Menaechmus Sosicles is on a journey. Accompanied by his faithful servant Messenio, the men have been searching for Menaechmus’ long-lost twin brother, also named Menaechmus. They arrive in Epidamnus, a city with a reputation for cursing its visitors with bad luck. Before long, Menaechmus Sosicles is spoiled with a bountiful lunch, the company of a courtesan, and valuable jewelry. He adores the attention, but is ready to move on and continue his search.
At the same time, the long-lost twin Menaechmus is living in Epidamnus--miserably married, courting the neighborhood courtesan, and suddenly finding himself followed by a new servant (Messenio) who claims to have known him for years. Through a series of confusions, misunderstandings, misidentifications, and a few fits of madness, the brothers finally come face-to-face.
The Menaechmi is perhaps Plautus’ greatest comedy and the inspiration for William Shakespeare’s Comedy of Errors. The foundation for the trope of long-lost twins, The Menaechmi is a romping, quick-paced slapstick send-up of domestic life, family loyalty, and an afternoon at the theatre.
The Menaechmi guide sections