Study Guide

Pericles, Prince of Tyre Act 2, Prologue

By William Shakespeare

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Act 2, Prologue

Read the full text of Pericles Act 2 Prologue with a side-by-side translation HERE.

  • Gower comes out on stage and summarizes what we've just seen, just in case we had to leave our seats to make a popcorn run.
  • Then we see a dumb show. No, that's not a reference to The Bachelor. A dumb show is basically a little mini-skit that's acted without anyone speaking.
  • In the dumb show, we see a dude deliver a letter to Pericles, who is busy chatting with Cleon. Pericles gives the messenger a huge tip and leaves. The end.
  • Now Gower starts talking again.
  • Since we all want to know what's in the letter, Gower tells us that it went something like this: Dear Pericles, That dude Thaliard came sniffing around here looking for you the other day. It's only a matter of time before he finds you in Tharsus so you should probably get your butt out of there ASAP. Your Friend, Helicanus (a.k.a. the guy who has been ruling Tyre while you've been on vacation).
  • Next, Gower tells us that Pericles took Helicanus's advice and hopped on his ship, which immediately encountered a nasty storm... and then sank.
  • Bummer.
  • We find out that Pericles is the only survivor and that he has washed up on a shore somewhere.

Pericles, Prince of Tyre Act 2, Prologue Study Group

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