Act 5 scene 5


Hortensio (one of Brachiano's officers) overhears Lodovico persuading Francisco to take no further part in the revenge plot as it is too risky. Instead, Lodovico will continue with it and so Francisco bids him farewell.

Hortensio goes to warn the authorities and raise a force of men to prevent the plot being carried out.


My lord upon my soul … Too far already: Lodovico is allowing Francisco to withdraw from the action, a sign that Francisco may avoid being implemented in the plot.

Exeunt Francisco and Lodovico: The two conspirators leave by separate exits to symbolize the parting of the ways. Their fates will no longer be linked.

These strong court factions … break the riders' necks: The use of imagery from the tournament emphasises the difference between traditional chivalry and the corrupt values of the court.

Investigating Act 5 scene 5

  • What do you think is the function of scene 5 in terms of
    • The mechanics of the plot?
    • The play's moral pattern?
    • Dramatic tension?

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