An Enemy of the People
(SCENE.--A big old-fashioned room in CAPTAIN HORSTER'S house. At the
back folding-doors, which are standing open, lead to an ante- room. Three
windows in the left-hand wall. In the middle of the opposite wall a platform has
been erected. On this is a small table with two candles, a water-bottle and glass,
and a bell. The room is lit by lamps placed between the windows. In the
foreground on the left there is a table with candles and a chair. To the right is a
door and some chairs standing near it. The room is nearly filled with a crowd of
townspeople of all sorts, a few women and schoolboys being amongst them.
People are still streaming in from the back, and the room is soon filled.)
1st Citizen (meeting another). Hullo, Lamstad! You here too?
2nd Citizen. I go to every public meeting, I do.
3rd Citizen. Brought your whistle too, I expect!
2nd Citizen. I should think so. Haven't you?
3rd Citizen. Rather! And old Evensen said he was going to bring a cow-horn, he
2nd Citizen. Good old Evensen! (Laughter among the crowd.)
4th Citizen (coming up to them). I say, tell me what is going on here tonight?
2nd Citizen. Dr. Stockmann is going to deliver an address attacking the Mayor.
4th Citizen. But the Mayor is his brother.
1st Citizen. That doesn't matter; Dr. Stockmann's not the chap to be afraid.
Peter Stockmann. For various reasons, which you will easily understand, I must
beg to be excused. But fortunately we have amongst us a man who I think will be
acceptable to you all. I refer to the President of the Householders' Association,
Several voices. Yes--Aslaksen! Bravo Aslaksen!
(DR. STOCKMANN takes up his MS. and walks up and down the platform.)
Aslaksen. Since my fellow-citizens choose to entrust me with this duty, I cannot