List iconThe Tempest:
Act 3, scene 3
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The Tempest
Act 3, scene 3


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Scene 3
Enter Alonso, Sebastian, Antonio, Gonzalo, Adrian,
Francisco, etc.

 By ’r lakin, I can go no further, sir.
 My old bones aches. Here’s a maze trod indeed
 Through forthrights and meanders. By your
5 I needs must rest me.
ALONSO  Old lord, I cannot blame thee.
 Who am myself attached with weariness
 To th’ dulling of my spirits. Sit down and rest.
 Even here I will put off my hope and keep it
10 No longer for my flatterer. He is drowned
 Whom thus we stray to find, and the sea mocks
 Our frustrate search on land. Well, let him go.
ANTONIO, aside to Sebastian 
 I am right glad that he’s so out of hope.
 Do not, for one repulse, forgo the purpose
15 That you resolved t’ effect.
SEBASTIAN, aside to Antonio  The next advantage
 Will we take throughly.
ANTONIO, aside to Sebastian  Let it be tonight;
 For now they are oppressed with travel, they
20 Will not nor cannot use such vigilance
 As when they are fresh.
SEBASTIAN, aside to Antonio  I say tonight. No more.

The Tempest
ACT 3. SC. 3

Solemn and strange music, and enter Prospero on the
top invisible.

 What harmony is this? My good friends, hark.
GONZALO Marvelous sweet music!

Enter several strange shapes, bringing in a banquet, and
dance about it with gentle actions of salutations.

25 Give us kind keepers, heavens! What were these?
 A living drollery! Now I will believe
 That there are unicorns, that in Arabia
 There is one tree, the phoenix’ throne, one phoenix
 At this hour reigning there.
ANTONIO 30 I’ll believe both;
 And what does else want credit, come to me
 And I’ll be sworn ’tis true. Travelers ne’er did lie,
 Though fools at home condemn ’em.
GONZALO  If in Naples
35 I should report this now, would they believe me?
 If I should say I saw such islanders
 For, certes, these are people of the island—
 Who, though they are of monstrous shape, yet note
 Their manners are more gentle, kind, than of
40 Our human generation you shall find
 Many, nay, almost any.
PROSPERO, aside  Honest lord,
 Thou hast said well, for some of you there present
 Are worse than devils.
ALONSO 45 I cannot too much muse
 Such shapes, such gesture, and such sound,
 Although they want the use of tongue—a kind
 Of excellent dumb discourse.

The Tempest
ACT 3. SC. 3

PROSPERO, aside 50 Praise in departing.
Inviting the King, etc., to eat, the shapes depart.
FRANCISCO They vanished strangely.
SEBASTIAN No matter, since
 They have left their viands behind, for we have
55 Will ’t please you taste of what is here?
 Faith, sir, you need not fear. When we were boys,
 Who would believe that there were mountaineers
 Dewlapped like bulls, whose throats had hanging at
60 ’em
 Wallets of flesh? Or that there were such men
 Whose heads stood in their breasts? Which now we
 Each putter-out of five for one will bring us
65 Good warrant of.
ALONSO  I will stand to and feed.
 Although my last, no matter, since I feel
 The best is past. Brother, my lord the Duke,
 Stand to, and do as we.
Alonso, Sebastian, and Antonio
move toward the table.

Thunder and lightning. Enter Ariel, like a Harpy, claps
his wings upon the table,
 and with a quaint device the
banquet vanishes.

ARIEL as Harpy 
70 You are three men of sin, whom Destiny,
 That hath to instrument this lower world
 And what is in ’t, the never-surfeited sea
 Hath caused to belch up you, and on this island,
 Where man doth not inhabit, you ’mongst men
75 Being most unfit to live. I have made you mad;
 And even with such-like valor, men hang and drown

The Tempest
ACT 3. SC. 3

 Their proper selves.
Alonso, Sebastian, and Antonio draw their swords.
 You fools, I and my fellows
 Are ministers of Fate. The elements
80 Of whom your swords are tempered may as well
 Wound the loud winds or with bemocked-at stabs
 Kill the still-closing waters as diminish
 One dowl that’s in my plume. My fellow ministers
 Are like invulnerable. If you could hurt,
85 Your swords are now too massy for your strengths
 And will not be uplifted. But remember—
 For that’s my business to you—that you three
 From Milan did supplant good Prospero,
 Exposed unto the sea, which hath requit it,
90 Him and his innocent child, for which foul deed,
 The powers—delaying, not forgetting—have
 Incensed the seas and shores, yea, all the creatures
 Against your peace. Thee of thy son, Alonso,
 They have bereft; and do pronounce by me
95 Ling’ring perdition, worse than any death
 Can be at once, shall step by step attend
 You and your ways, whose wraths to guard you
 Which here, in this most desolate isle, else falls
100 Upon your heads—is nothing but heart’s sorrow
 And a clear life ensuing.He vanishes in thunder.

Then, to soft music, enter the shapes again, and dance,
with mocks and mows, and carrying out the table.

PROSPERO, aside 
 Bravely the figure of this Harpy hast thou
 Performed, my Ariel. A grace it had, devouring.
 Of my instruction hast thou nothing bated
105 In what thou hadst to say. So, with good life
 And observation strange, my meaner ministers

The Tempest
ACT 3. SC. 3

 Their several kinds have done. My high charms
 And these mine enemies are all knit up
110 In their distractions. They now are in my power;
 And in these fits I leave them while I visit
 Young Ferdinand, whom they suppose is drowned,
 And his and mine loved darling.He exits, above.
GONZALO, to Alonso 
 I’ th’ name of something holy, sir, why stand you
115 In this strange stare?
ALONSO  O, it is monstrous, monstrous!
 Methought the billows spoke and told me of it;
 The winds did sing it to me, and the thunder,
 That deep and dreadful organ pipe, pronounced
120 The name of Prosper. It did bass my trespass.
 Therefor my son i’ th’ ooze is bedded, and
 I’ll seek him deeper than e’er plummet sounded,
 And with him there lie mudded.He exits.
SEBASTIAN But one fiend at a time,
125 I’ll fight their legions o’er.
ANTONIO  I’ll be thy second.
They exit.
 All three of them are desperate. Their great guilt,
 Like poison given to work a great time after,
 Now ’gins to bite the spirits. I do beseech you
130 That are of suppler joints, follow them swiftly
 And hinder them from what this ecstasy
 May now provoke them to.
ADRIAN  Follow, I pray you.
They all exit.