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Much Ado About Nothing - Act 4, scene 2
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Navigate this workMuch Ado About Nothing - Act 4, scene 2
Act 4, scene 2
Dogberry ineptly questions Borachio and Conrade about the deception of Claudio and Don Pedro. The Sexton has Borachio and Conrade bound and orders them taken to Leonato.Enter the Constables ⌜Dogberry and Verges,⌝ and the
Town Clerk, ⌜or Sexton,⌝ in gowns, ⌜with the Watch,
Conrade, and⌝ Borachio.
⌜DOGBERRY⌝ 2061 Is our whole dissembly appeared?
⌜VERGES⌝ 2062 O, a stool and a cushion for the Sexton.
⌜A stool is brought in; the Sexton sits.⌝
SEXTON 2063 Which be the malefactors?
⌜DOGBERRY⌝ 2064 Marry, that am I, and my partner.
⌜VERGES⌝ 2065 5Nay, that’s certain, we have the exhibition to
SEXTON 2067 But which are the offenders that are to be
2068 examined? Let them come before Master
p. 147⌜DOGBERRY⌝ 2070 10Yea, marry, let them come before me.
⌜Conrade and Borachio are brought forward.⌝
2071 What is your name, friend?
BORACHIO 2072 Borachio.
⌜DOGBERRY⌝ 2073 Pray, write down “Borachio.”—Yours,
CONRADE 2075 15I am a gentleman, sir, and my name is
⌜DOGBERRY⌝ 2077 Write down “Master Gentleman Conrade.”—
2078 Masters, do you serve God?
BORACHIO/CONRADE 2079 Yea, sir, we hope.
⌜DOGBERRY⌝ 2080 20Write down that they hope they serve
2081 God; and write God first, for God defend but God
2082 should go before such villains!—Masters, it is
2083 proved already that you are little better than false
2084 knaves, and it will go near to be thought so shortly.
2085 25 How answer you for yourselves?
CONRADE 2086 Marry, sir, we say we are none.
⌜DOGBERRY⌝ 2087 A marvelous witty fellow, I assure you,
2088 but I will go about with him.—Come you hither,
2089 sirrah, a word in your ear. Sir, I say to you it is
2090 30 thought you are false knaves.
BORACHIO 2091 Sir, I say to you we are none.
⌜DOGBERRY⌝ 2092 Well, stand aside.—’Fore God, they are
2093 both in a tale. Have you writ down that they are
SEXTON 2095 35Master constable, you go not the way to
2096 examine. You must call forth the watch that are
2097 their accusers.
⌜DOGBERRY⌝ 2098 Yea, marry, that’s the eftest way.—Let
2099 the watch come forth. Masters, I charge you in the
2100 40 Prince’s name, accuse these men.
FIRST WATCHMAN 2101 This man said, sir, that Don John, the
2102 Prince’s brother, was a villain.
⌜DOGBERRY⌝ 2103 Write down Prince John a villain. Why,
2104 this is flat perjury, to call a prince’s brother villain!
p. 149BORACHIO 2105 45Master constable—
⌜DOGBERRY⌝ 2106 Pray thee, fellow, peace. I do not like thy
2107 look, I promise thee.
SEXTON, ⌜to Watch⌝ 2108 What heard you him say else?
⌜SEACOAL⌝ 2109 Marry, that he had received a thousand
2110 50 ducats of Don John for accusing the Lady Hero
⌜DOGBERRY⌝ 2112 Flat burglary as ever was committed.
⌜VERGES⌝ 2113 Yea, by Mass, that it is.
SEXTON 2114 What else, fellow?
FIRST WATCHMAN 2115 55And that Count Claudio did mean,
2116 upon his words, to disgrace Hero before the whole
2117 assembly, and not marry her.
⌜DOGBERRY, to Borachio⌝ 2118 O, villain! Thou wilt be condemned
2119 into everlasting redemption for this!
SEXTON 2120 60What else?
⌜SEACOAL⌝ 2121 This is all.
SEXTON 2122 And this is more, masters, than you can deny.
2123 Prince John is this morning secretly stolen away.
2124 Hero was in this manner accused, in this very
2125 65 manner refused, and upon the grief of this suddenly
2126 died.—Master constable, let these men be bound
2127 and brought to Leonato’s. I will go before and show
2128 him their examination.⌜He exits.⌝
⌜DOGBERRY⌝ 2129 Come, let them be opinioned.
⌜VERGES⌝ 2130 70Let them be in the hands—
⌜CONRADE⌝ 2131 Off, coxcomb!
⌜DOGBERRY⌝ 2132 God’s my life, where’s the Sexton? Let
2133 him write down the Prince’s officer “coxcomb.”
2134 Come, bind them.—Thou naughty varlet!
⌜CONRADE⌝ 2135 75Away! You are an ass, you are an ass!
⌜DOGBERRY⌝ 2136 Dost thou not suspect my place? Dost
2137 thou not suspect my years? O, that he were here to
2138 write me down an ass! But masters, remember that
2139 I am an ass, though it be not written down, yet
2140 80 forget not that I am an ass.—No, thou villain, thou
p. 1512141 art full of piety, as shall be proved upon thee by
2142 good witness. I am a wise fellow and, which is more,
2143 an officer and, which is more, a householder and,
2144 which is more, as pretty a piece of flesh as any is in
2145 85 Messina, and one that knows the law, go to, and a
2146 rich fellow enough, go to, and a fellow that hath had
2147 losses, and one that hath two gowns and everything
2148 handsome about him.—Bring him away.—O, that I
2149 had been writ down an ass!