The Duchess of Malfi Act 5, Scene 2: Summary and Analysis

John Webster

Act 5, Scene 2: Summary and Analysis

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The Doctor: treats Ferdinand for his madness

Pescara returns to talk with a doctor about Ferdinand’s “lycanthropia.” The Cardinal, Ferdinand, Malateste, and, in the background, Bosola, enter. Ferdinand promptly tries to attack his shadow, fails to identify his doctor, and “tries to take off his gown.” Ferdinand beats the doctor before leaving, and the Cardinal explains that Ferdinand’s madness comes from seeing the nocturnal apparition of a murdered ghost. As the others leave, Bosola steps forward, and the Cardinal, before briefly promising to greatly reward him for doing “one thing for me,” vows not to let Bosola know that the Cardinal...

(The entire section is 740 words.)