Summary and Analysis
Act III — Scenes 8-10
A monk comes by, looking for Roxane's house, and Cyrano misdirects him. Christian wants Roxane's kiss, climbs the balcony, and kisses her. The monk returns. He is delivering a letter from De Guiche to Roxane. De Guiche has sent his regiment on but has stayed behind himself. The letter instructs her that he is coining to see her. She tells the monk that De Guiche's letter orders that she and Christian be married immediately. She pretends that this is against her will and the monk is completely convinced. The monk, Christian, and Roxane go inside for the ceremony, while Cyrano waits outside to divert De Guiche.
It might be worthwhile at this point to remind the reader briefly about the traditional practices of scene division. This section, as well as the preceding section; describes portions of the play that are very closely knit. Then, why divide each of the sections into three scenes? As mentioned earlier, it is traditional in drama to begin and end scenes with the entrance and exit of a reasonably important character, and such is the case here. Though there are no real interruptions in these sections, there are certain entrances and exits that would be marked as scene divisions in some texts. If the student is using a text without scene divisions, he can easily locate the portion of an act dealt with in the summaries by simply comparing the actions described with his text.
Roxane is very quick-witted in these scenes. She seems a little hasty in her wish to marry a man she sent away a short time earlier because he could not embroider upon the theme of love. The fact that De Guiche is pressing her may have something to do with her decision. At any rate, Rostand has managed to make the whole thing quite believable. We already know of De Guiche's desire for Roxane and of his power. This seems a simple and logical way out of all the difficulties Roxane and Christian would have if they married in a more conventional manner. It is necessary that they be married to explain Roxane's behavior in Acts IV and V.