Fiction > Harvard Classics > Gotthold Ephraim Lessing > Minna von Barnhelm
Gotthold Ephraim Lessing (1729–1781).  Minna von Barnhelm.
The Harvard Classics.  1909–14.
Act IV
Scene I
MINNA’S Room. MINNA (dressed handsomely and richly, but in good taste), FRANZISKA

(They have just risen from a table, which a servant is clearing.)

  Fran.  You cannot possibly have eaten enough, my lady.
  Min.  Don’t you think so, Franziska? Perhaps I had no appetite when I sat down.  2
  Fran.  We had agreed not to mention him during dinner. We should have resolved likewise, not to think of him.  3
  Min.  Indeed, I have thought of nothing but him.  4
  Fran.  So I perceived. I began to speak of a hundred different things, and you made wrong answers to each. (Another servant brings coffee.) Here comes a beverage more suited to fancies—sweet, melancholy coffee.  5
  Min.  Fancies! I have none. I am only thinking of the lesson I will give him. Did you understand my plan, Franziska?  6
  Fran.  Oh! yes; but it would be better if he spared us the putting it in execution.  7
  Min.  You will see that I know him thoroughly. He who refuses me now with all my wealth, will contend for me against the whole world, as soon as he hears that I am unfortunate and friendless.  8
  Fran.  (seriously). That must tickle the most refined self-love.  9
  Min.  You moralist! First you convict me of vanity—now of self-love. Let me do as I please, Franziska. You, too, shall do as you please with your Sergeant.  10
  Fran.  With my Sergeant?  11
  Min.  Yes. If you deny it altogether, then it is true. I have not seen him yet; but from all you have said respecting him, I foretell your husband for you.  12


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