What happened in the "Night" scene in the play The Lion and the Jewel?

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gmuss25 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Sadiku enters the village at the beginning of the scene and is laughing as she recounts her experience with Okiki, Baroka's father. Sadiku was able to make Okiki impotent and gloats at the fact that she successfully did the same thing to Baroka. Sidi overhears Sadiku and sees her dancing, then asks why Sadiku is so overjoyed. Sadiku tells Sidi that Baroka is impotent, and Sidi mentions her plans to attend Baroka's feast to mock him. Lakunle scolds Sidi and warns her of the Bale's deceptive techniques. Sidi dismisses Lakunle and leaves for the palace. Lakunle begins discussing the future of Ilujinle and how he wishes to do away with the bride-price, build a road through the village, create parks for lovers, and introduce other elements of modern civilization to Ilujinle. He displays contempt for Sadiku and insults her for obeying the Bale and for her traditional outlook on life.

The scene shifts to Baroka's palace where Baroka is in the middle of wrestling. Sidi begins to have a conversation with Baroka and slightly teases him for his old age and negative attitude. Her comments get a reaction out of Baroka, who flings the wrestler, displaying his strength. Baroka laments his lack of opportunity to display his kindness and eventually shows Sidi an envelope with a stamp on it. Sidi tells Baroka that she knows the significance of a stamp and the Bale shows Sidi a machine that makes stamps. He mentions that when the machine is fixed, every stamp leaving Ilujinle will have Sidi's image on it. Sidi is awestruck with the idea of having her image on every stamp, and Baroka continues to woo Sidi by complementing her and displaying his intellect. Eventually, Sidi gives in and sleeps with Baroka.

Meanwhile, Lakunle and Sadiku are waiting in the village, and Lakunle is convinced that the Bale has harmed Sidi. Suddenly, Sidi runs into the village and falls on the ground, cursing Baroka. She tells Sadiku and Lakunle that she has lost her virginity. Lakunle is initially upset but becomes rather optimistic. He agrees to still marry Sidi because he now has a reason not to pay the bride-price. Sidi seems surprised that Lakunle will still marry her and runs offstage. Sadiku brings word back to Lakunle that Sidi is getting ready for a wedding ceremony. Lakunle is shocked and mentions that he cannot get married this quickly. When Sidi returns wearing her wedding attire, she gives Lakunle a gift and invites him to the wedding. Lakunle is confused because he believes that he will be Sidi's groom. Sidi laughs in his face and insults him for his lack of masculinity. Sidi has chosen to marry Baroka, and then the ceremony takes place. After the ceremony, a young girl teases Lakunle, and he chases after her as the play ends.

Read the study guide:
The Lion and the Jewel

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