Comedy of Errors

Comedy of Errors Summary of Act 3

Act Three, Scene One

Antipholus of Ephesus, his servant Dromio, Angelo the goldsmith, and Balthasar the merchant all enter the stage. Antipholus is having the goldsmith make a necklace for his wife Adriana. Meanwhile, Dromio has complained of his ill-treatment to his master, who does not know what he is talking about and thinks Dromio is a fool.

Dromio, Antipholus, Angelo, and the merchant Balthasar return to Antipholus' home and find the gate locked. Dromio of Syracuse is keeping watch and refuses to let them enter. When Antipholus demands to know who is denying him access to his house, Dromio of Syracuse announces that his name is Dromio, causing even more confusion.

Nell, Adriana's kitchen-maid, comes out to see what the commotion is about. She tells the three men to go away, but they recognize her voice and demand to be let in. Finally Adriana appears to see what is going on. Her husband yells for her to let him in, but she scorns him and orders him to go away.

Antipholus of Ephesus apologizes to Balthasar for the problem, which causes him to be embarrassed. He demands that Dromio go and fetch a tool to help him break the gate down. Balthasar advises against it, arguing that Antipholus' wife has always been true to him, and that there must be some explanation for what is happening. Antipholus then orders the goldsmith to fetch the necklace, which he plans to give to another woman in order to spite his wife.

Act Three, Scene Two

Back in Adriana's house, Antipholus of Syracuse and Luciana are together on stage. Luciana lectures Antipholus about the poor way that he treats her sister. She tells him to stop looking at other women and to start comforting his wife.

Antipholus replies that he knows no wife, but that he finds Luciana to be quite beautiful and lovely. She is shocked by his suggestive nature and thinks that he has gone mad. She then tells him to wait while she goes to fetch her sister.

Dromio enters and complains that he is being chased by a woman who claims to be his wife. He tells Antipholus that this woman, Nell, is so fat that she could provide the oil in a lamp to burn an entire winter. He compares her to the globe, at which point Antipholus asks him where certain countries are upon her body. After this silly interplay, Antipholus orders Dromio to go to the harbor and find out if any ships are sailing away from Ephesus that night.

After Dromio leaves, Angelo enters with the gold chain which he gives to Antipholus of Syracuse. Antipholus is not sure what to make of the necklace, but he takes it anyway. He then decides to leave and rejoin Dromio so that both of them can escape from Ephesus where so many strange things are happening.