Act IV - Scene XIII

[The same and Anna Andreyevna.]

ANNA: [seeing Khlestakov on his knees] Oh, what a situation!

KHLESTAKOV: [rising] Oh, the devil!

ANNA: [to Marya] What does this mean? What does this behavior mean?

MARYA: I, mother—

ANNA: Go away from here. Do you hear? And don't you dare to show your face to me. [Marya goes out in tears.] Excuse me. I must say I'm greatly astonished.

KHLESTAKOV: [aside] She's very appetizing, too. She's not bad-looking, either. [Flings himself on his knees.] Madam, you see I am burning with love.

ANNA: What! You on your knees? Please get up, please get up. This floor isn't very clean.

KHLESTAKOV: No, I must be on my knees before you. I must. Pronounce the verdict. Is it life or death?

ANNA: But please—I don't quite understand the significance of your words. If I am not mistaken, you are making a proposal for my daughter.

KHLESTAKOV: No, I am in love with you. My life hangs by a thread. If you don't crown my steadfast love, then I am not fit to exist in this world. With a burning flame in my bosom, I pray for your hand.

ANNA: But please remember I am in a certain way—married.

KHLESTAKOV: That's nothing. Love knows no distinction. It was Karamzin who said: "The laws condemn." We will fly in the shadow of a brook. Your hand! I pray for your hand!