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Pericles
Act 5, scene 3

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Characters in the Play

Entire Play

The nautical tale of a wandering prince, Pericles is narrated by John Gower, a poet from the English past. Gower explains that…

Act 1, 1 chorus

Gower sets the stage for Pericles’ entrance at Antioch by telling of the incest between Antiochus and his daughter, whom…

Act 1, scene 1

Pericles risks his life to win the hand of Antiochus’s daughter, but, in meeting the challenge, he learns of the…

Act 1, scene 2

Back in his kingdom of Tyre, Pericles, fearing the power of Antiochus, sets sail once again.

Act 1, scene 3

Thaliard arrives in Tyre to find Pericles gone.

Act 1, scene 4

In Tarsus, King Cleon, Queen Dionyza, and the citizens of the country, dying of hunger, are saved by Pericles and…

Act 2, 2 chorus

Gower tells of Pericles’ departure from Tarsus and of the storm that destroys his ships and men and tosses him…

Act 2, scene 1

Fishermen in Pentapolis provide the shipwrecked Pericles with clothing and then pull his armor from the sea. They agree to…

Act 2, scene 2

At the court, Pericles and other knights present their shields to Princess Thaisa, and Pericles wins the tournament.

Act 2, scene 3

Simonides and Thaisa separately express their admiration for “the stranger knight.”

Act 2, scene 4

In Tyre, Helicanus recounts the awful deaths of Antiochus and his daughter. He then agrees to accept the crown twelve…

Act 2, scene 5

King Simonides, learning that Thaisa loves Pericles, pretends to be angry, but then reveals his pleasure at their mutual love.

Act 3, 3 chorus

Gower picks up the story on the night after Pericles and Thaisa’s wedding and carries it forward through Thaisa’s becoming…

Act 3, scene 1

In the storm, Thaisa dies in giving birth and her body is cast into the sea. To save the baby,…

Act 3, scene 2

The body of Thaisa washes ashore in Ephesus, where she is revived by a physician named Lord Cerimon.

Act 3, scene 3

Pericles leaves the infant, Marina, in the care of Cleon and Dionyza and sails for Tyre.

Act 3, scene 4

In Ephesus, Thaisa decides to become a votaress at the temple of Diana.

Act 4, 4 chorus

Gower carries the story forward fourteen years, focusing on the young Marina. Her beauty and talents arouse murderous hatred in…

Act 4, scene 1

Dionyza’s hired murderer, Leonine, is prevented from murdering Marina by pirates, who carry her away to their ship.

Act 4, scene 2

Marina is sold by the pirates to a brothel in Mytilene.

Act 4, scene 3

Dionyza, after Leonine has (falsely) reported Marina’s death, now justifies her actions to a horrified Cleon.

Act 4, scene 4

Gower tells of Pericles’ arrival in Tarsus, his learning of Marina’s death, and his vow of perpetual mourning.

Act 4, scene 5

In Mytilene, Marina preserves her virginity through eloquent pleas to her potential customers. We see the effect on two such…

Act 4, scene 6

Lysimachus, the governor of Mytilene, arrives at the brothel and is so moved (or shamed) by Marina’s eloquence that he…

Act 5, 5 chorus

Gower describes Marina’s success in Mytilene and tells of Pericles’ ship landing on Mytilene’s shores.

Act 5, scene 1

Lysimachus visits Pericles’ ship and sends for Marina, whose music he thinks will revive the grief-stricken king. When Marina tells…

Act 5, scene 2

Gower tells of the celebrations for Pericles in Mytilene and of the betrothal of Marina and Lysimachus.

Act 5, scene 3

At Diana’s temple in Ephesus, Thaisa recognizes Pericles as her husband and is reunited with him and with her daughter.

Act 5, epilogue

Gower reflects on the now-completed story and tells the fate of Cleon and Dionyza.

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Scene 3
Enter Cerimon and Diana’s Priestesses, including
Thaisa; at another door enter Pericles, Marina,
Helicanus, Lysimachus, and Attendants.


PERICLES 
 Hail, Dian! To perform thy just command,
 I here confess myself the King of Tyre,
 Who, frighted from my country, did wed

183
Pericles, Prince of Tyre
ACT 5. SC. 3

 At Pentapolis the fair Thaisa.
5 At sea in childbed died she, but brought forth
 A maid child called Marina, whom, O goddess,
 Wears yet thy silver livery. She at Tarsus
 Was nursed with Cleon, who at fourteen years
 He sought to murder. But her better stars
10 Brought her to Mytilene, ’gainst whose shore riding,
 Her fortunes brought the maid aboard us, where,
 By her own most clear remembrance, she made known
 Herself my daughter.
THAISA Voice and favor!
15 You are, you are—O royal Pericles!
She falls in a faint.
PERICLES 
 What means the nun? She dies! Help, gentlemen!
CERIMON Noble sir,
 If you have told Diana’s altar true,
 This is your wife.
PERICLES 20 Reverend appearer, no.
 I threw her overboard with these very arms.
CERIMON 
 Upon this coast, I warrant you.
PERICLES  ’Tis most certain.
CERIMON 
 Look to the lady. O, she’s but overjoyed.
25 Early one blustering morn this lady was
 Thrown upon this shore. I oped the coffin,
 Found there rich jewels, recovered her, and placed her
 Here in Diana’s temple.
PERICLES  May we see them?
CERIMON 
30 Great sir, they shall be brought you to my house,
 Whither I invite you. Look, Thaisa
 Is recoverèd.Thaisa rises.
THAISA  O, let me look!
 If he be none of mine, my sanctity

185
Pericles, Prince of Tyre
ACT 5. SC. 3

35 Will to my sense bend no licentious ear,
 But curb it, spite of seeing.—O, my lord,
 Are you not Pericles? Like him you spake,
 Like him you are. Did you not name a tempest,
 A birth and death?
PERICLES 40 The voice of dead Thaisa!
THAISA 
 That Thaisa am I, supposèd dead
 And drowned.
PERICLES 
 Immortal Dian!
THAISA  Now I know you better.
She points to the ring on his hand.
45 When we with tears parted Pentapolis,
 The king my father gave you such a ring.
PERICLES 
 This, this! No more, you gods! Your present kindness
 Makes my past miseries sports. You shall do well
 That on the touching of her lips I may
50 Melt and no more be seen.—O, come, be buried
 A second time within these arms!They embrace.
MARINA, kneeling  My heart
 Leaps to be gone into my mother’s bosom.
PERICLES 
 Look who kneels here, flesh of thy flesh, Thaisa,
55 Thy burden at the sea, and called Marina
 For she was yielded there.
THAISA, embracing Marina  Blessed, and mine own!
HELICANUS 
 Hail, madam, and my queen.
THAISA  I know you not.
PERICLES 
60 You have heard me say, when I did fly from Tyre
 I left behind an ancient substitute.
 Can you remember what I called the man?
 I have named him oft.
THAISA  ’Twas Helicanus then.

187
Pericles, Prince of Tyre
ACT 5. SC. 3

PERICLES 65Still confirmation!
 Embrace him, dear Thaisa. This is he.
They embrace.
 Now do I long to hear how you were found,
 How possibly preserved, and who to thank,
 Besides the gods, for this great miracle.
THAISA 70Lord Cerimon, my lord, this man
 Through whom the gods have shown their power,
 that can
 From first to last resolve you.
PERICLES  Reverend sir,
75 The gods can have no mortal officer
 More like a god than you. Will you deliver
 How this dead queen relives?
CERIMON  I will, my lord.
 Beseech you, first go with me to my house,
80 Where shall be shown you all was found with her,
 How she came placed here in the temple,
 No needful thing omitted.
PERICLES 
 Pure Dian, I bless thee for thy vision, and
 Will offer night oblations to thee.—Thaisa,
85 This prince, the fair betrothèd of your daughter,
 Shall marry her at Pentapolis.—And now this
 ornament
 Makes me look dismal will I clip to form,
 And what this fourteen years no razor touched,
90 To grace thy marriage day I’ll beautify.
THAISA 
 Lord Cerimon hath letters of good credit, sir,
 My father’s dead.
PERICLES 
 Heavens make a star of him! Yet there, my queen,
 We’ll celebrate their nuptials, and ourselves
95 Will in that kingdom spend our following days.
 Our son and daughter shall in Tyrus reign.—

189
Pericles, Prince of Tyre
EPILOGUE

 Lord Cerimon, we do our longing stay
 To hear the rest untold. Sir, lead ’s the way.
They exit.