Much Ado About Nothing

by: William Shakespeare

Act 5 Scene 2

page Act 5 Scene 2 Page 1

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Enter BENEDICK andMARGARET
BENEDICK andMARGARET enter.

BENEDICK

Pray thee, sweet Mistress Margaret, deserve well at my
hands by helping me to the speech of Beatrice.

BENEDICK

Please Margaret, help me write this poem for Beatrice.

MARGARET

Will you then write me a sonnet in praise of my beauty?

MARGARET

Afterward, will you write a sonnet for me, praising my beauty?

BENEDICK

In so high a style, Margaret, that no man living shall come
5over it, for in most comely truth thou deservest it.

BENEDICK

I’ll write you such a glorious sonnet, Margaret, that no man will ever be able to come over it. You certainly deserve it.

Benedick means that no man will ever improve on his sonnet;

MARGARET

To have no man come over me! Why, shall I always keep
below stairs?

MARGARET

BENEDICK

Thy wit is as quick as the greyhound’s mouth; it catches.

BENEDICK

Your wit is as quick as a greyhound’s jaws—it catches whatever it goes after.

MARGARET

And yours as blunt as the fencer’s foils, which hit but hurt
10not.

MARGARET

And your wit is as blunt as a practice sword, with its dull tip; it hits people but doesn’t hurt them.

BENEDICK

A most manly wit, Margaret, it will not hurt a woman. And
so, I pray thee, call Beatrice. I give thee the bucklers.

BENEDICK

It’s just that my wit is very gentlemanly, Margaret, and refuses to hurt a woman. Now please, tell Beatrice to come out. I admit defeat; I give you the

bucklers

A “buckler” is a shield with a spike in the middle of it.

bucklers
.

MARGARET

Give us the swords; we have bucklers of our own.

MARGARET

BENEDICK

If you use them, Margaret, you must put in the pikes with
15a vice, and they are dangerous weapons for maids.

BENEDICK

Watch out, though, Margaret—virgins shouldn’t be brandishing their bucklers around.

MARGARET

Well, I will call Beatrice to you, who I think hath legs.

MARGARET

I’ll go get Beatrice for you, who can walk here by herself—she has legs.