Comedy of Errors By William Shakespeare Act IV: Scene 1

ACT IV. SCENE 1. The same.

[Enter a MERCHANT, ANGELO, and an OFFICER.]

MERCHANT.
You know, since Pentecost the sum is due,
And since I have not much importun'd you;
Nor now I had not, but that I am bound
To Persia, and want guilders for my voyage;
Therefore make present satisfaction,
Or I'll attach you by this officer.

ANGELO.
Even just the sum that I do owe to you
Is growing to me by Antipholus;
And in the instant that I met with you
He had of me a chain; at five o'clock
I shall receive the money for the same:
Pleaseth you walk with me down to his house,
I will discharge my bond, and thank you too.

[Enter ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS, and DROMIO OF EPHESUS.]

OFFICER.
That labour may you save: see where he comes.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS.
While I go to the goldsmith's house, go thou
And buy a rope's end; that will I bestow
Among my wife and her confederates,
For locking me out of my doors by day. —
But, soft; I see the goldsmith: get thee gone;
Buy thou a rope, and bring it home to me.

DROMIO OF EPHESUS.
I buy a thousand pound a year! I buy a rope!

[Exit DROMIO.]

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS.
A man is well holp up that trusts to you:
I promised your presence, and the chain;
But neither chain nor goldsmith came to me:
Belike you thought our love would last too long,
If it were chain'd together; and therefore came not.

ANGELO.
Saving your merry humour, here's the note,
How much your chain weighs to the utmost carat;
The fineness of the gold, and chargeful fashion;
Which doth amount to three odd ducats more
Than I stand debted to this gentleman:
I pray you, see him presently discharg'd,
For he is bound to sea, and stays but for it.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS.
I am not furnished with the present money;
Besides I have some business in the town:
Good Signior, take the stranger to my house,
And with you take the chain, and bid my wife
Disburse the sum on the receipt thereof;
Perchance I will be there as soon as you.

ANGELO.
Then you will bring the chain to her yourself?

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS.
No; bear it with you, lest I come not time enough.

ANGELO.
Well, sir, I will: have you the chain about you?

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS.
An if I have not, sir, I hope you have,
Or else you may return without your money.

ANGELO.
Nay, come, I pray you, sir, give me the chain;
Both wind and tide stays for this gentleman,
And I, to blame, have held him here too long.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS.
Good Lord, you use this dalliance to excuse
Your breach of promise to the Porcupine:
I should have chid you for not bringing it,
But, like a shrew, you first begin to brawl.

MERCHANT.
The hour steals on; I pray you, sir, despatch.

ANGELO.
You hear how he importunes me: the chain, —

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS.
Why, give it to my wife, and fetch your money.

ANGELO.
Come, come, you know I gave it you even now;
Either send the chain or send by me some token.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS.
Fie! now you run this humour out of breath:
Come, where's the chain? I pray you, let me see it.

MERCHANT.
My business cannot brook this dalliance:
Good sir, say whe'r you'll answer me or no;
If not, I'll leave him to the officer.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS.
I answer you! What should I answer you?

ANGELO.
The money that you owe me for the chain.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS.
I owe you none till I receive the chain.

ANGELO.
You know I gave it you half-an-hour since.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS.
You gave me none: you wrong me much to say so.

ANGELO.
You wrong me more, sir, in denying it:
Consider how it stands upon my credit.

MERCHANT.
Well, officer, arrest him at my suit.

Back to Top

Take the Quiz

Antipholus of Ephesus gets arrested because he refuses to pay for a



Quiz