Breakfast illustration of bacon, eggs, and coffee with the silhouetted images of the Duchess' evil brothers, one on each side

The Duchess of Malfi

by John Webster

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Act 2, Scenes 1-2: Questions and Answers

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Study Questions
1. Why does Bosola suspect the Duchess is pregnant?

2. What is Delio’s advice for Antonio after the Duchess falls ill?

3. What does Bosola say is the sure way to know that you are an eminent courtier?

4. What does Bosola say caused his apricots to ripen quickly?

5. What does Bosola say about princes?

Answers
1. The Duchess throws up, has an upset stomach, and “wears a loose-bodied gown.”

2. Delio advises that he “make use then of this forc’d occasion” to keep the Duchess concealed and let her give birth secretly.

3. Bosola says to spread the rumor that you are dying, and after doing so, hear that “the common people curse you.”

4. The apricots were fertilized with horse-dung.

5. Bosola says that princes are motivated by “the like passions” as commoners.

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Act 1, Scene 2: Questions and Answers

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Ace 2, Scenes 3-5: Questions and Answers