SHAKESPEARE ALOUD

Two Gents Act V, Scene 2 – on the T, Boston subway

Another silly scene here at the top of Act V.  Shakespeare puts three of them in a row so set up the slingshot that gets released in the final scene, V;iv.

We wanted to do at least one on the T, and the timing was right to do a short one that was colorful enough to hopefully amuse any listeners who, like the boat on the Seine, were otherwise unable to escape.  People seem pretty interested if they have nowhere to be, I’ve found.

We’re on the red line, bouncing between Boston and Cambridge, going over the Charles River and underground.

THE SCENE

Again, not much to remark upon here.  We’re back in Turio land so there will invariably be some light humor tinged with some vainly clownish behavior that recalls earlier writers a bit more than the Shakespeare of Twelfth Night.  And so here.  We have our first shared line by three people, I think:

DUKE

Which of you saw Eglamour of late? (A demanding trochaic line)

TUIO

Not I.

PROTEUS

Nor I.

DUKE

Saw you my daughter?

PROTEUS

Neither.

It ends noticeably with a feminine ending, adding an extra syllable where ‘nay’ would have sufficed.  Interesting.

One more little thing, in line 40 the Duke has this:

At Patrick’s cell this even, and there she was not.

It’s a 12 syllable line so you may assume a larger thought.  But, it still only has five feet of poetry.  The meter’s a big gnarly, so I made two triplets out of ‘even and’ and ‘there she was.’  That seems to punctuate the thought and avoids the clunky iambs which don’t make the line make much sense.

BB

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