were ink,Your own handwriting would tell you what I think.

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

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ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

I think thou art an ass.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

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DROMIO OF EPHESUS

Marry, so it doth appearBy the wrongs I suffer and the blows I bear.I should kick being kicked; and, being at that pass,You would keep from my heels and beware of an ass.

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

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ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

You’re sad, Signior Balthasar. Pray God our cheerMay answer my good will and your good welcome here.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

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BALTHASAR

I hold your dainties cheap, sir, and your welcome dear.

BALTHASAR

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ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

O Signior Balthasar, either at flesh or fishA table full of welcome make scarce one dainty dish.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

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BALTHASAR

Good meat, sir, is common; that every churl affords.

BALTHASAR

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ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

And welcome more common, for that’s nothing but words.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

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BALTHASAR

Small cheer and great welcome makes a merry feast.

BALTHASAR

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ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

Ay, to a niggardly host and more sparing guest.But though my cates be mean, take them in good part.Better cheer may you have, but not with better heart.But soft! My door is lock’d. [to DROMIO] Go, bid them let us in.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

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DROMIO OF EPHESUS

Maud, Bridget, Marian, Ciceley, Gillian, Ginn!

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

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DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

[within] Mome, malt-horse, capon, coxcomb, idiot, patch!Either get thee from the door or sit down at the hatch.Dost thou conjure for wenches, that thou call’st for such storeWhen one is one too many? Go, get thee from the door.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

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DROMIO OF EPHESUS

What patch is made our porter? My master stays in the street.

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

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DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

[within] Let him walk from whence he came, lest he catch cold on ’s feet.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

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ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

Who talks within there? Ho, open the door.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

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DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

[within] Right, sir, I’ll tell you when an you tell me wherefore.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

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ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

Wherefore? For my dinner. I have not dined today.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

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DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

[within] Nor today here you must not. Come again when you may.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

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ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

What art thou that keep’st me out from the house I owe?

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

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DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

[within] The porter for this time, sir, and my name is Dromio.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

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DROMIO OF EPHESUS

O villain, thou hast stolen both mine office and my name!The one ne'er got me credit, the other mickle blame.If thou hadst been Dromio today in my place,Thou wouldst have changed thy face for a name, or thy name for an ass.

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

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LUCE

[within] What a coil is there, Dromio! Who are those atthe gate?

LUCE

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DROMIO OF EPHESUS

Let my master in, Luce.

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

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LUCE

[within] Faith, no, he comes too late,And so tell your master.

LUCE

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DROMIO OF EPHESUS

O Lord, I must laugh.Have at you with a proverb: shall I set in my staff?

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

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LUCE

[within] Have at you with another: that’s—When, can youtell?

LUCE

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DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

[within] If thy name be called “Luce,” Luce, thou hast answered him well.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

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ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

Do you hear, you minion? You’ll let us in, I hope?

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

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LUCE

[within] I thought to have asked you.

LUCE

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DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

[within] And you said no.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

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DROMIO OF EPHESUS

So, come, help. Well struck! There was blow for blow.

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

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ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

Thou baggage, let me in.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

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LUCE

[within) Can you tell for whose sake?

LUCE

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DROMIO OF EPHESUS

Master, knock the door hard.

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

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LUCE

[within] Let him knock till it ache.

LUCE

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ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

You’ll cry for this, minion, if I beat the door down.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

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LUCE

[within] What needs all that, and a pair of stocks in the town?

LUCE

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ADRIANA

[within] Who is that at the door that keeps all this noise?

ADRIANA

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DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

[within] By my troth, your town is troubled with unrulyboys.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

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ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

Are you there, wife? You might have come before.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

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ADRIANA

[within] Your wife, sir knave? Go, get you from the door.

ADRIANA

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DROMIO OF EPHESUS

If you went in pain, master, this knave would go sore.

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

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ANGELO

Here is neither cheer, sir, nor welcome. We would fain have either.

ANGELO

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BALTHASAR

In debating which was best, we shall part with neither.

BALTHASAR

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DROMIO OF EPHESUS

They stand at the door, master. Bid them welcome hither.

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

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ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

There is something in the wind, that we cannot get in.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

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DROMIO OF EPHESUS

You would say so, master, if your garments were thin.Your cake there is warm within; you stand here in the cold.It would make a man mad as a buck to be so bought and sold.

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

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ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

Go, fetch me something: I’ll break ope the gate.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

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DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

[within] Break any breaking here, and I’ll break your knave’s pate.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

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DROMIO OF EPHESUS

A man may break a word with you, sir, and words are butwind,Ay, and break it in your face, so he break it not behind.

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

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DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

[within] It seems thou want’st breaking. Out upon thee,hind!

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

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DROMIO OF EPHESUS

Here’s too much “out upon thee!” I pray thee, let me in.

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

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DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

[within] Ay, when fowls have no feathers and fish have no fin.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

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ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

Well, I’ll break in. Go, borrow me a crow.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

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DROMIO OF EPHESUS

A crow without feather? Master, mean you so?For a fish without a fin, there’s a fowl without a feather.— [To DROMIO OF SYRACUSE] If a crow help us in, sirrah, we’ll pluck a crow together.

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

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ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

Go, get thee gone. Fetch me an iron crow.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

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BALTHASAR

Have patience, sir. O, let it not be so. Herein you war against your reputation, And draw within the compass of suspect Th' unviolated honor of your wife. Once this: your long experience of her wisdom, Her sober virtue, years, and modesty Plead on her part some cause to you unknown. And doubt not, sir, but she will well excuse Why at this time the doors are made against you. Be ruled by me; depart in patience, And let us to the Tiger all to dinner, And about evening come yourself alone To know the reason of this strange restraint. If by strong hand you offer to break in Now in the stirring passage of the day, A vulgar comment will be made of it; And that supposèd by the common rout Against your yet ungallèd estimation That may with foul intrusion enter in And dwell upon your grave when you are dead; For slander lives upon succession, Forever housèd where it gets possession.

BALTHASAR

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ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

You have prevailed. I will depart in quiet And, in despite of mirth, mean to be merry. I know a wench of excellent discourse, Pretty and witty, wild and yet, too, gentle. There will we dine. This woman that I mean, My wife—but, I protest, without desert— Hath oftentimes upbraided me withal; To her will we to dinner. [to ANGELO] Get you home And fetch the chain; by this I know ’tis made. Bring it, I pray you, to the Porpentine, For there’s the house. That chain will I bestow— Be it for nothing but to spite my wife— Upon mine hostess there. Good sir, make haste. Since mine own doors refuse to entertain me, I’ll knock elsewhere, to see if they’ll disdain me.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

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ANGELO

I’ll meet you at that place some hour hence.

ANGELO

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ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

Do so. This jest shall cost me some expense.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

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Exeunt

The comedy of errors
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Dan rubins
About the Translator: Dan Rubins

Dan Rubins is currently completing his MA in Shakespeare Studies from King's College London/Shakespeare's Globe and will be pursuing an MA in Elementary Inclusive Education from Teachers College, Columbia University. He holds a BA in English from Yale University. His Masters dissertation focuses on announcements of death in early modern drama, and other research areas of interest include Shakespeare in transformative contexts (prisons, schools, etc.) and rhyme in Shakespeare's dramatic texts. In addition to teaching and learning, he also writes theatre reviews (often of Shakespeare productions), composes musical theatre (frequently with Shakespearean inspirations), and sings in choirs (occasionally in Shakespearean choral settings).