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You shall command me, sir. As gentle tell me, of what honour was This Cressida in Troy? Had she no lover there That wails her absence?
Tro. O, sir, to such as boasting show their scars, A mock is due. Will you walk on, my lord ? She was belov’d, she lov'd ; she is, and doth : But, still, sweet love is food for fortune's tooth.
SCENE, I. The Grecian Camp. Before Achilles'
Enter ACHILLES and PATROCLUS. Achil. I'll heat his blood with Greekish wine to
night; Which with my scimitar I'll cool to-morrow.Patroclus, let us feast him to the height.
Patr. Here comes Thersites.
How now, thou core of envy; Thou crusty batch of nature, what's the news?
Ther. Why, thou picture of what thou seemest, and idol of idiot worshippers, here's a letter for thee.
Achil. From whence, fragment?
· The surgeon's box,] In this answer Thersites quibbles upon the word tent.
Patr. Well said, Adversity !8 and what need these tricks ?
Ther. Pr’ythee be silent, boy; I profit not by thy talk: thou art thought to be Achilles' male varlet.
Patr. Male varlet, you rogue ! what's that?
Ther. Why, his masculine whore. Now the rotten diseases of the south, the guts-griping, ruptures, catarrhs, loads o'gravel i’the back, lethargies, cold palsies, raw eyes, dirt-rotten livers, wheezing lungs, bladders full of imposthume, sciaticas, limekilns i'the palm, incurable bone-ach, and the rivelled fee-simple of the tetter, take and take again such preposterous discoveries !
Patr. Why thou damnable box of envy, thou, what meanest thou to curse thus?
Ther. Do I curse thee?
Patr. Why, no, you ruinous butt; you whoreson indistinguishable cur, no.
Ther. No? why art thou then exasperate, thou idle immaterial skein of sleive silk, thou green scarcenet flap for a sore eye, thou tassel of a prodigal's purse, thou? Ah, how the poor world is pestered with such water-flies ; diminutives of nature !
Patr. Out, gall !
Achil. My sweet Patroclus, I am thwarted quite
* Well said, Adversity!) Adversity, in this instance, signifies contrariety. The reply of Thersites has been studiously adverse to the drift of the question urged by Patroclus.
9 thou idle immaterial skein of sleive silk,] All the terms used by Thersites of Patroclus, are emblematically expressive of flexibility, compliance, and mean officiousness. ... Finch egg!) A finch's egg is remarkably gaudy; but of such terms of reproach it is difficult to pronounce the true signification.
Both taxing me, and gaging me to keep
[Exeunt Achilles and Patroci Us. Ther. With too much blood, and too little brain, these two may run mad; but if with too much brain, and two little blood, they do, I'll be a curer of madmen. Here's Agamemnon,-an honest fellow enough, and one that loves quails ; but he has not so much brain as ear-wax: And the goodly transformation of Jupiter there, his brother, the bull,—the primitive statue, and oblique memorial of cuckolds; a thrifty shoeing-horn in a chain, hanging at his brother's leg,—to what form, but that he is, should wit larded with malice, and malice forced with wit, turn him to? To an ass, were nothing: he is both ass and ox : to an ox were nothing; he is both ox and ass.
To be a dog, a mule, a cat, a fitchew, a toad, a lizard, an owl, a puttock, or a herring without a roe, I would not care : but to be Menelaus,- I would conspire against destiny. Ask me not 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! spirits and fires 13
Enter Hector, Troilus, AJAX, AGAMEMNON,
ULYSSES, Nestor, MENELAUS, and Diomed, with lights.
go wrong, we go wrong. a fitchew,) i. e. a polecat.
spirits and fires !] This Thersites speaks upon the first sight of the distant lights.
No, yonder 'tis ; There, where we see the lights.
I trouble you.
Achil. Welcome, brave Hector; welcome, princes
all. Agam. So now, fair prince of Troy, I bid good
night. Ajax commands the guard to tend on you. Hect. Thanks, and good night, to the Greeks'
general. Men. Good night, my lord. Hect.
Good night, sweet Menelaus. Ther. Sweet draught: Sweet, quoth 'a! sweet sink, sweet sewer.
Achil. Good night,
Exeunt AGAMEMNON and MENELAUS. Achil. Old Nester tarries; and you too, Diomed, Keep Hector company an hour or two.
Dio. I cannot, lord; I have important business, The tide whereof is now.-Good night, great Hector.
Hect. Give me your hand.
Follow his torch, he
goes To Calchas' tent; I'll keep you company.
[Aside to Troilus. Tro. Sweet sir, you honour me. Hect.
And so good night. [Exit Diomed; Ulyss. and Tro. following. Achil. Come, come, enter my tent.
[E.reunt Achil. HECTOR, AJAX, and Nest. Ther. That same Diomed's a false-hearted rogue, a most unjust knave; I will no more trust him when
he leers, than I will a serpent when he hisses : he will spend his mouth, and promise, like Brabler the hound ;* but when he performs, astronomers foretell it; it is prodigious, there will come some change; the sun borrows of the moon, when Diomed keeps his word. I will rather leave to see Hector, than not to dog him: they say, he keeps a Trojan drab, and uses the traitor Calchas' tent: I'll after. Nothing but lechery ! all incontinent varlets !
The same. Before Calchas' Tent.
Dio. Diomed.–Caļchas, I think. Where's your daughter ?
Cal. [Within.] She comes to you, Enter Troilus and Ulysses, at a distance; after
them THERSITES, Ulyss. Stand where the torch may not discover us,
Enter CRESSIDA. Tro. Cressid come forth to him! Dio.
How now, my charge? Cres. Now, my sweet guardian !-Hark! a word
he will spend his mouth, and promise, like Brabler the hound ;] If a hound gives his mouth, and is not upon the scent of the game, he is by sportsmen called a babler or brabler.
- prodigious,] i.e. portentous, ominous.