The Comedy of Errors

The Comedy of Errors may have been written as early as 1590 and was performed at Gray's Inn in 1594. It was published in the First Folio of 1623 and is Shakespeare's shortest play. It also follows the neo-classical unities of time, place and action. The play on which it is based is Plautus's Menaechmi, although he adds a number of new elements such as a new pair of twins both named Dromio. Egeon has been arrested in Ephesus and, being an enemy of the state as a Syracusan merchant, he is forced by the duke to explain his presence. We find out that Egeon and his wife Emilia had twin sons who were exactly identical and were both named Antipholus. The twin slaves called Dromio were employed to look after them. A shipwreck had separated one Dromio, the elder Antipholus and Emila from Egeon and the others. Now Egeon has lost his remaining son and Dromio for five years since they went to look for their twins. While Egeus is forced to find the ransom before evening to avoid being put to death for being in Ephesus all the twins by accident have converged on Ephesus (the elder Antipholus is married there). As such the comedy of errors ensues with the wrong twins meeting and variously falling in love, escaping to convents and being confined as madmen. Inevitably for a Shakespearean comedy there comes resolution and everyone is saved, married or rescued.

Table of contents
Dramatis Personae.
Act 1
Scene 1. A hall in DUKE SOLINUS'S palace.
Scene 2. The Mart.
Act 2
Scene 1. The house of ANTIPHOLUS of Ephesus.
Scene 2. A public place.
Act 3
Scene 1. Before the house of ANTIPHOLUS of Ephesus.
Scene 2. The same.
Act 4
Scene 1. A public place.
Scene 2. The house of ANTIPHOLUS of Ephesus.
Scene 3. A public place.
Scene 4. A street.
Act 5
Scene 1. A street before a Priory.

  By PanEris using Melati.

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