Cyrano de Bergerac
Cyrano de Bergerac Lies and Deceit Quotes
How we cite our quotes:
CYRANO (Calls to Lise) Madame! – (She leaves the Musketeer and comes down to him.) This musketeer – He is making love to you? LISE (Haughtily) If any man Offends my virtue – all I have to do Is look at him – once! CYRANO (Looks at her gravely; she drops her eyes.) I do not find Those eyes of yours unconquerable. LISE (Panting) - Ah! CYRANO (Raising his voice a little.) Now listen – I am fond of Ragueneau; I allow no one – do you understand? – To…take his name in vain! (II. 133-140)
Unlike Ragueneau, Cyrano is not deceived by Lise. He read from her looks and gestures earlier that Lise was having an affair with the musketeer.
ROXANE Listen: I…love someone. CYRANO Ah!... ROXANE Someone who does not know. CYRANO Ah!... ROXANE At least – not yet. CYRANO Ah!... ROXANE But he will know Some day. CYRANO Ah!... ROXANE A big boy who loves me too, And is afraid of me, and keeps away. And never says one word. CYRANO Ah!... ROXANE Let me have Your hand a moment – why how hot it is! – I know. I see him trying… CYRANO Ah!... ROXANE There now! Is that better? – (She finishes bandaging the hand with her handkerchief.) Besides – only to think – (This is a secret.) He is a soldier too, In your own regiment – CYRANO: Ah!... ROXANE: Yes, in the Guards, Your company too. CYRANO Ah!... ROXANE And such a man! – He is proud – noble – young – brave – beautiful – CYRANO (Turns pale; rises.) Beautiful? – ROXANE What’s the matter? CYRANO (Smiling) Nothing – this – My sore hand! ROXANE Well, I love him. That is all. Oh – and I never saw him anywhere Except the Comedie. CYRANO You have never spoken? – ROXANE Only our eyes… CYRANO Why then – How do you know? – ROXANE People talk about people; and I hear Things…and I know. CYRANO You say he is in the Guards. His name? ROXANE Baron Christian de Neuvillette. (II. 192-211)
This is a good example of dramatic irony: Cyrano thinks Roxane is talking about himself while the audience knows she is really talking about Christian. Cyrano is blind to the fact that other men can have the same qualities as he (except beauty), and Roxane is blind to the fact that Cyrano is deeply, hopelessly in love with her.
CHRISTIAN Does it mean So much to you? CYRANO (Beside himself) It means – (Recovers, changes tone.) A Comedy, A situation for a poet! Come, Shall we collaborate? I’ll be your cloak Of darkness, your enchanted sword, your ring To charm the fairy Princess! CHRISTIAN But the letter – I cannot write – CYRANO Oh yes, the letter. (He takes from his pocket the letter which he has written.) Here. (II. 573-579)
Cyrano dupes Christian into thinking that wooing Roxane means nothing more to him than a poetic challenge, an exercise in wordsmanship. So throughout the play, he is guilty of deceiving both of the would-be lovers.