Act V. Scene I. - Before the Cell of Prospero.
Miranda: "O, wonder! How many goodly creatures are
there here! How beauteous mankind is! O brave new world,
/ That has such people in't!"
Prospero brings everyone except Stephano, Caliban,
and Trinculo before him in a circle. Spellbound, he
verbally reprimands several of the men who exiled him.
Prospero tells Ariel that he will soon be free and that
he will miss him. Prospero also intends to destroy his
ability to use magic.
Making his presence known, Prospero forgives King
Alonso, and tells Sebastian and Antonio he will keep
secret their plan to kill Alonso, forgiving both.
The famously sweet scene of Ferdinand playing chess
with Miranda occurs. Prospero forgives Stephano and
Trinculo. Caliban is embarrassed that he followed a
fool (Trinculo). Caliban is given his freedom. Prospero
announces that in the morning they will all set sail
for Milan. Ariel is set free.
Prospero now dressed in his magic robes, is accompanied
by Ariel. His plan is coming to it's conclusion, "Now
does my project gather to a head:" (now does my project
or plan gather to its head or conclusion), (Line 1).
Prospero asks Ariel about the status of the King and
his followers. Ariel tells him that they are "Confin'd
together" (confined together) in the same way as Prospero
had earlier commanded Ariel; they are in the "line-grove"
which borders Prospero's cell and will not move until
Prospero demands it. The King and his brother Sebastian
and Antonio are distracted, the rest, largely mourning
over them, including "'The good old lord Gonzalo:'"
Prospero commands Ariel to release them (Lines 20-32).
Prospero now alone, explains that he will soon break
and deeply bury his magic staff, and drown his magic
book once his final task is complete. He also recalls
all the magic feats he was capable of on this island
Ariel now returns, bringing with him Alonso, Gonzalo,
Sebastian, Antonio, Adrian and Francisco. All enter
into a circle Prospero has made and now Prospero speaks
to his "spell-stopp'd" (spell-stopped or spellbound)
audience (Line 61).
Prospero praises Gonzalo and reprimands Alonso for
his cruel actions against him and his daughter (Line
72). He decides to forgive both his brother Antonio
and Sebastian who would "have kill'd your king [King
Alonso];" (Line 78).
Noting that not one of his spellbound audience "would
know [recognize] me" (Line 83), Prospero commands Ariel
to fetch his hat and rapier from his cell. He also reminds
Ariel to be quick, for soon he will be free.
Ariel returns, singing and Prospero tells Ariel how
much he will soon miss him (Lines 93-100). He commands
Ariel now to head to the ship invisibly and bring "the
master and the boatswain" of the ship before him.
Prospero now makes his presence known to the King and
his followers. The King, now deeply embarrassed, disgraced
and remorseful for his actions, proclaims loudly his
guilt to Prospero, Prospero embracing first Alonso and
then his "noble friend," Gonzalo. (Lines 108-128).
Alonso returns to Prospero his dukedom of Milan (Lines
Speaking only to Sebastian and Antonio, Prospero makes
it very clear that he knows what they were going to
do to their King (Alonso). Prospero however will keep
this a secret.
"I here could pluck his highness' [Alonso's] frown
upon you, / And justify you traitors: at this time /
I will tell no tales" Prospero darkly warns (Line 126).
Prospero even forgives his brother (Lines 130-134)
but tells him that he will "require / My dukedom of
thee [you], which, perforce, I know, / Thou [you] must
restore" (Line 132).
Alonso now mourns for his son. Prospero joins him,
mourning for his lost daughter (she will soon be married
to Ferdinand), (Lines 138-171).
Alonso is confused, but the entrance to Prospero's
cell now opens to find the sight of Ferdinand and Miranda,
sweetly playing chess together.
Ferdinand greets his father and Miranda remarks on
the beauty of mankind: "O, wonder! How many goodly creatures
are there here! How beauteous mankind is! O brave new
world, / That has such people in't!" (Lines 181-183).
Alonso asks his son Ferdinand about Miranda, whom Ferdinand
explains he has taken for his wife without his father's
advise since he thought he was dead. Alonso now gives
his blessing (Lines 185-197) and Prospero tells Alonso
to forget the past. "Let us not burden our remembrances
/ With a heaviness that's gone" Prospero says (Line
Ariel now returns, bringing in an amazed Master and
Boatswain who explain that they have now found "Our
king and company:" and that their ship is now as fit
for sea as when they first departed (Line 221).
Prospero tells Alonso not to question these strange
happenings too deeply (Line 246) and Prospero now tells
Ariel to set "Caliban and his companions free;" (Line
Stephano, Trinculo and Caliban are brought in, wearing
their stolen clothing. Antonio remarks that one of them
(Caliban) "Is a plain fish, and, no doubt, marketable"
(is a plain fish and no doubt marketable or capable
of earning money), (Line 266).
Prospero tells King and company of Caliban's mother
(Line 269) and now Trinculo and Stephano who are both
extremely drunk are told to return their clothes back
to where they found them (Line 298).
All three are remorseful, especially Caliban who is
especially embarrassed that he took a drunkard for a
god, saying that, "I'll be wise hereafter, / And seek
for grace. What a thrice-double ass / Was I, to take
this drunkard for a god, / And worship this dull fool!"
Prospero now invites the King and his followers to
stay the night in his cell where he will tell them of
his time on the island. In the morning they shall all
set sail for Naples and Prospero after commanding Ariel
one last time to prepare calm weather for his journey,
informs Ariel that he is now free.
Prospero asks the audience to free him to travel
back to Naples reclaiming his life as the rightful Duke
Prospero, now without any magic powers, asks his audience
to let him travel to Naples. Asking to be released from
his island by the audience's hands (clapping), Prospero
asks for prayer so that at the audience's indulgence,
Prospero may be set free...