Summary and Analysis
Act II — Scenes 7-8
The Gascony Guards enter, proud of Cyrano. There is also a poet who wants to immortalize the exploit, and a newspaper editor who wants to interview Cyrano. The little pastry shop is suddenly full and noisy. Cyrano, of course, cares nothing for poets and reporters. When Le Bret asks about his interview with Roxane, Cyrano simply tells him to be quiet. De Guiche, Richelieu's powerful nephew who wants Roxane for his mistress, offers the services of himself and his uncle. Cyrano refuses, though he has written a play that he would like to see produced. As De Guiche leaves, he asks Cyrano if he knows of Don Quixote. Cyrano acknowledges that he recognizes himself. De Guiche tells him that the arm of the windmill could cause his downfall, but Cyrano refuses to be intimidated.
Le Bret chides Cyrano for throwing away such a brilliant opportunity. Cyrano describes the life of a protégé in disparaging terms. He wants to be free, to sing, to dream. He still refuses to discuss Roxane.
Scene 7 gets the cadets on stage and shows their admiration of Cyrano. Cyrano, in refusing De Guiche's offer so cavalierly, is in a sense throwing away another bag of gold. This, however, is more than an extravagant gesture; it is also a dangerous one because De Guiche is a powerful man who does not like to be crossed.
Cyrano's impassioned defense to Le Bret of intellectual freedom is a beautiful speech, altogether in character, and as impractical as Ragueneau's attitude toward the poets. One might say, however, that it is just such impractical attitudes as this one in the play that caused Cyrano to be continuously popular through the years. It is these ideas that have caused men to rebel, even up to our present day.