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Volpone | Scene Summaries

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Timeline of Events

Scene Summaries Chart

Scene Summary
Act 1, Scene 1 The play opens with Volpone, "the Fox," and his servant Mosca, "the Fly," discussing Volpone's incredible wealth. Volpon... Read More
Act 1, Scene 2 A dwarf (Nano), a eunuch (Castrone), and a hermaphrodite (Androgyno) enter Volpone's room to entertain him with banter a... Read More
Act 1, Scene 3 As Mosca ushers Voltore into the room, he promises Voltore that Volpone speaks only of him, and that only Voltore's pres... Read More
Act 1, Scene 4 Elderly Corbaccio—whom Volpone and Mosca refer to as "the Raven"—arrives with a vial of medicine he has brought to relie... Read More
Act 1, Scene 5 A wealthy merchant named Corvino arrives, bearing gifts of a pearl and diamond. Immediately, he asks whether Volpone has... Read More
Act 2, Scene 1 Two tourists chat outside Corvino's house, beneath the window of the room where he locks his wife. The men are revealed ... Read More
Act 2, Scene 2 Sir Politick Would-Be and Peregrine's conversation is interrupted by the arrival of two workers, actually Mosca and Nano... Read More
Act 2, Scene 3 Corvino bursts onto the scene yelling and breaks up the crowd. He is irate that the mountebank has set up near his prope... Read More
Act 2, Scene 4 Back at home, a heartsick Volpone claims to have been "wounded" by the "blows" of an "angry Cupid," and that he has fall... Read More
Act 2, Scene 5 Corvino berates Celia for making a scene with the "city's fool"—the mountebank—at a "public window." He accuses his wife... Read More
Act 2, Scene 6 Mosca arrives at Corvino's with the news that the mountebank's oil has cured Volpone. Corvino's rage grows as he vows to... Read More
Act 2, Scene 7 Corvino calls Celia, who weeps in another room. Corvino tries to convince Celia he isn't jealous, and that he'll prove h... Read More
Act 3, Scene 1 Leaving Corvino's house, Mosca delights in his success. He praises his manipulation skills, feeling overwhelming joy at ... Read More
Act 3, Scene 2 Mosca bumps into Bonario, the son of Corbaccio. Upper-class Bonario has no interest in conversing with a commoner like M... Read More
Act 3, Scene 3 At home, Volpone wonders why Mosca is taking so long to return. Nano, Castrone, and Androgyno join to entertain him, but... Read More
Act 3, Scene 4 Before entering Volpone's bedchambers, Lady Politick calls for two of her ladies to fix her hair and makeup, worrying th... Read More
Act 3, Scene 5 When Mosca finally arrives, Volpone begs him to get rid of Lady Politick at any cost. Mosca tells Lady Politick he just ... Read More
Act 3, Scene 6 As Volpone prepares, Mosca leads Bonario into the room and shows him where to hide. Read More
Act 3, Scene 7 Corvino and Celia arrive earlier than Mosca expected. Mosca rushes back to where Bonario hides and urges him to wait in ... Read More
Act 3, Scene 8 Mosca enters bleeding, having been stabbed by Bonario as he and Celia escaped. Volpone and Mosca wonder what will happen... Read More
Act 3, Scene 9 As soon as Corbaccio enters the room and sees Mosca bleeding, Mosca shouts that Bonario stormed into the house after dis... Read More
Act 4, Scene 1 Sir Politick and Peregrine meet in the street, with Sir Politick giving Peregrine lots of useless advice about how to pa... Read More
Act 4, Scene 2 Lady Politick arrives, searching for her husband with the courtesan. She spots Sir Politick and Peregrine in the distanc... Read More
Act 4, Scene 3 Mosca arrives and tells Lady Politick the prostitute he saw with her husband has been arrested. Mortified, Lady Politick... Read More
Act 4, Scene 4 Mosca meets with Corbaccio, Corvino, and Voltore to go over the story they will tell the court. Privately, Corvino confi... Read More
Act 4, Scene 5 In the courthouse, four advocates (lawyers) discuss the nature of the story just told to them by Celia and Bonario. Volt... Read More
Act 4, Scene 6 Lady Politick enters the courtroom and immediately calls Celia a "chameleon harlot" before apologizing to the court for ... Read More
Act 5, Scene 1 Back in his room, Volpone speaks in monologue about his experience in court. He admits faking illness was easy in privat... Read More
Act 5, Scene 2 Mosca enters, and the two spend some time rehashing their "masterpiece" deception, delighting in their ability to trick ... Read More
Act 5, Scene 3 The legacy-hunters arrive one-by-one, each eagerly waiting to hear themselves named heir, but Mosca ignores them all, sl... Read More
Act 5, Scene 4 Peregrine arrives at Sir Politick's house in disguise, hoping to exact revenge on Sir Politick for the embarrassment on ... Read More
Act 5, Scene 5 Both Mosca and Volpone are in disguise—Mosca as an aristocrat and Volpone as a knight. When Volpone leaves the room, Mos... Read More
Act 5, Scene 6 The disguised Volpone bumps into Corvino and Corbaccio on the street. He pretends to have heard that they inherited Volp... Read More
Act 5, Scene 7 Volpone next bumps into Voltore, whom he treats in the same mocking way as Corvino and Corbaccio. Volpone expresses outr... Read More
Act 5, Scene 8 Corvino and Corbaccio reenter the scene, as Mosca arrives dressed as an aristocrat. Volpone continues to taunt the men, ... Read More
Act 5, Scene 9 Voltore reenters the scene and insults Mosca, calling him a "flesh-fly." Volpone offers to beat up Mosca, claiming that ... Read More
Act 5, Scene 10 Voltore marches to the courthouse where the lawyers have gathered with Corbaccio and Corvino to sentence Bonario and Cel... Read More
Act 5, Scene 11 Outside the courthouse, Volpone laments to the audience that he should have listened to Mosca and ended the ruse when he... Read More
Act 5, Scene 12 Volpone rushes back to the courtroom where Voltore continues his confession to the confused court. Volpone pulls Voltore... Read More
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