ACHILLES. What, am I poor of late? 'Tis certain, greatness, once fall'n out with fortune, Must fall out with men too. What the declin'd is, He shall as soon read in the eyes of others As feel in his own fall; for men, like butterflies, Show not their mealy wings but to the summer; And not a man for being simply man Hath any honour, but honour for those honours That are without him, as place, riches, and favour, Prizes of accident, as oft as merit; Which when they fall, as being slippery standers, The love that lean'd on them as slippery too, Doth one pluck down another, and together Die in the fall. But 'tis not so with me: Fortune and I are friends; I do enjoy At ample point all that I did possess Save these men's looks; who do, methinks, find out Something not worth in me such rich beholding As they have often given. Here is

ULYSSES. I'll interrupt his reading. How now, Ulysses!

ULYSSES. Now, great Thetis' son!

ACHILLES. What are you reading?

ULYSSES. A strange fellow here Writes me that man-how dearly ever parted, How much in having, or without or in- Cannot make boast to have that which he hath, Nor feels not what he owes, but by reflection; As when his virtues shining upon others Heat them, and they retort that heat again To the first giver.

ACHILLES. This is not strange,

ULYSSES. The beauty that is borne here in the face The bearer knows not, but commends itself To others' eyes; nor doth the eye itself- That most pure spirit of sense-behold itself, Not going from itself; but eye to eye opposed Salutes each other with each other's form; For speculation turns not to itself Till it hath travell'd, and is mirror'd there Where it may see itself. This is not strange at all.

ULYSSES. I do not strain at the position- It is familiar-but at the author's drift; Who, in his circumstance, expressly proves That no man is the lord of anything, Though in and of him there be much consisting, Till he communicate his parts to others; Nor doth he of himself know them for aught Till he behold them formed in th' applause Where th' are extended; who, like an arch, reverb'rate The voice again; or, like a gate of steel Fronting the sun, receives and renders back His figure and his heat. I was much rapt in this; And apprehended here immediately Th' unknown

AJAX. Heavens, what a man is there! A very horse that has he knows not what! Nature, what things there are Most abject in regard and dear in use! What things again most dear in the esteem And poor in worth! Now shall we see to-morrow- An act that very chance doth throw upon him- Ajax renown'd. O heavens, what some men do, While some men leave to do! How some men creep in skittish Fortune's-hall, Whiles others play the idiots in her eyes! How one man eats into another's pride, While pride is fasting in his wantonness! To see these Grecian lords!-why, even already They clap the lubber Ajax on the shoulder, As if his foot were on brave Hector's breast, And great Troy shrinking.

ACHILLES. I do believe it; for they pass'd by me As misers do by beggars-neither gave to me Good word nor look. What, are my deeds forgot?

William Shakespeare
Classic Literature Library

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