Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: William Godshalk
Peer Reviewed

Troilus and Cressida (Quarto 1, 1609)

The history
Pat. Out gall. Ther. Finch egge.
Achil. My sweet Patroclus I am thwarted quite,
2905From my great purpose into morrowes battell,
Here is a letter from Queene Hecuba;
A token from her daughter my faire loue
Both taxing me, and gaging me to keepe:
An oth that I haue sworne: I wil not breake it,
2910Fall Greekes, fayle fame, honour or go or stay,
My maior vow lies here; this ile obay,
Come, come, Thersites help to trim my tent?
This night in banquctting must al be spent, away Patroclus.
2915Ther. With to much bloud, and to little braine, these two
may run mad, but if with to much braine and to little bloud
they do ile be a curer of mad-men, her's Agamemnon, an ho-
nest fellow inough, and one that loues quailes, but hee has
not so much braine as eare-wax, and the goodly transfor-
2920mation of Iupiter there, his be the Bull, the primitiue statue,
and oblique memorial of cuck-olds, a thrifty shooing-horne
in a chaine at his bare legge, to what forme but that hee is,
should wit larded with malice, and malice faced with witte,
turne him to: to an Asse, were nothing hee is both Asse and
Oxe, to an Oxe were nothing, her's both Oxe and Asse, to be
a day, a Moyle, a Cat, a Fichooke, a Tode, a Lezard, an Oule,
a Puttock, or a Herring without a rowe. I would not care,
but to bee Menelaus I would conspire against desteny, aske
2930me what I would be, if I were not Thersites, for I care not to
be the Louse of a Lazar, so I were not Menelaus---hey-day
sprites and fires.
Enter Agam: Vlisses, Nest: and Diomed with lights.
2935Aga. We go wrong we goe wrong.
Aiax. No, yonder tis there where we see the lights.
Hect. I trouble you. Aiax. No not a whit:
2940Vlis. Here comes himselfe to guide you.
Achil. Welcome braue Hector, welcome Princes all.
Aga. So now faire Prince of Troy, I bid God night,
Aiax commands the guard to tend on you.
Hect. Thanks and good night to the Greekes generall.
2945Mene. Good night my Lord.