From 11:00PM PDT on Friday, July 1 until 5:00AM PDT on Saturday, July 2, the Shmoop engineering elves will be making tweaks and improvements to the site. That means Shmoop will be unavailable for use during that time. Thanks for your patience!
In Leonato’s orchard, Benedick jokes with Margaret, asking her to help him write love poems to Beatrice. Margaret says he should write a verse in praise of Beatrice’s beauty. The pair jests back and forth for a bit, until Margaret runs off to bring Beatrice to Benedick.
Left alone, Benedick laments that he is a terrible writer of love poems. He says he loves more fiercely than Leander, Troilus, and all the great heroes of love epics, but he doesn’t seem to have quite the same ability with romantic words as they did.
In fact, he can only rhyme "scorn" with "horn," "school" with "fool," and so on. Benedick’s inability with words on the page is rather funny, given how quick he is in his speech.
Benedick gives up on writing silly poetry in the Renaissance style, and greets Beatrice, who has just entered the scene.
Benedick and Beatrice also fool around for a while (with words), but they get to the meat of the matter when Beatrice asks what went on between Benedick and Claudio.
Benedick says he went through with his promise; though only foul words passed between him and Claudio, he’s waiting to hear Claudio’s answer to his formal physical challenge, American Gladiator style.
The two then degenerate into love babble about who loves who, and how, but they do maintain their previous character by being kind of affectionately mean with each other. Benedick admits he loves Beatrice against his will. Benedick calls himself wise, and Beatrice points out that Benedick can’t be wise, because wise men never say they are. Etc. etc, snuggle, say mean stuff, snuggle, etc.
Benedick finally asks after the supposedly dead Hero, who turns out to still be ill.
Just then, Ursula rushes in with curative news. It has just been discovered that Hero was falsely accused, Claudio and Don Pedro were misled, and Don John is to blame for it all.
Benedick makes a joke about how he’d like to be in Beatrice’s lap (which is very well woven in contextually) and he and Beatrice run off to go inside Leonato’s house and witness the chaos.