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Welcome to my web site, now under development for more than twenty years.   
-- Philip Weller, November 13, 1941 - February 1, 2021
Dr. Weller, an Eastern Washington University professor of English and Shakespearean scholar for more than 50 years.

Much Ado About Nothing: Act 2, Scene 2

           Enter [DON] JOHN and BORACHIO.

      DON JOHN
1. shall: is going to.
  1   It is so; the Count Claudio shall marry the
  2   daughter of Leonato.

3. cross: thwart.
  3   Yea, my lord; but I can cross it.

      DON JOHN
  4   Any bar, any cross, any impediment will be
5-6. med'cinable: medicinal, healing. displeasure to: anger against. 6-7. whatsoever comes athwart his affection ranges evenly with mine: i.e., whatever makes him unhappy makes me happy.
  5   med'cinable to me: I am sick in displeasure
  6   to him, and whatsoever comes athwart his
  7   affection ranges evenly with mine. How
  8   canst thou cross this marriage?

  9   Not honestly, my lord; but so covertly that
 10   no dishonesty shall appear in me.

      DON JOHN
11. briefly: quickly.
 11   Show me briefly how.

 12   I think I told your lordship a year since, how
 13   much I am in the favour of Margaret, the waiting
 14   gentlewoman to Hero.

      DON JOHN
 15   I remember.

16-18. I can, at any unseasonable instant of the night, appoint her to look out at her lady's chamber window: i.e., I can make an arrangement with her to meet me at Hero's bedroom window at any time of the night.
 16   I can, at any unseasonable instant of the night,
 17   appoint her to look out at her lady's chamber
 18   window.

      DON JOHN
 19   What life is in that, to be the death of
 20   this marriage?

21. The poison of that lies in you to temper: it depends upon you to brew up the poison in that.
 21   The poison of that lies in you to temper.
 22   Go you to the prince your brother; spare
 23   not to tell him that he hath wronged his
 24   honor in marrying the renowned Claudio
25. whose estimation do you mightily hold up: whose reputation and honor you hold in high esteem. 26. contaminated stale: common prostitute.
 25   —whose estimation do you mightily hold up—
 26   to a contaminated stale, such a one as Hero.

      DON JOHN
 27   What proof shall I make of that?

28. misuse: abuse; deceive. vex: afflict, torment.
 28   Proof enough to misuse the prince, to vex
 29   Claudio, to undo Hero and kill Leonato.
30. Look you for any other issue?: do you expect any other result?; i.e., what more could you want?
 30   Look you for any other issue?

      DON JOHN
 31   Only to despite them, I will endeavor
 32   any thing.

33. meet: suitable.
 33   Go, then; find me a meet hour to draw Don
 34   Pedro and the Count Claudio alone: tell them
35. intend: pretend.
 35   that you know that Hero loves me; intend
 36   a kind of zeal both to the prince and Claudio,
 37   as,—in love of your brother's honor, who
 38   hath made this match, and his friend's reputation,
39. cozened: deceived, cheated.  semblance: outward appearance. 40. maid: virgin.  discovered: revealed.
 39   who is thus like to be cozened with the semblance
 40   of a maid,—that you have discovered thus. They
 41   will scarcely believe this without trial: offer them
42. instances: evidence, proofs.
 42   instances; which shall bear no less likelihood than
 43   to see me at her chamber window, hear me call
44. term me Claudio: —Apparently Borachio and Margaret, high-ranking servants, play at being aristocrats.
 44   Margaret Hero, hear Margaret term me Claudio;
 45   and bring them to see this the very night before
 46   the intended wedding,—for in the meantime I will
 47   so fashion the matter that Hero shall be absent,—
 48   and there shall appear such seeming truth of Hero's
49. jealousy: suspicion. assurance: certainty.
 49   disloyalty that jealousy shall be called assurance
50. preparation: preparation for the wedding of Claudio and Hero.
 50   and all the preparation overthrown.

      DON JOHN
 51   Grow this to what adverse issue it can, I will put
 52   it in practise. Be cunning in the working this, and
53. ducats: gold coins. —Borachio's reward is going to be rich.
 53   thy fee is a thousand ducats.

 54   Be you constant in the accusation, and my cunning
 55   shall not shame me.

      DON JOHN
56. presently: at once.
 56   I will presently go learn their day of
 57   marriage.