Cyrano de Bergerac

by: Edmond Rostand

Important Quotations Explained

1
Valvert: Your nose is . . . very big.
Cyrano: Yes, very.
Valvert: Ha!
Cyrano: Is that all?

This speech appears in Act I, just after Cyrano makes his first entrance. After several characters describe Cyrano to those who do not know him, Cyrano appears and fulfills everyone’s expectations. Valvert, one of de Guiche’s men, pokes fun at the size of Cyrano’s nose—a big mistake. Cyrano makes fun of Valvert’s lack of creativity and eloquence, and proceeds to put on a jesting exhibition of sorts, making fun of his own nose. This quotation demonstrates several of Cyrano’s important qualities: eloquence, sense of humor, creativity, resourcefulness, courage, and confidence, as well as his showmanship and bravado. Remembering the promise he made to Roxane to keep Christian safe, Cyrano responds to Valvert’s ridiculing of his nose with biting, ironic criticism instead of violence.