List iconMuch Ado About NothingList icon

Much Ado About Nothing
Act 2, scene 2

Synopsis:

Contents

Characters in the Play

Entire Play

The primary plot of Much Ado About Nothing turns on the courtship and scandal involving young Hero and her suitor, Claudio, but…

Act 1, scene 1

The army of Don Pedro of Aragon arrives in Messina and is welcomed by Leonato, Messina’s governor. Benedick of Padua,…

Act 1, scene 2

Leonato is given a garbled account of the conversation between Don Pedro and Claudio, and is led to believe that…

Act 1, scene 3

Don John, Don Pedro’s brother, receives a true account of Don Pedro’s plan to woo Hero for Claudio. Resentful of…

Act 2, scene 1

Don Pedro and his soldiers, disguised in masks, dance with the ladies of Leonato’s household. While Don Pedro woos Hero,…

Act 2, scene 2

Don John and his henchman Borachio agree on a plan to disrupt the coming marriage: Borachio will convince Claudio that…

Act 2, scene 3

Leonato, Claudio, and Don Pedro stage a conversation for Benedick to overhear. They talk about Beatrice’s desperate love for Benedick,…

Act 3, scene 1

Beatrice is lured into overhearing a staged conversation between Hero and Ursula, a waiting gentlewoman, who talk about Benedick’s desperate…

Act 3, scene 2

Benedick appears with his beard shaved off and showing other signs of having fallen in love. When he exits with…

Act 3, scene 3

That night, Messina’s master constable, Dogberry, and his assistant, Verges, set the night watch, telling the watchmen to pay particular…

Act 3, scene 4

Early the next morning, Hero prepares for the wedding. Beatrice enters, suffering, she says, from a bad cold, but Hero…

Act 3, scene 5

Dogberry and Verges try to tell Leonato about the arrest of Borachio and Conrade, but they are so unintelligible that…

Act 4, scene 1

At the wedding, Claudio publicly denounces Hero as a lewd woman. He is supported in his story by Don Pedro…

Act 4, scene 2

Dogberry ineptly questions Borachio and Conrade about the deception of Claudio and Don Pedro. The Sexton has Borachio and Conrade…

Act 5, scene 1

Leonato and his brother tell Claudio and Don Pedro of Hero’s death, and attempt to challenge them to a duel….

Act 5, scene 2

Benedick tells Beatrice that he has challenged Claudio. They are summoned to Leonato’s house with the news that Hero’s innocence…

Act 5, scene 3

Claudio appears at Leonato’s family tomb, has a song sung for Hero, and hangs a scroll on the tomb.

Act 5, scene 4

Claudio and Don Pedro appear for the second wedding. The women enter masked. When Claudio takes the hand of Leonato’s…

Include links to:

Images
Glosses
Audio
Video
Essays
Quill icon
Scene 2
Enter Don John and Borachio.

DON JOHN It is so. The Count Claudio shall marry the
 daughter of Leonato.
BORACHIO Yea, my lord, but I can cross it.
DON JOHN Any bar, any cross, any impediment will be
5 med’cinable to me. I am sick in displeasure to him,
 and whatsoever comes athwart his affection ranges
 evenly with mine. How canst thou cross this
 marriage?
BORACHIO Not honestly, my lord, but so covertly that
10 no dishonesty shall appear in me.
DON JOHN Show me briefly how.

61
Much Ado About Nothing
ACT 2. SC. 2

BORACHIO I think I told your Lordship a year since,
 how much I am in the favor of Margaret, the
 waiting gentlewoman to Hero.
DON JOHN 15I remember.
BORACHIO I can, at any unseasonable instant of the
 night, appoint her to look out at her lady’s chamber
 window.
DON JOHN What life is in that to be the death of this
20 marriage?
BORACHIO The poison of that lies in you to temper. Go
 you to the Prince your brother; spare not to tell
 him that he hath wronged his honor in marrying
 the renowned Claudio, whose estimation do you
25 mightily hold up, to a contaminated stale, such a
 one as Hero.
DON JOHN What proof shall I make of that?
BORACHIO Proof enough to misuse the Prince, to vex
 Claudio, to undo Hero, and kill Leonato. Look you
30 for any other issue?
DON JOHN Only to despite them I will endeavor
 anything.
BORACHIO Go then, find me a meet hour to draw Don
 Pedro and the Count Claudio alone. Tell them that
35 you know that Hero loves me; intend a kind of zeal
 both to the Prince and Claudio, as in love of your
 brother’s honor, who hath made this match, and his
 friend’s reputation, who is thus like to be cozened
 with the semblance of a maid, that you have discovered
40 thus. They will scarcely believe this without
 trial. Offer them instances, which shall bear no less
 likelihood than to see me at her chamber window,
 hear me call Margaret “Hero,” hear Margaret term
 me “Claudio,” and bring them to see this the very
45 night before the intended wedding, for in the meantime
 I will so fashion the matter that Hero shall be
 absent, and there shall appear such seeming truth

63
Much Ado About Nothing
ACT 2. SC. 3

 of Hero’s disloyalty that jealousy shall be called
 assurance and all the preparation overthrown.
DON JOHN 50Grow this to what adverse issue it can, I will
 put it in practice. Be cunning in the working this,
 and thy fee is a thousand ducats.
BORACHIO Be you constant in the accusation, and my
 cunning shall not shame me.
DON JOHN 55I will presently go learn their day of
 marriage.
They exit.