Volpone By Ben Jonson Summary and Analysis Act V: Scene 5

Summary

Volpone and Mosca enter, disguised, and each congratulates the other on his appearance. Volpone leaves for a moment to go and see what news can be had from the court. Alone, Mosca reveals himself as follows: "My fox is out of his hole, and ere he shall re-enter, I'll make him languish in his borrowed case." Unless, of course, Volpone will come to terms. Mosca dismisses the fools and servants for the day and resolves to "bury him or gain by him. . . . To cozen him of all were but a cheat well placed."

Analysis

Mosca's threat to uncase Volpone is an echo of the Sir Politic subplot. He puns on the word bury, which signifies the will and Volpone's feigned death as well as the actual cozening Mosca plans for him.

Once again, the playwright uses the soliloquy to display Mosca's character and to forewarn us of the possible outcome of his new disposition.

Mosca is correct in his appraisal of his master. However, it is also a good description of Mosca, for he is about to play tricks for his own personal ambitions.

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