Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: W. L. Godshalk
Peer Reviewed

Troilus and Cressida (Quarto 1, 1609)


Enter Aiax armed, Achilles, Patroclus, Agam.
Menelaus, Vlisses, Nester, Calcas.. &c.
Aga. Here art thou in appointment fresh and faire,
2550Anticipating time. With starting courage,
Giue with thy trumpet a loude note to Troy
Thou dreadfull Aiax that the appauled aire,
May pearce the head of the great Combatant, and hale him
hither.
2555Aiax. Thou, trumpet, ther's my purse,
Now cracke thy lungs, and split thy brasen pipe:
Blow villaine, till thy sphered Bias cheeke,
Out-swell the collick of puft Aquilon,
Come stretch thy chest, and let thy eyes spout bloud:
2560Thou blowest for Hector.
Vliss No trumpet answers.
Achil. Tis but early daies.
Aga. Is not yond Diomed with Calcas daughter.
Vliss. Tis he, I ken the manner of his gate,
2565He rises on the too: that spirit of his
In aspiration lifts him from the earth.
Aga. Is this the Lady Cressid?
Diom. Euen she.
Aga. Most deerely welcome to the Greekes sweete Lady.
Nest. Our generall doth salute you with a kisse.
Vliss. Yet is the kindnesse but perticular, twere better shee
were kist in general.
Nest. And very courtly counsell. Ile beginne: so much for
Achil. Ile take that winter from your lips faire Lady,
Achilles bids you welcome.
Men. I had good argument for kissing once.
Patro. But thats no argument for kissing now,
2580For thus pop't Paris in his hardiment,
2580.1And parted thus, you and your argument.
Vliss. Oh deadly gall and theame of all our scornes,
For which we loose our heads to guild his hornes.
Patro. The first was Menelaus kisse this mine,
Patroclus kisses you.
2585Mene. Oh this is trim.
Patr. Paris and I kisse euermore for him.
Mene. Ile haue my kisse sir? Lady by your leaue.
Cres. In kissing do you render or recciue.
Patr. Both take and giue.
2590Cres. Ile make my match to liue,
The kisse you take is better then you giue: therefore no kisse.
Mene. Ile giue you boote, ile giue you three for one.
Cres. You are an od man giue euen or giue none.
2595Mene. An odde man Lady, euery man is odde.
Cres. No Paris is nor, for you know tis true,
That you are odde and he is euen with you.
Mene. You fillip me a'th head.
Cres. No ile be sworne.
2600Vliss. It were no match, your naile against his horne,
May I sweete Lady begge a kisse of you.
Cres. You may. Uliss I do desire it.
Cres. Why begge then.
2605Vlis. Why then for Venus sake giue me a kisse,
When Hellen is a maide againe and his -------------
Cres. I am your debtor, claime it when tis due.
Vlis. Neuers my day, and then a kisse of you.
Diom. Lady a word, ile bring you to your father.
2610Nest. A woman of quick sence.
Vliss. Fie, fie vpon her,
Ther's language in her eye, her cheeke her lip,
Nay her foote speakes, her wanton spirits looke out
At euery ioynt and motiue of her body,
2615Oh these encounterers so glib of tongue,
That giue a coasting welcome ere it comes.
And wide vnclapse the tables of their thoughts,
To euery ticklish reader, set them downe,
For sluttish spoiles of opportunity:
2620And daughters of the game.
Flowrish
enter all of Troy.
All. The Troyans trumpet.
Agam. Yonder comes the troup.
2625Æne. Haile all the state of Greece: what shalbe done,
To him that victory commands, or doe you purpose,
A victor shalbe knowne, will you the knights
Shall to the edge of all extremity
Pursue each other, or shall they be diuided,
2630By any voice or order of the field, Hector bad aske?
Aga. Which way would Hector haue it?
Æne. He cares not, heele obay condicions.
Aga: Tis done like Hector, but securely done,
A little proudly, and great deale misprising:
2635The knight oppos'd.
Æne. If not Achilles sir, what is your name?
Achil. If not Achilles nothing:
Ene: Therefore Achilles, but what ere know this,
In the extremity of great and little:
2640Valour and pride excell themselues in Hector
The one almost as infinite as all,
The other blanke as nothing, way him well:
And that which lookes like pride is curtesie,
This Aiax is halfe made of Hectors bloud,
2645In loue whereof, halfe Hector staies at home,
Halfe heart, halfe hand, halfe Hector comes to seeke:
This blended knight halfe Troyan, and halfe Greeke.
Achil. A maiden battell then, Oh I perceiue you.
Aga. Here is sir Diomed? go gentle knight,
2650Stand by our Aiax. As you and Lord Eneas
Consent vpon the order of their fight,
So be it, either to the vttermost,
Or els a breath, the combatants being kin,
Halfe stints their strife, before their strokes begin.
Vlisses: what Troyan is that same that lookes so heauy?
Vlis. The yongest sonne of Priam, a true knight,
Not yet mature, yet matchlesse firme of word,
2660Speaking deeds, and deedlesse in his tongue,
Not soone prouok't nor beeing prouok't soone calm'd,
His heart and hand both open and both free.
For what he has he giues, what thinkes he shewes,
Yet giues hee not till iudgement guide his bounty,
2665Nor dignifies an impare thought with breath;
Manly as Hector, but more dangerous,
For Hector in his blaze of wrath subscribes
To tender obiects, but he in heate of action,
Is more vindicatiue then iealous loue.
2670They call him Troylus, and on him erect,
A second hope as fairely built as Hector:
Thus saies Æneas one that knowes the youth,
Euen to his ynches: and with priuate soule
Did in great Illion thus translate him to me.
Alarum.
2675Aga. They are in action.
Nest. Now Aiax hould thine owne.
Troy. Hector thou sleep'st awake thee.
Aga. His blowes are well dispo'd, there Aiax.
trumpets
Diom. You must no more.
2680Æne. Princes enough so please you.
Aiax. I am not warme yet, let vs fight againe.
Diom. As Hector pleases.
Hect. Why then will I no more,
Thou art great Lord my fathers sisters Sonne,
2685A couzen german to great Priams seede,
The obligation of our bloud forbids,
A gory emulation twixt vs twaine:
Were thy commixtion Greeke and Troyan so,
That thou couldst say this hand is Grecian all:
2690And this is Troyan, the sinnewes of this legge
All Greeke, and this all Troy: my mothers bloud,
Runnes on the dexter cheeke, and this sinister
Bounds in my fathers. By Ioue multipotent
Thou shouldst not beare from mee a Greekish member,
2695Wherein my sword had not impressure made.
But the iust Gods gainsay,
That any day thou borrowd'st from thy mother,
My sacred Aunt, should by my mortal sword,
Be drained. Let me embrace thee Aiax:
2700By him that thunders thou hast lusty armes,
Hector would haue them fall vpon him thus.
Cozen all honor to thee.
Aiax. I thanke thee Hector,
Thou art to gentle, and too free a man,
2705I came to kill thee cozen, and beare hence,
A great addition earned in thy death.
Hect. Not Neoptolymus so mirable,
On whose bright crest, fame with her lowdst (O yes)
Cries, this is he, could promise to himselfe,
2710A thought of added honor, torne from Hector.
Æne. There is expectance heere from both the sides,
What further you will do.
Hect. Weele answer it,
The issue is embracement, Aiax farewell.
2715Aiax. If I might in entreaties finde successe,
As seld I haue the chance, I would desire,
My famous cosin to our Grecian tents.
Diom. Tis Agamemnons wish, and great Achilles
Doth long to see vnarm'd the valiant Hector.
2720Hect. Æneas call my brother Troylus to me.
And signifie this louing enterview
To the expectors of our Troyan part,
Desire them home. Giue me thy hand my Cozen.
I will go eate with thee, and see your Knights.
Aiax. Great Agamemnon comes to mecte vs heere.
Hect. The worthiest of them, tell me name by name:
But for Achilles my owne searching eyes,
Shall finde him by his large and portly size.
2730Agam. Worthy all armes, as welcome as to one,
That would be rid of such an enemy.
From heart of very heart, great Hector welcome.
Hect. I thanke thee most imperious Agamemnon.
2740Agam. My well-fam'd Lord of Troy, no lesse to you.
Mene. Let me confirme my princely brothers greeting:
You brace of warlike brothers: welcome hether.
Hect. Who must we answer?
Æne. The noble Menelaus.
2745Hect. O you my Lord, by Mars his gauntlet thankes,
(Mock not thy affect, the vntraded earth)
Your quandom wife sweares still byVenus gloue,
Shees well, but bad me not commend her to you.
Men. Name her not now sir, shee's a deadly theame.
2750Hect. O pardon, I offend.
Nest. I haue thou gallant Troyan seene thee oft,
Laboring for destiny, make cruell way,
Through rankes of Greekish youth, and I haue seene thee
As hot as Perseus, spurre thy Phrigian steed,
2755Despising many forfaits and subduments,
When thou hast hung th'aduanced sword ith'ayre,
Not letting it decline on the declined,
That I haue said to some my standers by,
Loe Iupiter is yonder dealing life.
2760And I haue seene thee pause, and take thy breath,
When that a ring of Greekes haue shrupd thee in,
Like an Olympian wrastling. This haue I seene,
But this thy countenance still lockt in steele,
I neuer saw till now: I knew thy grand-sire,
2765And once fought with him, he was a soldier good,
But by great Mars the Captaine of vs all,
Neuer like thee: O let an old man embrace thee,
And worthy warriour welcome to our tents.
Æne. Tis the old Nestor.
2770Hect. Let me embrace thee good old Chronicle,
That hast so long walkt hand in hand with time,
Most reuerend Nestor, I am glad to claspe thee.
Nest. I would my armes could match thee in contention.
2775Hect. I would they could.
Nest. Ha? by this white beard Ide fight with thee to mor-
Well, welcome, welcome, I haue seene the time.
Vlis. I wonder now how yonder Citty stands,
When we haue here her base and piller by vs?
2780Hect. I know your fauour lord Vlisses well,
Ah sir, there's many a Greeke and Troyan dead,
Since first I saw your selfe and Diomed,
In Illion on your Greekish embassie.
Vlis. Sir I foretold you then what would ensue,
2785My prophecie is but halfe his iourney yet,
For yonder walls that pertly front your towne,
Yon towers, whose wanton tops do busse the clouds,
Must kisse their owne feete.
Hect. I must not beleeue you.
2790There they stand yet, and modestly I thinke,
The fall of euery Phrigian stone will cost,
A drop of Grecian bloud: the end crownes all,
And that old common arbitrator Time, will one day end it.
2795Vlis. So to him we leaue it.
Most gentle and most valiant Hector, welcome:
After the Generall, I beseech you next
To feast with me, and see me at my tent.
Achil. I shall forestall thee lord Vlisses thou:
2800Now Hector I haue fed mine eyes on thee,
I haue with exact view perusde thee Hector, & quoted ioynt
Hect. Is this Achilles? Achil. I am Achilles.
2805Hect. Stand faire I pray thee, let me looke on thee,
Achil. Behold thy fill.
Hect. Nay I haue done already.
Achil. Thou art too briefe, I will the second time,
As I would buie thee, view thee lim by lim,
2810Hect. O like a booke of sport thou'lt read me ore:
But ther's more in me then thou vnderstandst,
Why doost thou so oppresse me with thine eye.
Achil. Tell me you heauens, in which part of his body
Shall I destroy him: whether there, or there, or there,
2815That I may giue the locall wound a name,
And make distinct the very breach, whereout
Hectors great spirit flew: answer me heauens.
Hect. It would discredit the blest gods, proud man,
To answer such a question: stand againe,
2820Thinkst thou to catch my life so pleasantly,
As to prenominate in nice coniecture,
Where thou wilt hit me dead.
Achil. I tell rhee yea.
Hect. Wert thou an Oracle to tell me so,
2825Ide not beleeue thee. Hence-forth gard thee well,
For Ile not kill thee there, nor there, nor there,
But by the forge that stichied Mars his helme.
Ile kill thee euerywhere, yea ore and ore.
You wisest Grecians, pardon me this brag,
2830His insolence drawes folly from my lips,
But ile endeuour deeds to match these words,
Or may I neuer--------- ----
Aiax. Do not chafe thee cozen.
And you Achilles, let these threats alone,
2835Till accident or purpose bring you too't,
You may haue euery day enough of Hector,
If you haue stomack. The generall state I feare,
Can scarce entreate you to be odde with him.
Hect.I pray you let vs see you in the field,
2840We haue had pelting warres since you refusd, the Grecians
Achil. Doost thou entreate me Hector?
Tomorow do I meet thee fell as death:tonight all friends.
2845Hect. Thy hand vpon that match.
Agam. First all you Peeres of Greece, go to my tent,
There in the full conuiue we: afterwards
As Hectors leisure, and your bounties shall
Concurre together, seuerally entreate him
2850To taste your bounties, let the trumpets blowe,
That this great souldier may his welcome know.
Exeunt.
Troy. My Lord Ulisses, tell me I beseech you,
In what place of the field doth Calcas keepe.
Ulis. At Menelaus tent, most princely Troylus:
2855There Diomed doth feast with him to night,
Who neither lookes vpon the heauen nor earth,
But giues all gaze, and bent of amorous view,
On the faire Cresseid.
Troyl. Shall I sweete Lord be bound to you so much,
2860After we part from Agamemnons tent,
To bring me thether.
Ulis. You shall command me sir.
But gentle tell me of what honor was
This Cressida in Troy? had she no louer there
2865That wailes her absence?
Tro. O sir to such as bosting shew their skarres,
A mocke is due; will you walke on my Lord,
Shee was beloued my Lord, she is, and doth,
But still sweet loue is food for fortunes tooth.
Exeunt.