The Comedy of Errors

by: William Shakespeare

Original Text

Modern Text

Enter ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS and the OFFICER
ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS enters with the OFFICER.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

Fear me not, man. I will not break away:
I’ll give thee, ere I leave thee, so much money,
To warrant thee, as I am ’rested for.
My wife is in a wayward mood today
5And will not lightly trust the messenger
That I should be attached in Ephesus.
I tell you, ’twill sound harshly in her ears.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

Don’t worry, man, I won’t try to escape. When it’s time for me to be freed, I’ll pay you the fee you’re entitled to for arresting me. My wife’s in a perverse mood today. She’ll be suspicious when the messenger tells her that I was arrested. I tell you, this will make her angry when she hears about it.
Enter DROMIO OF EPHESUS with a rope’s end
DROMIO OF EPHESUS enters, holding a length of rope.
Here comes my man. I think he brings the money.
How now, sir? Have you that I sent you for?
Here’s my servant. I think he’s got the money. Hello there, sir! Do you have what I told you to get?

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

10Here’s that, I warrant you, will pay them all.

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

Yes. And this rope will take care of everybody, I guarantee it.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

But where’s the money?

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

But where’s the money?

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

Why, sir, I gave the money for the rope.

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

Why, sir, I spent it on this rope.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

Five hundred ducats, villain, for a rope?

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

You idiot! Five hundred ducats for a rope?

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

I’ll serve you, sir, five hundred at the rate.

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

I can get you five hundred ropes for that price.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

15To what end did I bid thee hie thee home?

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

Why did I just send you home?

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

To a rope’s end, sir, and to that end am I returned.

DROMIO OF EPHESUS

To get a piece of rope. And here I am, with that piece.

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

And to that end, sir, I will welcome you. (beats DROMIO OF EPHESUS)

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

And I’ll use that piece of rope to welcome you with. (beats DROMIO OF EPHESUS)