The Comedy of Errors

by: William Shakespeare

Original Text

Modern Text

Enter three or four, and offer to bind him. He strives.
Three or four men enter and try to restrain ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS. He struggles with them.

ADRIANA

O bind him, bind him! Let him not come near me.

ADRIANA

Tie him up! Tie him up! Keep him away from me!

PINCH

100More company! The fiend is strong within him.

PINCH

We need more help! The devil in him is strong!

LUCIANA

Ay me, poor man, how pale and wan he looks!

LUCIANA

Oh, my, poor man! How pale and listless he looks!

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

What, will you murder me?—Thou jailer, thou,
I am thy prisoner. Wilt thou suffer them
To make a rescue?

ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS

Are you trying to kill me? jailer, i’m your prisoner. are you going to let them break me out of jail?

OFFICER

   Masters, let him go.
105He is my prisoner, and you shall not have him.

OFFICER

Gentlemen, let go of him. He’s my prisoner and you can’t have him.

PINCH

Go, bind this man, for he is frantic too.

PINCH

Tie up the servant, for he is mad as well.
They bind DROMIO OF EPHESUS
The men tie up DROMIO OF EPHESUS.

ADRIANA

What wilt thou do, thou peevish officer?
Hast thou delight to see a wretched man
Do outrage and displeasure to himself?

ADRIANA

What are you doing, you stupid officer? Do you take some kind of pleasure in seeing a sick man harm himself?

OFFICER

110He is my prisoner. If I let him go,
The debt he owes will be required of me.

OFFICER

He’s my prisoner. If I let him go, I’ll have to pay his bail fees myself.

ADRIANA

I will discharge thee ere I go from thee.
Bear me forthwith unto his creditor,
And, knowing how the debt grows, I will pay it.—
115Good Master Doctor, see him safe conveyed
Home to my house. O most unhappy day!

ADRIANA

I’ll pay you. Take me to the man my husband is in debt to. Once I find out what the debt is for, I’ll pay it. Doctor Pinch, please have him brought to my house. What a horrible day!