Abbildungen der Seite

a goddess, he should take his choice. O admirable man! Paris ! - Paris is dirt to him; and I warrant, Helen, to change, would give an eye to boot.

Forces pass over the Stage. Cres. Here come more.

Pan. Asses, fools, dolts! chaff and bran, chaff and bran! porridge after meat! I could live and die i’the eyes of Troilus. Ne'er look, ne'er look; the eagles are gone; crows and daws, crows and daws! I had rather be such a man as Troilus, than Agamemnon and all Greece.

Cres. There is among the Greeks, Achilles ; a better man than Troilus.

Pan. Achilles ? a drayman, a porter, a very camel.
Cres. Well, well.
Pan. Well, well ? — Why, have

Why, have you any discretion ? have

you any eyes? Do you know what a man is ? Is not birth, beauty, good shape, discourse, manhood, learning, gentleness, virtue, youth, liberality, and such like, the spice and salt that season a man?

Cres. Ay, a minced man: and then to be baked with no date in the pye, for then the man's date is out.

Pan. You are such a woman ! one knows not at what ward you lie.*

4 Cres. Upon my back, to defend my belly; upon my wit, to defend my wiles; upon my secrecy, to defend mine honesty; my mask, to defend my beauty; and you, to defend all these: and at all these wards I lie, at a thousand watches.

Pan. Say one of your watches.

Cres. Nay, I'll watch you for that; and that's one of the chiefest of them too; if I cannot ward what I would


no date in the pye,] To account for the introduction of this quibble, it should be remembered that dates were an ingredient in ancient pastry of almost every kind at what ward you lie.) A metaphor from the art of defence. not have hit, I can watch you for telling how I took the blow; unless it swell past hiding, and then it is past watching

Pan. You are such another !

Enter TROILUS' Boy.
Boy. Sir, my lord would instantly speak with you.
Pan, Where?
Boy. At your own house; there he unarms him.

Pan. Good boy, tell him I come: [Exit Boy. I doubt, he be hurt. - Fare ye well, good niece.

Cres. Adieu, uncle.
Pan. I'll be with you, niece, by and by.
Cres. To bring, uncle,
Pan. Ay, a token from Troilus,
Cres. By the same token

you are a bawd. –

[Exit PANDARUS. Words, vows, griefs, tears, and love's full sacrifice, He offers in another's enterprize: But more in Troilus thousand fold I see Than in the glass of Pandar's praise may be; Yet hold I off. Women are angels, wooing: Things won are done, joy's soul lies in the doing : That she belov'd knows nought, that knows not this, Men prize the thing ungain’d more than it is: That she was never yet, that ever knew Love got so sweet, as when desire did sue: Therefore this maxim out of love I teach, Achievement is command; ungain’d, beseech :5 Then though my heart's contento firm love doth bear, Nothing of that shall from mine eyes appear. [Exit.

5 Achievement is command ; ungain'd, beseech:) The meaning of this obscure line seems to be -"Men, after possession, become our commanders: before it, they are our suppliants.”

my heart's content-) Content for capacity, or perhaps for consent.


The Grecian Camp.

Before Agamemnon's Tent.

Trumpets. Enter AGAMEMNON, Nestor, ULYSSES,

MENELAUS, and Others. Agam. Princes, What grief hath set the jaundice on your cheeks ? The ample proposition, that hope makes In all designs begun on earth below, Fails in the promis’d largeness: checks and disasters Grow in the veins of actions highest rear'd; As knots, by the conflúx of meeting sap, Infect the sound pine, and divert his grain Tortive and errant from his course of growth. Nor, princes, is it matter new to us, That we come short of our suppose so far, That, after seven years' siege, yet Troy walls stand ; Sith every action that hath gone before, Whereof we have record, trial did draw Bias and thwart, not answering the aim, And that unbodied figure of the thought That gav't surmised shape. Why then, you princes, Do you with cheeks abash'd behold our works; And think them shames, which are, indeed, nought else But the protractive trials of great Jove, To find persistive constancy in men ? The fineness of which metal is not found In fortune's love: for then, the bold and coward, The wise and fool, the artist and unread, The hard and soft, seem all affin'd? and kin: But, in the wind and tempest of her frown, Distinction, with a broad and powerful fan, Puffing at all, winnows the light away;

7 affin'd) i.e. joined by affinity.

And what hath mass, or matter, by itself
Lies, rich in virtue, and unmingled.

Nest. With due observance of thy godlike seat,
Great Agamemnon, Nestor shall apply 8
Thy latest words. In the reproof of chance
Lies the true proof of men: the sea being smooth,
How many shallow bauble boats dare sail
Upon her patient breast, making their way
With those of nobler bulk ?
But let the ruffian Boreas once enrage
The gentle Thetis, and, anon, behold
The strong-ribb’d bark through liquid mountains cut,
Bounding between the two moist elements,
Like Perseus' horse: Where's then the saucy boat,
Whose weak untimber'd sides but even now
Co-rival'd greatness ? either to harbour fled,
Or made a toast for Neptune. Even so
Doth valour's show, and valour's worth, divide,
In storms of fortune: For, in her ray and brightness,
The herd hath more annoyance by the brize,
Than by the tiger ; but when the splitting wind
Makes flexible the knees of knotted oaks,
And flies fled under shade', Why, then, the thing of

As rous'd with rage, with rage doth sympathize,
And, with an accent tun'd in self-same key,
Returns to chiding fortune.

Thou great commander, nerve and bone of Greece,
Heart of our numbers, soul and only spirit,
In whom the tempers and the minds of all




Nestor shall apply - ] Perhaps Nestor means, that he will attend particularly to, and consider, Agamemnon's latest words.

by the brize,] The brize is the gad or horse-fly. 1 And flies fled under shade,] i. e. And flies are fled under shade.

the thing of courage,] It is said of the tiger, that in storms and high winds he rages and roars most furiously.

Returns to chiding - ] Chiding is noisy, clamorous.


[ocr errors]

Should be shut up, — hear what Ulysses speaks.
Besides the applause and approbation
The which, — most mighty for thy place and sway,

[To AGAMEMNON. And thou most reverend for thy stretch’d-out life,

[To NESTOR. I give to both your speeches, — which were such, As Agamemnon and the hand of Greece Should hold up high in brass ; and such again, As venerable Nestor, hatch'd in silver, Should with a bond of air (strong as the axletree On which heaven rides,) knit all the Greekish ears To his experienc'd tongue", - yet let it please both, Thou great, - and wise, - to hear Ulysses speak.

Agam. Speak, prince of Ithaca; and be't of less expects That matter needless, of importless burden, Divide thy lips; than we are confident, When rank Thersites opes his mastiff jaws, We shall hear musick, wit, and oracle.


speeches, - which were such,
As Agamemnon and the hand of Greece
Should hold up high in brass ; and such again,
As venerable Nestor, hatch'd in silver,
Should with a bond of air-

knit all the Greekish ears To his experienc'd tongue,] Ulysses begins his oration with praising those who had spoken before him, and marks the characteristick excellencies of their different eloquence, - strength, and sweetness, which he expresses by the different metals on which he recommends them to be engraven for the instruction of posterity. The speech of Agamemnon is such that it ought to be engraven in brass, and the tablet held up by him on the one side, and Greece on the other, to show the union of their opinion. And Nestor ought to be exhibited in silver, uniting all his audience in one mind by his soft and gentle elocution. Brass is the common emblem of strength, and silver of gentleness. We call a soft voice a silver voice, and a persuasive tongue, a silver tongue. To hatch is a term of art for a particular method of engraving. Hacher, to cut, Fr. Johnson. The commentators differ in some respects from this explanation.

expect — ) Expect for expectation.


« ZurückWeiter »