HECTOR. I must not believe you. There they stand yet; and modestly I think The fall of every Phrygian stone will cost A drop of Grecian blood. The end crowns all; And that old common arbitrator, Time, Will one day end it.

ULYSSES. So to him we leave it. Most gentle and most valiant Hector, welcome. After the General, I beseech you next To feast with me and see me at my tent.

ACHILLES. I shall forestall thee, Lord Ulysses, thou! Now, Hector, I have fed mine eyes on thee; I have with exact view perus'd thee, Hector, And quoted joint by joint.

HECTOR. Is this Achilles?

ACHILLES. I am

ACHILLES.

HECTOR. Stand fair, I pray thee; let me look on thee.

ACHILLES. Behold thy fill.

HECTOR. Nay, I have done already.

ACHILLES. Thou art too brief. I will the second time, As I would buy thee, view thee limb by limb.

HECTOR. O, like a book of sport thou'lt read me o'er; But there's more in me than thou understand'st. Why dost thou so oppress me with thine eye?

ACHILLES. Tell me, you heavens, in which part of his body Shall I destroy him? Whether there, or there, or there? That I may give the local wound a name, And make distinct the very breach whereout Hector's great spirit flew. Answer me, heavens.

HECTOR. It would discredit the blest gods, proud man, To answer such a question. Stand again. Think'st thou to catch my life so pleasantly As to prenominate in nice conjecture Where thou wilt hit me dead?

ACHILLES. I tell thee yea.

HECTOR. Wert thou an oracle to tell me so, I'd not believe thee. Henceforth guard thee well; For I'll not kill thee there, nor there, nor there; But, by the forge that stithied Mars his helm, I'll kill thee everywhere, yea, o'er and o'er. You wisest Grecians, pardon me this brag. His insolence draws folly from my lips; But I'll endeavour deeds to match these words, Or may I never-

AJAX. Do not chafe thee, cousin; And you, Achilles, let these threats alone Till accident or purpose bring you to't. You may have every day enough of Hector, If you have stomach. The general state, I fear, Can scarce entreat you to be odd with him.

HECTOR. I pray you let us see you in the field; We have had pelting wars since you refus'd The Grecians' cause.

ACHILLES. Dost thou entreat me, Hector? To-morrow do I meet thee, fell as death; To-night all friends.

HECTOR. Thy hand upon that match.

AGAMEMNON. First, all you peers of Greece, go to my tent; There in the full convive we; afterwards, As Hector's leisure and your bounties shall Concur together, severally entreat him. Beat loud the tambourines, let the trumpets blow, That this great soldier may his welcome know.

Exeunt all but TROILUS and ULYSSES

TROILUS. My Lord Ulysses, tell me, I beseech you, In what place of the field doth Calchas keep?

ULYSSES. At Menelaus' tent, most princely

TROILUS. There Diomed doth feast with him to-night, Who neither looks upon the heaven nor earth, But gives all gaze and bent of amorous view On the fair Cressid.

TROILUS. Shall I, sweet lord, be bound to you so much, After we part from Agamemnon's tent, To bring me thither?

ULYSSES. 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?

TROILUS. 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.

Exeunt

The History of Troilus and Cressida Page 40

William Shakespeare Plays

Free Books in the public domain from the Classic Literature Library ©

William Shakespeare
Classic Literature Library

All Pages of This Book