The Comedy of Errors | Study Guide

William Shakespeare

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The Comedy of Errors | Scene Summaries

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Timeline of Events

  • Before action begins

    The Antipholus twins are born in Epidamnum.

    Act 1, Scene 1
  • The same day

    The Dromio twins are born and sold as servants.

    Act 1, Scene 1
  • Soon after

    Egeon's family is separated in a storm at sea.

    Act 1, Scene 1
  • 18 years later

    Antipholus of Syracuse, now grown up, leaves home to find his brother.

    Act 1, Scene 1
  • Shortly afterward

    Egeon leaves Syracuse, seeking his family.

    Act 1, Scene 1
  • Five years later

    Egeon arrives in Ephesus and is arrested.

    Act 1, Scene 1
  • The same day

    Antipholus of Syracuse arrives in Ephesus.

    Act 1, Scene 2
  • Early that afternoon

    Adriana mistakenly invites Antipholus of Syracuse home to dinner.

    Act 2, Scene 2
  • Minutes later

    Antipholus of Ephesus comes home but is locked out of the house.

    Act 3, Scene 1
  • After lunch

    Antipholus of Syracuse accepts the gold chain from Angelo.

    Act 3, Scene 2
  • Soon after

    Antipholus of Ephesus refuses to pay for the chain and is arrested.

    Act 4, Scene 1
  • Within the hour

    Doctor Pinch attempts to exorcise Antipholus of Ephesus.

    Act 4, Scene 4
  • Moments later

    Antipholus of Ephesus and Dromio of Ephesus are placed under house arrest.

    Act 4, Scene 4
  • About five o'clock

    Antipholus of Syracuse and Dromio of Syracuse seek refuge in the abbey.

    Act 5, Scene 1
  • Shortly thereafter

    The two pairs of twins are reunited at last.

    Act 5, Scene 1

Scene Summaries Chart

Scene Summary
Act 1, Scene 1 The play begins in the city of Ephesus, at the court of Duke Solinus. Egeon, an old Syracusian merchant, has been arrest... Read More
Act 1, Scene 2 Antipholus of Syracuse, Egeon's son, has just arrived in Ephesus with his servant, Dromio of Syracuse. He learns about t... Read More
Act 2, Scene 1 The scene shifts to the home of Antipholus of Ephesus. Adriana, Antipholus of Ephesus's wife, is upset with her husband ... Read More
Act 2, Scene 2 Back on the streets of Ephesus, Antipholus of Syracuse briefly reminds the audience of what has happened so far. Dromio ... Read More
Act 3, Scene 1 Antipholus of Ephesus stands outside of his house, conferring with the goldsmith Angelo and the merchant Balthasar. Alth... Read More
Act 3, Scene 2 Back on the streets of Ephesus, Luciana upbraids Antipholus of Syracuse for his coldness toward Adriana—his "wife" and L... Read More
Act 4, Scene 1 Elsewhere in Ephesus, Angelo the goldsmith is accosted by an unnamed second merchant, to whom he owes money. The second ... Read More
Act 4, Scene 2 Back at home Adriana and Luciana are trying to make sense of Antipholus's behavior. As far as Adriana knows, her husband... Read More
Act 4, Scene 3 Antipholus of Syracuse has put on the gold chain and is now wandering through the streets of Ephesus, musing on how ever... Read More
Act 4, Scene 4 Antipholus of Ephesus, now in jail, is waiting patiently for Dromio to come and post bail. When Dromio of Ephesus does s... Read More
Act 5, Scene 1 As Angelo and the second merchant are discussing the day's bizarre events, Antipholus of Syracuse comes onstage, accompa... Read More
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