Complete Text of the Shakespeare
With Definitions of Difficult Words and Explanations of
Edited by Michael J. Cummings
The following version of The Tempest is based on the text in the
authoritative 1914 Oxford Edition of Shakespeare's works, edited
by W. J. Craig. The text numbers the lines, including those with
stage directions such as "Enter" and "Exit." Annotations (notes
and definitions) appear in boldfaced type within the text.
Rightful Duke of Milan, Italy, and the main character. He had been
overthrown by his evil brother and, with his three-year-old
daughter, set adrift by his evil brother to die. But provisions
provided secretly by Prospero's friend Gonzalo enable him and his
daughter to reach a mysterious island. There, Prospero practices
magic and rules the island and its inhabitants for twelve years.
When a ship carrying his brother and other high officials of
Naples—including the king—sails a course near the island, Prospero
conjures a powerful tempest that blows the ship to his island.
Antonio: Prospero's brother. He illegally seized
Prospero's dukedom. After the tempest drives the ship carrying him
and Alonso, the King of Naples, to Prospero's island, Antonio
conspires against the king.
Miranda: Fifteen-year-old daughter of Prospero. She has
lived with her father on his island since she was three years old
and has never seen a man except for her father and the half-human
Caliban. The name Miranda is derived from the Latin word mirandus, meaning wonderful, strange, and
Alonso: King of Naples. He helped Antonio oust Prospero
as Duke of Milan. However, after arriving at Prospero's island, he
exhibits genuine remorse for his reprehensible treatment of
Sebastian: Brother of King Alonso. He conspires with
Antonio to kill Alonso.
Ferdinand: Son of King Alonso and heir to his father's
throne. He and Miranda fall in love when they first meet.
Gonzalo: Honest old friend and counselor of Prospero. He
provided Prospero and Miranda the means to survive at sea after
Prospero was overthrown by Antonio.
Spirit of the air on the magical island. He serves Prospero. Ariel
first served a witch, Sycorax, who imprisoned him in a recess of a
pine tree after he refused to do her bidding. He remained there to
suffer great torment for twelve years, during which time Sycorax
died. Upon his arrival on the island, Prospero freed Ariel but
bound the sprite to his service. Ariel possesses protean power,
enabling him to alter his appearance instantly. He can also travel
to any part of the island, or the world, in a split-second.
Adrian, Francisco: Lords in Alonso's entourage.
Trinculo: Alonzo's court jester.
Stephano: Antonio's butler.
Caliban: Savage half-man who
reluctantly serves Prospero. He is the son of a witch,
Sycorax. Caliban believes he is the rightful ruler of Prospero's
island, having inherited it from his mother.
Sycorax: A dead witch who was the mother of
Caliban. She is referred to in flashbacks. Sycorax, who was at one
time a resident of Algeria in North Africa, was banished to the
island occupied by Prospero. Before Prospero and Miranda arrived
on the island, she imprisoned Ariel and other spirits.
Boatswain: Foul-mouthed senior crewman
overseeing the deck of Alonso's ship.
Iris, Ceres, Juno: Goddesses who take part in a masque,
or entertainment, in Act 4 to celebrate the marriage of Ferdinand
and Miranda. In classical mythology, Iris was a messenger goddess
and goddess of the rainbow. Ceres was the goddess of agriculture,
and Juno was the queen of the gods.
Nymphs and Reapers: Participants in the masque.
Master: The captain of Alonzo's ship.
Mariners: Crewmen of Alonzo's ship.
Spirits: Sprites and goblins on Prospero's island.
Claribel: Daughter of King Alonso. She marries
the King of Tunis. Tunis is a city in Tunisia, a country in North
Africa. Claribel has no speaking part in the play.
King of Tunis: Claribel's husband. He has no
speaking part in the play.
Act 1, Scene 1: On a ship at sea.
Act 1, Scene 2: The island. Before the cell of
Act 2, Scene 1: Another part of the island.
Act 2, Scene 2: Another part of the island.
Act 3, Scene 1: Before Prospero's cell.
Act 3, Scene 2: Another part of the island.
Act 3, Scene 3: Another part of the island.
Act 4, Scene 1: Before Prospero's cell.
Act 5, Scene 1: Before Prospero's cell.
Act 1, Scene 1
On a ship at sea. A
tempestuous noise of thunder and lightning heard.
Enter a shipmaster and a
BOATSWAIN: Here, master:
what cheer? [what's happening?]
MASTER: Good, speak to the
mariners: fall to ’t yarely, or we run ourselves aground: bestir,
speak to the crewmen. Do it quickly, before we run the ship
aground and wreck it. Get going, get going.]
BOATSWAIN: Heigh, my
hearts! cheerly, cheerly, my hearts! yare, yare! Take in the
topsail. Tend to the master’s whistle.—Blow, till thou burst thy
wind, if room enough!
[Heigh . . .
enough: That's the way, men. (Heigh is an expression
of encouragement.) Quickly, quickly! Take in the topsail (square
upper sail). Heed what the master says. And you, raging storm,
blow till you can blow no more.]
Enter ALONSO, SEBASTIAN, ANTONIO,
FERDINAND, GONZALO, and others.
ALONSO: Good boatswain,
have care. Where’s the master? Play the men.
[Good . . .
men: Good boatswain, be careful about what you do. Where's the
master? These men should act like men and do what it takes to get
us out of this predicament.]
BOATSWAIN: I pray now, keep
Ant. Where is the master,
BOATSWAIN: Do you not hear
him? You mar our labour, keep [to] your cabins: you do assist the storm.
[You mar . . .
storm: You're getting in the way of our work. Go back to your
cabins. You're helping the storm to overwhelm us.]
Gon. Nay, good, be patient.
patient, my good man.]
BOATSWAIN: When the sea is.
Hence! What cares these roarers for the name of king? To cabin:
silence! trouble us not.
[When the . . .
not: I'll calm down when the sea does. Get out of here. The
roaring storm doesn't care who you are or what your rank is. Go to
your cabin and stay there.]
Gon. Good, yet remember
whom thou hast aboard.
BOATSWAIN: None that I more
love than myself. You are a counsellor [to the king]: if you can command these elements to
silence, and work the peace of the present, we will not hand a
rope more; use your authority: if you cannot, give thanks you have
lived so long, and make yourself ready in your cabin for the
mischance of the hour, if it so hap.—Cheerly, good hearts!—Out of
our way, I say. [Exit.
[if you can
command . . . our way, I say: If you can command the storm to
cease, we will let go of our ropes and relax. If you cannot
command the storm to cease, go to your cabin and prepare yourself
for the worst, possibly death. Put your muscle into it, men. Now
get out of our way.]
Gon. I have great comfort
from this fellow: methinks he hath no drowning mark upon him; his
complexion is perfect gallows. Stand fast, good Fate, to his
hanging! make the rope of his destiny our cable, for our own doth
little advantage! If he be not born to be hanged, our case is
[I have great .
. . miserable: This fellow comforts me. I don't think he will
drown. Instead, he looks like someone who will die by hanging on
the gallows. Stand fast, Fate. Make it true that he will die by
hanging. If he is fated to die that way, we'll survive. But if he
is born to drown, we're in serious trouble.]
BOATSWAIN: Down with the
topmast! yare! lower,
lower! Bring her to try with main-course. [A cry
within.] A plague upon this howling! they are louder than
the weather, or our office.—
[Down with . .
. office: The boatswain tells crewmen to bring down the sail on
the topmast, then use only the lowest sail on the lowest mast.
While he is shouting instructions, he hears a loud cry from within
the ship. He curses the cry, saying it is louder than his shouts
to the men and louder even than the storm.]
Re-enter SEBASTIAN, ANTONIO, and
Yet again? what do you here?
Shall we give o’er, and drown? Have you a mind to
[Yet . . .
sink: You again? Why are you on deck? Do you want us to give up
and drown? Would you like to sink?]
Seb. A pox o’ your throat,
you bawling, blasphemous, incharitable dog!
[A pox . . .
dog: To hell with you, you loudmouthed dog!]
BOATSWAIN: Work you, then.
if you're going to stay, you'll have to get to work like the
Ant. Hang, cur, hang! you
whoreson, insolent noisemaker, we are less afraid to be drowned
than thou art.
[Hang . . .
art: Be hanged, you bastard dog and disrespectful noisemaker.
You're more afraid than we are.]
Gon. I’ll warrant him for
drowning; though the ship were no stronger than a nutshell, and as
leaky as an unstanched wench.
[I'll . . .
wench: I'll guarantee that the boatswain won't drown even if the
ship is no stronger than a nutshell and as leaky as a menstruating
BOATSWAIN: Lay her a-hold,
a-hold! Set her two courses; off to sea again; lay her off.
[Lay her . . .
off: Steer her to the wind with two courses of sails and let go
back out to sea.]
Enter Mariners, wet.
Mar. All lost! to prayers,
to prayers! all lost! [Exeunt.
BOATSWAIN: What, must our
mouths be cold? [What, is this the end for us? Let's have one
Gon. The king and prince at
prayers! let us assist them,
For our case is as theirs.
[let us . . .
theirs: Let's join them, since we're in just as much trouble as
Seb. I am out of
Ant. We are merely cheated
of our lives by drunkards.—
[We . . .
drunkards: It appears we've been cheated out of our lives by these
This wide-chapp’d rascal,—would
thou might’st lie drowning,
The washing of ten
loudmouthed, booze-swilling boatswain—I hope he drowns in ten
tides washing over him.]
Gon. He’ll be hang’d
Though every drop of water swear
And gape at wid’st to glut
[He'll be . . .
glut: He'll live to hang on the gallows, although every drop of
water swears against it and threatens to drown him.]
[A confused noise within (inside the ship),—‘Mercy on us!’—
‘We split, we split!’—‘Farewell,
my wife and children!’—
‘Farewell, brother!’—‘We split,
we split, we split!’—]
Ant. Let’s all sink wi’ the
Seb. Let’s take leave of
Gon. Now would I give a
thousand furlongs of sea for an acre of barren ground; long heath,
brown furze [shrub], any
thing. The wills above [God's will] be done! but I would fain [rather] die a dry death.
The island. Before the cell of
Enter PROSPERO and MIRANDA.
MIRANDA: If by your art, my
dearest father, you have
Put the wild waters in this roar,
The sky, it seems, would pour
down stinking pitch,
But that the sea, mounting to th’
Dashes the fire out. O! I have
With those that I saw suffer: a
Who had, no doubt, some noble
creatures in her,
Dash’d all to pieces. O! the cry
[If by . . .
all to pieces: Dearest father, if you used your sorcery to put the
waters in this uproar, make the sea calm. The sky is as dark as
boiling pitch, which it would pour down if the sea's waves were
not so high that they are putting out the fire that boils the
pitch. O, I suffered when I saw that ship—which no doubt had noble
people on it—dashed all to pieces.]
Against my very heart. Poor
souls, they perish’d.
Had I been any god of power, I
Have sunk the sea within the
earth, or e’er
It should the good ship so have
The fraughting souls within
[I would have .
. . within her: I would have sunk the sea within the earth before
I would let it swallow that good ship and its freight of souls.]
collected: [Calm down:]
No more amazement. Tell your
There’s no harm
MIRANDA: O, woe the
I have done nothing but in care
Of thee, my dear one! thee, my
Art ignorant of what thou art,
Of whence I am: nor that I am
Than Prospero, master of a full
And thy no greater father.
[I have done .
. . greater father: I have done nothing to cause harm.
Everything I did was to benefit you, my dear daughter. You are
ignorant of who you are and know nothing of where I came from. You
don't know that I am actually a better person than I appear to be
as I occupy my poor little living quarters.]
MIRANDA: More to
Did never meddle with my
[More to . . .
thoughts: I never thought about knowing more.]
I should inform thee further.
Lend thy hand,
And pluck my magic garment from
me.—So: [Lays down his mantle [cloak].
Lie there, my art.—Wipe thou
thine eyes; have comfort.
The direful spectacle of the
wrack [shipwreck], which touch’d
The very virtue of compassion in
I have with such provision in
So safely order’d, that there is
No, not so much perdition as an
Betid [befell; happened] to any creature in the
[I have . . .
vessel: I have used my sorcery in such a way that no harm came to
anyone on the ship—not even to a hair on anyone's head.]
Which thou heard’st cry, which
thou saw’st sink. Sit down;
For thou must now know
MIRANDA: You have
Begun to tell me what I am, but
And left me to a bootless
Concluding, ‘Stay; not
[You have . . .
yet': You have often begun to tell me about who we are. But then
you stopped your story. I made useless (bootless, line 43) efforts
to prod more information from you. But you always said I should be
patient and wait for the right time.]
PROSPERO: The hour’s now
The very minute bids thee ope [open] thine ear;
Obey and be attentive. Canst thou
A time before we came unto this
I do not think thou canst, for
then thou wast not
Out three years
[not . . . old:
Not yet three years old.]
MIRANDA: Certainly, sir, I
PROSPERO: By what? by any
other house or person?
Of anything the image tell me,
Hath kept with thy
[By what? . . .
remembrance: What do you remember—a house or a person? Tell me
what picture you have in your mind.]
MIRANDA: ’Tis far
And rather like a dream than an
That my remembrance warrants. Had
[And rather . .
. warrants: What's in my mind is more like a dream of what was
rather than any proof that what I remember is accurate.]
Four or five women once that
PROSPERO: Thou hadst, and
more, Miranda. But how is it
That this lives in thy mind? What
seest thou else
In the dark backward and abysm of
If thou remember’st aught ere thou cam’st here,
How thou cam’st here, thou
[If thou . . .
may'st: If you remember anything that happened before you came
here, then maybe you also remember something about how you got
MIRANDA: But that I do
PROSPERO: Twelve year since
[ago], Miranda, twelve year
Thy father was the Duke of Milan
A prince of
MIRANDA: Sir, are not you my
PROSPERO: Thy mother was a
piece of virtue, and
She said thou wast my daughter;
and thy father
Was Duke of Milan, and his only
A princess,—no worse issued.
[Thy mother . .
. issued: Your virtuous mother said you were my daughter. I was
the Duke of Milan at the time, and my only heir was you, a
MIRANDA: O, the
What foul play had we that we
came from thence?
Or blessed was ’t we
[What foul . .
. we did: What foul play took us from our home and put us here? Or
was it a blessing that brought us here?]
PROSPERO: Both, both, my
By foul play, as thou say’st,
were we heav’d thence;
But blessedly holp
[By foul . . .
hither: It was foul play that drove us from our home. But it was a
blessing that helped us to this island, to this safe haven.]
MIRANDA: O! my heart
To think o’ the teen [sadness] that I have turn’d you
Which is from my remembrance.
Please you, further [continue the story].
PROSPERO: My brother and
thy uncle, call’d Antonio,—
I pray thee, mark me,—that a
Be so perfidious!—he whom next
Of all the world I lov’d, and to
The manage of my state; as at
Through all the signiories [domains; states;
lands of rulers] it was
And Prospero the prime duke;
being so reputed
In dignity, and for the liberal
[being so . . .
liberal arts: I was well known for my dignity and learning]
Without a parallel: those being
all my study,
The government I cast upon my
And to my state grew stranger,
And rapt in secret studies. Thy
[those being .
. . studies: I decided to devote my all time to my studies and
research, allowing my brother to run the government. Consequently,
I knew less and less about what was going on in everyday
government affairs, so wrapped up was I in my secret studies.]
Dost thou attend [listen to] me?
MIRANDA: Sir, most
PROSPERO: Being once
perfected how to grant suits,
How to deny them, who t’advance,
To trash for over-topping; new
The creatures that were mine, I
say, or chang’d ’em,
Or else new form’d ’em: having
both the key
Of officer and office, set all
hearts i’ the state
To what tune pleas’d his ear;
that now he was
The ivy which had hid my princely
And suck’d my verdure out on
’t.—Thou attend’st not.
[Being once . .
. attend'st not: After he perfected the way to grant or deny
requests, give promotions, and put a rein on the those who
overstep their bounds, he shaped all the government officials and
procedures to his will. Then he saw to it that he overshadowed me.
Are you listening to me?]
MIRANDA: O, good sir! I
PROSPERO: I pray thee, mark
I, thus neglecting worldly ends,
To closeness and the bettering of
With that, which, but by being so
O’erpriz’d all popular rate, in
my false brother
Awak’d an evil nature; and my
Like a good parent, did beget of
A falsehood in its contrary as
As my trust was; which had,
indeed no limit,
A confidence sans [without] bound. He being thus
neglecting . . . sans bound: I thus neglected the everyday duties
of running a government in favor of shutting myself in and
improving my mind with intellectual pursuits more valuable than
people think. But by doing so, I awakened evil thoughts in my
brother, Antonio. You see, I had placed complete trust in him.
Then he took advantage of my boundless trust.]
Not only with what my revenue
But what my power might else
Who having, into truth, by
telling of it,
Made such a sinner of his
To credit his own lie,—he did
He was indeed the duke; out o’
And executing th’ outward face of
With all prerogative:—Hence his
[Not only . . .
prerogative: After realizing that he controlled government power
and money, he began to think that he was the true ruler of my
dukedom. He no longer acted as a stand-in for me but instead acted
as if he were the duke—and assumed all the rights and powers of a
Dost thou hear?
MIRANDA: Your tale, sir,
would cure deafness.
PROSPERO: To have no screen
between this part he play’d
And him he play’d it for, he
needs will be
Absolute Milan. Me, poor man,—my
Was dukedom large enough: of
He thinks me now incapable;
[To have no . .
. incapable: To make sure he was taken seriously, he did
everything in his power to make people think he was the real Duke
of Milan. As for me, well, my books and studies were a large
enough dukedom. Then he regarded me as one who was incapable of
So dry he was for sway,—wi’ the
king of Naples
To give him annual tribute, do
Subject his coronet to his crown,
The dukedom, yet unbow’d,—alas,
To most ignoble
[So dry . . .
stooping: So thirsty was Antonio for power and recognition that he
allied himself with the King of Naples, agreeing to pay the king a
tribute (a sum of money given by a lesser ruler to a greater ruler
in order to gain favor) and to pledge his loyalty to the king.
Never before has the dukedom of Milan stooped to the authority of
MIRANDA: O the
PROSPERO: Mark his
condition and the event; then tell me
If this might be a
[Mark . . .
brother: Think about what he has done. Then tell me whether a
brother should act this way.]
MIRANDA: I should
To think but nobly of my
Good wombs have borne bad
PROSPERO: Now the
This King of Naples, being an
To me inveterate, hearkens my
Which was, that he, in lieu o’
Of homage and I know not how much
Should presently extirpate me and
Out of the dukedom, and confer
With all the honours on my
[This King . .
. my brother: This King of Naples, a longtime enemy of mine, told
my brother to uproot me from my dukedom. If my brother succeeded
in this task, the king said, he would recognize Antonio as
the rightful Duke of Milan and not require him to pay the king
money and homage.]
A treacherous army levied, one
Fated to the purpose did Antonio
The gates of Milan; and, i’ the
dead of darkness,
The ministers for the purpose
Me and thy crying
. . . self: So my brother raised an army, and one dark night his
soldiers captured you and me and took us out of the city. You were
MIRANDA: Alack [alas], for pity!
I, not rememb’ring how I cried
Will cry it o’er again: it is a
That wrings mine eyes to
[I, not . . .
eyes to 'it: I don't remember how I cried then, but I will cry all
over again for what happened to us.]
PROSPERO: Hear a little
And then I’ll bring thee to the
Which now’s upon us; without the
which this story
[And then . . . impertinent: And
then bring you up to date on the matter of that ship you thought
had sunk. What happened to that ship and the people aboard is
related to the story I am telling you.
MIRANDA: Wherefore did they
That hour destroy
[Wherefore . .
. us: Why didn't our captors kill us after they took us from the
PROSPERO: Well demanded,
My tale provokes that question.
Dear, they durst [dared] not,
So dear the love my people bore
me, nor set
A mark so bloody on the business;
With colours fairer painted their
In few [to make a long
story short], they
hurried us aboard a bark [ship],
Bore us some leagues to sea;
where they prepar’d
A rotten carcass of a boat, not
Nor tackle, sail, nor mast; the
Instinctively have quit [had left] it: there they hoist
To cry to the sea that roar’d to
us; to sigh
To the winds whose pity, sighing
Did us but loving
MIRANDA: Alack! what
Was I then to you!
[Alack . . .
you: Alas, I must have been a lot of trouble to you back then.]
PROSPERO: O, a cherubin [an angel]
Thou wast, that did preserve me!
Thou didst smile,
Infused with a fortitude from
When I have deck’d the sea with
drops full salt,
Under my burden groan’d; which
rais’d in me
An undergoing stomach, to bear
Against what should
[Thou didst . .
. ensue: You smiled like heaven itself when I cried in despair and
groaned under my burden. That smile gave me new hope and courage
to up against whatever perils we faced.]
MIRANDA: How came we
PROSPERO: By Providence
Some food we had and some fresh
A noble Neapolitan,
Out of his charity,—who being
Master of this design [who was in charge
of sending us off],—did
give us; with
Rich garments, linens, stuffs,
Which since have steaded [helped] much; so, of his
Knowing I lov’d my books, he
From mine own library with
I prize above my
MIRANDA: Would I
But ever see that
PROSPERO: Now I arise:—
[Resumes his mantle [puts his cloak back on].
Sit still, and hear the last of
Here in this island we arriv’d;
Have I, thy schoolmaster, made
thee more profit [educated you better]
Than other princes can, that have
For vainer hours and tutors not
MIRANDA: Heavens thank you
for ’t! And now, I pray you, sir,—
For still ’tis beating in my
For raising this
PROSPERO: Know thus far
By accident most strange,
bountiful Fortune [Fortuna, the goddess of fortune (good and
bad) in Roman mythology],
Now my dear lady, hath mine
Brought to this shore [in the shipwreck]; and by my prescience [foreknowledge;
pronunciation: PRESH inss]
I find my zenith doth depend upon
A most auspicious star, whose
If now I court not but omit, my
Will ever after droop. Here cease
[I find my . .
. questions: I find that my future good fortune and welfare depend
on the lucky star that brought this ship to our shores. So I must
respond to what has happened rather than sitting by and ignoring
it. Otherwise, my fortunes will droop. For now, don't ask any more
Thou art inclin’d to sleep; ’tis
a good dullness,
And give it way [and allow
drowsiness to overcome you];—I know thou canst not choose.— [MIRANDA
Come away, servant, come! I’m
Approach, my Ariel;
ARIEL: All hail, great
master! grave sir, hail! I come
To answer thy best pleasure; be
’t to fly,
To swim, to dive into the fire,
On the curl’d clouds: to thy
strong bidding task
Ariel and all his
[to thy strong
. . . quality: I am ready, with all my powers, to carry out any
task you ask of me.]
PROSPERO: Hast thou,
Perform’d to point the tempest
that I bade thee?
[Hast . . .
thee: Have you, spirit, carried out my orders exactly as
instructed regarding the storm and the ship?]
ARIEL: To every
I boarded the king’s ship; now on
the beak [projecting part of a ship],
Now in the waist, the deck, in
[waist: part of
a ship between the forecastle—below-deck space in the front of a
ship used for living quarters—and the rear of the ship.]
I flam’d amazement [burned like a
torch, amazing the sailors]: sometime I’d divide
And burn in many places; on the
The yards [horizontal spars
supporting sails], and
boresprit [bowsprit, a spar extending forward on the front of a
ship], would I flame
Then meet, and join [then rejoin my
divided self]: Jove’s
lightnings, the precursors
O’ the dreadful thunder-claps, more
And sight-outrunning were not:
the fire and cracks
Of sulphurous roaring the most
Seem to besiege and make his bold
Yea, his dread trident
name for Jupiter, the king of the gods in Roman mythology. His
Greek name was Zeus.]
[Jove's lightnings . . . shake: Jove's lightning bolts were not
any faster than I was. My flame and my loud cracks and roars
seemed to scare even the mighty Neptune, whose trident shook as
the waves trembled. (Neptune was the god of the sea in Roman
mythology. His Greek name was Poseidon.)]
PROSPERO: My brave
Who was so firm, so constant,
that this coil [uproar; confusion]
Would not infect his
ARIEL: Not a
But felt a fever of the mad and
Some tricks of desperation. All
Plunged in the foaming brine and
quit the vessel,
Then all a-fire with me: the
king’s son, Ferdinand,
With hair up-staring,—then like
reeds, not hair,—
Was the first man that leap’d;
cried, ‘Hell is empty,
And all the devils are
[Not a soul . .
. leap'd: All on the ship were in a fever, like madmen, and
desperately tried to save the ship. Then everyone but the sailors
jumped into the sea while the ship burned with my fire. The king's
son, Ferdinand, with his hair standing on end, was the first to
PROSPERO: Why, that’s my
But was not this nigh [near] shore?
ARIEL: Close by, my
PROSPERO: But are they,
ARIEL: Not a hair
On their sustaining [buoying] garments not a
But fresher than before: and, as
thou bad’st [bid me; told me] me,
In troops [groups] I have dispers’d them ’bout the
The king’s son have I landed by
Whom I left cooling of the air
In an odd angle of the isle and
His arms in this sad
PROSPERO: Of the king’s
The mariners, say how thou hast
And all the rest o’ the
[Of the . . .
fleet: What did you do with the sailors on the king's ship and
with the other ships in the fleet?]
ARIEL: Safely in
Is the king’s ship; in the deep
nook, where once
Thou call’dst me up at midnight
to fetch dew
From the still-vex’d Bermoothes;
Bermudas] there she’s
The mariners all under hatches
Who, with a charm join’d to their
I have left asleep: and for the
rest o’ the fleet
[Who, with . .
. asleep: Whom I put to sleep with a charm whose effect was
enhanced by their own fatigue from their ordeal]
Which I dispers’d, they all have
And are upon the Mediterranean
Bound sadly home for
Supposing that they saw the
king’s ship wrack’d,
And his great person
[they have all . . . perish: All
the other ships in the fleet met up and are now floating home to
Naples on the Mediterranean Sea. Those aboard these ships are sad,
for they think that their king died in the shipwreck that I
PROSPERO: Ariel, thy
Exactly is perform’d: but there’s
What is the time o’ th’
ARIEL: Past the mid season [past noon].
PROSPERO: At least two
The time ’twixt six and now
Must by us both be spent most
[At least . . .
preciously: At least two hours have passed. Between now and six
o'clock, we have to act fast in carrying out the plans for our
ARIEL: Is there more toil?
Since thou dost give me pains,
Let me remember thee what thou
Which is not yet perform’d
[Is there . . . perform'd me: Is
there more work for me? Well, if you're going to give me
more chores, let me remind you that you have not yet made good on
your promise to me.]
PROSPERO: How now!
What is ’t thou canst
[How now . . .
demand: What now? Are you in a bad mood? What is that you think I
PROSPERO: Before the time
be out? no more! [Before your time of duty to me has expired?
ARIEL: I prithee [ask you; beg you;
pray that you]
Remember, I have done thee worthy
[I prithee . .
. service: I beg you to remember that I have done worthy service
Told thee no lies, made no
Without or grudge or grumblings:
thou didst promise
To bate me a full
. . . full year: Without either grudges or grumbling. You promised
to reduce my time in servitude by a full year.]
PROSPERO: Dost thou
From what a torment I did free
PROSPERO: Thou dost; and
think’st it much to tread the ooze
Of the salt
To run upon the sharp wind of the
To do me business in the veins o’
When it is bak’d with frost.
[Thou dost . .
. frost: You do forget. You think I'm taking advantage of you when
I order you to walk on the ocean floor, run on the north wind, or
perform tasks for me deep in the earth when it is frozen.]
ARIEL: I do not,
PROSPERO: Thou liest,
malignant thing! Hast thou forgot
The foul witch Sycorax, who with
age and envy
Was grown into a hoop [who was bent over
with old age and envy]?
hast thou forgot her?
PROSPERO: Thou hast. Where
was she born? speak; tell me.
ARIEL: Sir, in Argier [Algiers].
PROSPERO: O! was she so? I
Once in a month, recount what
thou hast been,
Which thou forget’st. This damn’d
For mischiefs manifold and
To enter human hearing, from
Thou know’st, was banish’d: for
one thing she did
They would not take her life. Is
not this true?
[This damn'd .
. . life: This damned witch named Sycorax was banished from
Algiers for evil sorcery and mischievous acts. The people of that
city had decided not to execute her.]
PROSPERO: This blue-ey’d
hag was hither brought with child
[This . . .
child: This blue-eyed witch was brought here when she was
And here was left by the sailors.
Thou, my slave,
As thou report’st thyself, wast
then her servant:
And, for thou wast a spirit too
To act her earthy and abhorr’d
Refusing her grand hests [refusing to carry
out her commands], she
did confine thee,
By help of her more potent
And in her most unmitigable [unstoppable;
Into a cloven pine [into a pine tree
that was split open];
within which rift
Imprison’d, thou didst painfully
A dozen years; within which space
that time] she
And left thee there, where thou
didst vent thy groans
As fast as mill-wheels strike.
Then was this island,—
Save for the son that she did litter
A freckled whelp hag-born,—not
A human shape.
[as fast . . .
shape: As fast as the paddles on a mill's water wheel splash into
a waterway. At that time, this island had no one even resembling a
human except for the son she had given birth to here.]
ARIEL: Yes; Caliban her
PROSPERO: Dull thing, I say
what I'm saying, you dummy]; he that Caliban,
Whom now I keep in service. Thou
What torment I did find thee in;
Did make wolves howl and
penetrate the breasts
Of ever-angry bears: it was a
To lay upon the damn’d, which
Could not again undo; it was mine
When I arriv’d and heard thee,
that made gape [that opened up]
The pine, and let thee
ARIEL: I thank thee,
PROSPERO: If thou more
murmur’st, I will rend an oak
And peg thee in his knotty
Thou hast howl’d away twelve
[If thou . . .
winters: If you continue to complain, I will split open an oak
tree and imprison you there for twelve more years.]
I will be correspondent to
command [I will obey your commands],
And do my spiriting
PROSPERO: Do so; and after
I will discharge [free] thee.
ARIEL: That’s my noble
What shall I do? say what? what
shall I do?
PROSPERO: Go make thyself
like a nymph of the sea: be subject
To no sight but thine and mine;
To every eyeball else. Go, take
And hither come [come back here] in ’t: go, hence with
diligence! [Exit ARIEL.
Awake, dear heart, awake! thou
hast slept well;
The strangeness of your story put
Heaviness [sleepiness] in me.
PROSPERO: Shake it off.
We’ll visit Caliban my slave, who
Yields us kind
MIRANDA: ’Tis a villain,
I do not love to look
PROSPERO: But, as
We cannot miss him: he does make
Fetch in our wood; and serves in
That profit us.—What ho! slave!
Thou earth [clod; , thou!
There’s wood enough within. [Caliban is speaking offstage]
PROSPERO: Come forth, I
say; there’s other business for thee:
Come, thou tortoise!
Re-enter ARIEL, like a
Fine apparition! My quaint
Hark in thine
whispers in Ariel's ear.]
ARIEL: My lord, it shall be
PROSPERO: Thou poisonous
slave, got by the devil himself
Upon thy wicked dam, come
CALIBAN: As wicked dew as
e’er my mother brush’d
With raven’s feather from
Drop on you both! a south-west
blow on ye,
And blister you all
[As wicked . .
. all o'er: I hope a wicked dew from a rotten swamp drops on both
of you, and I hope a hard-blowing southwest wind blisters you all
over. (A southwest wind could promote illness, people thought.)]
PROSPERO: For this, be
sure, to-night thou shalt have cramps,
Side-stitches that shall pen thy
breath up; urchins
Shall forth at vast of night,
that they may work
All exercise on thee: thou shalt
As thick as honeycomb, each pinch
Than bees that made
[For this . . .
them: I'll give you cramps tonight for saying that. You'll have
severe pains in your sides that will take your breath away. In
addition, I'll send mischief-makers to pinch you all over.
Each pinch will hurt more than a bee sting.]
CALIBAN: I must eat my
This island’s mine, by Sycorax my
Which thou tak’st from me. When
thou camest first,
Thou strok’dst me, and mad’st
much of me; wouldst give me
Water with berries in ’t; and
teach me how
To name the bigger light [sun], and how the less [how the lesser
light, the moon]
That burn by day and night: and
then I lov’d thee
And show’d thee all the qualities
o’ th’ isle,
The fresh springs, brine-pits,
barren place, and fertile.
Cursed be I that did so!—All the
Of Sycorax, toads, beetles, bats,
light on you!
For I am all the subjects that
Which first was mine own king;
and here you sty me
In this hard rock [cave], whiles you do keep from
The rest o’ th’
PROSPERO: Thou most lying
Whom stripes [marks left by
whiplashing] may move,
not kindness! I have us’d thee,
Filth as thou art, with human
care; and lodg’d thee
In mine own cell, till thou didst
seek to violate
The honour of my
CALIBAN: Oh ho! Oh
ho!—would it had been done!
Thou didst prevent me; I had
peopled else [I would otherwise have populated]
This isle with
Which any print of goodness will
[Which . . .
take: Who will not do any good deeds]
Being capable of all ill! I
Took pains to make thee speak,
taught thee each hour
One thing or other: when thou
didst not, savage,
Know thine own meaning, but
wouldst gabble [babble] like
A thing most brutish, I endow’d
With words that made them known:
but thy vile race,
Though thou didst learn, had that
in ’t which good natures
Could not abide to be with;
therefore wast thou
Deservedly confin’d into this
Who hadst deserv’d more than a
CALIBAN: You taught me
language; and my profit on ’t
Is, I know how to curse: the red
[bubonic] plague rid [riddle; sicken]
For learning me your
PROSPERO: Hag-seed [son of a witch], hence [get going]!
Fetch us in fuel; and be quick,
thou ’rt best,
To answer other business.
Shrug’st thou, malice?
[Fetch us . . .
malice: Get us some wood for fuel. And you'd best be quick about
to carry out this task. You have a malicious look about you.]
If thou neglect’st, or dost
What I command, I’ll rack thee
with old cramps,
Fill all thy bones with aches;
make thee roar,
That beasts shall tremble at thy
CALIBAN: No, pray
[Aside.] I must obey: his
art is of such power,
It would control my dam’s god,
And make a vassal of him.
stage direction indicating that the speaker is talking only to
himself (or sometimes to a certain nearby character or several
characters). Other characters on the stage cannot hear the
speaker. However, the audience hears what he or she is saying.
[I must . . . of him: I must obey his
orders. His magic is so powerful that he could make a servant of
Setebos, the god to which my mother (dam, line 442) paid homage.]
PROSPERO: So, slave; hence!
Re-enter ARIEL invisible, playing
and singing; FERDINAND following.
Come unto these yellow sands,
And then take hands:
Curtsied when you have, and kiss’d,—
The wild waves whist,—
Foot it featly here and there;
And, sweet sprites, the burden [refrain]
[Come unto . . . bear: Come onto
this beach and join hands after you have curtsied to the sea and
kissed the wild waves into calming silence. Do a lively dance
here and there. Then, sweet sprites, sing the refrain of this
SPIRITS OFFSTAGE (singing the
refrain from different locations): Bow, wow.
ARIEL: The watch-dogs bark.
SPIRITS OFFSTAGE: Bow, wow.
ARIEL: Hark, hark! I hear
The strain of strutting
Chanticleer [Cry, Cock-a-diddle-dow.
[Hark . . .
dow: Listen! I hear the song of a strutting rooster:
cock-a-doodle-doo. (Chanticleer was a rooster that appeared in
medieval European fables.)]
FERDINAND: Where should
this music be? i’ th’ air, or th’ earth?
It sounds no more;—and sure, it
Some god o’ th’ island. Sitting
on a bank,
Weeping again the king my
father’s wrack [shipwreck],
This music crept by me upon the
Allaying both their fury, and my
With its sweet air [sound]: thence [from the bank] I have follow’d
Or it hath drawn me rather,—but
No, it begins
Full fathom five thy father lies;
Of his bones are coral made:
Those are pearls that were his eyes:
Nothing of him that doth fade,
But doth suffer a sea-change
Into something rich and strange.
Sea-nymphs hourly ring his
knell: [Burden: ding-dong.
[Your father lies thirty feet
below the ocean's surface. His bones are made of coral, and his
eyes have turned into pearls. All of his body is changing into
something rich and strange. Sea nymphs toll a bell for him every
hour. Refrain: ding-dong.]
Hark! now I hear them,—ding-dong,
FERDINAND: The ditty [song] does remember my drown’d
This is no mortal business, nor
That the earth owes [owns]:—I hear it now above me.
[This is . . .
above me: This song is not coming from any mortal. Nor is it
coming from the earth, for I hear it now above me.]
PROSPERO: The fringed
curtains of thine eye advance,
And say what thou seest yond.
[The fringed .
. . yond: Look over there and tell me what you see.]
MIRANDA: What is ’t? a
Lord, how it looks about! Believe
It carries a brave [handsome] form:—but ’tis a
PROSPERO: No, wench; it
eats and sleeps, and hath such senses
As we have, such; this gallant [young man; fellow;
creature] which thou
Was in the wrack [shipwreck]; and, but he’s something
With grief,—that’s beauty’s
canker [sore; disease],—thou
might’st call him
A goodly person: he hath lost his
And strays about to find
MIRANDA: I might call
A thing divine; for nothing
I ever saw so
PROSPERO: [Aside.] It goes on, I
As my soul prompts it.—Spirit,
fine spirit! I’ll free thee
Within two days for this.
[It goes . . .
this: My plans are going forward as I wish—thanks to the good work
of Ariel, whom I will free in two days.]
Miranda.] Most sure, the goddess
On whom these airs
attend!—Vouchsafe, my prayer
May know if you remain upon this
And that you will some good
How I may bear me here: my prime
Which I do last pronounce, is,—O
If you be maid or no?
[Most sure . .
. maid or no: Surely these songs are being sung for this goddess
[Miranda]. O, goddess, grant my requests. I want to know whether
you live on this island and whether you will instruct me on how I
am to act while I'm here. Lastly, O you wonder, are you a maiden
or are you really a goddess?]
MIRANDA: No wonder,
But certainly a
FERDINAND: My language!
I am the best of them that speak
Were I but where ’tis
[My language .
. . spoken: Good heavens, you speak the same language as I. Where
I live, I am the highest-ranking person who speaks this language.
(Because he believes his father died in the shipwreck, he thinks
he is now the King of Naples.]
PROSPERO: How! the
What wert thou, if the King of
Naples heard thee?
FERDINAND: A single thing,
as I am now, that wonders
To hear thee speak of Naples. He
does hear me;
And, that he does, I weep: myself
Who with mine eyes,—ne’er since
The king, my father
[A single thing
. . . wrack'd: Just a person who wonders to hear you speak of
Naples. He does hear me and, because he does, I weep for him. I am
now the King of Naples, who with my eyes—which have never ceased
weeping—witnessed my father's death in a shipwreck.]
MIRANDA: Alack [alas], for mercy!
FERDINAND: Yes, faith, and
all his lords; the Duke of Milan,
And his brave son being twain.
[Yes . . .
twain: Yes, faith, and all his lords—including the Duke of Milan
and his brave son—also went down with the ship.]
PROSPERO: [Aside.] The Duke of
And his more braver daughter
could control thee,
If now ’twere fit to do ’t.—At
the first sight [Aside.]
They have changed eyes:—delicate
I’ll set thee free for this!—[To
FER.] A word, good sir;
[The Duke . . .
free for this: The real Duke of Milan, me, could control this
young man if if were appropriate to do so. Upon first seeing each
other, Ferdinand and Miranda exchanged loving glances. Love at
first sight! Delicate Ariel, I'll set you free for this good
I fear you have done yourself
some wrong: a word.
Why speaks my father so ungently? This
Is the third man that e’er I saw;
That e’er I sigh’d for: pity move
To be inclin’d my
FERDINAND: [Aside.] O! if a
And your affection not gone forth
your affection for me remains], I’ll make you
The Queen of
PROSPERO: Soft, sir: one word
They are both in either’s powers: but this swift
I must uneasy make, lest too
Make the prize light.—[To
FER.] One word more: I charge thee
[They are . . .
prize light: They are in love, but I have to make their courtship
harder for them. If Ferdinand wins Miranda too easily, he won't
appreciate her. And vice versa.]
That thou attend me. Thou dost
The name thou ow’st [own] not;
and hast put thyself
Upon this island as a spy, to win
From me, the lord on
[Thou dost . .
. on 't: You are assuming a name that is not yours. I think you're
here on this island as a spy. You want to take it from me. But I
am the lord of this island.]
FERDINAND: No, as I am a
MIRANDA: There’s nothing
ill can dwell in such a temple:
If the ill spirit have so fair a
Good things will strive to dwell
nothing . . . with 't: There's nothing bad in him. Only good
things can come from so fair a person.]
PROSPERO: [To FER.]
[To MIRA.] Speak not you
for him; he’s a traitor.—[To FER.] Come;
I’ll manacle thy neck and feet
Sea-water shalt thou drink; thy
food shall be
The fresh-brook mussles, wither’d
roots and husks
Wherein the acorn cradled.
I will resist such entertainment
Mine enemy has more power.
[He draws, and is charmed from
[I will resist
. . . moving: I won't do what you order unless you can defeat me
in combat. Ferdinand draws his sword, but Prospero uses magic to
MIRANDA: O dear
Make not too rash a trial of him,
He’s gentle, and not
PROSPERO: What! I
My foot my tutor [do you think you
know enough to instruct me]?—Put thy sword up, traitor;
Who mak’st a show, but dar’st not
strike, thy conscience
Is so possess’d with guilt: come
from thy ward [come to your senses; cease taking that warlike stance],
For I can here disarm thee with
this stick [magic wand]
And make thy weapon
MIRANDA: Beseech [I beg] you, father!
PROSPERO: Hence! hang not
on my garments. [Get out of here, Miranda. Don't hang around
MIRANDA: Sir, have
I’ll be his surety [I'll guarantee
that he won't make trouble].
PROSPERO: Silence! one word
Shall make me chide [scold] thee, if not hate thee.
An advocate for an impostor?
Thou think’st there is no more
such shapes [such handsome men] as he,
Having seen but him and Caliban:
To the most of men this is a
Caliban [compared with most other men, Ferdinand is another
And they to him are
Are then most humble; I have no
To see a goodlier
FERDINAND.] Come on; obey:
Thy nerves are in their infancy
And have no vigour in them.
[Come on . . . them: Come on.
Obey my orders. You lack the resolve to resist me. Your nerves are
FERDINAND: So they
My spirits, as in a dream, are
all bound up.
My father’s loss, the weakness
which I feel,
The wrack [shipwreck] of all my friends, or this man’s
threats [and Prospero's threats],
To whom I am subdued, are but
light to me,
Might I but through my prison
once a day
Behold this maid: all corners
else o’ th’ earth
Let liberty make use of; space
Have I in such a prison.
loss . . . such a prison: The death of my father, the weakness I
feel, the shipwreck of all my friends, and Prospero's threats all
mean less to me than the sight of beautiful Miranda. If I were in
prison, all I would want is one glance at her each day. Let the
whole world have its liberty everywhere else. All I want is to see
Miranda once a day from my prison cell.]
PROSPERO: [Aside.] It works [my strategy is
FERDINAND.] Come on.—
Thou hast done well, fine
Ariel!—[To FERDINAND.] Follow me.—
[To ARIEL.] Hark, what thou
else shalt do me [shall you do for me].
MIRANDA: Be of
My father’s of a better nature,
Than he appears by speech: this
is unwonted [not typical of him],
Which now came from
PROSPERO: Thou [Ariel] shalt be as free
As mountain winds; but then
All points of my
ARIEL: To the
PROSPERO: [To FER.]
Come, follow.—[To MIRANDA] Speak not for him. [Don't try to speak
up for him.]
actors leave the stage.]
Another part of the island.
Enter ALONSO, SEBASTIAN, ANTONIO,
GONZALO, ADRIAN, FRANCISCO, and others.
GONZALO: Beseech you, sir,
be merry: you have cause,
So have we all, of joy; for our
Is much beyond our loss. Our hint
[for our . . .
woe: Because our lives are worth much more than what we lost. Our
Is common: every day some
The masters of some merchant and
[The masters .
. . the merchant: The captains of some merchant ships and the
Have just our theme of woe; but
for the miracle,
I mean our preservation, few in
Can speak like us: then wisely,
good sir, weigh
Our sorrow with our
ALONSO: Prithee, peace.
SEBASTIAN to ANTONIO: He
receives comfort like cold porridge.
ANTONIO: The visitor will not
give him o’er so. [But Gonzalo won't shut up.]
SEBASTIAN: Look, he’s
winding up the watch of his wit; by and by it will
[Look . . .
strike: Look, he's winding up his clock--that is, he's getting
ready to talk again. In a moment, he'll strike.]
GONZALO to ALONSO:
SEBASTIAN: One: tell. [Well, there's one
o'clock and he's beginning.]
GONZALO: When every grief
is entertain’d that’s offer’d,
Comes to the entertainer—
[When . . .
entertainer: When every grief that comes along is experienced by a
person, that person receives—]
GONZALO: Dolour comes to
him, indeed: you have spoken truer than you
[Dolour . . .
purposed: Dolor—that is, suffering—comes to him. The word you
spoke is closer to the truth than you thought.]
SEBASTIAN: You have taken
it wiselier [more wisely]
than I meant you should.
GONZALO: Therefore, my
ANTONIO: Fie, what a
spendthrift is he of his tongue!
ALONSO: I prithee, spare [spare me more
GONZALO: Well, I have done:
SEBASTIAN: He will be
ANTONIO: Which, of he or
Adrian [a lord in their company], for a good wager, first begins to
SEBASTIAN: The old
[A cock is a
grown rooster; cockerel is a rooster less than a year old.]
SEBASTIAN: Done. The
ANTONIO: A laughter. [The winner gets
the last laugh.]
ADRIAN: Though this island
seem to be desert,—
SEBASTIAN: Ha, ha, ha! So
ADRIAN: Uninhabitable, and
ANTONIO: He could not miss
ADRIAN: It must needs be of
subtle, tender, and delicate temperance.
ANTONIO: Temperance was a
SEBASTIAN: Ay, and a
subtle; as he most learnedly delivered.
ADRIAN: The air breathes
upon us here most sweetly.
SEBASTIAN: As if it had
lungs, and rotten ones.
ANTONIO: Or as ’twere
perfumed by a fen [swamp].
GONZALO: Here is everything
advantageous to life.
ANTONIO: True; save means
SEBASTIAN: Of that there’s
none, or little.
GONZALO: How lush and lusty
the grass looks! how green!
ANTONIO: The ground indeed
is tawny [dry and brown].
SEBASTIAN: With an eye of
green in ’t.
ANTONIO: He misses not
SEBASTIAN: No; he doth but
mistake the truth totally.
GONZALO: But the rarity of
it is,—which is indeed almost beyond credit [belief],—
SEBASTIAN: As many vouch’d
GONZALO: That our garments,
being, as they were, drenched in the sea, hold notwithstanding
their freshness and glosses; being rather new-dyed than stain’d
with salt water.
ANTONIO: If but one of his
pockets could speak, would it not say he lies?
SEBASTIAN: Ay, or very
falsely pocket up his report [or put his mouth in a pocket].
GONZALO: Methinks, our
garments are now as fresh as when we put them on first in Afric [Africa], at the marriage of the king’s fair
daughter Claribel to the King of Tunis.
SEBASTIAN: ’Twas a sweet
marriage, and we prosper well in our return.
ADRIAN: Tunis was never
graced before with such a paragon to their queen [paragon for a
GONZALO: Not since widow
ANTONIO: Widow! a pox o’
that! How came that widow in? [Empasis placed on the second that.] Widow Dido!
SEBASTIAN: What if he had
said, widower Aeneas too? Good Lord, how you take
ADRIAN: Widow Dido, said
you? you make me study of that: she was of Carthage, not of
GONZALO: This Tunis, sir,
GONZALO: I assure you,
Aeneas (pronounced uh NE ihs] was a warrior in the ancient city of
Troy. After the city fell to the Greeks at the end of the ten-year
Trojan War between Greece and Troy, Aeneas and other Trojans
escaped the city and sailed to Italy, where Aeneas laid the
foundation for the Roman civilization. On his way to Italy, he and
his compatriots stopped at Carthage, on the northern coast of
Africa, where he fell in love with its queen, Dido. In time, he
abandoned her and resumed his voyage to Italy. Broken-hearted,
Dido killed herself. The Roman writer Vergil (70-19 BC) told the
story of Aeneas in his great epic poem, the Aeneid. The ruins of
ancient Carthage lie outside the present-day city of Tunis,
ANTONIO: His word is more
than the miraculous harp [If he says something is so, it has to be so].
SEBASTIAN: He hath rais’d
the wall, and houses too. [He must have moved the whole city of Tunis,
walls and houses, to make it occupy the same site as Carthage.]
ANTONIO: What impossible
matter will he make easy next?
SEBASTIAN: I think he will
carry this island home in his pocket, and give it his son for an
ANTONIO: And, sowing the
kernels [seeds] of it in
the sea, bring forth more islands.
ANTONIO: Why, in good time.
GONZALO: [To ALONSO:]
Sir, we were talking that our garments seem now as fresh as when
we were at Tunis at the marriage of your daughter, who is now
ANTONIO: And the rarest [and the most
beautiful and worthy]
that e’er came there.
SEBASTIAN: Bate, I beseech
you, widow Dido.
[Bate . . . Dido: [Except for Dido.]
ANTONIO: O! widow Dido; ay,
widow Dido. [Oh, Dido. Yes, I suppose that's true.]
GONZALO: Is not, sir, my
doublet [close-fitting jacket] as fresh as the first day I wore it? I mean, in a
ANTONIO: That sort was well
fish’d for. [You must have wracked your brains to come up with that
GONZALO: When I wore it [the doublet] at your daughter’s
ALONSO: You cram these
words into mine ears, against
The stomach of my sense. Would I
Married my daughter there! for,
My son is lost; and, in my rate,
Who is so far from Italy
I ne’er again shall see her. O
thou, mine heir
Of Naples and of Milan! what
Hath made his meal on
[You cram . . .
meal on thee: You cram your words into my ears even though I don't
want to listen to you. I wish I had never allowed my daughter to
marry in Tunis. In the first place, on the trip back from that
city, we lost my son in a storm. In the second place, my daughter
will now live in a far-off land. I'll never see her again. O, my
poor son, the heir of Naples and Milan. What strange fish ate you
as you sank into the sea?]
FRANCISCO: Sir, he may
I saw him beat the surges under
And ride upon their backs: he
tense of tread] the water,
Whose enmity he flung aside, and
breasted [stayed on top of]
The surge most swoln [swollen] that met him: his bold
’Bove [above] the contentious waves he kept, and
Himself with his good arms in
To the shore, that o’er his
wave-worn basis [body] bow’d,
As stooping to relieve him. I not
He came alive to
ALONSO: No, no; he’s
SEBASTIAN: Sir, you may
thank yourself for this great loss,
That would not bless our Europe
with your daughter,
But rather lose her to an
[Sir, you . . .
African: Sir, it's all your fault for not marrying your daughter
to a European rather than an African.]
Where she at least is banish’d
from your eye,
Who hath cause to wet the grief
ALONSO: Prithee, peace [be quiet].
SEBASTIAN: You were kneel’d
to and importun’d otherwise
By all of us; and the fair soul
Weigh’d [balanced herself] between loathness and obedience,
Which end o’ the beam should bow.
We have lost your son,
[You were . . .
your son: We all knelt down and begged you not to send her to
Africa. Even Claribel herself loathed the idea but ended up
obeying you. We have lost your son, Ferdinand.
I fear, for ever: Milan and
More widows in
them of this business’ making [more widows in them as a result of
what has happened],
Than we bring men to comfort
them: the fault’s
ALONSO: So is the dearest
of the loss.
GONZALO: My lord
The truth you speak doth lack
And time to speak it in; you rub
When you should bring the plaster
healing preparation applied to a sore].
ANTONIO: And most
chirurgeonly [And you should apply that plaster with the same care as a
GONZALO: It is foul weather
in us all, good sir,
When you are
GONZALO: Had I plantation
of this isle, my lord,—
[Had I . . .
lord: Had a I plantation (colony) on this island, my lord—.
Antonio and Sebastian respond as if plantation refers to cultivated land, as the
next two lines indicate.]
ANTONIO: He’d sow ’t with
nettle-seed [the seed of a prickly plANTONIO: Its hairs sting a person
who touches it.]
SEBASTIAN: Or docks, or
mallows [or weeds].
GONZALO: And were the king
on ’t, what would I do? [If I were the king of the island, do you
know what I'd do?]
SEBASTIAN: Scape being drunk for want of wine. [Escape being drunk
because there's not any wine on the island.]
GONZALO: I’ the
commonwealth I would by contraries
Execute all things; for no kind
Would I admit; no name of
Letters should not be known;
And use of service, none;
Bourn, bound of land, tilth,
No use of metal, corn, or wine,
No occupation; all men idle,
And women too, but innocent and
commonwealth . . . sovereignty: In my kingdom, I would govern in a
way that no other ruler does. There would be no businesses, no
judges or other government officials, no schools, no wealth or
poverty, no servants. There would be no contracts, no laws
governing the passage of property or a title from one person to
another, no land boundaries, no cultivation of land, no vineyard.
And there would be no use of metal, corn, wine, or oil. In
addition, there would be no occupations; all men and women would
be idle. Women would be innocent and pure. There would be no
SEBASTIAN: Yet he would be
king on ’t. [Yet he would be king of a land that prohibits kings.]
ANTONIO: The latter end of
his commonwealth forgets the beginning.
[The latter . .
. beginning: The last part of his speech (that there would be no
sovereigns) forgets what he said in the first part (that he would
be the absolute sovereign who executes all things).]
GONZALO: All things in
common nature should produce
Without sweat or endeavour:
[All things . .
. endeavour: All necessities would be produced without work.]
Sword, pike, knife, gun, or need
of any engine [or any other weapon],
Would I not have; but nature
should [would] bring
Of its own kind [in its own way], all foison [all crops], all abundance,
To feed my innocent
SEBASTIAN: No marrying
’mong his subjects? [Would anyone get married?]
ANTONIO: None, man; all
idle; whores and knaves. [No marriages. Everyone would be idle. But I
guess there would be whores and scoundrels.]
GONZALO: I would with such
perfection govern, sir,
To excel the golden
Peaceful, prosperous, and happy period in any country's history.]
SEBASTIAN: Save his
majesty! [Hail is majesty Gonzalo!]
ANTONIO: Long live
GONZALO to ALONSO: And,—do
you mark [listen to] me,
ALONSO: Prithee, no more: thou dost talk nothing to
up. Your words mean nothing to me.]
GONZALO: I do well believe
your highness; and did it to minister occasion to these gentlemen,
who are of such sensible and nimble lungs that they always used to
laugh at nothing.
[I do well . .
. nothing: I believe your highness is right in your response to
me. I didn't really mean what I said. I just wanted to spout on
mindlessly to give these gentlemen cockeyed ideas to laugh about.]
ANTONIO: ’Twas you we
GONZALO: Who in this kind
of merry fooling am nothing to you; so you may continue and laugh
at nothing still.
[Who . . .
still: I realize that in my jesting I am nothing to you. So you
may continue to laugh at nothing.]
ANTONIO: What a blow was
there given! [What a blow he gave to us! (Spoken in mockery)]
SEBASTIAN: An [if] it had not fallen flat-long. [If it had not
GONZALO: You are gentlemen
of brave mettle: you would lift the moon out of her sphere, if she
would continue in it five weeks without changing.
[You are brave
and helpful gentlemen. You would give the moon a push if it
stalled in orbit of the earth.]
Enter ARIEL, invisible, playing
SEBASTIAN: We would so, and
then go a-bat-fowling.
[Yes, we would
help the moon along, then go batfowling. (To batfowl was to
capture roosting birds. First, the hunters would blind a bird with
bright light. Then they would strike it or snare it in a net.]
ANTONIO: Nay, good my lord,
be not angry.
GONZALO: No, I warrant you;
I will not adventure my discretion so weakly. Will you laugh me
asleep, for I am very heavy?
[No, I'm not
angry. I will not judge you harshly without good reason. Will you
laugh me to sleep, since I am very weary?]
ANTONIO: Go sleep, and hear
us. [All sleep but ALONSO:, SEBASTIAN:, and ANTONIO:
ALONSO: What! all so soon
asleep! I wish mine eyes
Would, with themselves, shut up
my thoughts: I find
They are inclin’d to do
[I wish . . .
do so: I wish I also could fall asleep. Sleep would stop
negative thoughts from racing through my mind. As a matter of
fact, I do feel drowsy.]
SEBASTIAN: Please you,
Do not omit the heavy offer of
It seldom visits sorrow; when it
It is a
[Do not . . .
comforter: Don't pass up the opportunity to lie down. Sleep seldom
comes to the sorrowful. When it does, it is comforting.]
ANTONIO: We two, my
Will guard your person while you
take your rest,
And watch your
ALONSO: Thank you. Wondrous
heavy. [ALONSO sleeps. Exit ARIEL.
SEBASTIAN: What a strange
drowsiness possesses them!
ANTONIO: It is the quality
o’ the climate.
Doth it not then our eyelids
sink? I find not
Myself dispos’d to
ANTONIO: Nor I: my spirits
They fell together all, as by
consent [they all fell asleep at the same time, as if by
They dropp’d, as by a
thunder-stroke. What might,
Worthy Sebastian? O! what
And yet methinks I see it in thy
What thou should’st be. The
occasion speaks thee; and
My strong imagination sees a
Dropping upon thy
[What might . .
. head: What might happen next, Sebastian? Oh, I shouldn't think
such thoughts, yet I see in your face what you could do—seize the
SEBASTIAN: What! art thou
waking? [Are you dreaming? Are you in your right mind?]
ANTONIO: Do you not hear me
SEBASTIAN: I do; and
It is a sleepy language, and thou
Out of thy sleep. What is it thou
This is a strange repose, to be
With eyes wide open; standing,
And yet so fast
[It is a sleepy
. . . fast asleep: You sound as if you're talking in your sleep.
What did you say? You're in a strange state: sleeping with your
eyes wide open—standing, speaking, moving but still asleep.]
Thou let’st thy fortune sleep—die
Whiles thou art
[Thou let'st .
. . waking: You're missing a great opportunity to advance
yourself. This opportunity is in dreamland while you stand here
awake, doing nothing.]
SEBASTIAN: Thou dost snore
There’s meaning in thy
[Thou dost . .
. snores: You snores sound like words. There is meaning in your
ANTONIO: I am more serious
than my custom: you
Must be so too, if heed me; which
[I am . . .
o'er: I am serious about this, and so must you be. If you heed me,
you could triple your fortunes and well-being.]
SEBASTIAN: Well; I am standing
water. [Well, I'm listening. I'm like standing water in a pond.]
ANTONIO: I’ll teach you how
to flow. [I'll teach you to flow like a river that is going
SEBASTIAN: Do so: to
Hereditary sloth instructs
[Do so . . .
me: Do so. It is my nature to ebb, like receding water, for I am
lazy by nature.]
If you but knew how you the
Whiles thus you mock it! how, in
You more invest it! Ebbing men,
Most often do so near the bottom
By their own fear or
[If you . . .
sloth: If only you realized how much you like my idea even though
you mock it! If only you know how, in dismissing the idea, you
become more enthralled with it. Lazy men most often remain near
the bottom of society because of their fear and inaction.]
SEBASTIAN: Prithee, say on:
The setting of thine eye and
A matter from thee, and a birth
Which throes thee much to
[Say on . . .
to yield: Keep talking. The way you're looking at me suggests you
have a worthy plan. However, like a pregnant woman in the throes
of labor, you're have difficulty giving birth to it.]
Although this lord of weak
Who shall be of as little
When he is earth’d, hath here
For he’s a spirit of persuasion,
Professes to persuade,—the king,
his son’s alive,
’Tis as impossible that he’s
As he that sleeps here
. . . swims: Although this lord, Gonzalo, does not have a good
memory--and nobody will remember him after he's in his grave--he
almost persuaded the king that his son, Ferdinand, is still alive.
Of course, it's as impossible that he's alive as its that this
lord sleeping here is swimming.]
SEBASTIAN: I have no
ANTONIO: O! out of that "no
What great hope have you! no hope
that way is
Another way so high a hope that
Ambition cannot pierce a wink
But doubts discovery there. Will
you grant with me
That Ferdinand is
[O! out . . .
drown'd: O! Out of that "no hope" for Ferdinand, as you put it,
there is great hope for you. No hope for Ferdinand means that you
have hope higher than any ambition can reach. But let's get one
thing straight first. Do you agree that Ferdinand drowned?]
ANTONIO: Then tell
Who’s the next heir of
ANTONIO: She that is Queen
of Tunis; she that dwells
Ten leagues beyond man’s life;
she that from Naples
Can have no note, unless the sun
The man i’ th’ moon’s too
slow—till new-born chins
Be rough and razorable: she that,
We all were sea-swallow’d, though
some cast again,
And by that destiny to perform an
Whereof what’s past is prologue,
what to come
In yours and my
[She that . . .
from whom: Yes, Claribel, the Queen of Tunis, who lives so far
away that she is out of touch. Letters sent to her wouldn't travel
any faster than the time it takes for an infant to grow into a
teenager who's shaving for the first time. Only sunlight could
travel fast enough to keep her abreast of what's happening in her
native land. After her wedding, when we were on our way home, we
were all swallowed by the sea. However, some of us were cast to
the surface and made it to shore. It was her wedding that put us
where we are. Now we have an opportunity to take advantage
of what she did for us.]
SEBASTIAN: What stuff is
this!—How say you?
’Tis true my brother’s daughter’s
Queen of Tunis;
So is she heir of Naples; ’twixt
There is some
[What stuff . .
. space: What are you trying to say? It's true that my brother
Alonso's daughter is Queen of Tunis and her father's heir. It's
also true that there is a great distance between Naples and
ANTONIO: A space whose
Seems to cry out, ‘How shall that
Measure us back to Naples?—Keep
And let Sebastian wake!’—Say,
this were death
That now hath seiz’d them; why,
they were no worse
Than now they are. There be that
can rule Naples
As well as he that sleeps; lords
that can prate
As amply and
As this Gonzalo; I myself could
A chough of as deep chat. O, that
The mind that I do! what a sleep
For your advancement! Do you
[A space . . .
wake: A space whose every cubit (ancient measure equal to the
distance between the elbow and the tip of the middle finger) seems
to say that Claribel is too far away to return to Naples; she
should stay in Tunis and let Sebastian awaken to a new life. Now,
let's suppose those men there were dead instead of asleep. Why,
they would be no worse off than they are now. There is a man who
can rule Naples as well as the sleeping king. And there are others
who can talk just as well and just as unnecessarily as Gonzalo. I
myself can crow the way he does. O, if only you would think the
way I do! Those sleeping men are giving you a great opportunity
for advancement. Do you understand me?]
SEBASTIAN: Methinks I
ANTONIO: And how does your
Tender your own good
[And . . .
fortune: And how do you think this situation could advance your
own good fortune?]
You did supplant your brother
And look how well my garments sit
Much feather than before; my
Were then my fellows; now they
are my men.
[And look . . .
men: And now I wear fine clothes, and my brother's servants are
now my servants.]
SEBASTIAN: But, for your
ANTONIO: Ay, sir; where
lies that? if it were a kibe [chafed skin occurring often on the
’Twould put me to my slipper; but
I feel not
This deity in my bosom: twenty
That stand ’twixt me and Milan,
candied be they,
And melt ere they molest! Here
lies your brother,
No better than the earth he lies
[but I feel . .
. molest: But I don't feel guilty in my heart. If I had
twenty consciences made of candy--each conscience trying to
persuade me to give back Milan--they'd melt before I'd reach for
even one of them. Here is your sleeping brother, no better than
the earth he lies on.]
If he were that which now he’s
like, that’s dead;
Whom I, with this obedient
steel,—three inches of it,—
Can lay to bed for ever; whiles
you, doing thus,
To the perpetual wink for aye
This ancient morsel, this Sir
Should not upbraid our course.
For all the rest,
They’ll take suggestion as a cat
They’ll tell the clock to any
We say befits the
[If he were . .
. hour: If I stabbed him to death, you could do the same to
Gonzalo. All the rest of them will accept any explanation we give
them, and they will do whatever we say.]
SEBASTIAN: Thy case, dear
Shall be my precedent: as thou
I’ll come by Naples. Draw thy
sword: one stroke
Shall free thee from the tribute
which thou pay st,
And I the king shall love
And when I rear my hand, do you
To fall it on
SEBASTIAN: O! but one
word. [They converse apart.
Music. Re-enter ARIEL,
ARIEL: My master through
his art foresees the danger
That you, his friend, are in; and
sends me forth—
For else his project dies—to keep
thee living. [Sings in GONZALO’S ear.
While you here
do snoring lie,
ANTONIO: Then let us both
His time doth take.
If of life you keep a care,
Shake off slumber, and beware:
GONZALO: Now, good
Preserve the king! [They
ALONSO: Why, how now! ho,
awake! Why are you drawn [Why are your weapons drawn]?
Wherefore this ghastly looking [Why do you have
such a ghastly look on your faces]?
GONZALO: What’s the
SEBASTIAN: Whiles we stood
here securing your repose [guarding you while you were asleep],
Even now, we heard a hollow burst
Like bulls, or rather lions; did
’t not wake you?
It struck mine ear most
ALONSO: I heard
ANTONIO: O! ’twas a din to
fright a monster’s ear,
To make an earthquake: sure it
was the roar
Of a whole herd of
ALONSO: Heard you this,
GONZALO: Upon mine honour,
sir, I heard a humming,
And that a strange one too, which
did awake me.
I shak’d you, sir, and cried; as
mine eyes open’d,
I saw their weapons drawn:—there
was a noise,
That’s verily. ’Tis best we stand
upon our guard,
Or that we quit this place: let’s
draw our weapons.
ALONSO: Lead off this
ground, and let’s make further search
For my poor
GONZALO: Heavens keep him
from these beasts!
For he is, sure, i’ [in] the island.
ALONSO: Lead away.
[Exit with the others.
ARIEL: Prospero my lord
shall know what I have done: COUPLET
So, king, go safely on to seek
thy son. [Exit.
Another part of the island.
Enter CALIBAN, with a burden of
A noise of thunder heard.
CALIBAN: All the infections
that the sun sucks up
From bogs, fens, flats, on
Prosper [Prospero] fall,
and make him
flats: A bog is a spongy wetland area with an acidic surface
composed mainly of moss and peat. A fen is similar to a bog, but
it is less acidic. A flat is a stretch of level land.]
By inch-meal [by inch-meal:
Little by little] a
disease! His spirits hear me,
And yet I needs must curse. But
they’ll nor pinch,
Fright me with urchin-shows,
pitch me i’ the mire,
Nor lead me, like a firebrand, in
Out of my way, unless he bid ’em;
For every trifle are they set upon
[But they'll .
. . upon me: But they won't pinch me or frighten me by appearing
as goblins. Nor will they throw me into the mud or lead me, like a
torch in the dark, onto a false trail--unless he tells them to.
But he does have them track me and punish me for every little
thing that I do wrong.]
Sometime like apes, that mow [frown] and chatter at me
And after bite me; then like
Lie tumbling in my bare-foot way
Their pricks at my foot-fall;
sometime am I
All wound with adders, who with
Do hiss me into madness.—
. . . madness: Sometimes these spirits appear as apes that frown
and chatter at me, then bite me. Sometimes they appear as
hedgehogs (an animal similar to a porcupine) that lie in my path
as I walk barefooted. Their stiff quills prick my feet. Sometimes
poisonous adders wind around me and hiss me into madness.]
Lo now! lo!
Here comes a spirit of his, and
to torment me
For bringing wood in slowly: I’ll
Perchance he will not mind me.
TRINCULO: Here’s neither
bush nor shrub to bear off [shelter me from] any weather at all, and another storm
brewing; I hear it sing i’ the wind: yond [yonder] same black cloud, yond huge one,
looks like a foul bombard [bomber] that would shed his liquor [rain]. If it should thunder as it did
before, I know not where to hide my head: yond same cloud cannot
choose but fall by pailfuls.—What have we here? a man or a fish?
Dead or alive? A fish: he smells like a fish; a very ancient [rotten] and fish-like smell; a kind of not of
the newest Poor-John [small fish of low quality]. A strange fish! Were I in England
now,—as once I was,—and had but this fish painted, not a holiday
fool there but would give a piece of silver: there would this
monster [ugly fish] make
a man [make
me rich]; any strange
beast there makes a man. When they will not give a doit [small coin of
meager value] to relieve
a lame beggar, they will lay out ten to see a dead Indian. Legg’d
fish has legs] like a
man! and his fins like arms! Warm, o’ my troth! [His body is still
warm, by Jove.] I do now
let loose my opinion, hold it no longer [I do no contradict
what I said before]; this
is no fish, but an islander, that hath lately suffered by a
thunderbolt. [Thunder.] Alas! the storm is come again:
my best way is to creep under his [Caliban's] gaberdine [cloak]; there is no other shelter hereabout:
misery acquaints a man with strange bedfellows. I will here shroud
under this cloak] till
the dregs [last trickle] of
the storm be past.
Enter STEPHANO, singing; a bottle
in his hand.
I shall no more
to sea, to sea,
This is a very scurvy tune to
sing at a man’s funeral:
Here shall I die a-shore:—
Well, here’s [to] my comfort. [Drinks.
The master, the
swabber, the boatswain and I,
This is a scurvy tune too: but
here’s [to] my
The gunner and his mate,
Lov’d Mall, Meg, and Marian and Margery,
But none of us car’d for Kate;
For she had a tongue with a tang,
Would cry to a sailor, ‘Go hang!’
She lov’d not the savour of tar nor of pitch,
Yet a tailor might scratch her where-e’er she did itch:
Then to sea, boys, and let her go hang.
CALIBAN: Do not torment me:
STEPHANO: What’s the
Have we devils here? Do you put
tricks upon us with savages and men of Ind [India]? Ha! I have not ’scaped drowning, to
be afeard now of your four legs; for it hath been said, As proper
a man as ever went on four legs cannot make him give ground: and
it shall be said so again while Stephano breathes at’s [at his] nostrils.
CALIBAN: The spirit
torments me: O!
STEPHANO: This is some
monster of the isle with four legs , who hath got, as I take it,
an ague [fever]. Where
the devil should he learn our language? I will give him some
relief, if it be but for that: if I can recover [cure] him and keep him tame and get to
Naples with him, he’s a present for any emperor that ever trod on
neat’s-leather [cow's leather].
CALIBAN: Do not torment me,
prithee: I’ll bring my wood home
STEPHANO: He’s in his fit
now and does not talk after the wisest. He shall taste of my
bottle: if he have never drunk wine afore it will go near to
remove his fit. If I can recover [cure] him, and keep him tame, I will not take too much for him
sell him for a great sum]:
he shall pay for him that hath him, and that
CALIBAN: Thou dost me yet
but little hurt; thou wilt anon [soon], I know it by thy trembling: now Prosper [Prospero] works upon thee.
STEPHANO: Come on your
ways: open your mouth; here is that which will give language to
you, cat. Open your mouth: this will shake [stop] your shaking [shivering], I can tell you, and that
soundly [gives CALIBAN drink]: you cannot tell who’s your
friend; open your chaps [jaws] again.
TRINCULO: I should know
that voice: it should be—but he [Stephano] is drowned, and these are devils. O!
STEPHANO: Four legs and two
voices; a most delicate monster! [Trinculo and Caliban are both under
Caliban's cloak. Stephano thinks they are a single being with two
voices and four legs.]
His forward voice now is to speak well of his friend; his backward
voice is to utter foul speeches, and to detract. If all the wine
in my bottle will recover [cure] him, I will help his ague [fever]. Come. Amen! I will pour some in thy
STEPHANO: Doth thy other
mouth call me [Is one of your voices addressing me?] Mercy! mercy! This is a devil, and no
monster: I will leave him; I have no long spoon.
[I have no long
spoon: Old saying. It means that someone who dines with Satan
should have a long spoon in order to keep his distance from the
TRINCULO: Stephano!—if thou
are] Stephano, touch me,
and speak to me; for I am Trinculo:—be not afeard—thy good friend
STEPHANO: If thou beest
Trinculo, come forth. I’ll pull thee by the lesser [shorter] legs: if any be Trinculo’s legs,
these are they. Thou art very Trinculo indeed! How cam’st thou to
be the siege of this moon-calf [freak; fool;
monster]? Can he vent
TRINCULO: I took him to be
killed with a thunder-stroke. [I thought he was killed by lightning.] But art thou not drowned, Stephano? I
hope now thou art not drowned. Is the storm overblown? I hid me
under the dead moon-calf’s gaberdine for fear of the storm. And
art thou living, Stephano? O Stephano! two Neapolitans ’scaped! [At least two of us
Neapolitans escaped drowning.]
joyfully dances around with Trinculo.]
STEPHANO: Prithee, do not turn me about: my stomach is
not constant [my stomach is queasy].
CALIBAN: [Aside.] These be fine things an if
they be not sprites.
That’s a brave god and bears
I will kneel to
[Aside: Spoken to himself]
STEPHANO: How didst thou
’scape? How cam’st thou hither [here]? swear by this bottle, how thou cam’st hither. I escaped
upon a butt of sack [strong Spanish wine popular in England in
Shakespeare's time] made
in Spain and the Canary Islands, which the sailors heaved
overboard, by this bottle! which I made of the bark of a tree with
mine own hands, since I was cast ashore.
[These be . . . him: These are
fine creatures if they're not sprites. That one is a wonderful
god who has liquor from the heavens. I will kneel before him.]
[I escaped upon
. . . ashore: I swear by this bottle that I escaped on a cask of
wine that the sailors heaved overboard. I made the bottle out of
tree bark after I reached the shore. ]
CALIBAN: I’ll swear upon
that bottle, to be thy true subject; for the liquor is not
STEPHANO: Here: swear then,
how thou escaped.
TRINCULO: Swam ashore, man,
like a duck: I can swim like a duck, I’ll be
STEPHANO: Here, kiss the
a drink]. [gives
TRINCULO drink]. Though thou canst swim like a duck, thou
art made like a goose [silly person].
TRINCULO: O Stephano! hast
any more of this?
STEPHANO: The whole butt,
man: my cellar is in a rock by the seaside, where my wine is hid.
How now, moon-calf! how does thine ague [fever]?
CALIBAN: Hast thou not
dropped from heaven?
STEPHANO: Out o’ the moon,
I do assure thee: I was the man in the moon, when time
CALIBAN: I have seen thee
in her, and I do adore thee; my mistress showed me thee, and thy
dog, and thy bush.
STEPHANO: Come, swear to
that; kiss the book; I will furnish it anon [noon] with new contents;
TRINCULO: By this good
light, this is a very shallow monster.—I afeard of him!—a very
weak monster.—The man i’ the moon! a most poor credulous
monster!—Well drawn, monster, in good sooth.
[By this . . .
sooth: By this good light, I can tell that he's not a very
imposing monster. I afraid of him? Hah. A very weak monster who
will believe anything you tell him. Well drawn from the bottle,
monster, I must say.]
CALIBAN: I’ll show thee
every fertile inch o’ the island;
And I will kiss thy foot. I prithee, be my god.
TRINCULO: By this light, a
most perfidious [untrustworthy] and drunken monster: when his god’s
asleep, he’ll rob his bottle.
CALIBAN: I’ll kiss thy
foot: I’ll swear myself thy subject.
STEPHANO: Come on then;
down, and swear.
TRINCULO: I shall laugh
myself to death at this puppy-headed monster. A most scurvy
monster! I could find in my heart to beat him,—
TRINCULO: But that the poor
monster’s in drink: an abominable monster!
CALIBAN: I’ll shew [show] thee the best springs; I’ll pluck
I’ll fish for thee, and get thee
A plague upon the tyrant that I
I’ll bear him no more sticks, but
TRINCULO: A most ridiculous
monster, to make a wonder of a poor drunkard!
CALIBAN: I prithee, let me bring thee where crabs [crabapples] grow;
And I with my long nails will dig
thee pig-nuts [pignut: plant with edible roots];
Show thee a jay’s nest and
instruct thee how
To snare the nimble marmozet [marmoset: small
monkey]; I’ll bring
To clust’ring filberts [hazelnuts], and sometimes I’ll get
Young scamels [scamel: probably a
type of bird] from the
rock. Wilt thou go with me?
STEPHANO: I prithee now, lead the way, without any more
talking.—Trinculo, the king and all our company else being
drowned, we will inherit here [this island].—Here; bear my bottle.—Fellow
Trinculo, we’ll fill him by and by again. [Here, Trinculo,
carry my bottle for me. We'll fill it in a little while.]
CALIBAN: Farewell, master [Prospero]; farewell, farewell. [Sings
TRINCULO: A howling
monster, a drunken monster.
No more dams
I’ll make for fish;
STEPHANO: O brave monster!
lead the way. [Exeunt.
Nor fetch in firing [wood]
Nor scrape trenchering [trencher:
board or wooden platter for carving meat, cutting up food, and
serving food] nor wash dish;
’Ban, ’Ban, Ca—Caliban,
Has a new master—Get a new man [get
a new servant, Prospero].
Freedom, high-day! high-day, freedom! freedom! high-day,
Everyone leaves the stage.]
Before PROSPERO'S cell.
Enter FERDINAND, bearing a log.
FERDINAND: There be some
sports are painful, and their labour
Delight in them sets off: some
kinds of baseness
Are nobly undergone, and most
Point to rich ends. This my mean
Would be as heavy to me as
The mistress which I serve
quickens what’s dead
And makes my labours pleasures:
O! she is
Ten times more gentle than her
[There be . . .
crabbed: Some tasks are painful. But the hard work in executing
them can make them rewarding. Some kinds of lowly tasks are
completed to win a rich prize. This task I am now carrying out
would normally be burdensome and hateful, but I enjoy doing it
because completing it will please Miranda. Oh, she is ten times
more gentle than her rough and disagreeable father.]
And he’s compos’d of harshness. I
Some thousands of these logs and
pile them up,
Upon a sore injunction [according to his
instructions]: my sweet
Weeps when she sees me work, and
says such baseness
Had never like executor. I
But these sweet thoughts do even
refresh my labours,
Most busiest when I do
. . . do it: Such lowly tasks never had such a noble and worthy
man to carry them out. But her sweet thoughts for me make my labor
enjoyable, especially when I am at my busiest.]
Enter MIRANDA and PROSPERO,
MIRANDA to FERDINAND: Alas!
now, pray you,
Work not so hard: I would the
Burnt up those logs that you are
enjoin’d [ordered; required] to pile!
Pray, set it down and rest you:
when this burns,
’Twill [it will] weep for having wearied you. My
Is hard at study; pray now, rest
He’s safe for these three
[He's safe . .
. hours: We're at a safe distance from him for three hours.]
FERDINAND: O most dear
The sun will set, before I shall
What I must strive to do.
[The sun . . .
to do: The sun will set before I have a chance to complete my
MIRANDA: If you’ll sit
I’ll bear your logs the while.
Pray, give me that [give me that log];
I’ll carry it to the
FERDINAND: No, precious
I had rather crack my sinews [injure my muscles], break my back,
Than you should such dishonour
While I sit lazy
MIRANDA: It would become
As well as it does you: and I
should do it
With much more ease; for my good
will is to it,
And yours it is against.
[It would . . .
against: I could just as well carry wood as you. And I could do so
more easily than you, because I would be willing to do it. You,
however, are not willing to let me do it.]
PROSPERO: [Aside.] Poor worm! thou art infected:
This visitation shows it.
[Poor . . .
shows it: My poor daughter! You are in love. What I see proves
MIRANDA: You look
FERDINAND: No, noble
mistress; ’tis fresh morning with me
When you are by at night. I do
Chiefly that I might set it in my
What is your
MIRANDA: Miranda.—O my
I have broke your hest [instruction;
command] to say
Indeed, the top of admiration;
What’s dearest to the world! Full
many a lady
I have ey’d with best regard, and
many a time
The harmony of their tongues hath
Brought my too diligent ear: for
Have I lik’d several women; never
With so full soul but some defect
Did quarrel with the noblest
grace she ow’d,
And put it to the foil: but you,
[Full many a .
. . foil: I have eyed many ladies looking for the best in them,
and many of them spoke in such a way that they enthralled me. I
have liked several women for certain virtues. But always I found
some defect in a woman which was out of harmony with the noblest
grace she possessed and thus detracted from it.]
So perfect and so peerless, are
Of every creature’s
MIRANDA: I do not
One of my sex; no woman’s face
Save, from my glass [mirror], mine own: nor have I
More that I may call men than
you, good friend,
And my dear father: how features
I am skill-less of; but, by my
The jewel in my dower,—I would
Any companion in the world but
[how features .
. . but you: How people appear elsewhere I do not know. But my
modesty--the jewel of all I possess--I would not give to anyone
Nor can imagination form a
Besides yourself, to like of [to compare you
with]. But I
Something too wildly and my
I therein do
FERDINAND: I am in my
A prince, Miranda; I do think, a
I would not so!—and would no more
This wooden slavery than to
The flesh-fly blow my mouth.—Hear
my soul speak:—
[I am . . . my
mouth: I am by status a prince. But I may be a king--I hope it is
not so!--and would no more endure the slavery of carrying wood
than to a allow fleshfly to deposit its offspring in my mouth. (A
fleshfly is unlike the common housefly in that it lays hatching
maggots instead of eggs.]
The very instant that I saw you
My heart fly to your service;
To make me slave to it; and for
Am I this patient
. . . log-man: In you, my heart resides as a slave to your every
wish. For your sake I am patiently carrying logs.]
MIRANDA: Do you love
FERDINAND: O heaven! O
earth! bear witness to this sound,
And crown what I profess with
If I speak true: if hollowly,
What best is boded me to
Beyond all limit of what else i’
Do love, prize, honour
[O heaven . . .
honour you: Heaven and earth, bear witness to what I say. If I
speak the truth, make my dreams come true. If I speak falsely,
reverse any good fortune predicted for me. Beyond all limit, I do
love, prize, and honor you.]
MIRANDA: I am a
To weep at what I am glad
PROSPERO: [Aside.] Fair
Of two most rare affections!
Heavens rain grace
On that which breeds between
FERDINAND: Wherefore [why] weep you?
MIRANDA: At mine
unworthiness, that dare not offer
What I desire to give; and much
What I shall die to wANTONIO: But
this is trifling;
And all the more it seeks to hide
The bigger bulk it shows. Hence,
And prompt me, plain and holy
[At mine . . .
innocence: I weep because I am not worthy to offer what I want to
give. I also weep because I am not worthy to take what I want to
receive. But this is foolish. The more I try to hide my feelings,
the more they show themselves. Therefore, I will cease being
bashful. Plain and holy innocence will prompt me to speak
I am your wife, if you will marry
If not, I’ll die your maid [I'll die a virgin]: to be your fellow [wife]
You may deny me; but I’ll be your
Whether you will or
FERDINAND: My mistress,
And I thus humble
MIRANDA: My husband
FERDINAND: Ay, with a heart
As bondage e’er of freedom:
here’s my hand.
MIRANDA: And mine, with my
heart in ’t: and now farewell
Till half an hour
FERDINAND: A thousand
thousand! [Exeunt FERDINAND and MIRANDA
PROSPERO: So glad of this
as they, I cannot be,
Who are surpris’d withal; but my
At nothing can be more. [But my rejoicing
at their love could not be greater.] I’ll to my book [book of magic];
For yet, ere supper time, must I
Much business appertaining.
Another part of the island.
Enter CALIBAN, with a bottle,
STEPHANO, and TRINCULO.
STEPHANO: Tell not me:—when
the butt is out [when the wine cask is empy], we will drink water; not a drop
before: therefore bear up, and board ’em.—Servant-monster, drink
the folly of this island! They say there’s but five upon this
isle: we are three of them; if th’ other two be brained like us,
the state totters.
servant-monster, when I bid thee: thy eyes are almost set in thy
TRINCULO: Where should they
be set else? he were a brave [fearsome] monster indeed, if they were set in
STEPHANO: My man-monster
hath drowned his tongue in sack: for my
part, the sea cannot drown me; I swam, ere I could recover [before
I could reach] the shore, five-and-thirty leagues [105 miles], off
and on, by this light. Thou shalt be my lieutenant, monster, or my
standard [flag carrier].
TRINCULO: Your lieutenant,
if you list; he’s no standard. [You should recruit him as a
lieutenANTONIO: But he's so drunk he cannot bear a standard
STEPHANO: We’ll not run,
TRINCULO: Nor go neither:
but you’ll lie, like dogs; and yet say nothing neither. [He shouldn't walk
either. He should simply lie there like a dog and say nothing.]
STEPHANO: Moon-calf, speak once in thy life, if thou
beest a good moon-calf.
CALIBAN: How does thy
honour? Let me lick thy shoe. I’ll not serve
him [Trinculo]; he is not valiANTONIO:
TRINCULO: Thou liest, most
ignorant monster: I am in case to justle a constable [fight an officer
of the law]. Why, thou
deboshed [debased; corrupt]
fish thou, was there ever a man a coward that hath drunk so much sack as I to-day? Wilt thou tell a
monstrous lie, being but half a fish and half a
CALIBAN: Lo, how he mocks
me! wilt thou let him, my lord?
TRINCULO: ‘Lord’ quoth
he!—that a monster should be such a natural [that a monster
should be so polite and civilized]!
CALIBAN: Lo, lo, again!
bite him to death, I prithee.
STEPHANO: Trinculo, keep a
good tongue in your head: if you prove a mutineer, [if you oppose me,
you'll hang on] the next
tree! The poor monster’s my subject, and he shall not suffer
CALIBAN: I thank my noble
lord. Wilt thou be pleas’d
To hearken once again the suit I
made thee? [to do what I asked?]
STEPHANO: Marry, will I;
kneel, and repeat it: I will stand, and so shall
Enter ARIEL, invisible.
CALIBAN: As I told thee
before, I am subject to a tyrant, a sorcerer, that by his cunning
hath cheated me of the island.
ARIEL: Thou liest..
CALIBAN: Thou liest [spoken to Trinculo
in the belief that Ariel's words were Trinculo's], thou jesting monkey
I would my valiant master would
I do not lie.
STEPHANO: Trinculo, if you
trouble him any more in his tale, by this hand, I will supplant [knock out] some of your teeth.
TRINCULO: Why, I said
STEPHANO: Mum then and no
more.—[To CALIBAN.] Proceed.
CALIBAN: I say, by sorcery
he got this isle;
From me he got it: if thy
Revenge it on him,—for, I know,
But this thing dare
[I say . . .
dare not: I tell you that my master, Prospero, got this island
from me by sorcery. If your greatness would do so, I ask that you
gain revenge against him. I know that you have what it takes to
dare such a task. But this thing, Trinculo, does not.]
STEPHANO: That’s most
CALIBAN: Thou shalt be lord
of it [this island] and I’ll serve thee.
STEPHANO: How now shall
this be compassed? Canst thou bring me to the party?
[How now . . .
party: How can I become the lord of the island? Can you take me to
its present ruler?]
CALIBAN: Yea, yea, my lord:
I’ll yield him thee asleep,
Where thou may’st knock a nail
into his head.
[Yea . . .
head: Yes, yes, my lord. I'll take you to him when he is asleep.
You can drive a nail into his head.]
ARIEL: Thou liest; thou
canst not [you can't do what you said].
CALIBAN: What a pied
ninny’s this! Thou scurvy patch!—
[pied ninny: Pied means multi-colored. Jesters such
as Trinculo usually wore costumes with many bright colors. A ninny
was a simpleton.]
I do beseech thy greatness, give
And take his bottle from him:
when that’s gone
He shall drink nought [nothing] but brine [sea water]; for I’ll not show
Where the quick freshes [flowing spring
STEPHANO: Trinculo, run
into no further danger: interrupt the monster one word further,
and, by this hand, I’ll turn my mercy out o’ doors [I won't show you
any mercy] and make a
stock-fish of thee.
TRINCULO: Why, what did I?
I did nothing. I’ll go further off [I'm getting out of
STEPHANO: Didst thou not
say he lied?
STEPHANO to TRINCULO: Do I
so? take thou that. [Strikes TRIN.]
As you like this, give me the lie
another time [If you like being struck, say again that I lied].
TRINCULO: I did not give
thee the lie:—Out o’ your wits and hearing too?—A pox o’ your
bottle! this can sack and
drinking do.—A murrain on your monster, and the devil take your
[I did not . .
. fingers: I did not say you lied. Are you out of your wits and
hearing? A curse on your bottle. This is what drinking too much
wine can do. I hope that your monster gets a deadly disease
(murrain) and that thedevil takes your fingers.]
CALIBAN: Ha, ha,
STEPHANO: Now, forward with
your tale.—Prithee stand further off.
CALIBAN: Beat him enough:
after a little time
I’ll beat him
STEPHANO: Stand further [farther away].—Come, proceed.
CALIBAN: Why, as I told
thee, ’tis a custom with him
I’ the afternoon to sleep: there
thou may’st brain him,
Having first seiz’d his books; or
with a log
Batter his skull, or paunch him
with a stake [plunge a stake into his belly],
Or cut his wezand with thy knife.
Weasand (pronounced WIZ ind or WEEZ ind), throat]
First to possess his books; for
He’s but a sot [drunkard], as I am, nor hath
One spirit to command: they all
do hate him
As rootedly as I. Burn but his
He has brave utensils [furnishings for
interior decor],—for so
he calls them,—
Which, when he has a house, he’ll
deck [decorate] withal [with]:
And that most deeply to consider
The beauty of his daughter; he
Calls her a nonpareil [person without
equal; pronounced non puh RAIL or non
puh REL]: I never saw a
But only Sycorax my dam [my mother] and she;
But she as far surpasseth
As great’st does
[But she . . .
least: But she far surpasses Sycorax in beauty.]
STEPHANO: Is it so brave [wonderful] a lass?
CALIBAN: Ay, lord; she will
become thy bed, I warrant,
And bring thee forth brave
STEPHANO: Monster, I will
kill this man: his daughter and I will be king and queen,—save our
graces! and Trinculo and thyself shall be viceroys. Dost thou like
the plot, Trinculo?
STEPHANO: Give me thy hand:
I am sorry I beat thee; but, while thou livest, keep a good tongue
in thy head.
CALIBAN: Within this half
hour will he be asleep;
Wilt thou destroy him
STEPHANO: Ay, on mine
ARIEL: This will I tell my
CALIBAN: Thou mak’st me
merry: I am full of pleasure.
Let us be jocund: will you troll
[sing] the catch [song]
You taught me but while-ere [just moments ago]?
STEPHANO: At thy request,
monster, I will do reason, any reason: Come on, Trinculo, let us
Flout [mock] ’em, and scout [scorn] ’em; and scout ’em,
and flout ’em;
CALIBAN: That’s not the
tune. [ARIEL plays the tune on a tabor [small drum] and pipe.
Thought is free.
STEPHANO: What is this
TRINCULO: This is the tune
of our catch, played by the picture of Nobody [by someone we
STEPHANO: If thou beest [are] a man, show thyself in thy likeness:
if thou beest a devil, take ’t as thou list [take any form that
TRINCULO: O, forgive me my
STEPHANO: He that dies pays
all debts [is forgiven all his sins]: I defy thee.—Mercy upon us!
CALIBAN: Art thou
STEPHANO: No, monster, not
CALIBAN: Be not afeard: the
isle is full of noises,
Sounds and sweet airs, that give
delight, and hurt not.
Sometimes a thousand twangling [same as twanging] instruments
Will hum about mine ears; and
That, if I then had wak’d after
Will make me sleep again: and
then, in dreaming,
The clouds methought would open
and show riches
Ready to drop upon me; that, when
I cried to dream
STEPHANO: This will prove a
brave [wonderful] kingdom to me, where I shall have my
music for nothing.
CALIBAN: When Prospero is
STEPHANO: That shall be by
and by: I remember the story.
TRINCULO: The sound is
going away: let’s follow it, and after do our
STEPHANO: Lead, monster;
we’ll follow.—I would I could see this taborer [drummer]! he lays it on. Wilt
TRINCULO: I’ll follow,
Another part of the island.
Enter ALONSO, SEBASTIAN, ANTONIO,
GONZALO, ADRIAN, FRANCISCO, and others.
GONZALO: By ’r lakin [by Our Lady], I can go no further,
My old bones ache: here’s a maze
Through forth-rights, and
meanders! by your patience,
[here's a . . .
meanders: We're in a maze that sometimes takes us on straight
paths and sometimes wanders this way and that.]
I needs must rest
ALONSO: Old lord, I cannot
Who am myself attach’d with
To the dulling of my spirits: sit
down, and rest.
Even here I will put off my hope,
and keep it
No longer for my flatterer: he is
Whom thus we stray to find; and
the sea mocks
Our frustrate search on land.
Well, let him go.
[Even here . . . him go: Right
here, I am losing all hope of ever finding Ferdinand alive. He
must have drowned. The sounds of the sea mock our frustrating
search for him on land. Well, maybe it's time to face the truth.
He is dead.
ANTONIO [Aside to SEBASTIAN]: I am right glad
that he’s so out of hope.
Do not, for one repulse, forego
That you resolv’d to
[Do not . . .
effect: Don't for a single minute give up on the plan we devised.]
SEBASTIAN [Aside to ANTONIO]: The next
Will we take
[The next . . .
throughly: The next chance we get, we'll go through with the
ANTONIO [Aside to
SEBASTIAN]: Let it be to-night;
For, now they are oppress’d with
Will not, nor cannot, use such
vigilance [be as watchful]
As when they are
SEBASTIAN [Aside to ANTONIO]: I say to-night: no
Solemn and strange music; and
PROSPERO above, invisible. Enter below several strange shapes,
bringing in a banquet: they dance about it with gentle actions of
salutation; and, inviting the king, &c., to eat, they depart.
ALONSO: What harmony is
this? my good friends, hark!
GONZALO: Marvellous sweet
ALONSO: Give us kind
keepers, heavens! [Be kind to us, heavens!] What were these [what did we just
SEBASTIAN: A living
drollery [unusual or whimsical event]. Now I will believe
That there are unicorns; that in
There is one tree, the phoenix’
throne; one phoenix
At this hour reigning
Egyptian mythology, the phoenix was a bird that lived five hundred
years, then died in a fire after the sun ignited an Arabian tree
on which the phoenix was perched. The tree was located near
Heliopolis, Egypt. From the ashes, the phoenix rose to new life.]
ANTONIO: I’ll believe
And what does else want credit,
come to me,
[And what . . .
me: And I'll believe whatever else is presented to me as fact]
And I’ll be sworn ’tis true:
travellers ne’er did lie,
Though fools at home condemn
GONZALO: If in
I should report this now, would
they believe me?
If I should say I saw such
For, certes [certain], these are people of the
Who, though they are of monstrous
shape, yet, note,
Their manners are more
gentle-kind than of
Our human generation you shall
Many, nay, almost
[Who, though .
. . any: Who, though they look like monsters, are far more gentle
than almost any human being]
PROSPERO [Aside]: Honest
Thou hast said well; for some of
you there present
Are worse than devils.
Honest . . .
devils: Honest Gonzalo, you have spoken the truth, for some of the
humans in your company are worse than devils.]
ALONSO: I cannot too much
Such shapes, such gesture, and
such sound, expressing,—
Although they want the use of
Of excellent dumb
[I cannot too .
. . discourse: I'm amazed at what I am beholding: the shapes, the
gestures, the sounds. Although they do not speak as we do, they
communicate in a silent, eloquent way.]
PROSPERO [Aside]: Praise in departing. [I praise you as
FRANCISCO: They vanish’d
SEBASTIAN: No matter,
They have left their viands [food] behind; for we have
Will ’t please you to taste of
what is here?
GONZALO: Faith, sir, you
need not fear. When we were boys,
Who would believe that there were
Dew-lapp’d like bulls, whose
throats had hanging at them
Dewlapped, having loose skin hanging from the neck]
Wallets of flesh? or that there
were such men
Whose heads stood in their
breasts? which now we find
[Whose . . .
breasts: Allusion to accounts in The Discovery of
(1596), by Sir Walter Raleigh. Guiana is in northeast South
America; it includes regions in Venezuela, Brazil, Guyana, French
Guiana, and Suriname. In The Discovery of Guiana, Raleigh wrote
about his explorations in Guiana, claim there was a race of people
there with eyes in their shoulders and mouths in their chests.]
Each putter-out of five for one
will bring us
Good warrant of.
[putter-out . . . one: Of this term,
G.B. Harrison says, "In Shakespeare's time, voyages to distant
and strange ports were so risky that the traveler sometimes left
a sum of money with a merchant at home on condition that he
should receive five times the amount if he returned . . . "
(footnote on page 1492 of Shakespeare:
The Complete Works, published by Harcourt in New York
ALONSO: I will stand to and
[warrant: Proof; guarantee]
Although my last; no matter, since I
The best is past.—Brother, my
lord the duke,
Stand to and do as
. . . as we: Although this my last meal, it doesn't matter; for
the best of my life is over. My brother, Duke Prospero, please
Thunder and lightning. Enter
ARIEL like a harpy; claps his wings upon the table; and, with a
quaint device, the banquet vanishes.
Greek mythology, a woman with the wings, talons, and tail feathers
of a bird.]
ARIEL: You are three men of
sin, whom Destiny—
That hath to instrument this
And what is in ’t,—the
Hath caused to belch up you; and
on this island
Where man doth not inhabit; you
Being most unfit to live. I have
made you mad; [Seeing ALONSO:, SEBASTIAN:, &c., draw
[Destiny . . .
made you mad: Destiny, which determines the fortunes of the those
in this lower world, has caused the sea to belch you up onto this
island. No men inhabit this place, since you are so corrupt you
are unfit to live anywhere. I had made you mad.]
And even with such-like valour
men hang and drown
Their proper selves. You fools! I
and my fellows
. . . selves: In such a state of madness, even men of valor hang
or drown themselves.]
Are ministers of fate: the
Of whom your swords are temper’d,
may as well
Wound the loud winds, or with
Kill the still-closing waters, as
One dowle that’s in my plume; my
Are like invulnerable. If you
[the elements .
. . invulnerable: Your swords, no matter what elements go into
their making, would have more success stabbing at wind or water
than they would trying damage a single feather on my wings. Those
who accompany me are also invulnerable to your sword stabs and
Your swords are now too massy for
your strengths [too heavy for you to lift].
And will not be uplifted. But,
For that’s my business to
you,—that you three
From Milan did supplant [overthrow] good Prospero;
Expos’d unto the sea, which hath
requit it [which has paid you back for your wrongdoing],
Him and his innocent child: for
which foul deed
The powers, delaying, not
Incens’d the seas and shores,
yea, all the creatures,
Against your peace. Thee of thy
They have bereft [taken away]; and do pronounce, by me,
Lingering perdition,—worse than
Can be at once,—shall step by
You and your ways; whose wraths
to guard you from—
Which here in this most desolate
isle, else falls
Upon your heads,—is nothing but
And a clear life
[Thee of thy .
. . your ways: The higher powers have taken your son from you. And
they have pronounced that, through me, you should experience a
hellish existence worse than death. I shall follow you step by
step to monitor you and your actions. The only way you can avoid
the wrath of the higher powers on this desolate island is to
repent for your sins and resolve to live uprightly henceforward.]
He vanishes in thunder: then, to
soft music, enter the Shapes again, and dance with mocks and mows
[frowns], and carry out the table.
PROSPERO: [Aside.] Bravely [wondrously;
perfectly] the figure of
this harpy hast thou
Perform’d, my Ariel; a grace it
Of my instruction hast thou
nothing bated [lessened; diminished]
In what thou hadst to say: so,
with good life
And observation strange, my
Their several kinds have done. My
high charms work,
And these mine enemies are all
In their distractions: they now
are in my power;
[so, with . . .
power: So did the different kinds of my lesser spirits, putting
vigor and strange looks into their excellent performance. My magic
has worked, and my enemies are all thinking about their unnerving
experiences. They are in my power.]
And in these fits I leave them,
while I visit
Young Ferdinand,—whom they
suppose is drown’d,—
And his and mine lov’d
darling. [Exit above.
GONZALO: I’ the name of
something holy, sir, why stand you
In this strange
ALONSO: O, it is monstrous!
Methought the billows [billowing waves] spoke and told me of
The winds did sing it to me; and
That deep and dreadful
The name of Prosper [Prospero]: it did bass my trespass [it deeply spoke of
my wrongdoing against him].
Therefore my son i’ th’ ooze is
I’ll seek him deeper than e’er
And with him there lie
[Therefore . .
. mudded: Therefore, my son is lying dead at the bottom of the
sea, deeper than any seaman ever measured, and I will soon join
SEBASTIAN: But one fiend at a
I’ll fight their legions
ANTONIO: I’ll be thy
second. [Exeunt SEBASTIAN: and ANTONIO:
GONZALO: All three of them
are desperate; their great guilt,
Like poison given to work a great
Now ’gins to bite the spirits.—I
do beseech you
That are of suppler joints,
follow them swiftly
And hinder them from what this
May now provoke them
ADRIAN: Follow, I pray you.
Before Prospero's cell.
Enter PROSPERO, FERDINAND, and
PROSPERO: If I have too
austerely punish’d you,
Your compensation makes amends;
Have given you here a third of
mine own life,
Or that for which I live; whom
I tender to thy hand: all thy
Were but my trials of thy love,
Hast strangely stood the test:
here, afore Heaven,
I ratify this my rich gift. O
Do not smile at me that I boast
her off [brag about her],
For thou shalt find she will
outstrip all praise,
And make it halt behind
FERDINAND: I do believe
[I do . . .
oracle: I would believe what you say even if a great seer or
prophet told me the contrary.]
PROSPERO: Then, as my gift
and thine own acquisition
Worthily purchas’d, take my
If thou dost break her virgin
All sanctimonious ceremonies
With full and holy rite be
No sweet aspersion shall the
heavens let fall
To make this contract grow; but
Sour-ey’d disdain and discord
The union of your bed with weeds
That you shall hate it both:
therefore take heed,
As Hymen’s lamps shall light you.
[Then, as my .
. . light you: Then take Miranda as a gift worthily earned. But if
you steal her virginity before you are married in holy rites, the
heavens will frown on your union. Hatred, disdain, and discord
shall befoul your marriage bed. So take heed. And be aware that
Hymen, the god of marriage, will be watching you.]
FERDINAND: As I
For quiet days, fair issue [fair children] and long life,
With such love as ’tis now, the
The most opportune place, the
Our worser genius can, shall
Mine honour into lust, to take
The edge of that day’s
When I shall think, or Phoebus’
steeds are founder’d,
Or Night kept chain’d
[the murkiest .
. . below: Nothing can make me violate her virginity before
marriage. Murky dens and other opportune places may tempt me to
seduce Miranda, but I won't give in to lust. Instead, I'll wait
for the day of our wedding celebration. If the sun god, Phoebus
Apollo, seems to drive his golden chariot across the sky too
slowly on that day and if Night is kept in chains, I'll still wait
for the sun to go down and darkness to overspread the earth before
I'll go to my marriage bed. (In Greek mythology, Phoebus Apollo
was the sun god. Each day, he drove his horse-drawn golden
chariot, the sun, across the sky.]
Sit then, and talk with her, she
is thine own.
What, Ariel! my industrious
ARIEL: What would my potent
master? [What do you wish, my potent master?] here I am.
PROSPERO: Thou and thy
meaner fellows your last service
Did worthily perform; and I must
In such another trick. Go bring
the rabble [Alonso and his friends],
O’er whom I give thee power, here
to this place:
Incite them to quick motion [incite them to
action]; for I
Bestow upon the eyes of this
Some vanity [show; display] of mine art [magic]: it is my promise,
And they expect it from
PROSPERO: Ay, with a
ARIEL: Before you can say,
‘Come,’ and ‘Go,’
And breathe twice; and cry, ‘so,
Each one, tripping on his
Will be here with mop and
[Before you . .
. mow: I'll bring them to you in an instANTONIO:]
Do you love me, master?
PROSPERO: Dearly [I love you dearly] my delicate Ariel. Do not
Till thou dost hear me
ARIEL: Well, I conceive [understand]. [Exit.
PROSPERO to FERDINAND:
Look, thou be true; do not give dalliance
Too much the rein: the strongest
oaths are straw
To the fire i’ the blood: be more
Or else good night your
[Look, thou . .
. your vow: Now look. I expect you to be true to your word. Don't
give your strong physical feelings for my daughter too much rein.
Your fiery passion could easily burn the straw of your promises.
So control your passions and be celibate until the right time. If
you fail to do as I say, good-bye.]
FERDINAND: I warrant you,
The white-cold virgin snow upon
Abates the ardour of my
[The white . .
. liver: The desire to preserve the snow-white virginity of your
daughter overcomes the heat of my passion.]
Now come, my Ariel! bring a
corollary [bring one of your attendants],
Rather than want a spirit:
appear, and pertly.
No tongue! all eyes! be
silent. [Don't speak. Just watch and be quiet.] [Soft music.
A masque [An entertainment]. Enter IRIS.
following passage (lines 71-86), the messenger goddess Iris
addresses the goddess of agriculture, Ceres, asking her to leave
her domain to spend time on Prospero's island to help entertain
the queen of the gods, Juno.
IRIS: Ceres, most bounteous
lady, thy rich leas [meadows]
[Iris: In classical ancient
mythology, the messenger goddess and goddess of the rainbow]
Of wheat, rye, barley, vetches [plants of the pea
family], oats, and
[Ceres: In classical ancient
mythology, the goddess of agriculture. Her Greek name was
Thy turfy mountains, where live
And flat meads thatch’d with
stover [dries leaves and stalks of crops, used as fodder], them to keep;
Thy banks with pioned [having many
flowers] and twilled [having interwoven
Which spongy April at thy hest [request] betrims,
To make cold nymphs chaste
crowns; and thy broom [shrub with yellow flowers] groves,
Whose shadow the dismissed [rejected] bachelor loves,
Being lass-lorn [without a lass;
without a girlfriend];
thy pole-clipt vineyard;
And thy sea-marge [seacoast], sterile and
Where thou thyself dost air [bask]: the queen o’ the
[queen of the
sky: The queen of the gods in ancient mythology. Her Greek name
was Hera; her Roman name was Juno. Shakespeare uses the Roman
Whose watery arch [rainbow] and messenger am I,
Bids thee leave [asks you to leave] these; and with her sovereign
Here on this grass-plot, in this
To come and sport; her peacocks
fly amain [fly speedily]:
Approach, rich Ceres, her to
entertain [to entertain her].
CERES: Hail, many-colour’d
messenger, that ne’er
Dost disobey the wife of Jupiter
Who with thy saffron wings upon
Diffusest honey-drops, refreshing
And with each end of thy blue bow
My bosky acres, and my unshrubb’d
Rich scarf to my proud earth; why
hath thy queen
Summon’d me hither, to this
[Who with . . .
green: With your saffron wings, Iris, you release honey and
refreshing rain showers on my flowers. With each end of your
rainbow, you crown my thicketed lands and my soft, unshrubbed
plains. Why have you summoned me to this place, to this
IRIS: A contract of true
love to celebrate,
And some donation freely to
On the bless’d
CERES: Tell me, heavenly
If Venus [goddess of love;
Greek name, Aphrodite] or
her son [Cupid, god of love; Greek name, Eros], as thou dost know,
Do now attend the queen [Juno]? since they did
The means that dusky Dis [Pluto (Hades), god
of the Underworld],
my daughter got,
Her and her blind boy’s scandal’d
IRIS: Of her
Be not afraid; I met her
Cutting the clouds towards Paphos
town and worship center for Venus] and her son
Dove-drawn with her. Here thought
they to have done
Some wanton charm upon this man
Whose vows are, that no bed-rite
shall be paid
Till Hymen’s [Hymen: god of
marriage] torch be
lighted; but in vain:
Mars’s hot minion is return’d
[Mars's . . .
again: Mars's lover, Venus, has returned again. Mars (Greek name,
Ares) was the god of war.]
Her waspish-headed son [Cupid] has broke his
Swears he will shoot no more, but
play with sparrows,
And be a boy right
CERES: Highest queen of
Great Juno comes; I know her by
JUNO: How does my bounteous
sister? [Ceres was Juno's sister.] Go with me
To bless this twain [Ferdinand and
Miranda], that they may
And honour’d in their issue [children].
Honour, riches, marriage-blessing,
Long continuance, and increasing,
Hourly joys be still upon you!
Juno sings her blessings on you.
Earth’s increase, foison [harvest]
Barns and garners [granaries]
Vines, with clust’ring bunches [of
Plants with goodly burden bowing;
Spring come to you at the farthest
In the very end of harvest!
[Spring . . . May spring come to
you immediately after the autumn harvest!]
Scarcity and want shall shun you;
Ceres’ blessing so is on you.
FERDINAND: This is a most
majestic vision, and
Harmonious charmingly: May I be
To think these
PROSPERO: Spirits, which by
I have from their confines call’d
FERDINAND: Let me live here
So rare a wonder’d father and a
Makes this place Paradise.
[JUNO and CERES whisper, and send IRIS an
PROSPERO: Sweet, now,
Juno and Ceres whisper
There’s something else to do:
hush, and be mute,
Or else our spell is
IRIS: You nymphs, call’d
Naiades, of the winding brooks,
Plural of naiad (pronounced NAY id or NY id). In Greek
mythology, a naiad was a beautiful maiden, or nymph, inhabiting
waterways and forests.]
With your sedg’d crowns [sedge: plant
resembling grass], and
Leave your crisp channels, and on
this green land
Answer your summons: Juno does
Come, temperate nymphs, and help
A contract of true love: be not
Enter certain nymphs.
You sun-burn’d sicklemen [farm laborers
wielding sickles], of
Come hither from the furrow, and
Make holiday: your rye-straw hats
And these fresh nymphs encounter
[And these . .
. footing: And dance with these beautiful maidens]
Enter certain reapers [field hands;
habited [dressed]: they
join with the nymphs in a graceful dance; towards the end whereof
PROSPERO starts suddenly, and speaks; after which, to a strange,
hollow, and confused noise, they heavily vanish.
PROSPERO: [Aside.] I had forgot that foul
Of the beast Caliban, and his
Against my life: the minute of
Is almost come.—[To the
spirits.] Well done! avoid [stop performing]; no more!
FERDINAND: This is strange:
your father’s in some passion
That works him
MIRANDA: Never till this
Saw I him touch’d with anger so
PROSPERO: You do look, my
son, in a mov’d sort [in a worried way]
As if you were dismay’d: be
Our revels now are ended. These
As I foretold you, were all
Are melted into air, into thin
And, like the baseless fabric of
The cloud-capp’d towers, the
The solemn temples, the great
Yea, all which it inherit, shall
And, like this insubstantial
Leave not a rack behind. We are
[And, like . .
. rack behind: Like this dreamlike vision, towers that soar into
the clouds, gorgeous palaces, solemn temples, and the earth itself
will all eventually disappear, leaving nothing behind.]
As dreams are made on, and our
Is rounded with a sleep.—Sir, I
Bear with my weakness; my old
brain is troubled.
Be not disturb’d with my
If you be pleas’d, retire into my
And there repose: a turn or two
To still my beating
FERDINAND and MIRANDA: We
wish your peace. [Exeunt.
PROSPERO: Come with a
thought!—[To them.] I thank thee: Ariel, come! [Ariel, come to me
at the speed of thought!]
ARIEL: Thy thoughts I
cleave to. What’s thy pleasure?
We must prepare to meet with
ARIEL: Ay, my commander;
when I presented Ceres,
I thought to have told thee of
it; but I fear’d
Lest I might anger
PROSPERO: Say again, where
didst thou leave these varlets [villains]?
ARIEL: I told you, sir,
they were red-hot with drinking;
So full of valour that they smote
[struck] the air
For breathing in their faces;
beat the ground
For kissing of their feet; yet
Towards their project. Then I
beat my tabor;
[yet always . .
. tabor: Yet they never forgot their project to kill you. Then I
beat my drum.]
At which, like unback’d [riderless; never
saddled] colts, they
prick’d their ears,
Advanc’d their eyelids, lifted up
As they smelt music: so I charm’d
That, calf-like, they my lowing
Tooth’d briers, sharp furzes,
pricking goss and thorns,
Which enter’d their frail shins:
at last I left them
I’ the filthy-mantled pool beyond
There dancing up to the chins,
that the foul lake
[so I charm'd .
. . their feet: So I put a spell on their ears, which made them
follow--like calves--the mooing sound I made. I led them through a
patch of plants with briers, sharp spines, and thorns. These
prickly plants scratched their frail shins. Afterward, I left them
standing in the pool beyond your cell. Its filthy scum left a
horrible smell on their feet, and they reacted by jumping and
PROSPERO: This was well
done, my bird.
Thy shape invisible retain thou
The trumpery in my house, go
bring it hither,
For stale to catch these
[Thy shape . .
. thieves: Remain invisible. Then fetch the gawdy clothes in my
house. I'll use them to attract these thieves.]
ARIEL: I go, I go.
PROSPERO: A devil, a born
devil, on whose nature
Nurture can never stick; on whom
Humanely taken, are all lost,
And as with age his body uglier
So his mind cankers. I will
plague them all,
[A devil . . .
them all: That Caliban is a born devil who will never change. All
my pains to train and educate him are lost. As his body grows
uglier with age, his mind grows madder and madder. I will torment
all of them.]
Even to roaring. [Re-enter
ARIEL, loaden [loaded down] with glistering [bright-colored] apparel, &c.
Come, hang them on this line [lime tree].
PROSPERO and ARIEL remain
invisible. Enter CALIBAN, STEPHANO, and TRINCULO, all wet.
CALIBAN: Pray you, tread
softly, that the blind mole may not
Hear a foot fall: we now are near
STEPHANO: Monster, your
fairy, which you say is a harmless fairy, has done little better
than played the Jack with [play tricks on] us.
TRINCULO: Monster, I do
smell all [smell like]
horse-piss; at which my nose is in great
STEPHANO: So is mine.—Do
you hear, monster? If I should take a displeasure against you,
TRINCULO: Thou wert but a
CALIBAN: Good my lord, give
me thy favour still:
Be patient, for the prize I’ll
bring thee to
Shall hoodwink this mischance [make the smell
seem like perfume]:
therefore speak softly;
All’s hush’d as midnight
TRINCULO: Ay, but to lose
our bottles in the pool,—
STEPHANO: There is not only
disgrace and dishonour in that, monster, but an infinite
TRINCULO: That’s more to me
than my wetting [losing that bottle was worse than getting
wet]: yet this is your
harmless fairy, monster.
STEPHANO: I will fetch off
my bottle, though I be o’er ears [in deep water] for my labour.
CALIBAN: Prithee [please], my king, be quiet. Seest thou
This is the mouth o’ the cell: no
noise, and enter.
Do that good mischief, which may
make this island
Thine own for ever, and I, thy
For aye thy foot-licker.
[I, thy . . .
foot-licker: I, Caliban, your lowly servANTONIO:]
STEPHANO: Give me thy hand:
I do begin to have bloody thoughts.
TRINCULO: O king Stephano!
O peer [companion; friend]! O worthy Stephano! look, what a wardrobe here is for
CALIBAN: Let it alone, thou
fool; it is but trash.
TRINCULO: O, ho, monster!
we know what belongs to a frippery [we know the
difference between fine clothes and gawdy ones].—O king Stephano!
STEPHANO: Put off that
gown, Trinculo; by this hand, I’ll have that
TRINCULO: Thy grace shall
CALIBAN: The dropsy [affliction
characterized by accumulation of fluid in body tissues or
cavities] drown this
fool! what do you mean
To dote thus on such luggage?
And do the murder first: if he
From toe to crown he’ll fill our
skins with pinches;
Make us strange stuff [do strange things
to us; turn us into strange creatures].
STEPHANO: Be you quiet,
monster.—Mistress line [Mistress lime tree], is not this my jerkin [close-fitting,
sleeveless jacket]? Now
is the jerkin under the line: now, jerkin, you are like to lose your hair and prove a
[Now is the . .
. bald jerkin: This time, line refers to the
equator, according to G. B. Harrison. The equator is the imaginary
circle that separates northern and southern hemispheres. Harrison
says disease that caused the hair to fall out was commonplace
among persons who traveled below the equator (footnote on page
1497 of Shakespeare: The Complete Works, published by
Harcourt in New York in 1952).]
TRINCULO: Do, do [do take the
jerkin]: we steal by line
and level, an ’t like your grace. [your grace, we
steal things here with straightforward honesty that is always on
the level, like a brick laid exactly flat].
STEPHANO: I thank thee for
that jest; here’s a garment for ’t: wit [clever
conversation] shall not
go unrewarded while I am king of this country: ‘Steal by line and
level,’ is an excellent pass of pate [pun; comment]; there’s another garment for
TRINCULO: Monster, come,
put some lime upon your fingers, and away with the rest [put some sticky
birdlime on your fingers so that you won't drop any of the other
things that you carry away].
CALIBAN: I will have none
on ’t: we shall lose our time [opportunity],
And all be turn’d to barnacles,
or to apes
With foreheads villanous [villainous] low.
STEPHANO: Monster, lay-to
your fingers: help to bear this away where my hogshead of wine is,
or I’ll turn you out of my kingdom. Go to; carry
STEPHANO: Ay, and
A noise of hunters heard. Enter
spirits, in shape of hounds, and hunt them about [and are sniffing
around, as if hunting prey]; PROSPERO and ARIEL setting them on.
PROSPERO: Hey, Mountain,
ARIEL: Silver! there it
PROSPERO: Fury, Fury! there,
Tyrant, there! hark, hark! [CAL., STEPHANO:, and TRIN. are
Go, charge my goblins that they
grind their joints
With dry convulsions; shorten up
With aged cramps, and more
pinch-spotted make them
Than pard [than a leopard], or cat o’
[charge . . .
sinews: Tell my goblins to dry up their joints so that their bones
grind. Give them muscle cramps and pinch them enough to give them
spots all over.]
ARIEL: Hark! they
PROSPERO: Let them be
hunted soundly. At this hour
Lie at my mercy all mine
Shortly shall all my labours end,
Shalt have the air at freedom:
for a little [for a little while longer],
Follow, and do me service.
Everyone leaves the stage.]
Before the cell of Prospero.
Enter PROSPERO in his magic
robes; and ARIEL.
PROSPERO: Now does my
project gather to a head:
My charms crack not [my magic is
working]; my spirits
obey, and time
Goes upright with his carriage.
How’s the day?
[time . . .
day: Everything is happening on schedule. What time is it?]
ARIEL: On the sixth hour;
at which time, my lord,
You said our work should
PROSPERO: I did say
When first I rais’d the tempest.
Say, my spirit,
How fares the king and’s [and his] followers?
In the same fashion as you gave
Just as you left them: all
In the line-grove [lime-tree grove] which weather-fends your cell [which protects
your cell against the weather];
They cannot budge till your
release. The king,
His brother, and yours, abide all
And the remainder mourning over
Brimful of sorrow and dismay; but
Him, that you term’d, sir, ‘The
good old lord Gonzalo:’
His tears run down his beard,
like winter’s drops
From eaves of reeds; your charm
so strongly works them,
That if you now beheld them, your
PROSPERO: Dost thou think
ARIEL: Mine would, sir,
were I human.
PROSPERO: And mine
Hast thou, which art but air, a
touch, a feeling
Of their afflictions, and shall
One of their kind, that relish
all as sharply,
Passion as they, be kindlier
mov’d than thou art?
Though with their high wrongs I
am struck to the quick,
Yet with my nobler reason ’gainst
Do I take part: the rarer action
In virtue than in vengeance: they
The sole drift of my purpose doth
Not a frown further. Go, release
[Though with .
. . them, Ariel: Though I am very angry about the wrongs they did
me, my reason rules my anger. It is better to show mercy than to
seek vengeance. Since they appear to be sorry for what they did, I
don't want to take any more action against them. So go release
My charms I’ll break, their
senses I’ll restore,
And they shall be
ARIEL: I’ll fetch them,
PROSPERO: Ye elves of
hills, brooks, standing lakes, and groves;
And ye, that on the sands with
Do chase the ebbing Neptune and
do fly him
When he comes back; you demi-puppets,
Neptune was the
name of the god of the sea in Roman mythology. His Greek name was
By moonshine do the green sour
Whereof the ewe not bites; and
you, whose pastime
Is to make midnight mushrooms;
To hear the solemn curfew; by
Weak masters though ye be—I have
The noontide sun, call’d forth
the mutinous winds,
And ’twixt the green sea and the
Set roaring war: to the
Have I given fire and rifted
Jove’s stout oak
With his own bolt: the
Have I made shake; and by the
spurs pluck’d up
The pine and cedar: graves at my
Have wak’d their sleepers, op’d,
and let them forth
By my so potent art. But this
I here abjure; and, when I have
Some heavenly music,—which even
now I do,—
To work mine end upon their
This airy charm is for, I’ll
break my staff,
Bury it certain fathoms in the
And, deeper than did ever plummet
I’ll drown my book. [Solemn
All of you elves have helped me perform my magic--first, the elves
who chase the outgoing sea tide without making footprints in the
sand and who run away when the tide returns; next, you tiny
creatures smaller than puppets that make circles in the grass,
circles that grazing animals stay away from. Then, those who cause
mushrooms to grow at midnight, after the curfew has sounded. With
your assistance, I have dimmed the noon sun, summoned wild winds,
and started a roaring war between the green sea and the blue sky.
To the booming thunder, I have given the power of fiery lightning
that struck and split the stout oak tree of the king of the gods,
Jupiter. I shook the cliff and uprooted pine and cedar trees. At
my command, the sleepers in graves have awakened. But the magic I
used to cause these events I now renounce. And, when the time
comes that I require some heavenly music--which even now I do--to
work my magic upon my visitors, I will break my magic staff and
bury it deep in the earth. Moreover, deep in the sea I'll drown my
book of magic.
Re-enter ARIEL: after him,
ALONSO, with a frantic gesture, attended by GONZALO; SEBASTIAN and
ANTONIO in like manner, attended by ADRIAN and FRANCISCO: they all
enter the circle which PROSPERO had made, and there stand charmed;
which PROSPERO observing, speaks.
A solemn air and the best
To an unsettled fancy, cure thy
Now useless, boil’d within thy
skull! There stand,
For you are
solemn music, the best comforter of an unsettled mind, cure the
fever boiling in your brains. Remain standing there, spellbound,
for a time.]
Holy Gonzalo, honourable
Mine eyes, even sociable to the
show of thine,
Fall fellowly drops. The charm
[Mine eyes . .
. apace: My eyes, when they behold your eyes, cry tears in
sympathy for you. The spell I have been working will subside in a
And as the morning steals upon
Melting the darkness, so their
Begin to chase the ignorant fumes
Their clearer reason.—O good
[And as . . .
reason (Prospero speaks to himself): As the early morning
progresses, day will overcome night and these men will begin to
come to their senses.]
My true preserver, and a loyal
To him thou follow’st, I will pay
thy graces [will reward you]
Home, both in word and deed.—Most
Didst thou, Alonso, use me and my
Thy brother was a furtherer in
Thou’rt pinch’d for ’t now,
Sebastian.—Flesh and blood,
You, brother mine, that
Expell’d remorse and nature; who,
Whose inward pinches therefore
are most strong,—
Would here have kill’d your king;
I do forgive thee,
Unnatural though thou art!—Their
Begins to swell, and the
Will shortly fill the reasonable
That now lie foul and muddy. Not
one of them
understand . . . muddy: Their understanding of their wrongs begins
to rise, like an ocean wave, and the approaching tide will clear
their minds of the foul and muddy thinking that once occupied
That yet looks on me, or would
Fetch me the hat and rapier [sword] in my cell:— [Exit
I will discase me, and myself
As I was sometime Milan.—Quickly,
[I will . . .
Milan: I will change clothes and present myself as the Duke of
Thou shalt ere [before] long be free.
ARIEL re-enters, singing, and
helps to attire PROSPERO.
Where the bee
sucks, there suck I
In a cowslip’s bell I lie;
There I couch when owls do cry.
On the bat’s back I do fly
After summer merrily:
Merrily, merrily shall I live now
Under the blossom that hangs on the bough.
PROSPERO: Why, that’s my
dainty Ariel! I shall miss thee;
But yet thou shalt have
freedom;—so, so, so.—
To the king’s ship, invisible as
There shalt thou find the
Under the hatches; the master and
Being awake, enforce them to this
[enforce . . .
place: Bring the boat-swain and the master to me.]
And presently, I
ARIEL: I drink the air
before me, and return
Or e’er your pulse twice
Or . . . beat:
Before your heart beats twice.]
GONZALO: All torment,
trouble, wonder, and amazement
Inhabits here: some heavenly
power guide us
Out of this fearful
PROSPERO: Behold, sir
The wronged Duke of Milan,
For more assurance that a living
Does now speak to thee, I embrace
And to thee and thy company I
ALONSO: Whe’r thou beest [whether you are] he or no,
Or some enchanted trifle to abuse
As late I have been, I not know:
Beats, as of flesh and blood;
and, since I saw thee,
Th’ affliction of my mind amends
[eases], with which,
I fear, a madness held me: this
An if this be at all—a most
Thy dukedom I resign, and do
Thou pardon me my wrongs.—But how
Be living, and be
PROSPERO: First, noble
Let me embrace thine age [embrace you]; whose honour
Be measur’d, or
GONZALO: Whether this
Or be not, I’ll not
[Whether . . .
swear: Am I imagining this or is it really happening?]
PROSPERO: You do yet
Some subtleties o’ the isle, that
will not let you
Believe things certain.—Welcome!
my friends all:—
[You do . . .
certain: You are still somewhat under the spell of this island and
find it difficult to accept what you see and hear.]
to SEBASTIAN and ANTONIO] But you, my brace of lords [my two lords], were I so minded,
I here could pluck his highness’
frown upon you,
And justify you traitors: at this
I will tell no
[I here . . .
tales: I could tell the king of your plot against him. However, at
this time, I will be silent about your traitorous activity.]
SEBASTIAN: [Aside.] The devil speaks in
For you, most wicked sir, whom to
Would even infect my mouth, I do
Thy rankest fault; all of them;
My dukedom of thee, which,
perforce, I know,
ALONSO: If thou beest [if you are] Prospero,
Give us particulars of thy
[Give . . .
preservation: Tell us the details of how you saved yourself long
How thou hast met us here, who
three hours since TIME 3 HOURS
Were wrack’d upon this shore;
where I have lost,—
How sharp the point of this
My dear son
PROSPERO: I am woe [am so sorry] for ’t, sir.
ALONSO: Irreparable is the
loss, and patience
Says it is past her
PROSPERO: I rather
You have not sought her help; of
whose soft grace,
For the like loss I have her
And rest myself
ALONSO: You the like loss! [What? You suffered
a loss like mine?]
PROSPERO: As great to me,
as late; and, supportable
To make the dear loss, have I
means much weaker
Than you may call to comfort you,
Have lost my
[As great . . . my daughter: To
me, a great loss--which occurred just recently. I have lost my
O heavens! that they were living
both in Naples,
The king and queen there! that
they were, I wish
Myself were mudded in that oozy
Where my son lies. When did you
lose your daughter?
[O . . . your
daughter lies: O heavens, I wish that they were living in Naples
as king and queen. If my wish could come true, I would willingly
take my son's place in his muddy grave at the bottom of the ocean.
When did you lose your daughter?]
PROSPERO: In this last tempest [I lost her in the
storm]. I perceive, these
At this encounter do so much
admire [at this encounter seem so amazed]
That they devour their reason,
and scarce think
Their eyes do offices of truth, their words
Are natural breath: but,
howsoe’er you have
Been justled from your senses,
know for certain
That I am Prospero and that very
Which was thrust forth of Milan;
who most strangely
Upon this shore, where you were
wrack’d, was landed,
To be the lord on ’t. No more yet
devour . . . yet of this: That they lose their reason and can
hardly believe what they see and that what they breathe is
ordinary air. Whatever the case, you should know that I am indeed
Prospero. I was forced out of my dukedom, Milan, and most
strangely cast ashore on this island, where you were shipwrecked.
I became lord of the island. But no more of this story now.]
For ’tis a chronicle of day by
Not a relation [story] for a breakfast nor
Befitting this first meeting.
This cell’s my court [ruler's place of
residence; place where a ruler's staff and friends meet]: here have I few
And subjects none abroad: pray
you, look in.
My dukedom since you have given
I will requite you with as good a
At least bring forth a wonder, to
As much as me my
[My dukedom . .
. me my dukedom: Since you have returned my dukedom to me, I will
repay you with as good a thing. It will please you as much as my
dukedom pleases me.]
The entrance of the cell opens,
and discovers FERDINAND and MIRANDA playing at chess.
MIRANDA: Sweet lord, you
play me false.
FERDINAND: No, my dearest
I would not for the
MIRANDA: Yes, for a score
of kingdoms you should wrangle,
And I would call it fair
ALONSO: If this
A vision of the island, one dear
Shall I twice
SEBASTIAN: A most high
FERDINAND: Though the seas
threaten, they are merciful:
I have curs’d them without
cause. [Kneels to ALONSO:
ALONSO: Now, all the
Of a glad father compass thee
Arise, and say how thou cam’st
How many goodly creatures are
How beauteous mankind is! O brave
That has such people in
PROSPERO: ’Tis new to
ALONSO: What is this maid,
with whom thou wast at play?
Your eld’st acquaintance cannot
be three hours:
Is she the goddess that hath
And brought us thus
[Is she . . .
together: Is she the goddess that separated us after the
shipwreck, then brought us back together?]
FERDINAND: Sir, she is
But by immortal Providence she’s
I chose her when I could not ask
For his advice, nor thought I had
Is daughter to this famous Duke
Of whom so often I have heard
But never saw before; of whom I
Receiv’d a second life; and
This lady makes him to
ALONSO: I am
But O! how oddly will it sound
Must ask my child
PROSPERO: There, sir,
Let us not burden our
With a heaviness [sadness] that’s gone.
GONZALO: I have inly
Or should have spoke ere [before] this. Look down, you
And on this couple drop a blessed
For it is you that have chalk’d
forth the way
Which brought us
ALONSO: I say, Amen,
GONZALO: Was Milan thrust
from Milan, that his issue
Should become kings of Naples? O,
[Was Milan . .
. Naples: Was the Duke of Milan, Prospero, forced out of Milan so
that his children could be heirs to the throne of Naples?]
Beyond a common joy, and set it
With gold on lasting pillars. In
Did Claribel her husband find at
And Ferdinand, her brother, found
Where he himself was lost;
Prospero [found] his
In a poor isle; and all of us [found] ourselves,
When no man was his own [when no
man was in possession of himself.] 240
ALONSO: [To FERDINAND and
MIRANDA] Give me your hands:
Let grief and sorrow still
embrace his heart
That doth not wish you
GONZALO: Be it so:
Re-enter ARIEL, with the master
and boatswain amazedly following.
O look, sir! look, sir! here are
more of us.
I prophesied, if a gallows were
This fellow could not drown.—Now,
That swear’st grace o’erboard,
not an oath on shore?
Hast thou no mouth by land? What
is the news?
[I prophesied .
. . news: On the ship, I predicted that this fellow (the
boatswain) would not drown but would eventually go to the gallows
on land. Now, you cursing blasphemer who threw acceptable
conversation and manners overboard, don't you have anything to say
on land? At least tell us the news.]
BOATSWAIN: The best news is
that we have safely found
Our king and company: the next,
Which but three glasses since we
gave out split,—
[Which . . .
split: Which but three hourglasses ago (three hours ago) we gave
up on because it broke up]
Is tight and yare [maneuverable;
ready to sail] and bravely rigg’d as when
We first put out to
ARIEL: [Aside to PROSPERO] Sir, all this
Have I done since I
PROSPERO: [Aside to
ARIEL] My tricksy spirit!
ALONSO: These are not
natural events; they strengthen
From strange to stranger.—Say,
how came you hither [here]?
BOATSWAIN: If I did think,
sir, I were well awake,
I’d strive to tell you. We were
dead of sleep [were sleeping soundly],
And,—how we know not,—all clapp’d
[confined] under hatches,
Where, but even now, with strange
and several noises
Of roaring, shrieking, howling,
And more diversity of sounds, all
We were awak’d; straightway, at
liberty [free to do as we pleased]:
Where we, in all her trim,
Our royal, good, and gallant
ship; our master
Capering to eye her [dancing around
joyfully as he eyed her]:
on a trice [in an instant],
so please you,
Even in a dream [as in a dream], were we divided from them [we were separated
from the crew],
And were brought moping
ARIEL: [Aside to PROSPERO] Was ’t well
PROSPERO: [Aside to
ARIEL] Bravely, my diligence! Thou shalt be
ALONSO: This is as strange
a maze as e’er men trod;
And there is in this business
more than nature
Was ever conduct of: some
Must rectify our
[This is . . .
knowledge: These events are as strange a maze as any that men ever
walked through. There is something unnatural about what has been
going on. We need some wise man to tell uswhat all this means.]
PROSPERO: Sir, my liege [sovereign; king],
Do not infest your mind with
The strangeness of this business:
at pick’d leisure
Which shall be shortly, single
I’ll resolve you,—
Which to you shall seem probable,—of
These happen’d accidents; till
when, be cheerful,
And think of each thing well.—[Aside to ARIEL] Come hither,
[Do not infest.
. . thing well: Don't dwell on the strangeness of what's been
happening here. Soon, at your leisure, I will explain everything,
which will seem probable instead of improbable. Till that time, be
cheerful and optimistic.]
Set Caliban and his companions
Untie the spell. [Exit
ARIEL.] How fares my gracious sir?
There are yet missing of your
Some few odd lads that you
Re-enter ARIEL, driving in
CALIBAN, STEPHANO, and TRINCULO, in their stolen
STEPHANO: Every man shift
for all the rest, and let no man take care for himself, for all is
but fortune.—Coragio! bully-monster,
[Every man . .
. Coragio: Every man should act on behalf of all of us instead of
looking out for his own selfish interests. Courage, good monster
TRINCULO: If these be true
spies [eyes] which I wear in my head, here’s a
CALIBAN: O Setebos! these
be brave spirits, indeed.
[Setebos: The god Caliban's mother
How fine my master is! I am
[brave: Excellent; wonderful]
He will chastise
What things are these, my lord
Will money buy
ANTONIO: Very like; one of
Is a plain fish, and, no doubt,
PROSPERO: Mark but [take notice of] the badges of these men, my
Servants wore badges identifying their masters.]
Then say, if they be true.—This
mis-shapen knave [Caliban],—
His mother was a witch; and one
That [she] could control the moon, make flows
[That . . .
ebbs: That she could control the moon and make the tides ebb and
And deal in her command without
These three have robb’d me; and
For he’s a bastard one,—had
plotted with them
To take my life: two of these
Must know and own; this thing of
[These three .
. . mine: The three of them robbed me and plotted to kill me. Two
of them (Antonio and Sebastian) you no doubt recognize as your
own. The third one--this creature of darkness--I acknowledge as
CALIBAN: I shall be
pinch’d to death
ALONSO: Is not this
Stephano, my drunken butler?
SEBASTIAN: He is drunk now:
where had he wine?
ALONSO: And Trinculo is
reeling-ripe: where should they
Find this grand liquor that hath
How cam’st thou in this
pickle? [How did you get so drunk?]
TRINCULO: I have been in
such a pickle since I saw you last that, I fear me, will never out
of my bones: I shall not fear fly-blowing.
[I have been .
. . fly-blowing: I have been so drunk since I last saw you that I
may never be sober again. With so much alcohol in my bones, at
least I won't have to worry about rotting away with flies laying
eggs in my mouth.]
SEBASTIAN: Why, how now,
STEPHANO: O! touch me not:
I am not Stephano, but a cramp.
PROSPERO: You’d be king of
the isle, sirrah?
STEPHANO: I should have
been a sore one then.
ALONSO: This is a strange
thing as e’er [ever] I look’d
on. [Pointing to CALIBAN.
PROSPERO: He is as
disproportion’d in his manners
As in his shape.—Go, sirrah, to
Take with you your companions: as
To have my pardon, trim it
[as you look .
. . handsomely: If you want my pardon, clean and decorate my cell
CALIBAN: Ay, that I will;
and I’ll be wise hereafter,
And seek for grace. What a
Was I, to take this drunkard for
And worship this dull
PROSPERO: Go to;
away! [Be off with you.]
ALONSO: Hence, and bestow
your luggage where you found it.
[Hence . . . found it: Get going.
And put that clothing back where you found it.]
SEBASTIAN: Or stole it,
rather. [Exeunt CALIBAN, STEPHANO, and
PROSPERO: Sir, I invite
your highness and your train
To my poor cell, where you shall
take your rest
For this one night; which—part of
With such discourse
[conversation] as, I not doubt, shall make it [the time]
Go quick away [pass quickly]; the story of my
And the particular accidents gone
Since I came to this isle: and in
I’ll bring you to your ship, and
so to Naples,
Where I have hope to see the
Of these our dear-beloved
And thence retire me to my Milan,
Every third thought shall be my
about preparing for my eventual death].
To hear the story of your life,
Take the ear strangely [be a strange story
PROSPERO: I’ll deliver
And promise you calm seas,
And sail so expeditious that
Your royal fleet far off.—[Aside to ARIEL.] My Ariel,
That is thy charge: then to the
Be free, and fare thou
well!—Please you, draw near. [Exeunt.
Spoken by PROSPERO.
Now my charms are all o’erthrown,
And what strength I have’s mine
Now that I have
renounced my magic, I must rely on my own strength.]
Which is most faint: now, ’tis
I must be here confin’d by you,
Or sent to Naples. Let me not,
[I must . . .
not: I must be confined here on the island by you, the audience,
or sent to Naples. Let me not be confined.]
Since I have my dukedom got
And pardon’d the deceiver, dwell
In this bare island by your
But release me from my bands
With the help of your good hands.
[With . . .
hands: With your hearty applause]
Gentle breath of yours my sails
Must fill, or else my project
[Gentle . . .
fails: The gentle breath of your cheers for what you have seen
must fill my sails; otherwise, my play fails.]
Which was to please. Now I want [lack]
Spirits to enforce, art to
And my ending is despair,
Unless I be reliev’d by prayer,
Which pierces so that it assaults
Mercy itself and frees all
[Now I want . .
. faults: Now that I don't have spirits to order around or magic
to cast spells, I'll probably end up in despair unless I am
supported by prayer. Prayer is so powerful that heaven itself
hears it and forgives all faults.]
As you from crimes would pardon’d
Let your indulgence set me