Fiction > Harvard Classics > Gotthold Ephraim Lessing > Minna von Barnhelm
Gotthold Ephraim Lessing (1729–1781).  Minna von Barnhelm.
The Harvard Classics.  1909–14.
Act V
Scene XII
TWO SERVANTS (running into the room from different sides), the rest as before

  First Ser.  Your ladyship, his excellency the Count!
  Second Ser.  He is coming, your ladyship!  2
  Fran.  (running to the window). It is! it is he!  3
  Min.  Is it? Now, Tellheim, quick!  4
  Maj. T.  (suddenly recovering himself). Who, who comes? Your uncle, Madam! this cruel uncle!… Let him come; just let him come!… Fear not!… He shall not hurt you even by a look. He shall have to deal with me… You do not indeed deserve it of me.  5
  Min.  Quick, Tellheim! one embrace and forget all.  6
  Maj. T.  Ah! did I but know that you could regret—  7
  Min.  No, I can never regret having obtained a sight of your whole heart! … Ah! what a man you are!… Embrace your Minna, your happy Minna: and in nothing more happy than in the possession of you. (Embracing.) And now to meet him!  8
  Maj. T.  To meet whom?  9
  Min.  The best of your unknown friends.  10
  Maj. T.  What!  11
  Min.  The Count, my uncle, my father, your father… My flight, his displeasure, my loss of property—do you not see that all is a fiction, credulous knight?  12
  Maj. T.  Fiction! But the ring? the ring?  13
  Min.  Where is the ring that I gave back to you?  14
  Maj. T.  You will take it again? Ah! now I am happy… Here, Minna  (taking it from his pocket).  15
  Min.  Look at it first! Oh! how blind are those who will not see!… What ring is that? the one you gave me? or the one I gave to you? Is it not the one which I did not like to leave in the landlord’s possession?  16
  Maj. T.  Heaven! what do I see! What do I hear!  17
  Min.  Shall I take it again now? Shall I? Give it to me! give it! (Takes it from him, and then puts it on his finger herself.) There, now all is right!  18
  Maj. T.  Where am I? (Kissing her hand.) Oh! malicious angel, to torture me so!  19
  Min.  As a proof, my dear husband, that you shall never play me a trick without my playing you one in return…. Do you suppose that you did not torture me also?  20
  Maj. T.  Oh you actresses! But I ought to have known you.  21
  Fran.  Not I, indeed; I am spoilt for acting. I trembled and shook, and was obliged to hold my lips together with my hand.  22
  Min.  Nor was mine an easy part.—But come now—  23
  Maj. T.  I have not recovered myself yet. How happy, yet how anxious, I feel. It is like awaking suddenly from a frightful dream.  24
  Min.  We are losing time… I hear him coming now.  25


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