Illustration of Hero wearing a mask

Much Ado About Nothing

by William Shakespeare

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Act 2, Scene 1 Summary

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Last Updated February 6, 2023.

Beatrice confides to the audience that no man is a match for her, and she gives Hero counsel about how to respond to Don Pedro’s proposal.

The masked attendees arrive and begin to dance, and Don Pedro, disguised as Claudio, draws Hero aside into conversation.

Beatrice, who is speaking with Benedick but acting as though she doesn’t know his identity, calls him a fool.

Don John and Borachio encounter Claudio, to whom they speak as if he were Benedick. They tell him that Don Pedro intends to marry Hero himself.

Benedick then meets up with Claudio and teases him about Don Pedro's supposed desire for Hero.

When he returns, Don Pedro announces he has won Hero for Claudio, and Leonato concurs.

Beatrice exits, prompting Don Pedro to remark that she and Benedick would be a great match. He asks the others to help him bring the potential couple together.

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Act 1, Scene 3 Summary

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Act 2, Scene 2 Summary