|Age Range(s)||Adult (36-50)|
|Type of monologue / Character is||Descriptive|
|Description||Mrs. Allonby describes the perfect husband|
A Woman of No Importance focuses on the relationship between Lord Illingworth and his son Gerald Arbuthnot, his illegitimate son who he hires by chance as his secretary. During the play he finds out Gerald is his son. Some 20 years earlier Lord Illingworth seduced Mrs. Arbuthnot and she got pregnant with Gerald. Gerald's mother refuses Lord Illingworth's overdue marriage proposal and Gerald is torn between the two. The monologue is delivered by Mrs. Allonby, a witty and eccentric woman who is a friend of Gerald's father and who dares Lord Illingworth to kiss Miss Hester Worsley, a rich American Puritan. Here we are in ACT II, at a party at Lady Jane Hunstanton's house. Mrs. Allonby is sitting at on a sofa with various ladies, talking about men and relationships. In this funny monologue Mrs. Allonby describes how the "ideal man" should be...
Written by Administrator
|MRS. ALLONBY: "The Ideal Man! Oh, the Ideal Man should talk to us as if we were goddesses, and treat us as if we were children. He should refuse all our serious requests, and gratify every one of our whims. He should encourage us to have caprices, and forbid us to have missions. He should always say much more than he means, and always mean much more than he says....[..] He should never run down other pretty women. That would show he had no taste, or make one suspect that he had too much. No; he should be nice about them all, but say that somehow they don't attract him....[...] If we ask him a question about anything, he should give us an answer all about ourselves. He should invariably praise us for whatever qualities he knows we haven't got. But he should be pitiless, quite pitiless, in reproaching us for the virtues that we have never dreamed of possessing. He should never believe that we know the use of useful things. That would be unforgivable. But he should shower on us everything we don't want...[...] He should persistently compromise us in public, and treat us with absolute respect when we are alone. And yet he should be always ready to have a perfectly terrible scene, whenever we want one, and to become miserable, absolutely miserable, at a moment's notice, and to overwhelm us with just reproaches in less than twenty minutes, and to be positively violent at the end of half an hour, and to leave us for ever at a quarter to eight, when we have to go and dress for dinner. And when, after that, one has seen him for really the last time, and he has refused to take back the little things he has given one, and promised never to communicate with one again, or to write one any foolish letters, he should be perfectly broken-hearted, and telegraph to one all day long, and send one little notes every half-hour by a private hansom, and dine quite alone at the club, so that every one should know how unhappy he was. And after a whole dreadful week, during which one has gone about everywhere with one's husband, just to show how absolutely lonely one was, he may be given a third last parting, in the evening, and then, if his conduct has been quite irreproachable, and one has behaved really badly to him, he should be allowed to admit that he has been entirely in the wrong, and when he has admitted that, it becomes a woman's duty to forgive, and one can do it all over again from the beginning, with variations.|