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  • Title: Troilus and Cressida (Modern)
  • Editor: William Godshalk
  • ISBN: 1-55058-301-8

    Copyright Internet Shakespeare Editions. This text may be freely used for educational, non-proift purposes; for all other uses contact the Coordinating Editor.
    Author: William Shakespeare
    Editor: William Godshalk
    Peer Reviewed

    Troilus and Cressida (Modern)

    1477.1[3.1]
    Music sounds within. Enter Pandarus and a Servant.
    Pandarus
    Friend -- you -- pray you, a word. Do not you 1480follow the young lord Paris?
    Servant
    Ay, sir, when he goes before me.
    Pandarus
    You depend upon him, I mean.
    Servant
    Sir, I do depend upon the Lord.
    Pandarus
    You depend upon a noble gentleman. I must 1485needs praise him.
    Servant
    The Lord be praised.
    Pandarus
    You know me, do you not?
    Servant
    Faith, sir, superficially.
    Pandarus
    Friend, know me better; I am the lord Pandarus.
    1490Servant
    I hope I shall know your honor better.
    Pandarus
    I do desire it.
    Servant
    You are in the state of grace?
    Pandarus
    Grace? Not so, friend; "honor" and "lordship" are my titles. What music is this?
    1495Servant
    I do but partly know, sir; it is music in parts.
    Pandarus
    Know you the musicians?
    Servant
    Wholly, sir.
    Pandarus
    Who play they to?
    Servant
    To the hearers, sir.
    1500Pandarus
    At whose pleasure, friend?
    Servant
    At mine, sir, and theirs that love music.
    Pandarus
    "Command," I mean, friend.
    Servant
    Who shall I command, sir?
    Pandarus
    Friend, we understand not one another. I am too 1505courtly, and thou art too cunning. At whose request do these men play?
    Servant
    That's to't indeed, sir. Marry, sir, at the request of Paris, my lord, who's there in person, with him the mortal Venus, the heart blood of beauty, love's invisible 1510soul.
    Pandarus
    Who? My cousin Cressida?
    Servant
    No, sir, Helen. Could you not find out that by her attributes?
    Pandarus
    It should seem, fellow, that thou hast not seen the 1515lady Cressida. I come to speak with Paris from the prince Troilus. I will make a complimental assault upon him, for my business seethes.
    Servant
    Sodden business? There's a stewed phrase indeed.
    Enter Paris and Helen.
    1520Pandarus
    Fair be to you, my lord, and to all this fair company; fair desires in all fair measure fairly guide them, especially to you, fair queen; fair thoughts be your fair pillow.
    Helen
    Dear lord, you are full of fair words.
    1525Pandarus
    You speak your fair pleasure, sweet queen. -- Fair prince, here is good broken music.
    Paris
    You have broke it, cousin, and, by my life, you shall make it whole again; you shall piece it out with a piece of your performance. -- Nell, he is full of harmony.
    1530Pandarus
    Truly, lady, no.
    Helen
    O sir --
    Pandarus
    Rude, in sooth; in good sooth, very rude.
    Paris
    Well said, my lord; well, you say so in fits.
    Pandarus
    I have business to my lord, dear queen. -- My 1535lord, will you vouchsafe me a word?
    Helen
    Nay, this shall not hedge us out; we'll hear you sing, certainly.
    Pandarus
    Well, sweet queen, you are pleasant with me. -- But, marry, thus, my lord: my dear lord and most 1540esteemed friend, your brother Troilus --
    Helen
    My lord Pandarus, honey-sweet lord --
    Pandarus
    Go to, sweet queen, go to. -- commends himself most affectionately to you.
    Helen
    You shall not bob us out of our melody. 1545If you do, our melancholy upon your head.
    Pandarus
    Sweet queen, sweet queen, that's a sweet queen, i'faith --
    Helen
    And to make a sweet lady sad is a sour offense.
    Pandarus
    Nay, that shall not serve your turn, that shall it 1550not, in truth, la. Nay, I care not for such words, no, no. -- And, my lord, he desires you, that if the king call for him at supper, you will make his excuse.
    Helen
    My lord Pandarus?
    Pandarus
    What says my sweet queen, my very, very 1555sweet queen?
    Paris
    What exploit's in hand? Where sups he tonight?
    Helen
    Nay, but my lord?
    Pandarus
    What says my sweet queen? -- [To Paris?] My cousin will fall out with you.
    1560Helen
    [To Paris]You must not know where he sups.
    Paris
    With my disposer, Cressida?
    Pandarus
    No, no, no such matter; you are wide. Come, your disposer is sick.
    Paris
    Well, I'll make excuse.
    1565Pandarus
    Ay, good my lord. Why should you say Cressida? No, your poor disposer's sick.
    Paris
    I spy.
    Pandarus
    You spy? What do you spy? -- Come, give me an instrument now, sweet queen.
    1570Helen
    Why, this is kindly done.
    Pandarus
    My niece is horrible in love with a thing you have, sweet queen.
    Helen
    She shall have it, my lord, if it be not my lord Paris.
    1575Pandarus
    He? No, she'll none of him; they two are twain.
    Helen
    Falling in, after falling out, may make them three.
    Pandarus
    Come, come, I'll hear no more of this. I'll sing you a song now.
    1580Helen
    Ay, ay, prithee, now. By my troth, sweet lord, thou hast a fine forehead.
    Pandarus
    Ay, you may, you may.
    Helen
    Let thy song be love. This love will undo us all. O Cupid, Cupid, Cupid.
    1585Pandarus
    Love? Ay, that it shall, i'faith.
    Paris
    Ay, good now: "Love, love, nothing but love."
    Pandarus
    In good truth, it begins so.
    [Sings]
    Love, love, nothing but love, still more:
    For, O, love's bow,
    1590Shoots buck and doe;
    The shaft confounds not that it wounds,
    But tickles still the sore.
    These lovers cry, "Oh, ho," they die;
    Yet that which seems the wound to kill
    1595Doth turn "Oh, ho," to "ha ha he."
    So dying love lives still.
    "Oh, ho," awhile, but "ha ha ha."
    "Oh, ho," groans out for "ha ha ha" -- hey-ho.
    Helen
    In love, i'faith, to the very tip of the nose.
    1600Paris
    He eats nothing but doves, love, and that breeds hot blood, and hot blood begets hot thoughts, and hot thoughts beget hot deeds, and hot deeds is love.
    Pandarus
    Is this the generation of love? Hot blood, hot thoughts, and hot deeds? Why, they are vipers. Is love a 1605generation of vipers? -- Sweet lord, who's afield today?
    Paris
    Hector, Deiphobus, Helenus, Antenor, and all the gallantry of Troy. I would fain have armed today, but my Nell would not have it so. 1610How chance my brother Troilus went not?
    Helen
    He hangs the lip at something. -- You know all, lord Pandarus.
    Pandarus
    Not I, honey-sweet queen. I long to hear how they sped today. 1615 -- You'll remember your brother's excuse?
    Paris
    To a hair.
    Pandarus
    Farewell, sweet queen.
    Helen
    Commend me to your niece.
    Pandarus
    I will, sweet queen.
    Sound a retreat.
    1620Paris
    They're come from field; let us to Priam's hall
    To greet the warriors. Sweet Helen, I must woo you
    To help unarm our Hector; his stubborn buckles,
    With these your white enchanting fingers touched,
    Shall more obey than to the edge of steel
    1625Or force of Greekish sinews. You shall do more
    Than all the island kings -- disarm great Hector.
    Helen
    'Twill make us proud to be his servant, Paris:
    Yea, what he shall receive of us in duty
    Gives us more palm in beauty than we have,
    1630Yea, overshines ourself.
    Sweet, above thought, I love thee.
    Exeunt.