Here comes a spirit of his, to torment me For bringing wood in slowly. I’ll fall flat. Perchance he will not mind me.
What do we have here, a man or a fish? Whew, he stinks like a fish—an old salted fish, not a fresh-caught one.
There is no other shelter hereabouts. Misery acquaints a man with strange bedfellows. I will here shroud till the dregs of the storm be past.
Caliban describes the torments that Prospero’s spirits subject him to. As he is thinking of these spirits, Caliban sees Trinculo and imagines him to be one of the spirits. Hoping to avoid pinching, he lies down and covers himself with his cloak.
This is some monster of the island, with four legs. He’s in his fit now and does not talk after the wisest. He shall taste of my bottle. If he have never drunk wine afore, it will go near to remove his fit.
Do not torment me! O!
Trinculo sees the cloak-covered Caliban on the ground and becomes curious. He cannot decide whether Caliban is a man or a fish.
Stephano! If thou beest Stephano, touch me and speak to me. For I am Trinculo—be not afeard—thy good friend Trinculo.
Come on your ways. Open your mouth. Here is that which will give language to you, cat. Open your mouth. This will shake your shaking.
Before he can decide, he hears thunder and decides to take shelter with Caliban. Stephano enters in the distance.
I prithee now, lead the way without any more talking.— Trinculo, the king and all our company else being drowned, we will inherit here.
I’ll kiss thy foot. I’ll swear myself thy subject.
Hearing and seeing the four legs sticking out from the cloak, Stephano thinks the two men are a four-legged monster with a fever. He decides to relieve this fever with a drink.
Trinculo calls out to Stephano, who helps him out from under the blanket.
The two men talk while Caliban enjoys the liquor and begs to worship Stephano. The men take full advantage of Caliban’s drunkenness, mocking him as a “most ridiculous monster” and he promises to lead them around and show them the isle.