ACT III. SCENE 3. The Greek camp

Flourish.

Enter AGAMEMNON, ULYSSES, DIOMEDES, NESTOR, AJAX, MENELAUS, and CALCHAS

CALCHAS. Now, Princes, for the service I have done, Th' advantage of the time prompts me aloud To call for recompense. Appear it to your mind That, through the sight I bear in things to come, I have abandon'd Troy, left my possession, Incurr'd a traitor's name, expos'd myself From certain and possess'd conveniences To doubtful fortunes, sequest'ring from me all That time, acquaintance, custom, and condition, Made tame and most familiar to my nature; And here, to do you service, am become As new into the world, strange, unacquainted- I do beseech you, as in way of taste, To give me now a little benefit Out of those many regist'red in promise, Which you say live to come in my behalf.

AGAMEMNON. What wouldst thou of us, Troyan? Make demand. CALCHAS. You have a Troyan prisoner call'd Antenor, Yesterday took; Troy holds him very dear. Oft have you-often have you thanks therefore- Desir'd my Cressid in right great exchange, Whom Troy hath still denied; but this Antenor, I know, is such a wrest in their affairs That their negotiations all must slack Wanting his manage; and they will almost Give us a prince of blood, a son of Priam, In change of him. Let him be sent, great Princes, And he shall buy my daughter; and her presence Shall quite strike off all service I have done In most accepted pain.

AGAMEMNON. Let Diomedes bear him, And bring us Cressid hither. Calchas shall have What he requests of us. Good Diomed, Furnish you fairly for this interchange; Withal, bring word if Hector will to-morrow Be answer'd in his challenge. Ajax is ready.

DIOMEDES. This shall I undertake; and 'tis a burden Which I am proud to bear.

Exeunt DIOMEDES and CALCHAS ACHILLES and PATROCLUS stand in their tent

ULYSSES. Achilles stands i' th' entrance of his tent. Please it our general pass strangely by him, As if he were forgot; and, Princes all, Lay negligent and loose regard upon him. I will come last. 'Tis like he'll question me Why such unplausive eyes are bent, why turn'd on him? If so, I have derision med'cinable To use between your strangeness and his pride, Which his own will shall have desire to drink. It may do good. Pride hath no other glass To show itself but pride; for supple knees Feed arrogance and are the proud man's fees.

AGAMEMNON. We'll execute your purpose, and put on A form of strangeness as we pass along. So do each lord; and either greet him not, Or else disdainfully, which shall shake him more Than if not look'd on. I will lead the way.

ACHILLES. What comes the general to speak with me? You know my mind. I'll fight no more 'gainst Troy.

AGAMEMNON. What says Achilles? Would he aught with us?

NESTOR. Would you, my lord, aught with the general?

ACHILLES. No.

NESTOR. Nothing, my lord.

AGAMEMNON. The better.

Exeunt AGAMEMNON and NESTOR

ACHILLES. Good day, good day.

MENELAUS. How do you? How do you?

Exit

ACHILLES. What, does the cuckold scorn me?

AJAX. How now, Patroclus?

ACHILLES. Good morrow,

AJAX.

AJAX. Ha?

ACHILLES. Good morrow.

AJAX. Ay, and good next day too.

Exit

ACHILLES. What mean these fellows? Know they not Achilles?

PATROCLUS. They pass by strangely. They were us'd to bend, To send their smiles before them to Achilles, To come as humbly as they us'd to creep To holy altars.

The History of Troilus and Cressida Page 27

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