Imatges de pàgina
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damned villain, and cannot die with a safe conscience till I have first murdered him.

Troil. Shew me that Diomede, and thou shalt live.

Thers. Come along with me, and I will conduct thee to Calchas's tent, where I believe he is now, making war with the priest's daughter.

Hect. Here we must part, our destinies divide us; Brother and friend, farewell.

Troil. When shall we meet?
Hect. When the gods please; if not, we once

must part.

Look; on yon hill their squandered troops unite.

Troil. If I mistake not, 'tis their last reserve: The storm's blown o'er, and those but after-drops.

Hect. I wish our men be not too far engaged ; For few we are and spent, as having born The burthen of the day: But, hap what can, They shall be charged ; Achilles must be there, And him I seek, or death. Divide our troops, and take the fresher half.

Troil. O brother !

Hect. No dispute of ceremony:
These are enow for me, in faith enow.
Their bodies shall not flag while I can lead ;
Nor wearied limbs confess mortality,
Before those ants, that blacken all yon

hill, Are crept into the earth. Farewell. [Exit HECT.

Troil. Farewell.-Come, Greek.

Thers. Now these rival rogues will clapperclaw one another, and I shall have the sport of it.

[Exit Troil, with THERS. Enter Achilles and Myrmidons. Achil. Which way went Hector ?

Myrmid. Up yon sandy hill ;
You may discern them by their smoking track
A wavering body working with bent hams

Against the rising, spent with painful march,
And by loose footing cast on heaps together.
Achil. O thou art gone, thou sweetest, best of

friends!
Why did I let thee tempt the shock of war,
Ere yet the tender nerves had strung thy limbs,
And knotted into strength! Yet, though too late,
I will, I will revenge thee, my Patroclus !
Nor shall thy ghost thy murderer's long attend,
But thou shalt hear him calling Charon back,
Ere thou art wafted to the farther shore.--
Make haste, my soldiers; give me this day's pains
For my dead friend : strike every hand with mine,
Till Hector breathless on the ground we lay !
Revenge is honour, the securest way.

[Exit with Myrm.
Enter THERSITES, Troilus, Trojans.
Thers. That's Calchas's tent.
Troil. Then, that one spot of earth contains more

falsehood,
Than all the sun sees in his race beside.
That I should trust the daughter of a priest !
Priesthood, that makes a merchandise of heaven!
Priesthood, that sells even to their prayers and bles-

sings, And forces us to pay for our own cozenage! Thers. Nay, cheats heaven too with entrails and

with offals; Gives it the garbage of a sacrifice, And keeps the best for private luxury.

Troil. Thou hast deserved thy life for cursing priests. Let me embrace thee; thou art beautiful : That back, that nose, those eyes are beautiful : Live; thou art honest, for thou hat'st a priest.

Thers. [Aside.] Farewell, Trojan ; if I escape with life, as I hope, and thou art knocked on the head, as I hope too, I shall be the first that ever escaped

the revenge

of a priest after cursing him; and thou wilt not be the last, I prophesy, that a priest will bring to ruin.

[Exit THER. Troil. Methinks, my soul is roused to her last

work;
Has much to do, and little time to spare.
She starts within me, like a traveller,
Who sluggishly outslept his morning hour,
And mends his pace to reach his inn betimes.

[Noise within, Follow, follow !
A noise of arms ! the traitor may be there ;
Or else, perhaps, that conscious scene of love,
The tent, may hold him; yet I dare not search,
For oh, I fear to find him in that place.

[Exit TROILUS. Enter Calchas and CRESSIDA. Cres. Where is he? I'll be justified, or die.

Calch. So quickly vanished! he was here but now.
He must be gone to search for Diomede;
For Diomede told me, here they were to fight.

Cres. Alas!
Calch. You must prevent, and not complain.
Cres. If Troilus die, I have no share in life.
Calch. If Diomede sink beneath the sword of Troi.

lus,
We lose not only a protector here,
But are debarred all future means of flight.

Cres. What then remains ?

Calch. To interpose betimes Betwixt their swords; or, if that cannot be, To intercede for him, who shall be vanquished. Fate leaves no middle course. [Exit CALCHAS,

Clashing within. Cres. Ah me! I hear them, And fear ’tis, past prevention.

Enter DIOMEDE, retiring before Troikus, and fall

ing as he enters. Troil. Now beg thy life, or die.

Diom. No; use thy fortune : I loath the life, which thou canst give, or take. Troil. Scorn'st thou my mercy, villain !—Take thy

wish.Cres. Hold, hold your hand, my lord, and hear

me speak. [Troilus turns back; in which time DIOMEDE

rises, Trojans and Greeks enter, and rank them

selves on both sides of their Captains. Troil

. Did I not hear the voice of perjured Cressida? Com'st thou to give the last stab to my heart? As if the proofs of all thy former falsehood Were not enough convincing, com’st thou now To beg my rival's life? Whoin, oh, if any spark of truth remained, Thou couldst not thus, even to my face, prefer.

Cres. What shall I say !-that you suspect me false, Has struck me dumb! but let him live, my Troilus; By all our loves, by all our past endearments, I do adjure thee, spare him.

Troit. Hell and death!

Cres. If ever I had power to bend your mind, ,
Believe me still your faithful Cressida;
And though my innocence appear like guilt,
Because I make his forfeit life my suit,
"Tis but for this, that my return to you

,
Would be cut off for ever by his death;
My father, treated like a slave, and scorned;
Myself in hated bonds a captive held.

Troil. Could I believe thee, could I think thee true, In triumph would I bear thee back to Troy, Though Greece could rally all her shattered troops, And stand embattled to oppose my way.

But, oh, thou syren, I will stop my ears
To thy enchanting notes; the winds shall bear
Upon their wings thy words, more light than they.

Cres. Alas! I but dissembled love to him.
If ever he had any proof, beyond
What modesty might give

Diom. No! witness this. [The Ring shewn.
There, take her, Trojan, thou deserv'st her best;
You good, kind-natured, well-believing fools,
Are treasures to a woman.
I was a jealous, hard, vexatious lover,
And doubted even this pledge,-till full possession;
But she was honourable to her word,
And I have no just reason to complain.

Cres. O unexampled, frontless impudence !
Troil. Hell, show me such another tortured wretch

as Troilus !
Diom. Nay, grieve not; I resign her freely up;
I'm satisfied; and dare engage for Cressida,
That, if you have a promise of her

person, She shall be willing to come out of debt. Cres. [Kneeling.] My only lord, by all those holy

VOWS,
Which, if there be a Power above, are binding,
Or, if there be a hell below, are fearful,
May every imprecation, which your rage
Can wish on me, take place, if I am false !

Diom. Nay, since you're so concerned to be believed,
I'm sorry I have pressed my charge so far ;
Be what you would be thought; I can be grateful.
Troil. Grateful! Oh torment! now hell's bluest

flames Receive her quick, with all her crimes upon her! Let her sink spotted down! let the dark host Make room, and point, and hiss her as she gues! Let the most branded ghosts of all her sex Rejoice, and cry,“ Here comes a blacker fiend !” Let her

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