Page images
PDF
EPUB

REFERENCES DESCRIPTIVE OF THE

PLATES.

TROILUS AND CRESSIDA. The classical grandeur in the subjects of this play renders it peculiarly adapted to pictorial illustration; though one of the least attractive amongst the splendid productions of our bard, in its literary character. The heroes immortalized by Homer and ancient art afford such capabilities for the display of imagination and design, that it has not been confined within the limits of comparatively few plates without regret. Were the play in greater favour, and classical subjects received with more attention, a liberty would have been taken with the plan of these illustrations, and every subject alluded to in the text should have been introduced; it should have been Shakspeare elucidated by Homer, with the aid of Phidias and his brother sculptors. But it would have added to an already extensive work what, in the taste of the

B2

[ocr errors][merged small]

present day, it is to be feared, would be considered an encumbrance. Still one or two subjects have been deemed necessary to the conduct of the story, and one, “ Helen disarming Hector,” for the sake of introducing the celebrated object of contention in the Trojan war. The strictest accuracy in the cos

tume has been attended to, and the just distinction - made between the Greeks and Trojans.

TROILUS AND CRESSIDA.

PANDARUS and CRESSIDA watching the return of the Trojan chiefs from the field.ÆNEAS, ANTENOR, HECTOR, PARIS, HELENUS, and TROILUS pass.

“Cress. What sneaking fellow comes yonder ?

Pan. Where? yonder? that's Deiphobus : 'tis Troilus! there's a man, niece! Hem! brave Troilus ! the prince of chivalry! .... Look you how his sword is bloodied and his helm more hack'd than Hector's.”

Act I, S. 2.

II.

CASSANDRA raving.

Cass. Cry, Trojans, cry! lend me ten thousand eyes, And I will fill them with prophetic tears.

Hect. Peace, sister, peace !

Cass. Virgins and boys, midage and wrinkled elders, Soft infancy, that nothing canst but cry, Add to my clamours ! let us pay betimes A moiety of that mass of moan to come :Cry, Trojans, cry! practise your eyes with tears ; Troy must not be, nor goodly Ilion stand; Our firebrand brother, Paris, burns us all. Cry, Trojans, cry! a Helen and in woe: Cry, cry! Troy burns, or else let Helen go.”

Act II. S. 2.

III.

HELEN assisting to unarm HECTOR.

66 Paris.

' Sweet Helen, I must woo you To help unarm our Hector: his stubborn buckles, With these your white enchanting fingers touch'd, Shall more obey than to the edge of steel, Or 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,
Yea, overshines ourself.”

Act III. S. 1.

IV.

TROILUS and CRESSIDA.

“Tro. You have bereft me of all words, lady.

Pan. .... What, billing again? Here's -In witness whereof the parties interchangeablyCome in, come in; I'll go get a fire.

Tro. Why was my Cressid then so hard to win?
Cress. Hard to seem won;"

« PreviousContinue »