Download a PDF to print or study offline.

Study Guide
Cite This Study Guide

How to Cite This Study Guide

quotation mark graphic
MLA

Bibliography

Course Hero. "The Misanthrope Study Guide." Course Hero. 25 Oct. 2017. Web. 18 Sep. 2018. <https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Misanthrope/>.

In text

(Course Hero)

APA

Bibliography

Course Hero. (2017, October 25). The Misanthrope Study Guide. In Course Hero. Retrieved September 18, 2018, from https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Misanthrope/

In text

(Course Hero, 2017)

Chicago

Bibliography

Course Hero. "The Misanthrope Study Guide." October 25, 2017. Accessed September 18, 2018. https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Misanthrope/.

Footnote

Course Hero, "The Misanthrope Study Guide," October 25, 2017, accessed September 18, 2018, https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Misanthrope/.

The Misanthrope | Scene Summaries

Share
Share
See Scene Summaries Chart

Timeline of Events

  • In the mid-17th century

    Alceste and Philinte discuss the nature of sincerity and social harmony.

    Act 1, Scene 1
  • Later that day

    Oronte reads his sonnet to Alceste, who mocks and criticizes it.

    Act 1, Scene 2
  • Later that day

    Alceste reproaches Célimène, his beloved, for her coquetry.

    Act 2, Scene 1
  • Later that day

    Célimène uses her sharp wit and keen eye to satirize the courtiers.

    Act 2, Scene 5
  • Later that day

    Arsinoé attempts to win Alceste's favor and undermine Célimène.

    Act 3, Scene 7
  • Later that day

    Célimène's letters are read, revealing her feelings about her suitors.

    Act 5, Scene 4
  • Immediately after

    Oronte angrily abandons his pursuit of Célimène.

    Act 5, Scene 5
  • Immediately after

    Célimène refuses Alceste's request that she join him in exile, and he rejects her.

    Act 5, Scene 7
  • Later that day

    Philinte and Éliante proclaim their union.

    Act 5, Scene 8

Scene Summaries Chart

Scene Summary
Act 1, Scene 1 In the play's opening scene, Alceste and Philinte discuss friendship and sincerity. Alceste is uncompromising in his ins... Read More
Act 1, Scene 2 The play's first scene flows directly into the second with the entrance of the courtier Oronte. Addressing Alceste, he p... Read More
Act 1, Scene 3 Philinte opens this brief scene with a mild reproach to Alceste about the perils of "sincerity in excess." True to type,... Read More
Act 2, Scene 1 Frank and blunt as ever, Alceste reproaches Célimène for her fickle behavior, predicting that their relationship will en... Read More
Act 2, Scene 2 Célimène's servant Basque announces the arrival of Acaste, a young nobleman from the court. Célimène directs Basque to s... Read More
Act 2, Scene 3 Predictably, Alceste reproves Célimène for her all-too-willing consent to admit the courtier Acaste. Célimène replies th... Read More
Act 2, Scene 4 The valet Basque reappears, this time to announce the arrival of Clitandre, another young nobleman from the court. Alces... Read More
Act 2, Scene 5 While chairs are provided for the visiting noblemen, Alceste grimly warns he will not withdraw, as he had threatened in ... Read More
Act 2, Scene 6 In this brief scene, Basque makes his third appearance in the act, announcing that a gentleman in an official uniform ha... Read More
Act 2, Scene 7 The new arrival is a guard attached to the "Marshalsea," a judicial body associated with the court of Louis XIV. The gua... Read More
Act 3, Scene 1 Two noble courtiers, Acaste and Clitandre, discuss their own satisfaction with their lot in life. Acaste pronounces hims... Read More
Act 3, Scene 2 This scene flows directly from Scene 1, with the now familiar run-in technique. Célimène enters to inform Acaste and Cli... Read More
Act 3, Scene 3 Basque plays his familiar role of announcing a new visitor. Arsinoé has arrived to see Célimène. Even before Acaste can ... Read More
Act 3, Scene 4 Once again Molière employs the run-in technique for a brief transitional scene that features the arrival of Arsinoé. She... Read More
Act 3, Scene 5 Like several other scenes in the play, this one begins with an avowal of friendship. Friendship's "flame," declares Arsi... Read More
Act 3, Scene 6 Alceste enters. Célimène tells him that she must send a piece of correspondence before evening, so she will be grateful ... Read More
Act 3, Scene 7 Arsinoé is evidently delighted by the turn that events have taken. She loses no time in pouring out her admiration for A... Read More
Act 4, Scene 1 In a dialogue with Célimène's cousin Éliante, Philinte recounts what happened at Alceste's appearance before the marshal... Read More
Act 4, Scene 2 Alceste bursts in on the scene, exploding with rage and thirsting for vengeance. After several appeals from Éliante for ... Read More
Act 4, Scene 3 In the showdown between Alceste and Célimène, Alceste begins melodramatically by invoking heaven (Ô Ciel!) in an aside. ... Read More
Act 4, Scene 4 Alceste's valet, Monsieur Dubois, enters to convey to his master a cryptic, garbled message. The gist is that Alceste mu... Read More
Act 5, Scene 1 Alceste tells Philinte that Alceste has lost his lawsuit. He is now so outraged, he has decided to withdraw from mankind... Read More
Act 5, Scene 2 Oronte demands that Célimène terminate her relationship with Alceste. When Célimène demurs, Alceste emerges from the cor... Read More
Act 5, Scene 3 Célimène briefly describes her predicament to Éliante and asks her cousin's advice. Éliante replies that her advice will... Read More
Act 5, Scene 4 Acaste, Clitandre, and Arsinoé now join the characters from the previous scene (Célimène, Alceste, Oronte, Philinte, and... Read More
Act 5, Scene 5 Furious and resentful, Oronte denounces Célimène for her betrayal. As he departs, he tells Alceste that he (Oronte) will... Read More
Act 5, Scene 6 Arsinoé now rejoins the fray, reproaching Célimène for her lack of propriety and especially for her unappreciative treat... Read More
Act 5, Scene 7 Alceste now asks Célimène if he can finally be allowed to have his say. Apparently contrite, she admits that she has wro... Read More
Act 5, Scene 8 Alceste ruefully admits to Éliante that his destiny probably does not include marriage. Éliante breaks in to assure him ... Read More
Cite This Study Guide

information icon Have study documents to share about The Misanthrope? Upload them to earn free Course Hero access!