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Twelfth Night, or What You Will

Twelfth Night, or What You Will


by William Shakespeare

Twelfth Night, or What You Will Act 1, Scene 3 Summary

  • Meanwhile, back at Olivia's pad, Sir Toby Belch (who has been drinking all night) complains that his niece, Olivia, needs to snap out it – she's mourned for her dead brother long enough and now it's time to party.
  • Maria lays into Toby and warns him to come home at a more reasonable hour, because Olivia's sick and tired of him staying out late.
  • Toby says that's just too bad – he's gotta fight for his right to party.
  • Having given Toby Belch a little piece of her mind, Maria starts in on Toby's guest and drinking buddy, Sir Andrew Aguecheek. When Toby brags that Aguecheek's super rich, Maria scoffs that he'll probably burn through his cash within the year because he's an idiot who does nothing but drink.
  • Toby defends his good buddy and says Aguecheek speaks three or four languages and plays a musical instrument, too.
  • Maria's not impressed and points out that Aguecheek's a drunken fool and likes to pick fights that he can't win. He's a coward and will probably get himself killed, she insists.
  • Toby's feeling blissfully belligerent and explains why Aguecheek's always drunk – because he's always drinking toasts to Olivia's good health, of course. Toby, who is clearly still wasted from partying all night, then brags that he'll beat the heck out of any man that refuses to drink a toast to Olivia.
  • Just then, Sir Andrew Aguecheek shows up. He says, "What's up?" to his pal Toby and introduces himself to Maria, who proceeds to rag on him.
  • Toby gives his boy a hard time for letting a woman clown him like that. The two then proceed to talk smack and fall into what seems to be a familiar pattern of drunken banter.
  • Sir Andrew Aguecheek says he's had a swell time partying with Toby, but it's time for him to get home, especially since it seems Olivia's not interested in marrying him. (Remember, Olivia has sworn off men, including Duke Orsino.)
  • Nonsense, Toby says, there's no way Olivia will get with Duke Orsino, so Aguecheek should hang in there a bit longer.
  • Aguecheek says he might as well stick around for another month or so. Why not? There's always a great party to go to. The two talk a little more trash and then run off.

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