Dialogue from Act 3, Scene 1 of “The Tempest” as given in the textbook are given here along with their detailed word by word and line by line explanations and summary analysis. Students may easily understand the meanings and reflections of the dialogues by Ferdinand and Mirada with Prospero aside. Enjoy free learning here.
Act 3, Scene 1 of “The Tempest”
- There be some sports are painful, and their labour
- Ferdinand begins by acknowledging that some activities or sports can be painful, and the effort put into them is made enjoyable by the pleasure derived from the activity itself.
- Delight in them sets off: some kinds of baseness
- The joy experienced in these activities enhances the effort put into them. Ferdinand suggests that certain types of difficult or lowly tasks can be endured and even become noble when there is joy in doing them.
- Are nobly undergone and most poor matters
- Some lowly or humble tasks can be endured in a noble manner, and even the simplest matters can lead to significant outcomes.
- Point to rich ends. This my mean task
- Ferdinand suggests that even his seemingly ordinary and humble task has a purpose that will lead to rich or valuable results.
- Would be as heavy to me as odious, but
- Ferdinand admits that the task assigned to him would be burdensome and unpleasant if not for a particular reason.
- The mistress which I serve quickens what’s dead
- Ferdinand explains that his work is made bearable and even enjoyable because the woman he serves (referring to Miranda) brings life and vitality to what would otherwise be lifeless or dull.
- And makes my labours pleasures: O, she is
- Miranda’s presence transforms his work into a pleasurable activity. Ferdinand expresses admiration for Miranda.
- Ten times more gentle than her father’s crabbed,
- Ferdinand compares Miranda to her father (Prospero), describing her as ten times more gentle than her father, who is characterized as “crabbed” or harsh.
- And he’s composed of harshness. I must remove
- Ferdinand contrasts Prospero’s harshness with Miranda’s gentleness and mentions the task he must undertake.
- Some thousands of these logs and pile them up,
- Ferdinand reveals the nature of his labor, which involves moving and stacking thousands of logs.
- Upon a sore injunction: my sweet mistress
- He mentions that the task is given as a difficult command or order (“sore injunction”), but the presence of his sweet mistress (Miranda) makes it bearable.
- Weeps when she sees me work, and says, such baseness
- Miranda feels sorry for Ferdinand and cries when she sees him working, commenting on the lowly nature of the task.
- Had never like executor. I forget:
- Ferdinand momentarily forgets something, possibly due to the sweet thoughts of Miranda.
- But these sweet thoughts do even refresh my labours,
- Ferdinand concludes that despite the challenging nature of the task, thinking about Miranda and her kindness refreshes and invigorates him, making the labor more bearable.
- Most busy lest, when I do it.
- Ferdinand adds that he is busiest when trying not to think about Miranda while working, suggesting that her thoughts constantly occupy his mind.
Miranda expresses concern for Ferdinand and urges him to take a break from his labor.
- Alas, now, pray you,
- Miranda begins with an expression of sorrow or sympathy, addressing Ferdinand with a sense of urgency.
- Work not so hard: I would the lightning had
- She implores Ferdinand to ease up on his hard work, expressing a wish that a lightning strike had destroyed the logs he’s tasked with piling. This demonstrates her concern for his well-being.
- Burnt up those logs that you are enjoin’d to pile!
- Miranda wishes that the logs, which are the source of Ferdinand’s labor, had been consumed by lightning, implying that she would prefer him not to endure the difficulty of the task.
- Pray, set it down and rest you: when this burns,
- She requests him to put down the logs and take a break. She suggests that once the logs are set on fire, they will “weep” for having wearied him.
- ‘Twill weep for having wearied you. My father
- Miranda personifies the burning logs, suggesting that they will metaphorically weep or lament for causing fatigue to Ferdinand. She then mentions her father, likely referring to Prospero.
- Is hard at study; pray now, rest yourself;
- Miranda assures Ferdinand that her father is busy studying and won’t be aware of his resting. She encourages him to take a break and rest.
- He’s safe for these three hours.
- Miranda reassures Ferdinand that her father will be occupied with his studies for the next three hours, indicating that it’s a suitable time for Ferdinand to rest without any concerns.
In this act, Miranda’s compassion for Ferdinand is evident as she expresses a desire for his well-being and encourages him to take a break from his labor, taking into consideration his fatigue and the challenging nature of his task.
In this line, Ferdinand expresses his concern to Miranda about completing his task before sunset.
- O most dear mistress,
- Ferdinand addresses Miranda affectionately, emphasizing her importance to him.
- The Sun will set before I shall discharge
- He laments that the sun will set before he can complete or discharge the task assigned to him.
- What I must strive to do.
- Ferdinand acknowledges the effort and struggle (“strive”) required to fulfill his duties. He’s expressing a sense of urgency and the difficulty he faces in completing the task within the limited time before sunset.
This line reflects Ferdinand’s dedication to his responsibilities, as well as the challenges he encounters in meeting his obligations within the given timeframe. The urgency in his words conveys a desire to fulfill his duties promptly, perhaps influenced by the expectations placed upon him or the consequences of not completing the task in time.
Miranda offers to help Ferdinand with his labor by carrying the logs for him.
- If you’ll sit down,
- Miranda suggests that if Ferdinand takes a break and sits down, she is willing to assist him.
- I’ll bear your logs the while:
- She offers to carry the logs on his behalf during his rest, showing her willingness to support and share the burden of his task.
- Pray, give me that;
- Miranda requests Ferdinand to hand over the burden (a log or something related to his task) to her, indicating her eagerness to help.
- I’ll carry it to the pile.
- She specifies that she will carry the log to the designated pile, demonstrating her readiness to actively contribute to the completion of Ferdinand’s labor.
Miranda’s willingness to assist Ferdinand reflects her compassion, affection, and desire to alleviate his physical strain. It also reinforces the growing bond between them, as Miranda takes an active role in supporting Ferdinand during his challenging task.
Ferdinand responds to Miranda’s offer to help him with his labor.
- No, precious creature;
- Ferdinand addresses Miranda affectionately, calling her a “precious creature” to express his love and admiration for her.
- I had rather crack my sinews, break my back,
- He vehemently rejects Miranda’s offer, stating that he would prefer to endure physical strain and even risk injury (“crack my sinews, break my back”) rather than allowing her to undergo such dishonor by doing the labor while he sits idly.
- Than you should such dishonour undergo,
- Ferdinand is concerned about the dishonor or indignity that Miranda might face if she were to take on the laborious task in his place.
- While I sit lazy by.
- He emphasizes his unwillingness to be idle while she takes on the hard work, expressing a sense of duty and a desire to protect her from any perceived dishonor.
This scene act highlights Ferdinand’s sense of responsibility and chivalry. He is determined to bear the physical burden himself, even if it means enduring hardship, in order to shield Miranda from what he perceives as a dishonorable act. It reflects traditional notions of gender roles and the protective instincts of a suitor towards his beloved.
In this dialogue, Miranda responds to Ferdinand’s refusal of her help and insists that she is capable of performing the labor with ease.
- It would become me
- Miranda suggests that taking on the task would be fitting or appropriate for her, just as much as it is for Ferdinand.
- As well as it does you: and I should do it
- She asserts that she is just as capable of performing the task as he is, and she could do it equally well.
- With much more ease; for my good will is to it,
- Miranda claims that she would find the task much easier because her willingness and desire to help make the effort lighter. Her motivation and positive attitude would make the labor less burdensome for her.
- And yours it is against.
- Miranda contrasts her own willingness (“good will”) with Ferdinand’s reluctance (“yours it is against”). She believes that her eagerness to assist makes her better suited for the task.
Miranda’s response highlights her determination to contribute and her confidence in her ability to perform the labor. She also emphasizes the contrast between her positive attitude and Ferdinand’s reluctance, suggesting that her willingness and motivation would make the task more manageable for her. This exchange continues to showcase the dynamics of their relationship and their respective perspectives on duty and gender roles.
Prospero makes a private comment to himself regarding Ferdinand.
- Prospero (aside) Poor worm, thou art infected!
- In this parenthetical aside, Prospero speaks to himself. He refers to Ferdinand as a “poor worm,” a term that conveys both sympathy and a sense of vulnerability. The term “infected” suggests that there is some influence or affliction affecting Ferdinand.
- This visitation shows it.
- Prospero attributes Ferdinand’s condition to a “visitation,” implying that there is a divine or supernatural influence at play. The word “shows” suggests that Prospero perceives signs or symptoms of this influence in Ferdinand’s behavior or situation.
This aside act indicates Prospero’s awareness of something amiss with Ferdinand, and he interprets it as a form of affliction or infection. It adds an element of intrigue and foreshadowing to the narrative, hinting at Prospero’s deeper understanding of the events on the island and his ongoing schemes and plans.
Miranda observes Ferdinand’s tired appearance and comments on it.
- You look wearily.
- Miranda directly addresses Ferdinand and notes that he appears tired or weary. This line shows her concern for his well-being and reflects her perceptiveness toward his physical condition.
Miranda’s comment is a straightforward observation that indicates her attentiveness to Ferdinand’s state, reinforcing the growing connection and care between the two characters.
Ferdinand responds to Miranda’s observation about his weariness and expresses his feelings towards her.
- No, noble mistress; ‘tis fresh morning with me
- Ferdinand denies being weary and claims that, in the presence of Miranda, it feels like a fresh morning for him even at night. This romantic statement suggests that Miranda’s presence brings him a sense of vitality and rejuvenation.
- When you are by at night. I do beseech you—
- He continues by expressing his earnest request, marked by “I do beseech you,” indicating a strong desire or plea.
- Chiefly that I might set it in my prayers—
- Ferdinand specifies that he wishes to know Miranda’s name, primarily so that he can include it in his prayers. This demonstrates his reverence and admiration for her, elevating her to a level of significance in his thoughts and supplications.
- What is your name?
- Ferdinand directly asks Miranda to reveal her name, signifying a pivotal moment in their interaction. In Shakespearean plays, the exchange of names often carries weight, symbolizing a deeper connection or understanding.
This passage highlights Ferdinand’s immediate and growing infatuation with Miranda. His poetic language and desire to incorporate her name into his prayers emphasize the romantic and spiritual dimensions of their burgeoning relationship.
Miranda responds to Ferdinand’s request for her name.
- Miranda—O my father,
- Miranda reveals her name, stating it in response to Ferdinand’s question. However, her immediate exclamation and mention of her father suggest that she might feel conflicted or guilty about disclosing her identity.
- I have broke your hest to say so!
- Miranda realizes that by revealing her name, she has disobeyed or broken her father’s command (“hest”). This adds a layer of tension to the moment, as it hints at the influence of Prospero’s instructions and the potential complications in their developing relationship.
Miranda’s admission of her name and her immediate concern about breaking her father’s command contribute to the complexity of the characters’ interactions. It foreshadows the presence of familial expectations and Prospero’s control over Miranda, setting the stage for further exploration of these themes in the play.
Ferdinand expresses his admiration and infatuation for Miranda.
- Admired Miranda!
- Ferdinand begins by addressing Miranda with admiration, using the past participle “Admired” to emphasize the depth of his feelings.
- Indeed the top of admiration!
- He goes on to declare that Miranda is not just admired, but the pinnacle or summit of admiration itself. This hyperbolic language underscores the intensity of his admiration for her.
- Worth What’s dearest to the world!
- Ferdinand states that Miranda is worth more than anything else in the world, suggesting that she holds the highest value in his eyes.
- Full many a lady I have eyed with best regard
- Ferdinand admits that he has observed many ladies with great attention and regard in the past.
- and many a time The harmony of their tongues hath into bondage Brought my too diligent ear:
- He explains that he has often been captivated by the eloquence or harmony of their speech, suggesting that he has been drawn in by the words and conversations of other women.
- for several virtues Have I liked several women; never any With so full soul, but some defect in her Did quarrel with the noblest grace she owed And put it to the foil:
- Ferdinand confesses that he has appreciated various virtues in different women, but there was always some flaw or defect that marred their noble qualities and undermined their grace.
- but you, O you, So perfect and so peerless, are created Of every creature’s best.
- He contrasts Miranda with the women he has encountered, stating that she is perfect and without peer. Ferdinand believes that she is created from the best qualities of every creature, emphasizing her exceptional nature.
This act reveals Ferdinand’s deep admiration for Miranda, portraying her as an ideal and flawless figure in his eyes. The exaggerated language and comparisons highlight the intensity of his feelings and set the stage for the romantic elements of their relationship.
Miranda responds to Ferdinand’s expressions of admiration with her own sentiments.
- I do not know One of my sex; no woman’s face remember,
- Miranda begins by stating that she doesn’t know any other women. She has no memory of seeing another woman’s face except her own when she looks in a mirror.
- Save, from my glass, mine own; nor have I seen More that I may call men than you, good friend, And my dear father:
- She acknowledges that the only man she has seen, apart from Ferdinand, is her father. Her social interactions have been limited, and her knowledge of the world is restricted to what she has observed in her reflection and her immediate family.
- how features are abroad I am skilless of;
- Miranda admits that she is unaware of the appearances and characteristics of people outside of her immediate surroundings. She lacks knowledge of the world beyond her isolated island.
- but, by my modesty, The jewel in my dower,
- She refers to her modesty as a valuable jewel in her possession (“dower”). This suggests that her virtue and humility are significant to her.
- I would not wish Any companion in the world but you, Nor can imagination form a shape, Besides yourself, to like of.
- Miranda expresses her strong preference for Ferdinand as a companion, claiming that she wouldn’t desire any other companion in the world. She also states that her imagination cannot conjure up an image or shape of anyone she would like besides him.
- But I prattle Something too wildly and my father’s precepts I therein do forget.
- Miranda realizes that she has been speaking too freely and passionately. She attributes this to her excitement and forgets her father’s teachings in the process.
Miranda’s response reveals her sheltered upbringing and limited exposure to the outside world. Her sincere and earnest affection for Ferdinand, coupled with her lack of experience and exposure, adds depth to the unfolding romance between the characters.
Ferdinand continues to express his deep affection for Miranda and the impact she has had on him.
- I am in my condition A prince, Miranda; I do think, a king;
- Ferdinand declares his royal status, suggesting that in his current state, he feels like a prince, even considering himself a king. This indicates the transformative effect Miranda has had on his self-perception.
- I would, not so!—and would no more endure This wooden slavery than to suffer The flesh-fly blow my mouth.
- He rejects the idea of being in a lowly or servile condition (“wooden slavery”) and expresses that he would not endure such a state. The comparison to a flesh-fly blowing on his mouth emphasizes the repulsiveness of the idea.
- Hear my soul speak: The very instant that I saw you, did My heart fly to your service; there resides To make me slave to it; and for your sake Am I this patient log-man.
- Ferdinand speaks from the depths of his being, stating that the moment he saw Miranda, his heart pledged itself to her service. He describes his heart residing in her service, turning him into a willing slave. The term “patient log-man” refers to his laborious task of moving logs, suggesting that he willingly takes on this role for Miranda’s sake.
This scene act intensifies Ferdinand’s expressions of love and servitude towards Miranda. He not only views himself as royalty in her presence but willingly embraces a servile role, highlighting the profound impact of his feelings for her. The imagery and metaphors used convey the strength and immediacy of Ferdinand’s love for Miranda.
is a straightforward and pivotal moment in Act 3, Scene 1 of “The Tempest” by William Shakespeare.
Miranda’s question, “Do you love me?”
With this question, Miranda seeks a direct affirmation of Ferdinand’s feelings towards her. This moment is significant as it marks the exploration of their growing romantic relationship. It reflects Miranda’s desire for a clear understanding of Ferdinand’s emotions, emphasizing the theme of love in the play. Ferdinand’s response will likely play a crucial role in further developing the dynamics between the two characters.
In response to Miranda’s question, Ferdinand passionately declares his love for her in Act 3, Scene 1 of “The Tempest”
- O heaven, O earth, bear witness to this sound
- Ferdinand calls upon heaven and earth to bear witness to his declaration. This emphasizes the solemnity and sincerity of his words, as he wants his love for Miranda to be acknowledged by the divine and the natural world.
- And crown what I profess with kind event If I speak true!
- Ferdinand expresses a hope that if he is speaking the truth about his love for Miranda, the universe will respond favorably (“crown what I profess with kind event”). This further underscores his sincerity and genuine emotions.
- If hollowly, invert What best is boded me to mischief!
- Conversely, Ferdinand acknowledges that if he is insincere or deceptive (“hollowly”), he wishes that the positive expectations (“what best is boded me”) would be turned into misfortune or mischief. This self-imposed consequence adds weight to the truthfulness of his words.
- I Beyond all limit of what else i’ the world Do love, prize, honour you.
- Ferdinand unequivocally declares the extent of his feelings for Miranda. He claims that beyond any comparison to anything else in the world, he loves, prizes, and honors her. This hyperbolic language emphasizes the depth and exclusivity of his emotions.
Ferdinand’s response is a powerful affirmation of his love for Miranda, and he invokes the elements of heaven and earth to bear witness to the authenticity of his feelings. The sincerity and intensity of his declaration contribute to the romantic atmosphere in the play and solidify the emotional connection between the two characters.
Miranda reflects on her emotions after Ferdinand’s declaration of love. Let’s break down her words:
- I am a fool
- Miranda begins by self-deprecatingly calling herself a fool. This may suggest that she feels a sense of vulnerability or perhaps naivety in her emotional response.
- To weep at what I am glad of.
- She explains the reason for her self-perceived foolishness. Miranda is weeping, but she is simultaneously glad or happy about what has just transpired. This reveals a complex mix of emotions within her—tears that might stem from joy, relief, or overwhelming feelings.
Miranda’s statement captures the paradoxical nature of her emotions. Despite being glad and happy about Ferdinand’s love, she is moved to tears. This complexity adds depth to her character and reflects the intricate and sometimes contradictory nature of human emotions, particularly in the context of love and vulnerability.
In this aside act from Act 3, Scene 1 of “The Tempest”, Prospero expresses his thoughts in response to the developing romantic relationship between Ferdinand and Miranda. Let’s break down his words:
- Prospero: (aside) Fair encounter
- Prospero speaks quietly to himself, expressing his inner thoughts. The “fair encounter” refers to the meeting or interaction between Ferdinand and Miranda.
- Of two most rare affections!
- Prospero characterizes the affections or feelings between Ferdinand and Miranda as “most rare.” This suggests that their connection is extraordinary and uncommon.
- Heavens rain grace On that which breeds between ‘em!
- Prospero invokes the heavens, asking for grace or divine favor to be bestowed on the burgeoning relationship between Ferdinand and Miranda. The phrase “that which breeds between ’em” implies the growth and development of their feelings for each other.
Prospero’s aside reveals his approval and positive sentiment regarding the romantic connection between Ferdinand and Miranda. He wishes for divine grace to bless their relationship, highlighting the significance of this union in the context of the play. This moment reflects Prospero’s evolving attitude and involvement in the affairs of the characters on the island.
Ferdinand addresses Miranda, who has been weeping. Let’s break down his words:
- Ferdinand: Wherefore weep you?
- Ferdinand inquires about the reason behind Miranda’s tears. The word “wherefore” means “why” or “for what reason.”
This line reflects Ferdinand’s concern for Miranda’s emotions. He notices her tears and seeks to understand the cause, showing his attentiveness to her feelings and a desire to comfort or assist her. It also contributes to the evolving dynamic between Ferdinand and Miranda as they navigate their growing relationship.
In this powerful monologue from Act 3, Scene 1 of “The Tempest” by William Shakespeare, Miranda speaks to Ferdinand about her feelings and her willingness to be with him. Let’s break down her words:
- At mine unworthiness that dare not offer What I desire to give, and much less take What I shall die to want.
- Miranda expresses a sense of unworthiness, suggesting that she feels hesitant to offer what she desires to give. She adds that she is even less inclined to take what she shall die to want, emphasizing a deep longing or desire.
- But this is trifling; And all the more it seeks to hide itself, The bigger bulk it shows.
- Miranda dismisses her hesitation as trivial or unimportant. She notes that the more she tries to conceal her feelings, the more evident they become, emphasizing the intensity of her emotions.
- Hence, bashful cunning! And prompt me, plain and holy innocence!
- She attributes her inner conflict to a combination of bashful cunning and plain, holy innocence. The terms suggest a mix of shyness, cleverness, and sincere purity in her emotional state.
- I am your wife, if you will marry me; If not, I’ll die your maid: to be your fellow You may deny me; but I’ll be your servant, Whether you will or no.
- Miranda makes a bold and unequivocal statement of her feelings for Ferdinand. She declares herself as his wife if he agrees to marry her. She adds that if he refuses, she will die unmarried (“die your maid”). Furthermore, she expresses her willingness to be his companion (“fellow”) even if he denies her as a wife, emphasizing that she will be his servant whether he wishes it or not.
Miranda’s monologue is a significant moment in the play, showcasing her forthrightness, deep love for Ferdinand, and willingness to make profound commitments. It adds complexity to their relationship and contributes to the themes of love and commitment in “The Tempest.”
In this brief yet affectionate response, Ferdinand addresses Miranda.
- My mistress, dearest; and I thus humble ever.
- Ferdinand addresses Miranda as “my mistress” with a term of endearment, calling her “dearest.” He then expresses his humility, stating that he is “thus humble ever.” This likely indicates his continued admiration, respect, and devotion to her.
Ferdinand’s words reflect his deep affection for Miranda, and the language used underscores the respect and devotion he feels toward her. This exchange contributes to the ongoing development of their romantic relationship in the play.
Miranda’s question, “My husband, then?” from Act 3, Scene 1 of “The Tempest” by William Shakespeare, is a pivotal moment in the play.
In this simple yet significant inquiry, Miranda seeks confirmation or acknowledgment of her relationship status with Ferdinand. The question carries weight as it reflects Miranda’s understanding of their deepening connection and her desire for a more formal commitment. It marks a crucial step in the development of their romantic relationship, and Ferdinand’s response will likely shape the course of their future interactions.
In this response, Ferdinand confirms his commitment to Miranda.
- Ay, with a heart as willing As bondage e’er of freedom: here’s my hand.
- Ferdinand affirms that he is indeed her husband, using the archaic “Ay” to mean “yes.” He adds that his heart is as willing as someone in bondage would be to freedom, suggesting that he willingly and gladly accepts the commitment. Finally, he extends his hand, symbolizing an offer of partnership and union.
Ferdinand’s response is a declaration of his love and commitment to Miranda, using vivid imagery to express the eagerness and joy with which he accepts their union. This moment marks a significant milestone in their relationship, solidifying their marital bond.
Miranda responds to Ferdinand’s commitment.
- And mine, with my heart in’t;
- Miranda reciprocates Ferdinand’s gesture, stating that her hand is also offered in marriage, and she emphasizes that her heart is included in the commitment. This emphasizes the sincerity and depth of her feelings.
- and now farewell Till half an hour hence.
- Miranda concludes by bidding farewell but with the expectation of a brief parting. She specifies “till half an hour hence,” indicating that their separation will be temporary, and they will meet again shortly.
Miranda’s response underscores the mutual commitment and affection between her and Ferdinand. The use of her heart in the gesture adds emotional weight to the agreement, and her farewell with the promise of a quick reunion suggests eagerness and anticipation for their future together.
Ferdinand’s exclamation, “A thousand thousand!” from Act 3, Scene 1 of “The Tempest” by William Shakespeare, is an emphatic expression of his joy and happiness.
It’s a poetic way of saying “many, many thanks” or expressing an overwhelming sense of gratitude or appreciation. The repetition of “thousand” intensifies the magnitude of his feelings, emphasizing the depth of his emotions in response to Miranda’s commitment and the prospect of their union. This exclamation adds a touch of romantic flourish to the scene and conveys the profound happiness Ferdinand is experiencing in this moment.
Prospero expresses his joy at the positive turn of events involving Ferdinand and Miranda.
- So glad of this as they I cannot be, Who are surprised withal; but my rejoicing At nothing can be more.
- Prospero states that he is as glad about the union of Ferdinand and Miranda as those who are surprised by unexpected good news. However, he adds that his own rejoicing is even greater, suggesting that he anticipated and orchestrated this outcome.
- I’ll to my book, For yet ere supper-time must I perform Much business appertaining.
- Prospero acknowledges that, despite his joy, he must return to his studies or “book” because he has important tasks to accomplish before supper. The phrase “much business appertaining” refers to various tasks related to his magical and strategic plans ahead.
This act reveals Prospero’s satisfaction with the unfolding events while also emphasizing his role as a manipulator and orchestrator of the circumstances on the island. His mention of returning to his book hints at the continued use of his magical powers and the intricate plots he has in store. Prospero’s character is complex, combining elements of joy and control in his reactions to the evolving situations around him.