The Comedy of Errors

by: William Shakespeare

  Act 2 Scene 2

page Act 2 Scene 2 Page 6

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ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE

But your reason was not substantial why there is no time to recover.

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE

You didn’t come up with a very good proof.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

Thus I mend it: Time himself is bald and therefore, to the world’s end, will have bald followers.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE

Then I’ll change it to this: Father Time himself is bald, so for all time there will be bald men.

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE

I knew ’twould be a bald conclusion:
But soft, who wafts us yonder?

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE

I knew you’d come up with a

bald

“Bald” can also mean “trivial” or “lame.”

bald
conclusion. But wait—who’s that waving to us?
Enter ADRIANA and LUCIANA
ADRIANA and LUCIANA enter.

ADRIANA

Ay, ay, Antipholus, look strange and frown.
Some other mistress hath thy sweet aspects.
105I am not Adriana, nor thy wife.
The time was once when thou unurged wouldst vow
That never words were music to thine ear,
That never object pleasing in thine eye,
That never touch well welcome to thy hand,
110That never meat sweet-savored in thy taste,
Unless I spake, or looked, or touched, or carved to thee.
How comes it now, my husband, O, how comes it
That thou art thus estranged from thyself?
“Thyself” I call it, being strange to me,
115That, undividable, incorporate,
Am better than thy dear self’s better part.
Ah, do not tear away thyself from me!
For know, my love, as easy mayest thou fall
A drop of water in the breaking gulf,
120And take unmingled thence that drop again
Without addition or diminishing,
As take from me thyself and not me too.
How dearly would it touch thee to the quick,
Shouldst thou but hear I were licentious
125And that this body, consecrate to thee,

ADRIANA

Yes, yes, Antipholus: look bewildered and frown at me. You’ve given away all your sweet looks to some other woman—I am not Adriana nor your wife. There was a time when you’d freely tell me that words were never music to your ear unless I said them, that objects never pleased your eye unless I showed them to you, that touches never pleased your hands unless they were my touches, and that food never tasted sweet to you unless I had prepared it. How is it, my husband—oh, how is it—that you have become a stranger to yourself? I say yourself because you are a stranger to me now, but when we are indivisible and united in one body, I am better than the best part of you. Ah, don’t tear yourself away from me! For you should know, my love, that it would be as easy to let a drop of water fall into the churning sea and then fish it out again, unmingled and undiminished, as it would be to take yourself from me without taking me out of myself as well. How deeply would it cut you if you heard that I had been cheating on you and that my body—which is sworn for you only—had been contaminated by vile lust?

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