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Every Man in his Humour- Ben Jonson- Act IV

Updated: Aug 14, 2021

Act IV

In Kitely’s house Downright scolds Dame Kitely for letting Wellbred and his indiscipline companions inside the house. She doesn’t understand the reason for his despise towards these men. Inside the house, Mathew as per plan tries to impress Bridget with poetry. He reads Marlowe’s Hero and Leander and claims that it’s him who wrote it just in the morning. Wellbred and Edward are amused with his pretensions yet Wellbred warns Bridget of the tricks Mathew is using to woo her. This provokes Downright to criticize Wellbred and his companions in harsh words. One leads to the other and in the end Downright, Wellbred, and Bobadil stand with swords and others try to stop them before a quarrel. Cash enters home.

Kitely appears eager to find out the man his wife has a relationship with. Wellbred complains to Cash that it’s his brother’s actions that made him draw his sword. Bridget also blames Downright for the cause. At this time she has developed affection towards Edward which she expresses to Dame Kitely. Kitely is not happy with the conversation he gets inside his home to search for men who are hidden (this is his own imagination that men are hidden inside his home).

Now in Cob’s house Cob speaks like a lunatic to his wife Tib accusing her chastity that she has an illicit affair with Bobadil. He then orders her to lock the door and never let anybody inside. He then waves the arrest warrant and moves faster to proceed. In the tavern, Edward also admits that he has affection towards Bridget. Wellbred assures that Edward will win her heart and then he sends Brainworm who is still in disguise as Fritzsword to send a message to his brother Downright. Brainworm meets Old Knowell and Roger Formal in a street. He is still disguised and so he makes a play. He informs Old Knowell that Edward has got the info about his father’s espionage and also he is now heading towards Cob’s house as he has likeliness towards Cob’s wife. This provokes Old Knowell. He asks Brainworm to stay with Formal and leaves. Even Formal believes all the lies that Brainwrom says and offers to buy him wine and listen to his problems and so they head towards the tavern.

In the tavern as Mathew, Stephen, Edward, Bobadil, and Wellbred speak despicable contents on Downright. Bobadil claims that with the fighting skills that he had taught Mathew, Mathew could easily kill Downright. He also boasts as usual of his war experiences and his chivalry. At that time Downright appears. He asks Bobabdil to draw his sword to fight; instead of a knightly fight Bobadil like Sir Gawain from Sir Gawain and the Green Knight he runs. Mathew also runs out of fear. After Downright leaves, Bobadil again appears and says that his reason behind the failed fight is his own peace belief and also some supernatural power has acted against him. After saying such folly reasons to Edward and Wellbred he leaves the place. Stephen takes the cloak of Downright that has fallen down and keeps it with him.

In Kitely’s house, Wellbred informs Kitely and Dame that anger is common when it comes to Downright. He then says that not all harms are created by anger sometime it might be experienced unexpectedly. With this, he creates an idea that Dame might have poisoned Kitely's wine. Instantly Kitely believes it and acts as if he is going to die. This annoys Bridget, Dame, and Wellbred. Now in the disguise of Formal, Brainworm appears and informs that Justice Clement has requested Kitely to meet him immediately. Kitely before leaving his house asks Cash to spy on his wife; he also searches for Cob as he couldn’t find him he leaves. Now aside, Wellbred informs Dame that Kitely has a crush on Cob’s wife Tib which is why he is searching for Cob. Dame believes it and makes Cash go along with her to Cob’s house to find her husband’s betrayal. After this Wellbred informs his intention to marry Bridget with Edward in the Tower, he has also sent Brainworm in prior to bring Edward to the wedding. Bridget shows her interest. They all leave. Kitely comes there and learns that Dame has gone with Cash to Cob's house and again with the suspect, he rushes there.

In the city street, Bobadil and Mathew in fury ask for an arrest warrant from Brainworm who is still in the disguise of Formal. Brainworm asks for money in exchange, instead, he gets jewelry and silk clothes. While asking for the description of Downright they tell him regarding his huge size and the cloak that he wears.

Old Knowell in search of Edward; Dame kitely and Cash in search of Kitely and Kitely in search of Dame appear in front of Cob’s house. Confused Tib tells them that nobody is in her home. As Kitely has appeared there within a cloak as in disguise, Dame confirms her suspicion whereas, Kitely connects Old Knowell with Dame. As they all blame each other and Cob comes there, Kitely informs him that Old Knowell was the mysterious lover of Tib. Cash beats Tib, Knowell tries to stop, and finally all plan to going in front of Justice Clement. Old Knowell also gets aware of the trick that has been played among the people here.

Now Brainworm appears in disguise like a constable and tells Mathew and Bobadil that he has come to arrest Downright. He mistakenly arrests Stephen as he is the one who is with the description provided. Stephen tries to prove that he is not Downright yet in vain. At the same time, Downright appears and gets the information that Mathew and Bobadil have got an arrest warrant against him. He then asks all to come to Justice Clement. Downright then tries to get back his cloak. As Stephen refused once, he forces Brainworm to arrest Stephen for theft. They all go to Justice Clement’s house.

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