The Winter's Tale Translation Table of Contents
Now you can read The Winter's Tale alongside a modern translation that anyone can understand. Use the translation to enrich your understanding of Shakespeare's original and avoid getting bogged down in archaic language.
Act 1, Scene 1
Two servants discuss the King of Sicily's (Leontes) long-term friendship with the visiting King of Bohemia (Polixenes).
Act 1, Scene 2
Leontes imagines Hermione is having an affair with Polixenes. He orders Camillo to poison him, but he helps him escape.
Act 2, Scene 1
Leontes takes his pregnant wife from their son and throws her in prison. His advisors beg him to stop his madness.
Act 2, Scene 2
Paulina visits Hermione in prison and smuggles the newborn baby out.
Act 2, Scene 3
Paulina presents the baby to Leontes as his own, but he rejects it, ordering Antigonus to abandon it in the wilderness.
Act 3, Scene 1
Two of Leontes's servants arrive from Delphi, where they've consulted Apollo's oracle about Hermione's potential guilt.
Act 3, Scene 2
Leontes puts Hermione on trial, declaring her guilty despite the oracle. She and Mamillius are reported dead.
Act 3, Scene 3
Antigonus abandons Perdita in Bohemia. Though a bear instantly kills him, two shepherds find the baby and adopt her.
Act 4, Scene 1
Time enters, and explains that sixteen years have passed and Perdita has grown into a beautiful woman.
Act 4, Scene 2
Sixteen years later, Camillo longs to return to Sicilia, but Polixenes convinces him to spy on his son's secret romance.
Act 4, Scene 3
Autolycus, a pickpocket, robs Perdita's foster brother and then follows him to the spring sheep-shearing festival.
Act 4, Scene 4
Florizel and Perdita nearly get married at the festival, but Polixenes intervenes. Camillo helps the lovers escape.
Act 5, Scene 1
Paulina leads Leontes in daily repentance for his crimes. Florizel and Perdita arrive, with Polixenes close behind.
Act 5, Scene 2
Eyewitnesses tell how Leontes realized Perdita was his daughter, he and Polixenes made up, and the lovers got engaged.
Act 5, Scene 3
Paulina reveals a "statue" of Hermione which is actually the queen, alive after all these years. Everyone is reunited.