The Tempest simplified

Synopsis

The play opens with a serious storm quickly gaining strength near a remote island in the Mediterranean Sea. The level of fear also quickly gains strength for those on board a sailing ship caught up in the terrible storm.  As the weather conditions deteriorate, the Boatswain yells at the men on board to get below, which causes a man named Gonzalo to respond “remember whom thou hast aboard,” causing the Boatswain to shout back “out of our way, I say.” 

When Gonzalo told the Boatswain “remember whom thou hast aboard” he was referring to Alonso, the king of Naples, the king’s brother (Sebastian) and the king’s son (Ferdinand). Gonzalo is listed as Alonso’s councillor.  Also on board was the duke of Milan, a man named Antonio.  As Sebastian, Antonio and Gonzalo come up from below, the Boatswain cries “Yet again? What do you here? Have you a mind to sink?”  Antonio shouts back “Hang, cur, hang. We are less afraid to be drowned than thou art.”  As the ship sinks a mariner cries “All lost! To prayers, to prayers!”  Inside the ship a voice cries “Mercy on us!  Farewell, my wife and children! We split, we split!”  Gonzalo rather calmly notes that “I would rather die a dry death.”

On the near-by island, at the time the storm is pounding the ship, Prospero and his daughter Miranda are talking when she says “If by your art you have put the wild waters in this roar, allay them.”  Prospero is quite the magician; to say he’s uniquely talented doesn’t quite say it, able as he is to make oceans roar and birds speak.  He tells her “Be collected. No more amazement. No harm. Wipe thou thine eyes, daughter.” Through a history lesson for us and his fifteen year old daughter, Prospero lets us all know of events that led to this moment, from the time he was duke of Milan to the present.  He and his daughter for some time have been consigned to this remote island, a place, however, where he gets to freely practice his magic tricks, for what that’s worth. He has Miranda fall asleep, using the opportunity to have Ariel (his spirit-servant) report to him.  We learn that all on-board the sailing ship have landed on the island and are fine, but that Ferdinand, the prince of Naples, has been separated from the others.  Prospero praises Ariel for his good work. 

We also learn that a woman named Sycorax, purported to be a witch, was banished from Algiers years earlier to this island; exiled along with her son Caliban and Ariel, who was then her spirit-servant.  Referring to Caliban, Prospero says that with Sycorax’s death the island “was not honored with a human shape.”  Prospero then dismisses Ariel, asking him to “disguise himself as a sea nymph.”  Caliban then enters to give us a history of his relationship with Prospero and Miranda.

Having, as we say, survived the shipwreck and landed on the island, Alonso and his entourage appear on stage.  Gonzalo, a young man who had been loyal to Prospero when years ago they both were in Milan, offers Alonso a very upbeat assessment of their situation; Sebastian being the more skeptical saying “He receives comfort like cold porridge.”  Alonso says to Gonzalo “Prithee, no more,” fearing his son was lost in the shipwreck, and as well despondent over the thought that he’ll never again see his daughter, she now being a queen, having just married the King of Tunis.  Alonso and his followers had attended his daughter’s wedding in Africa, returning to Italy when their trip home was interrupted with this shipwreck. 

At this point, an invisible-to-the-men Ariel enters the scene and sings to Alonso and some of his associates, most of them falling asleep.  Antonio convinces Sebastian (the two of them not having fallen asleep) that they should use this opportunity to kill the sleeping Alonzo and Gonzalo, which would leave Sebastian, the king’s brother, as heir to the throne of Naples, now that Alonso’s son, the first in line heir, seems to have been lost in the storm, and his daughter, now a queen in Africa.  Sebastian buys into Antonio’s plan. Antonio had “supplanted” Prospero, his brother, as duke of Milan in the coup some twelve years earlier.  But Ariel arrives just in time to awaken Gonzalo and Alonso, thwarting Antonio’s dastardly plan. 

Ariel then leads the very-much-alive-but-separated-from-the-others Ferdinand to Miranda, the two young people immediately falling for each other. Witnessing their meeting from afar, a happy Prospero says “At the first sight they have changed eyes. Delicate Ariel, I’ll set thee free for this.” With class and style, Ferdinand charms Miranda.  With a master plan in mind, Prospero tells Ferdinand that he will be chained and must follow his instructions, while Miranda, doing her best to defend her father yet trying to protect Ferdinand, says “My father’s of a better nature, sir, then he appears by speech.” 

Separately, Trinculo and Stephano (Alonso’s servant and butler), also separated from the others at the time of the shipwreck, run into each other by happenstance, believing they are the sole survivors of the shipwreck.  They meet Caliban under unusual circumstances, Caliban willingly becoming Stephano’s servant, Stephano plying him with wine, Stephano having made it to shore “upon a barrel of sack.”  Trinculo becomes the odd-man-out, not having wine to gain Caliban’s favor. Caliban suggests Stephano “knock a hole in Prospero’s head” and tells him of Prospero’s beautiful daughter, Miranda.  Stephano responds, “Monster, I will kill this man. His daughter and I will be king and queen, and Trinculo and thyself shall be viceroys.”  They exit to visit the supposedly sleeping Prospero.  However, ever alert Ariel, having overheard them, says aside “This will I tell my master.”    

Prospero requires Ferdinand to “remove some thousands of logs upon a sore injunction.” Miranda is upset with his hard labor; he all along telling her how much he cares for her and that “for your sake am I this patient log-man.”  She eventually says “I am your wife if you will marry me.” He accepts her offer saying “Here’s my hand.”

Meanwhile shipwrecked Alonso and his associates find themselves practically starved and certainly exhausted.  But Ariel and other spirits, Ariel now transformed into a Harpy, a talking bird with a human head, the spirits being ones never to miss an opportunity, prepare a banquet table with appropriate food and drinks before the worn-out and famished men.  But just as Alonso, Sebastian and Antonio enthusiastically sit down to the table, the Harpy jumps onto the table and causes the food and drink to vanish.  He proceeds to scare the daylights out of the men, saying “You are three men of sin” and “remember that you three from Milan did supplant good Prospero, exposed unto the sea, for which foul deed, the powers have incensed the seas and shores against your peace.”  Gonzalo enters saying to Alonso as the Harpy vanishes “Why stand you in this strange stare?”   From a distance Prospero tells us “My high charms work. They now are in my power; and in these fits I leave them while I visit young Ferdinand, whom they suppose is drowned, and his and mine loved darling.”

As he apologizes to Ferdinand for the harsh treatment he’s imposed on him; imposed as a test of character, Prospero welcomes him into his narrow family saying “She is thine own.”  To “bestow my magic powers” Prospero instructs Ariel to have his spirits put on a show for Ferdinand.  But Prospero quickly interrupts the show, saying “I had forgot that foul conspiracy of the beast Caliban and his confederates against my life.”  He then offers Ferdinand (and us) some of Shakespeare’s most interesting thoughts on mortality, this play purported to be Shakespeare’s last. As Caliban, Stephano and Trinculo try to sneak up on Prospero, Prospero scatters them with the frightening howls of hounds, as “spirits in the shape of dogs” chase them away, Prospero having, as we’ve seen, quite the inventory of magic tricks. 

Ariel reports to Prospero, telling him “All prisoners cannot budge till your release.”  Prospero responds “Go, release them, Ariel.  My charms I’ll break.”  Prospero is present the moment his spell over Alonso and his followers ends.  He and Alonso embrace, each apologizing to the other for past actions.  Alonso bemoans the apparent loss of his son Ferdinand; Prospero wryly saying “I have lost my daughter.”  He quickly welcomes Alonso into his home where Ferdinand and Miranda are playing chess.  A jubilant Alonso says “Is she the goddess that hath severed us and brought us thus together?” 

Ariel, having been so instructed, returns with the ship’s Master and Boatswain in tow, both having remained with the ship.  The Boatswain reports to an astonished Alonso and the others that the ship is “seaworthy and bravely rigged.”  As Prospero praises Ariel, Alonso says “these are not natural events.  They strengthen from strange to stranger.” With Prospero and the shipwrecked men together in his home, Prospero tells them “of my time on this isle” and how he hopes to join them on their voyage to Naples, hoping to return to “my Milan” and “see the nuptial of these our dear-beloved solemnized.” Prospero grants Ariel his freedom. 

Principal Characters

Alonso.  Alonso is the king of Naples and the leader of the castaways who find themselves on this island, all subjected to Prospero’s magic.  Alonso is a gentleman throughout; concerned with the believed loss of his son as well the dire circumstances he and his followers are forced to endure.  Near the end of the play, he and Prospero come to peace with each other, each forgiving the other for past actions.  Alonso’s son, Ferdinand, falls for Miranda and marries her, in no small part a result of Prospero’s unique powers. 

Antonio.  Antonio is Prospero’s younger brother who twelve years earlier had engineered a successful coup, “supplanting” his brother Prospero as the duke of Milan, exiling Prospero and his daughter to a sailboat, left to drift at sea, supplied with provisions by Gonzalo, only to be forgiven at the end of the play by Prospero, the ultimate survivor.  At one point in the play, Antonio teams up with Sebastian with a plan to kill Alonso and Gonzalo, only to be denied by Prospero’s spirits.  

Ariel.  Ariel is the principal spirit-servant in the story who twelve years before this story begins had been brought to this island as a spirit-servant to Sycorax, the supposed witch exiled to this island with her son Caliban.  At the very end of the play Ariel is granted his long-sought freedom from Prospero, a result of the extraordinary on-demand service he has faithfully provided the magician.

Caliban.  Caliban is the son of the late Sycorax, a woman from Algiers accused of being a witch and exiled to this forlorn and barren island in the Mediterranean some time before Prospero and his daughter arrive.  Prospero identifies Sycorax as being “This blue-eyed hag brought with child and here left by th’ sailors.”  Prospero identifies Caliban as being “not honored with a human shape.”  Speaking of Caliban, Prospero says “she died and left thee here” and that “I have used thee with humane care, lodged thee in my mine own cell, till thou didst seek to violate the honor of my child.”  Caliban is Prospero’s servant, but switches his allegiance to Stephano, Alonso’s butler, when Stephano, who rode a barrel of sack to shore, provides Caliban with a seeming unlimited supply of wine.  We don’t know who made up this story folks. 

Ferdinand.   Ferdinand is Alonso’s son, the prince of Naples, a young man with no unpleasant characteristics (as opposed to some others in Alonso’s entourage) who falls in love at first sight with Miranda, a result it seems of her father’s outstanding magic skills.  He and Gonzalo represent the best side of the male side of our being.

Gonzalo.   Gonzalo is the connecting link between Alonso and Prospero, always positive and upbeat, always thoughtful and loyal.  Twelve years earlier he had provided Prospero and his then three-year old daughter Miranda with the provisions that permitted the two of them to survive the challenge when they were left alone at night in a small boat out in the Mediterranean Sea.  He also provided Prospero with his supply of magic books. 

Miranda.  Miranda is Prospero’s beautiful young sweetheart of a daughter, the token female in the story, and a good one at that, who it seems Shakespeare created to give purpose to her father’s life. 

Prospero.  Prospero is the play’s lead who as the duke of Milan had spent more time with his magic studies than he had leading the city and was usurped of his title in a coup early in the play, a coup led by his brother Antonio.  Prospero, and at that time his three year old daughter Miranda, had been left alone in a small craft far out at sea only to survive a twelve year stint on a barren island, mostly as a result of Prospero’s enormous and unique talent as a magician. 

Sebastian.  Sebastian is Alonso’s brother who has almost no role other than as the king of Naples’ younger brother who gets talked into a coup attempt by Antonio, Prospero’s brother.   Antonio and Sebastian plan to kill the sleeping Alonso and Gonzalo, an effort thwarted by Ariel, the talented and often present spirit.

The Play


  • Act 1, Scene 1
  • The play opens on a sailing ship in the Mediterranean Sea encountering a serious storm. Alonzo, Antonio, Sebastian, Gonzalo and others are on board.
  • MASTER
  • Boatswain! Speak to th’ mariners. Fall to ‘t quickly or we run ourselves aground.
  • He exits. Mariners enter.
  • BOATSWAIN
  • Cheerly, cheerly, my good fellows. Quick, quick! Take in the topsail.
  • Alonzo, Sebastian, Antonio, Ferdinand, Gonzalo and others enter.
  • ANTONIO
  • Where is the Master, boatswain?
  • BOATSWAIN
  • You mar our labor. Keep your cabins.
  • GONZALO
  • Nay, good, be patient.
  • BOATSWAIN
  • Silence! Trouble us not.
  • GONZALO
  • Good, yet remember whom thou hast aboard.
  • BOATSWAIN
  • If you can command these elements to silence, and work the peace of the present, we will not hand a rope more. If you cannot, give thanks you have lived so long, and make yourself ready in your cabin for the mischance of the hour. Out of our way, I say!
  • He exits.
  • GONZALO
  • I have great comfort from this fellow. Methinks he hath no drowning mark upon him. His complexion is perfect gallows. If he be not born to be hanged, our case is miserable.
  • He exits with Alonzo, Sebastian and others. The Boatswain enters.
  • BOATSWAIN
  • Down with the topmast! Quick!
  • Sebastian, Antonio and Gonzalo enter.
  • BOATSWAIN
  • Yet again? What do you here? Have you a mind to sink?
  • SEBASTIAN
  • A curse on your throat, you bawling, uncharitable dog!
  • BOATSWAIN
  • Work you then.
  • ANTONIO
  • Hang, cur, hang. We are less afraid to be drowned than thou art.
  • BOATSWAIN
  • Bring the ship close to the wind. Set her two courses. Off to sea again! Lay her off!
  • MARINERS
  • All lost! To prayers, to prayers! All lost!
  • Mariners exit.
  • GONZALO
  • The King and Prince at prayers. Let’s assist them, for our case is as theirs.
  • ANTONIO
  • We are merely cheated of our lives by drunkards. This bigmouthed rascal ---
  • Boatswain exits.
  • GONZALO
  • He’ll be hanged yet, though every drop of water swear against it.
  • A noise within.
  • WHOEVER
  • Mercy on us! Farewell, my wife and children!
  • ANTONIO
  • Let’s all sink wi’ th’ King.
  • SEBASTIAN
  • Let’s take leave of him.
  • He exits with Antonio.
  • GONZALO
  • Now would I give a thousand furlongs of sea for an acre of barren ground. I would rather die a dry death.
  • He exits.
  • Act 1, Scene 2
  • Prospero and Miranda are on stage.
  • MIRANDA
  • If by your art, my dearest father, you have put the wild waters in this roar, allay them. O, I have suffered with those that I saw suffer! A brave vessel, who had, no doubt, some noble creature in her, dashed all to pieces. Poor souls, they perished.
  • PROSPERO
  • Be collected. No more amazement.
  • MIRANDA
  • O, woe the day!
  • PROSPERO
  • No harm. I have done nothing but in care of thee, of thee, my dear one, thee, my daughter, who art ignorant of what thou art, naught knowing of whence I am, nor that I am greater than Prospero, master of a poor dwelling.
  • MIRANDA
  • More to know did never meddle with my thoughts.
  • PROSPERO
  • ‘Tis time I should inform thee farther. Lend thy hand and pluck my magic garment from me.
  • She helps him put aside his cloak.
  • PROSPERO
  • Lie there, my magic skill. Wipe thou thine eyes, daughter. Have comfort. I have with such provision in mine art so safely ordered that there is no loss to any creature in the vessel which thou heard’st cry. Sit down, for thou must now know farther.
  • They sit.
  • MIRANDA
  • You have often begun to tell me what I am, but stopped concluding “Stay. Not yet.”
  • PROSPERO
  • The hour’s now come. Canst thou remember a time before we came unto this place? I do not think thou canst, for then thou wast not yet three years old.
  • MIRANDA
  • Certainly, sir, I can.
  • PROSPERO
  • By what? Tell me that hath kept with thy remembrance.
  • MIRANDA
  • Had I not four or five women once that tended me?
  • PROSPERO
  • Thou hadst, and more, Miranda. But how is it that this lives in thy mind? What seest thou else in the dark backward and abyss of time? If thou rememb’rest aught before thou cam’st here, how thou cam’st here thou may remember.
  • MIRANDA
  • But that I do not. Sir, art not you my father?
  •  
  •  
  • Prospero to Miranda, No. 1
  •  
  • Twelve years ago, Miranda, thy father
  • Was Milan’s duke and a prince of power.
  • Thy mother was a model of virtue,
  • And you our only child. Antonio,
  • My brother, thy uncle, whom next to you
  • Of all the world I loved, soon became so
  • Disloyal to me through foul play. I had no
  • Equal as an arts scholar and did know
  • The magic of the mystic, but being
  • So consumed with occult matters I cast
  • Government on my brother who, changing
  • At his whim all that I had set to last,
  • Did surround my princely trunk with ivy
  • That grew too thick, drawing all strength from me.
  • PROSPERO
  • Dost thou pay attention to me?
  • MIRANDA
  • O, good sir, I do.
  • PROSPERO
  • I pray thee, mark me.
  •  
  •  
  • Prospero to Miranda, No. 2
  •  
  • By thus neglecting all worldly ends, I
  • Devoted time to bettering of my
  • Mind, leading me into a secluded
  • Life, but awakening in my brother
  • A false nature, my having created
  • In him an evil treachery, greater
  • Than my trust, which had indeed no limit.
  • He, having my revenue and what it
  • Yielded, and what my power might extract,
  • Turned memory into truth by telling
  • It, crediting his own lie, one that backed
  • His belief that he was Duke. His growing
  • Ambition blinded him to what was, or
  • The part he played or him he played it for.
  • PROSPERO
  • Dost thou hear?
  • MIRANDA
  • Your tale, sir, would cure deafness.
  •  
  •  
  • Prospero to Miranda, No. 3
  •  
  • He thinks me undeserving of earthly
  • Justice, and so eager for power he
  • Conspired with the King of Naples to give
  • Him annual tribute, do him homage, and
  • In other ways bend the dukedom to live
  • Under most ignoble stooping. This land
  • Of Naples, governed by this king who backs
  • My brother’s suit that I, as one who lacks
  • Rights, should be driven from our fair dukedom;
  • That confers all honors on my brother,
  • Whereon one midnight in sheer darkness from
  • Milan’s gates a crying you and I were
  • Taken by agents for the purpose. They
  • Placed us on a bark, sending us away.
  • MIRANDA
  • O, the heavens! I, not remembering how I cried out then, will cry it o’er again. Wherefore did they not that hour destroy us?
  •  
  •  
  • Prospero to Miranda, No. 4
  •  
  • They dared not, so dear the people love me,
  • Nor set on this crime a mark so bloody.
  • They bore us some leagues to sea where they let
  • Us go, to cry to the sea that roared to
  • Us, to sigh to the winds that we did get
  • So wrong. What let us bear what would ensue
  • Was your smile. We came ashore through divine
  • Assistance. My friend Gonzalo, a fine
  • Neapolitan, out of charity
  • Gave us some food and fresh water, being
  • The plan’s master, so with necessities
  • Such as fabrics, helping us so. Knowing
  • I loved my volumes, he furnished me from
  • My library books I prize above my dukedom.
  • MIRANDA
  • Would I might but ever see that man.
  • Prospero stands.
  • PROSPERO
  • Sit still, and hear the last of our sea-sorrow. Here in this island we arrived, and here have I, thy schoolmaster, made thee more profit than other princes can.
  • MIRANDA
  • Heavens thank you for ‘t. And now I pray you, sir, your reason for raising this sea storm?
  • PROSPERO
  • By accident most strange, hath mine enemies brought to this shore; and by my reaching the zenith of good fortune, if now I court not, my fortunes will ever after droop. Here cease more questions thou art inclined to sleep.
  • Miranda falls asleep. Prospero puts on his cloak.
  • PROSPERO
  • Approach, my Ariel. Come.
  • Ariel enters.
  • ARIEL
  • All hail, great master! I come to answer thy best pleasure.
  • PROSPERO
  • Hast thou, spirit, performed to point the tempest that I bade thee?
  • ARIEL
  • To every article. I boarded the King’s ship; in every cabin I flamed astonishment and terror; sometimes I’d divide and burn in many places.
  • PROSPERO
  • Who was so firm, so constant, that this disturbance would not infect his reason?
  • ARIEL
  • Not a soul but felt a fever of the mad. All but mariners plunged in the foaming brine and quit the vessel. The King’s son, Ferdinand, was the first man that leaped; cried “Hell is empty, and all the devils are here.”
  • ARIEL
  • Why, that’s my spirit! But are they, Ariel, safe?
  • ARIEL
  • Not a hair perished. The King’s son have I landed by himself in a solitary spot.
  • PROSPERO
  • Of the King’s ship ----
  • ARIEL
  • Safely in harbor is the King’s ship. In the deep nook, there she’s hid; the mariners all below deck under hatches stowed have I left asleep. And for the rest o’ th’ fleet, they all have met again and are upon the Mediterranean float, bound sadly home for Naples, supposing that they saw the King’s ship wracked and his great person perish.
  • PROSPERO
  • Ariel, thy charge exactly is performed. The time ‘twixt six and now must by us both be spent most preciously.
  • ARIEL
  • Is there more toil? Let me remember thee what thou hast promised, which is not yet performed me.
  • PROSPERO
  • How now? Moody?
  • ARIEL
  • My liberty. I prithee, remember I have done thee worthy service. Thou did promise to subtract me a full year.
  • PROSPERO
  • Dost thou forget from what a torment I did free thee?
  • ARIEL
  • No.
  • PROSPERO
  • Hast thou forgot the foul witch Sycorax?
  • ARIEL
  • No, sir.
  • PROSPERO
  • Thou hast. Where was she born?
  • ARIEL
  • Sir, in Algiers.
  • PROSPERO
  • This witch Sycorax, for mischiefs manifold, from Algiers, thou know’st, was banished. For one thing she did they would not take her life. Is not this true?
  • ARIEL
  • Ay, sir.
  • PROSPERO
  • This blue-eyed hag was hither brought with child and here was left by th’ sailors. Thou was then her servant. For refusing her grand commands, she did imprison thee a dozen years; within which time she died and left thee there. Then was this island not honored with a human shape.
  • ARIEL
  • Yes, Caliban, her son.
  • PROSPERO
  • I say so; he, that Caliban whom now I keep in service. Thou best know’st what torment I did find thee in. Thy groans did make wolves howl. It was mine art, when I arrived and heard thee, that l let thee out.
  • ARIEL
  • I thank thee, master.
  • PROSPERO
  • If thou complain any more, I will rend an oak and peg thee in its knotty entrails till thou hast howled away twelve winters.
  • ARIEL
  • Pardon, master. I will do my spiriting without complaining.
  • PROSPERO
  • Do so, and after two days I will discharge thee.
  • ARIEL
  • That’s my noble master. What shall I do? Say, what? What shall I do?
  • PROSPERO
  • Disguise thyself as a sea nymph. Be subject to no sight but thine and mine, invisible to every eyeball else. Go, hence with diligence!
  • Ariel exits.
  • PROSPERO
  • Awake, dear heart, awake. Thou hast slept well.
  • Miranda wakes.
  • PROSPERO
  • We’ll visit Caliban, my slave, who never yields us kind answer.
  • MIRANDA
  • ‘Tis a villain, sir, I do not love to look on.
  • PROSPERO
  • He does make our fire, fetch in our wood, and serves in duties that profit us. What ho, Caliban! Speak!
  • CALIBAN WITHIN
  • There’s wood enough within.
  • Ariel like a water nymph enters.
  • PROSPERO
  • Fine apparition! My quaint Ariel.
  • He whispers to Ariel.
  • ARIEL
  • My lord, it shall be done.
  • He exits.
  • PROSPERO TO CALIBAN
  • Come forth!
  • Caliban enters.
  • CALIBAN
  • A southwest wind blow on you and blister you all o’er.
  • PROSPERO
  • For this, be sure, tonight thou shalt have cramps, side-stitches that shall pen thy breath up.
  •  
  •  
  • Caliban to Prospero
  •  
  • This island is mine, by Sycorax, my
  • Mother, which thou tak’st from me. When I
  • First encountered thee thou made much of me;
  • Wouldst give me water with berries in
  • It; teach me what the bigger light might be
  • And how the lesser light the night doth win.
  • And I loved thee, showing thee the features
  • Of th’ isle, the fresh springs, where danger lures,
  • The barren place and the fertile. Cursed be
  • I that did so! All the magic spells of
  • Sycorax, toads, beetles, bats and flies flee
  • To you; once being king, now kept above
  • The mad sea penned in this cave of rock and
  • Denied the rest of my mother’s island.
  • PROSPERO
  • I have used thee with humane care, and lodged thee in mine own cell, till thou didst seek to violate the honor of my child.
  • CALIBAN
  • O ho, O ho! Would ‘t had been done! Thou didst prevent me.
  • MIRANDA
  • Abhorred slave, which any print of goodness wilt not take, being capable of all ill! I pitied thee, took pains to make thee speak, and taught thee each hour one thing or other. Therefore wast thou deservedly confined into this rock, who hadst deserved more than a prison.
  • CALIBAN
  • The plague rid you for teaching me your language!
  • PROSPERO
  • Fetch us in fuel; and be quick, thou ‘rt best, to answer other business. I’ll rack thee with old cramps; fill all thy bones with aches.
  • CALIBAN ASIDE
  • I must obey. His art is of such power it would control my mother’s god, Setebos.
  • Caliban exits. Ferdinand and Ariel enter, Ariel being invisible, playing and singing.
  • FERDINAND
  • Where should this music be? I’ th’ air, or th’ earth? It sounds no more. I have followed it. Or it hath drawn me rather. But ‘tis gone. No, it begins again.
  • Ariel sings again.
  • FERDINAND
  • The ditty does remember my drowned father.
  • MIRANDA
  • What is ‘t? A spirit? Believe me, sir, it carries a splendid form. But ‘tis a spirit.
  • PROSPERO
  • No, dear, it eats and sleeps and hath such senses as we have. He hath lost his fellows and strays about to find ‘em.
  • MIRANDA
  • I might call him a thing divine.
  • PROSPERO ASIDE
  • It goes on, I see, as my soul prompts it.
  • PROSPERO TO ARIEL
  • Spirit, fine spirit, I’ll free thee within two days for this.
  • Ferdinand sees Miranda.
  • FERDINAND
  • Most sure, the goddess on whom these airs attend! My prime request is: if you be maid or no.
  • MIRANDA
  • No wonder, sir, but certainly a human woman and unmarried.
  • FERDINAND
  • My language! Heavens! I am the best of them that speaks this speech.
  • PROSPERO
  • The best? What wert thou if the King of Naples heard thee?
  • FERDINAND
  • Myself am Naples, who with mine eyes beheld the King my father wracked.
  • MIRANDA
  • Alack, for mercy!
  • FERDINAND
  • Yes, faith, and all his lords, the Duke of Milan and his brave son being two.
  • PROSPERO ASIDE
  • At the first sight they have changed eyes. Delicate Ariel, I’ll set thee free for this.
  • PROSPERO TO FERDINAND
  • A word, good sir. I fear you have done yourself some wrong. A word.
  • MIRANDA
  • Why speaks my father so ungently? This is third man that e’er I saw, the first that e’er I sighed for.
  • FERDINAND
  • O, I’ll make you the Queen of Naples.
  • PROSPERO ASIDE
  • They are both in either’s powers. But this swift business I must uneasy make, lest too light winning make the prize light.
  • PROSPERO TO FERDINAND
  • Thou dost here usurp the name thou own’st not, and hast put thyself upon this island as a spy, to win it from me, the lord on ‘t.
  • FERDINAND
  • No, as I am a man!
  • MIRANDA
  • There’s nothing ill can dwell in such a temple. If the ill spirit have so fair a house, good things will strive to dwell with ‘t.
  • PROSPERO TO FERDINAND
  • Follow me.
  • PROSPERO TO MIRANDA
  • Speak not you for him. He’s a traitor.
  • PROSPERO TO FERDINAND
  • Come, I’ll manacle thy neck and feet together. Sea water shalt thou drink. Follow.
  • FERDINAND
  • No, I will resist such treatment.
  • He is charmed from moving.
  • MIRANDA
  • He’s gentle and not fearful.
  • PROSPERO
  • What, I say. Put thy sword up, traitor. I can here disarm thee with this stick and make thy weapon drop.
  • MIRANDA
  • Sir, have pity. I’ll be his surety.
  • PROSPERO
  • Silence. What, an advocate for an impostor? Hush. Thou think’st there is no more such shapes as he, having seen but him and Caliban. To th’ most of men this is a Caliban, and they to him are angels.
  • MIRANDA
  • I have no ambition to see a goodlier man.
  • PROSPERO TO FERDINAND
  • Come on, obey.
  • FERDINAND
  • My spirits, as in a dream, are all bound up, my father’s loss, the weakness which I feel, the wrack of all my friends, nor this man’s threats to whom I am subdued, are but light to me, might I but through my prison once a day behold this maid.
  • PROSPERO ASIDE
  • It works.
  • MIRANDA TO FERDINAND
  • Be of comfort. My father’s of a better nature, sir, than he appears by speech.
  • PROSPERO TO ARIEL
  • Thou shalt be as free as mountain winds; but then exactly do all points of my command.
  • ARIEL
  • To th’ syllable.
  • PROSPERO TO FERDINAND
  • Come, follow.
  • PROSPERO TO MIRANDA
  • Speak not for him.
  • They exit.
  • Act 2, Scene 1
  • Alonzo, Sebastian, Antonio, Gonzalo, Adrian, Francisco and others are on stage.
  •  
  •  
  • Gonzalo to Alonzo
  •  
  • Sir, we need be merry. We all have cause
  • For joy, for our escape, if we show pause,
  • Far exceeds our loss. Our occasions for
  • Woe are common; everyday some sailor’s
  • Wife has an issue, the officers have more
  • Than their men can do, and the distant owners
  • Of the goods complain. Few in a million
  • Can speak like us, for our preservation
  • Is our fortune; weigh our comfort to be
  • Here. Our garments, being drenched in the sea,
  • Methinks are now as fresh as when we
  • Put them on first in Africa for the
  • Marriage we fortunately did not miss
  • Of Claribel to the King of Tunis.
  • SEBASTIAN ASIDE TO ANTONIO
  • He receives comfort like cold porridge.
  • GONZALO TO ALONSO
  • Therefore, my lord ---
  • ANTONIO
  • Fie, what a spendthrift is he of his tongue.
  • ALONZO TO GONZALO
  • I prithee, spare.
  • SEBASTIAN ASIDE TO ANTONIO
  • He will be talking.
  • GONZALO
  • Here is everything advantageous to life.
  • ANTONIO
  • True, save means to live.
  • GONZALO
  • How lush the grass looks! How green!
  • ANTONIO ASIDE TO SEBASTIAN
  • He misses not much.
  • SEBASTIAN ASIDE TO ANTONIO
  • No, he doth but mistake the truth totally.
  • SEBASTIAN
  • ‘Twas a sweet marriage, and we prosper well in our return.
  • ADRIAN
  • Tunis was never graced before with such a paragon to their queen.
  • GONZALO TO ALONSO
  • Sir, we were talking that our garments seem now as fresh as when we were at Tunis at the marriage of your daughter, who is now queen.
  • ALONSO
  • You cram these words into mine ears against the stomach of my sense. Would I had never married my daughter there, for coming thence my son is lost, and, in my estimation, she too, who is so far from Italy removed I ne’er again shall see her. O, thou mine heir of Naples and of Milan.
  • FRANCISCO
  • Sir, he may live. I saw him beat the surges under him and ride upon their backs.
  • ALONSO
  • No, no, he’s gone.
  • SEBASTIAN
  • We have lost your son, I fear, forever. Milan and Naples have more widows than we bring men to comfort them. The fault’s your own.
  • ALONSO
  • So is the dear’st o’ th’ loss.
  • GONZALO
  • My lord Sebastian, the truth you speak doth lack some gentleness and time to speak it in. You run the sore when you should bring the plaster.
  • SEBASTIAN
  • Very well.
  • GONZALO TO ALONSO
  • It is foul weather in us all, good sir, when you are cloudy.
  • SEBASTIAN
  • Foul weather?
  • GONZALO
  • Had I plantation of this isle, my lord, and were the King on ‘t, what would I do? I would with such perfection govern, sir, t’ excel the Golden Age.
  • SEBASTIAN
  • ‘Save his Majesty!
  • ANTONIO
  • Long live Gonzalo!
  • ALONSO
  • Prithee, no more. Thou dost talk nothing to me.
  • GONZALO
  • I did it to minister occasion to these gentlemen who are use to laughing at nothing.
  • ANTONIO
  • ‘Twas you we laughed at.
  • GONZALO
  • You are gentlemen of brave mettle. You would lift the moon out of her sphere if she would continue in it five weeks without changing.
  • An invisible Ariel enters, playing solemn music.
  • GONZALO
  • Will you laugh me asleep?
  • All sink down asleep except Alonso, Antonio and Sebastian.
  • ALONSO
  • What, all so soon asleep? I wish mine eyes would.
  • ANTONIO
  • We two, my lord, will guard your person while you take your rest.
  • ALONSO
  • Thank you. Wondrous sleep.
  • Alonso sleeps. Ariel exits.
  • SEBASTIAN
  • What a strange drowsiness possesses them! I find not myself disposed to sleep.
  • ANTONIO
  • Nor I. My spirits are nimble. What might, worthy Sebastian, O, what might --- ? The present opportunity speaks to you and my strong imagination sees a crown dropping upon thy head.
  • SEBASTIAN
  • What, art thou awake?
  • ANTONIO
  • Do you not hear me speak?
  • SEBASTIAN
  • I do. What is it thou didst say?
  • ANTONIO
  • Noble Sebastian, thou let’st thy fortune sleep, die rather, close your eyes whiles thou art waking.
  • SEBASTIAN
  • There’s meaning in thy snores.
  •  
  •  
  • Antonio to Sebastian
  •  
  • I am more serious than my custom.
  • Because of fear, receding men often
  • Seek the bottom. ‘Tis as impossible
  • That the King’s son is undrowned as he that
  • Sleeps here swims, and with that great hope is full
  • For you. And is not Queen Claribel at
  • Tunis too far away? Therefore, what’s past
  • Is prologue; what’s to come is yours at last
  • And mine to discharge. O, that you bore my
  • Mind. What a fine sleep for Alonso when
  • You are to advance. Gonzalo must die
  • Too. As for the others, each will listen
  • As a cat laps milk; they’ll say it is our
  • Time for all that we say befits the hour.
  • ANTONIO
  • And how does your pleasure regard your own good fortune?
  • SEBASTIAN
  • I remember you did supplant your brother Prospero.
  • ANTONIO
  • True, and look how well my garments sit upon me.
  • SEBASTIAN
  • But, for your conscience?
  • ANTONIO
  • Ay, sir, where lies that? Here lies your brother, no better than the earth he lies upon.
  • SEBASTIAN
  • Thy case, dear friend, shall be my precedent: as thou got’st Milan, I’ll come by Naples. Draw thy sword. One stroke shall free thee from the tribute which thou payest, and I the King shall love thee.
  • ANTONIO
  • Draw together, and when I rear my hand, do you the like to fall it on Gonzalo.
  • They draw their swords. Ariel enters and whispers in Gonzalo’s ear: awake, awake!
  • ANTONIO TO SEBASTIAN
  • Then let us both be sudden.
  • Gonzalo awakes and wakens Alonso.
  • ALONSO TO SEBASTIAN
  • Why are you drawn? Wherefore this ghastly looking?
  • SEBASTIAN
  • Whiles we stood here securing your repose, we heard a hollow burst of bellowing like bulls. Did ‘t not wake you?
  • ALONSO
  • I heard nothing.
  • ANTONIO
  • O, ‘twas a din to fright a monster’s ear.
  • ALONSO
  • Heard you this, Gonzalo?
  • GONZALO
  • Upon mine honor, sir, I heard a humming, and that a strange one too, which did awake me. As mine eyes opened, I saw their weapons drawn. ‘Tis best we stand upon our guard, or that we quit this place. Let’s draw our weapons.
  • ALONSO
  • Let’s make further search for my poor son.
  • GONZALO
  • Heavens keep him from these beasts, for he is, sure, i’ th’ island.
  • ALONSO
  • Lead away.
  • ARIEL ASIDE
  • Prospero my lord shall know what I have done. So, king, go safely on to seek thy son.
  • They exit.
  • Act 2, Scene 2
  • Caliban enters carrying wood. Thunder is heard. Trinculo is Alonso’s servant. Stephano is Alonso’s butler.
  • CALIBAN
  • All the infections that the sun sucks up from bogs and flats fall on Prosper and make him little by little a disease. Lo, now, lo! Here comes a spirit of his, and to torment me for bringing wood in slowly. I’ll fall flat. Perchance he will not mind me.
  • He lies down and covers himself with a cloak. Trinculo enters.
  • TRINCULO
  • Here’s neither bush nor shrub to bear off any weather at all. And another storm brewing; I hear it sing i’ th’ wind.
  • He notices Caliban.
  • TRINCULO
  • What have we here, a man or a fish? Dead or alive? He smells like a fish.
  • Thunder sounds.
  • TRINCULO
  • Alas, the storm is come again. My best way is to creep under his cloak. There is no other shelter hereabout. Misery acquaints a man with strange bedfellows.
  • He crawls under Caliban’s cloak. Stephano enters singing.
  • STEPHANO SINGING
  • I shall no more to sea, to sea. Here shall I die ashore.
  • STEPHANO
  • Well, here’s my comfort.
  • He drinks.
  • STEPHANO
  • What’s the matter? Have we devils here?
  • CALIBAN
  • The spirit torments me. O!
  • STEPHANO
  • This is some monster of the isle with four legs, who hath got, as I take it, a fever. Where the devil should he learn our language?
  • CALIBAN
  • Do not torment me, prithee. I’ll bring my wood home faster.
  • STEPHANO
  • He’s in a fit now. He shall taste of my bottle. If he have never drunk wine afore, it will go near to remove his fit.
  • CALIBAN
  • Thou dost me yet but little hurt.
  • STEPHANO
  • Open your mouth. This will shake your shaking.
  • Caliban drinks.
  • STEPHANO
  • Open your chops again.
  • TRINCULO
  • I should know that voice. It should be --- but he is drowned, and these are devils. O defend me!
  • STEPHANO
  • Four legs and two voices --- a most delicate monster! If all the wine in my bottle will recover him, I will help his fever. Amen! I will pour some in thy other mouth.
  • TRINCULO
  • Stephano!
  • STEPHANO
  • Doth thy other mouth call me?
  • TRINCULO
  • Stephano! If thou be’st Stephano, touch me, for I am Trinculo.
  • STEPHANO
  • If thou be’st Trinculo, come forth. I’ll pull thee by the lesser legs. If any be Trinculo’s legs, these are they.
  • He pulls him out from under Caliban’s cloak.
  • STEPHANO
  • Thou art very Trinculo indeed. How cam’st thou to be the siege of this monster?
  • TRINCULO
  • I took him to be killed with a thunderstroke. But art thou not drowned, Stephano? O Stephano, two Neapolitans scaped!
  • CALIBAN ASIDE
  • That’s a brave god and bears celestial liquor. I will kneel to him.
  • He crawls out from under the cloak.
  • STEPHANO TO TRINCULO
  • How didst thou scape? I escaped upon a barrel of sack, which the sailors heaved o’erboard. Here. Swear then how thou escapedst.
  • TRINCULO
  • Swum ashore, man, like a duck.
  • Trinculo drinks.
  • TRINCULO
  • O Stephano, hast any more of this?
  • STEPHANO
  • The whole barrel, man.
  • CALIBAN
  • Hast thou not dropped from heaven?
  • STEPHANO
  • Out o’ th’ moon, I do assure thee.
  • Caliban drinks.
  • CALIBAN
  • I’ll show thee every fertile inch o’ th’ island, and I will kiss thy foot. I prithee, be my god.
  • TRINCULO
  • When’s god’s asleep, he’ll rob his bottle.
  • CALIBAN
  • I’ll kiss thy foot.
  • STEPHANO
  • Come on, then. Down, and swear.
  • Caliban kneels.
  • CALIBAN
  • I’ll show thee the best springs. I’ll pluck thee berries. I’ll fish for thee and get thee wood enough. A plague upon the tyrant that I serve. I’ll bear him no more sticks, but follow thee, thou wondrous man.
  • TRINCULO
  • A most ridiculous monster, to make a wonder of a poor drunkard.
  • STEPHANO
  • I prithee now, lead the way without any more talking.
  • STEPHANO TO TRINCULO
  • The King and all our company else being drowned, we will inherit here.
  • Caliban sings drunkenly.
  • TRINCULO
  • A drunken monster.
  • CALIBAN SINGS
  • Freedom! High-day! Freedom!
  • They exit.
  • Act 3, Scene 1
  • Ferdinand enters carrying a log.
  •  
  •  
  • Ferdinand to himself
  •  
  • The pain of sporting games one often finds
  • Is offset by the games’ joy, and some kinds
  • Of men’s base activities are nobly
  • Undertaken, and then some poor tasks be
  • Rich indeed. This task would be as heavy
  • As it is odious were it not she
  • The mistress I serve who makes these labors
  • Pleasures, she more gentle than her father’s
  • Crabbed harshness. Strict command demands that I
  • Remove all these logs till I be too sore
  • To enjoy his game. My mistress doth cry,
  • Saying I’m this works’ best executor.
  • But for her to my mind sweet thoughts are sent
  • When I undertake this work assignment.
  • Miranda enters. Prospero stands off at a distance, unobserved.
  • MIRANDA
  • Alas now, pray you, work not so hard. Pray, set it down and rest you. My father is hard at study. He’s safe for these three hours.
  • FERDINAND
  • O most dear mistress, the sun will set before I shall discharge what I must strive to do.
  • MIRANDA
  • Pray, give me that. I’ll carry it to the pile.
  • FERDINAND
  • No, precious creature, I had rather break my back than you should such dishonor undergo while I sit lazy by.
  • MIRANDA
  • You look wearily.
  • FERDINAND
  • No, noble mistress, ‘tis fresh morning with me when you are by at night. I do beseech you, what is your name?
  • MIRANDA
  • Miranda. O my father, I have broke your command to say so!
  • FERDINAND
  • Admired Miranda!
  •  
  •  
  • Ferdinand to Miranda
  •  
  • With my best regard I have eyed many
  • A lady, and often the harmony
  • Of their tongues hath brought into bondage my
  • Too attentive ear. I have liked women
  • For different virtues and reasons that lie
  • With them, but too often finding with them
  • Some defect. I am in my condition
  • A prince, Miranda, being but the son
  • Of a king, and, wishing it were not so,
  • Think a king. Hear my soul speak: the instant
  • That I saw you my wounded heart did go
  • To you; for your sake am I this patient
  • Log-man. You, so peerless and perfected
  • Are the best of all creatures created.
  • MIRANDA
  • Do you love me? I do not know one of my sex, no woman’s face remember, save, from my glass, mine own. Nor have I seen more that I may call men than you, good friend, and my dear father. I would not wish any companion in the world but you, nor can imagination form a shape besides yourself to like of. But I prattle something too wildly.
  • FERDINAND
  • I, beyond all limit of what else i’ th’ world, do love, prize, honor you.
  • MIRANDA
  • I am a fool to weep at what I am glad of.
  • PROSPERO ASIDE
  • Fair encounter of two most rare affections. Heavens rain grace on that which breeds between ‘em!
  • FERDINAND
  • Wherefore weep you?
  • MIRANDA
  • At mine unworthiness, that dare not offer what I desire to give, and much less take what I shall die to want. I am your wife if you will marry me. If not, I’ll die your maidservant. To be your companion you may deny me, but I’ll be your servant whether you will or no.
  • FERDINAND
  • The woman that I love and serve. I thus humbly here kneel.
  • MIRANDA
  • My husband, then?
  • FERDINAND
  • Here’s my hand.
  • She clasps his hand.
  • MIRANDA
  • And mine, with my heart in ‘t. And now farewell till half an hour hence.
  • They exit.
  • PROSPERO
  • So glad of this as they I cannot be, who are surprised with all this; but my rejoicing at nothing can be more. I’ll to my book, for yet ere suppertime must I perform much business appertaining.
  • He exits.
  • Act 3, Scene 2
  • Caliban, Stephano and Trinculo are on stage.
  • STEPHANO TO TRINCULO
  • When the barrel is out, we will drink water; not a drop before. Therefore, servant monster, drink to me.
  • TRINCULO
  • Servant monster? The folly of this island! They say there’s but five upon this isle; we are three of them. If th’ other two be brained like us, the state totters.
  • Caliban drinks.
  • STEPHANO
  • My man-monster hath drowned his tongue in sack. Thou shalt be my lieutenant, monster or my standard-bearer.
  • TRINCULO
  • Your lieutenant, if you list. He’s no standard-bearer.
  • CALIBAN
  • How does thy Honor? Let me lick thy shoe. I’ll not serve him; he is not valiant.
  • TRINCULO
  • Thou liest, most ignorant monster. Wilt thou tell a monstrous lie, being but half a fish and half a monster?
  • CALIBAN
  • Lo, how he mocks me! Wilt thou let him, my lord?
  • TRINCULO
  • “Lord,” quoth he?
  • STEPHANO
  • Trinculo, keep a good tongue in your head. The poor monster’s my subject, and he shall not suffer indignity.
  • CALIBAN
  • I thank my noble lord.
  • Ariel enters, invisible. Caliban kneels.
  • CALIBAN
  • As I told thee before, I am subject to a tyrant, a sorcerer, that by his cunning hath cheated me of the island.
  • ARIEL IN TRINCULO’S VOICE
  • Thou liest.
  • Caliban stands.
  • CALIBAN TO TRINCULO
  • I would my valiant master would destroy thee. I do not lie.
  • STEPHANO
  • Trinculo, if you trouble him any more in ‘s tale, by this hand, I will supplant some of your teeth.
  • TRINCULO
  • Why, I said nothing.
  • STEPHANO
  • Mum then, and no more.
  • Trinculo stands aside.
  • CALIBAN
  • I say by sorcery he got this isle. If thy Greatness will, revenge it on him. Thou shalt be lord of it, and I’ll serve thee.
  • STEPHANO
  • Canst thou bring me to the party?
  • CALIBAN
  • Yea, yea, my lord. I’ll yield him thee asleep, where thou mayst knock a nail into his head.
  • ARIEL IN TRINCULO’S VOICE
  • Thou liest. Thou canst not.
  • CALIBAN
  • Thou scurvy patch! I do beseech thy Greatness, give him blows and take his bottle from him.
  • STEPHANO
  • Trinculo, run into no further danger.
  • TRINCULO
  • Why, what did I? I did nothing.
  • STEPHANO
  • Didst thou not say he lied?
  • ARIEL IN TRINCULO’S VOICE
  • Thou liest.
  • STEPHANO
  • Do I so? Take thou that.
  • He beats Trinculo.
  • TRINCULO
  • A plague on your monster, and the devil take your fingers!
  • STEPHANO TO TRINCULO
  • Prithee, stand further off.
  • Trinculo moves farther away.
  • CALIBAN
  • Why, as I told thee, ‘tis a custom with him i’ th’ afternoon to sleep. There thou mayst brain him, having first seized his books. Remember first to possess his books, for without them he’s but a sot, as I am, nor not one spirit to command. And that most deeply to consider is the beauty of his daughter. I never saw a woman but only Sycorax my dam and she; but she as far surpasseth Sycorax as great’st does least.
  • STEPHANO
  • Monster, I will kill this man. His daughter and I will be king and queen, and Trinculo and thyself shall be viceroys. Dost thou like the plot, Trinculo?
  • TRINCULO
  • Excellent.
  • STEPHANO
  • Give me thy hand. I am sorry I beat thee.
  • CALIBAN
  • Within this half hour will he be asleep. Wilt thou destroy him then?
  • STEPHANO
  • Ay, on mine honor.
  • ARIEL ASIDE
  • This will I tell my master.
  • CALIBAN
  • Thou mak’st me merry.
  • Ariel plays a tune on a tabor and pipe.
  • STEPHANO TO THE INVISIBLE MUSICIAN
  • If thou be’st a man, show thyself in thy likeness. If thou be’st a devil, take ‘t.
  • TRINCULO
  • O, forgive me my sins!
  • STEPHANO
  • He that dies pays all debts.
  • CALIBAN
  • Art thou afeard?
  • STEPHANO
  • No, monster, not I.
  • CALIBAN
  • Be not afeard. The isle is full of noises, sounds and sweet airs that give delight and hurt not.
  • STEPHANO
  • This will prove a brave kingdom to me, where I shall have my music for nothing.
  • CALIBAN
  • When Prospero is destroyed.
  • STEPHANO
  • That shall be by and by.
  • TRINCULO
  • The sound is going away. Let’s follow it, and after do our work.
  • STEPHANO
  • Lead, monster. We’ll follow. Wilt come?
  • TRINCULO
  • I’ll follow, Stephano.
  • They exit.
  • Act 3, Scene 3
  • Alonso, Sebastian, Antonio, Gonzalo and others are on stage.
  • GONZALO
  • I can go no further, sir. By your patience, I needs must rest me.
  • ALONSO
  • Old lord, I cannot blame thee. Sit down and rest. He is drowned whom thus we stray to find, and the sea mocks our frustrate search on land. Well, let him go.
  • ANTONIO ASIDE TO SEBASTIAN
  • I am right glad that he’s so out of hope.
  • SEBASTIAN ASIDE TO ANTONIO
  • The next advantage will we take throughly.
  • ANTONIO ASIDE TO SEBASTIAN
  • Let it be tonight.
  • SEBASTIAN ASIDE TO ANTONIO
  • I say tonight. No more.
  • Solemn and strange music sounds. Prospero is on the top of the hill invisible.
  • ALONSO
  • What harmony is this? Marvelous sweet music!
  • Several strange shapes enter, and bring in a banquet.
  • SEBASTIAN
  • A living comic play! Now I will believe that there are unicorns.
  • GONZALO
  • If in Naples I should report this now, would they believe me? For, certainly, these are people of the island. Their manners are more gentle, kind, than of our human generation.
  • PROSPERO ASIDE
  • Honest lord, thou hast said well, for some of you there present are worse than devils.
  • The strange shapes invite the King and others to eat, and then depart.
  • FRANCISCO
  • They vanished strangely.
  • SEBASTIAN
  • They have left their food and drink behind, for we have stomachs. Will ‘t please you taste of what is here?
  • ALONSO
  • Not I.
  • GONZALO
  • Faith, sir, you need not fear.
  • ALONSO
  • I will stand to and feed. Although my last, no matter, since I feel the best is past. Brother, my lord the Duke, stand to, and do as we.
  • Alonso, Sebastian and Antonio move toward the table. Thunder sounds. Ariel enters like a Harpy, claps his wings upon the table. A Harpy is a mythological creature with the wings and talons of a bird. The banquet vanishes.
  •  
  •  
  • Ariel as Harpy to Alonso, Sebastian and Antonio.
  •  
  • You are three men of sin whom Destiny
  • Hath caused the sea to belch up here with me,
  • On this island uninhabited by
  • Man, you ‘mongst the men most unfit to live.
  • As to diminish one feather in my
  • Plume, you may as well still the sea or give
  • The loud winds wounds with your swords. Remember,
  • You three men from Milan did deliver
  • An exposed proud Prospero and his child
  • Unto the sea. The powers have drawn their
  • Wrath against your peace for having defiled
  • His goodness. While thou, Alonso, doth bear
  • The loss of thy son, they do pronounce by
  • Me ling’ring perdition until thou die.
  • He vanishes in thunder.
  • PROSPERO ASIDE
  • Bravely the figure of this Harpy hast thou performed, my Ariel. They now are in my power; and in these fits I have them while I visit young Ferdinand, whom they suppose is drowned, and his and mine loved darling.
  • He exits above.
  • GONZALO TO ALONSO
  • I’ th’ name of something holy, sir, why stand you in this strange stare?
  • ALONSO
  • O, it is monstrous, monstrous! The thunder, that deep and dreadful organ pipe, pronounced the name of Prosper. It did proclaim the baseness of my actions.
  • All but Gonzalo exit.
  • GONZALO
  • All three of them are desperate. Their great guilt, like poison given to work a great time after, now ‘gins to bite the spirits.
  • He exits.
  • Act 4, Scene 1
  • Prospero, Ferdinand and Miranda are on stage.
  • PROSPERO TO FERDINAND
  • If I have too harshly punished you, your compensation makes amends, for I have given you here a part of mine own life, or that for which I live; who once again I tender to thy hand. All thy vexations were but my trials of thy love, and thou hast wonderfully stood the test. Here afore heaven I ratify this my rich gift.
  • FERDINAND
  • I hope for quiet days, fair issue, and long life, with such love as ‘tis now.
  • PROSPERO
  • Fairly spoke. She is thine own.
  • Ferdinand and Miranda move aside.
  • PROSPERO
  • Ariel!
  • Ariel enters.
  • ARIEL
  • What would my potent master?
  • PROSPERO
  • Thou and thy lesser spirits your last service did worthily perform. Incite them to quick motion, for I must bestow upon the eyes of this young couple some trifle that displays my magic powers. It is my promise, and they expect it from me.
  • ARIEL
  • Presently?
  • PROSPERO
  • Ay, with the wink of an eye. Do not approach till thou dost hear me call.
  • Ariel exits.
  • PROSPERO TO FERDINAND
  • Look thou be true; do not give amorous behavior too much the rein. The strongest oaths are straw to th’ fire i’ th’ blood.
  • FERDINAND
  • I warrant you, sir.
  • PROSPERO
  • Now come, my Ariel. Appear, and quickly.
  • Soft music.
  • PROSPERO
  • No tongue. All eyes. Be silent.
  • Ceres, Juno, Iris and other spirits put on a show.
  • JUNO SINGS
  • Honor, riches, marriage-blessing, long continuance, and increasing, hourly joys be still upon you, Juno sings her blessings on you.
  • CERES SINGS
  • Spring come to you at the farthest in the very end of harvest. Scarcity and want shall shun you. Ceres’ blessing so is on you.
  • FERDINAND
  • This is a most majestic vision, and harmonious charmingly.
  • PROSPERO
  • Spirits, which by mine art I have from their confines called to enact my present fancies.
  • FERDINAND
  • Let me live here ever.
  • Juno and Ceres whisper.
  • PROSPERO
  • Sweet now, silence.
  • Prospero starts suddenly and speaks.
  • PROSPERO
  • I had forgot that foul conspiracy of the beast Caliban and his confederates against my life.
  • The spirits vanish.
  • FERDINAND TO MIRANDA
  • This is strange. Your father’s in some passion that works him strongly.
  • MIRANDA
  • Never till this day saw I him touched with anger, so distempered.
  •  
  •  
  • Prospero to Ferdinand
  •  
  • You look disturbed, my son, as if you were
  • Dismayed. Our revels now have ended, sir.
  • These our actors were all spirits and are
  • Melted into air, into thin air, and
  • Like a foundationless structure are far
  • From the gorgeous palaces and the land
  • Itself. Yet, all that we inhabit will
  • Dissolve, leaving this faded pageant still,
  • Not a wisp of cloud left behind. We are
  • Such fabric that dreams are made of and our
  • Little life here is ended with a far
  • Off sleep. Ferdinand, my old brain is sour,
  • Troubled with my weakness. Be not disturbed
  • With my unstill mind that appears perturbed.
  • FERDINAND AND MIRANDA
  • We wish your peace.
  • They exit. Ariel enters.
  • PROSPERO
  • Come with a thought. I thank thee, Ariel. Come.
  • ARIEL
  • Thy thoughts I cleave to. What’s thy pleasure?
  • PROSPERO
  • We must prepare to meet with Caliban.
  • ARIEL
  • Ay, my commander.
  • PROSPERO
  • Say again, where didst thou leave these rascals?
  • ARIEL
  • I told you, sir, they were red-hot with drinking, so full of valor that they smote the air for breathing in their faces. I left them i’ th’ filthy-mantled poor beyond your cell. There dancing up to th’ shins, that the foul lake o’erstunk their feet.
  • PROSPERO
  • This was well done, my bird. Thy shape invisible retain thou still.
  • ARIEL
  • I go, I go.
  • He exits.
  • PROSPERO
  • I will plague them all even to roaring.
  • Ariel enters loaded with glittering apparel.
  • PROSPERO
  • Come, hang them on this line.
  • Caliban, Stephano and Trinculo enter. Prospero and Ariel look on.
  • CALIBAN
  • Pray you, tread softly. We now are near his cell.
  • STEPHANO
  • Monster, your fairy, which you say is harmless fairy, has done little better than played the rascal with us.
  • CALIBAN
  • Good my lord, give me thy favor still. Speak softly.
  • TRINCULO
  • Ay, but to lose our bottles in the pool!
  • STEPHANO
  • There is not only disgrace and dishonor in that, monster, but an infinite loss.
  • CALIBAN
  • Prithee, my king, be quiet. Seest thou here, this is the mouth o’ th’ cell. No noise, and enter.
  • STEPHANO
  • Give me thy hand. I do begin to have bloody thoughts.
  • Trinculo sees the apparel.
  • TRINCULO
  • O King Stephano, look what a wardrobe is for thee!
  • He puts on one of the gowns.
  • STEPHANO
  • Put off that gown, Trinculo.
  • CALIBAN
  • Let ‘t alone, and do the murder first.
  • STEPHANO
  • Be you quiet, monster.
  • A noise of hunters is heard. Several spirits in the shape of dogs and hounds enter.
  • PROSPERO
  • Hey, Mountain, hey!
  • ARIEL
  • Silver! There it goes, Silver!
  • PROSPERO
  • Fury, Fury there.
  • Caliban, Stephano and Trinculo are driven off.
  • ARIEL
  • Hark, they roar.
  • PROSPERO
  • Let them be hunted sounded. Shortly, shall all my labors end, and thou shalt have the air at freedom.
  • They exit.
  • Act 5, Scene 1
  • Prospero is on stage with his magic robes. Ariel is with him.
  • PROSPERO
  • How’s the day?
  • ARIEL
  • On the sixth hour, my lord, you said our work should cease.
  • PROSPERO
  • I did say so when first I raised the tempest. Say, my spirit, how fares the King and ‘s followers?
  • ARIEL
  • Confined together, just as you left them; all prisoners, sir, in the grove of linden trees which weather-fends your cell. They cannot budge till your release. Your charm so strongly works ‘em that if you now behold them, your feelings would become tender.
  • PROSPERO
  • Dost thou think so, spirit.
  • ARIEL
  • Mine would, sir, were I human.
  • PROSPERO
  • And mine shall. They being penitent, the sole drift of my purpose doth extend not a frown further. Go, release them, Ariel. My charms I’ll break, their senses I’ll restore, and they shall be themselves.
  • ARIEL
  • I’ll fetch them, sir.
  • He exits.
  • PROSPERO
  • This rough magic I here abjure, and when I have required some heavenly music, which even now I do.
  • Solemn music. Ariel enters, followed by Alonso and his followers.
  • PROSPERO TO HIMSELF
  • A solemn air, and the best comforter to an unsettled fancy, cure thy brains, now useless, within thy skull. There stand, for you are spell-stopped.
  • Alonso and his followers do not yet see or hear Prospero or Ariel.
  •  
  •  
  • Prospero to Ariel
  •  
  • The charm dissolves apace, and as the dawn
  • Steals upon the night, spreading shadows on
  • What’s seen, so their new awareness begins
  • To chase the ignorant fumes that cloak their
  • Clearer reason. Alonso, your cruel sins
  • Did use us, as did you Sebastian, where
  • You, brother mine, expelling remorse and
  • Nature would here have killed your king. This hand
  • Extends. I forgive thee, unnatural
  • Though thou art. Ariel, I shall miss thee,
  • But thou shalt have freedom. At the ship pull
  • The sailors below deck from their sleep; see
  • The master is awakened presently.
  • Drive them by force to this place, I prithee.
  • ARIEL
  • I drink the air before me, and return before your pulse twice beat.
  • GONZALO
  • All torment, trouble, wonder, and amazement inhabits here. Some heavenly power guide us out of this fearful country.
  • PROSPERO TO ALONSO
  • Behold, sir king, the wronged Duke of Milan, Prospero. For more assurance that a living prince does now speak to thee, I embrace thy body.
  • He embraces Alonso.
  • PROSPERO
  • And to thee and thy company I bid a hearty welcome.
  • ALONSO
  • Thy dukedom I resign, and do entreat thou pardon me my wrongs. But how should Prospero be living and be here?
  • PROSPERO TO GONZALO
  • First, noble friend, let me embrace you, whose honor cannot be measured or confined.
  • GONZALO
  • Whether this be or be not, I’ll not swear.
  • PROSPERO
  • Welcome, my friends all.
  • PROSPERO ASIDE TO SEBASTIAN AND ANTONIO
  • But you, my pair of lords, were I so minded, I here could prove you to be traitors. At this time I will tell no tales.
  • SEBASTIAN ASIDE
  • The devil speaks in him.
  • PROSPERO ASIDE TO SEBASTIAN
  • No.
  • PROSPERO TO ANTONIO
  • For you, most wicked sir, I do forgive thy rankest fault, and require my dukedom of thee, which perforce I know thou must restore.
  • ALONSO
  • If thou be’st Prospero, give us particulars of thy preservation, how thou hast met us here, whom three hours since were wracked upon this shore, where I have lost my dear son Ferdinand.
  • PROSPERO
  • I am distressed for ‘t, sir.
  • ALONSO
  • Irreparable is the loss.
  • PROSPERO
  • For the like loss, I rest myself content.
  • ALONSO
  • You the like loss?
  • PROSPERO
  • I have lost my daughter.
  • ALONSO
  • A daughter? When did you lose your daughter?
  • PROSPERO
  • Know you have been jostled from your senses. Know for certain that I am Prospero and that very duke who most strangely upon this shore, where you were wracked, was landed to be the lord on ‘t.
  • PROSPERO TO ALONSO
  • Welcome, sir. This cell’s my home. Pray you, look in.
  • Ferdinand and Miranda are inside playing chess.
  • ALONSO
  • If this prove a vision of the island, one dear son shall I twice lose.
  • SEBASTIAN
  • A most high miracle!
  • Ferdinand sees his father and comes forward.
  • FERDINAND
  • Though the seas threaten, they are merciful. I have cursed them without cause.
  • He kneels.
  • ALONSO
  • Arise, and say how thou cam’st here.
  • Ferdinand stands. Miranda rises and comes forward.
  • MIRANDA
  • O wonder! How many goodly creatures are there here! How beauteous mankind is! O, brave new world, that has such people in ‘t!
  • ALONSO TO FERDINAND
  • What is this maid with whom thou wast at play? Is she the goddess that hath severed us and brought us thus together?
  • FERDINAND
  • Sir, she is mortal, but by immortal providence she’s mine. I chose her when I could not ask my father for his advice, nor thought I had one. She is daughter to this famous Duke of Milan. I have received a second life; and second father this lady makes him to me.
  • ALONSO
  • I am hers. But, O, how oddly will it sound that I must ask my child forgiveness!
  • PROSPERO
  • There, sir, stop. Let us not burden our remembrances with a heaviness that’s gone.
  • GONZALO
  • Look down, you gods, and on this couple drop a blessed crown, for it is you that have chalked forth the way which brought us hither.
  • ALONSO
  • I say “Amen,” Gonzalo.
  • GONZALO
  • O, rejoice. In one voyage did Claribel her husband find at Tunis, and Ferdinand, her brother, found a wife where he himself was lost; Prospero his dukedom in a poor isle; and all or us ourselves when no man was his own.
  • ALONSO TO FERDINAND AND MIRANDA
  • Give me your hands.
  • Ariel enters with the Master and Boatswain following.
  • GONZALO
  • O, look, sir, look, sir, here is more of us. What is the news?
  • BOATSWAIN
  • The best news is that we have safely found our king and company. The next: our ship is tight and seaworthy and bravely rigged as when we first put out to sea.
  • ARIEL ASIDE TO PROSPERO
  • Sir, all this service have I done since I went.
  • PROSPERO ASIDE TO ARIEL
  • My crafty spirit!
  • ALONSO
  • These are not natural events. They strengthen from strange to stranger.
  • BOATSWAIN
  • We were dead of sleep and all clapped under hatches, where with strange and shrieking and jingling chains, all horrible, we were awaked, straightway at liberty, and where we were brought in a daze hither.
  • ARIEL ASIDE TO PROSPERO
  • Was ‘t well done?
  • PROSPERO ASIDE TO ARIEL
  • Bravely, my diligence. Thou shalt be free.
  • ALONSO
  • This is as strange a maze as e’er men trod.
  • PROSPERO
  • Sir, my liege, do not infest your mind with beating on the strangeness of this business. At a moment of leisure, which shall be shortly, single I’ll resolve you.
  • PROSPERO ASIDE TO ARIEL
  • Come hither, spirit; set Caliban and his companions free. Untie the spell.
  • Ariel exits.
  • PROSPERO
  • Sir, there are yet missing of your company some few odd lads that you remember not.
  • Ariel enters, followed by Caliban, Stephano and Trinculo in their stolen apparel.
  • STEPHANO
  • Courage, my fine monster, courage.
  • PROSPERO
  • Observe these men, my lords, then say if they be true.
  • ALONSO
  • Is not this Stephano, my drunken butler?
  • SEBASTIAN
  • He is drunk now. Where had he wine?
  • ALONSO
  • And Trinculo is reeling ripe. Where should they find this grand liquor that hath gilded ‘em?
  • Alonso points to Caliban.
  • ALONSO
  • This is as strange a thing as e’er I looked on.
  • PROSPERO TO CALIBAN
  • So, sirrah, to my cell. Take with you your companions.
  • CALIBAN
  • Ay, that I will, and I’ll be wise hereafter and seek for grace.
  • Caliban, Stephano and Trinculo exit.
  •  
  •  
  • Prospero to Alonso
  •  
  • This misshapen knave’s mother, legend goes,
  • Was so strong she could control the moon’s flows
  • And ebbs. These three here have robbed me, and this
  • Demi-devil plotted with them to take
  • My life. Sir, I do invite your Highness
  • To my home where you may enjoy the brake
  • From your brief enslavement; where I shall tell
  • Of my time on this isle, and wish you well,
  • For in the morn I’ll take you to your ship,
  • Promising an auspicious voyage, so
  • Expeditious that you shall on this trip
  • O’ertake your fleet; where I’ll to Naples go
  • Where a legal service for these two can
  • Be; when I can withdraw to my Milan.
  • ALONSO
  • I long to hear the story of your life, which must take the ear strangely.
  • PROSPERO ASIDE TO ARIEL
  • My Ariel, chick, to the elements be free, and fare thou well.
  • PROSPERO TO ALONSO
  • Please you, draw near.
  • They all exit.

Copyright © 2010 Simplified Shakespeare

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