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The scene takes a slightly more serious tone with the setting before the marriage altar. Lies and rumor prevail, however. Claudio rejects Hero, and Leonato believes Claudio guilty of taking Hero's virginity. Claudio denies this and questions Hero about the man in the window from the previous evening. Claudio swears he will never love again and Hero faints. Leonato believes the lies he has been told and wants to die. But first he wants to kill Hero, if she still lives. Friar Francis realizes that Hero is innocent, however, and he decides to pronounce her death. Alone now before the altar, Beatrice and Benedick declare their love, and he agrees to fulfull anything she requests. She tells him to kill Claudio, which he agrees to do.
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