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Troilus and Cressida - Act 3, scene 2
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Act 3, scene 2
Pandarus brings together Troilus and a seemingly reluctant Cressida, who finally acknowledges her love for Troilus.Enter Pandarus ⟨and⟩ Troilus’s Man, ⌜meeting.⌝
PANDARUS 1646 How now? Where’s thy master? At my
1647 cousin Cressida’s?
MAN 1648 No, sir, ⟨he⟩ stays for you to conduct him thither.
PANDARUS 1649 O, here he comes.—How now, how now?
TROILUS, ⌜to his Man⌝ 1650 5Sirrah, walk off.⌜Man exits.⌝
PANDARUS 1651 Have you seen my cousin?
1652 No, Pandarus. I stalk about her door
1653 Like a strange soul upon the Stygian banks
1654 Staying for waftage. O, be thou my Charon,
1655 10 And give me swift transportance to ⟨those⟩ fields
1656 Where I may wallow in the lily beds
1657 Proposed for the deserver! O, gentle Pandar,
1658 From Cupid’s shoulder pluck his painted wings
1659 And fly with me to Cressid!
PANDARUS 1660 15Walk here i’ th’ orchard. I’ll bring her
1662 I am giddy; expectation whirls me round.
1663 Th’ imaginary relish is so sweet
1664 That it enchants my sense. What will it be
1665 20 When that the wat’ry ⌜palate⌝ taste indeed
1666 Love’s thrice-repurèd nectar? Death, I fear me,
1667 Swooning destruction, or some joy too fine,
1668 Too subtle-potent, tuned too sharp in sweetness
1669 For the capacity of my ruder powers.
1670 25 I fear it much; and I do fear besides
1671 That I shall lose distinction in my joys,
1672 As doth a battle when they charge on heaps
1673 The enemy flying.
p. 123⟨Enter Pandarus.⟩
PANDARUS 1674 She’s making her ready; she’ll come straight.
1675 30 You must be witty now. She does so blush and
1676 fetches her wind so short as if she were frayed with
1677 a spirit. I’ll fetch her. It is the prettiest villain. She
1678 fetches her breath as short as a new-ta’en sparrow.
1679 Even such a passion doth embrace my bosom.
1680 35 My heart beats thicker than a feverous pulse,
1681 And all my powers do their bestowing lose,
1682 Like vassalage at ⟨unawares⟩ encount’ring
1683 The eye of majesty.
Enter Pandarus, and Cressida ⌜veiled.⌝
PANDARUS, ⌜to Cressida⌝ 1684 Come, come, what need you
1685 40 blush? Shame’s a baby.—Here she is now. Swear
1686 the oaths now to her that you have sworn to me.
1687 ⌜Cressida offers to leave.⌝ What, are you gone again?
1688 You must be watched ere you be made tame, must
1689 you? Come your ways; come your ways. An you
1690 45 draw backward, we’ll put you i’ th’ ⌜thills.⌝—Why
1691 do you not speak to her?—Come, draw this curtain
1692 and let’s see your picture. ⌜He draws back her veil.⌝
1693 Alas the day, how loath you are to offend daylight!
1694 An ’twere dark, you’d close sooner.—So, so, rub on,
1695 50 and kiss the mistress. (⌜They kiss.⌝) How now? A
1696 kiss in fee-farm? Build there, carpenter; the air is
1697 sweet. Nay, you shall fight your hearts out ere I
1698 part you. The falcon as the tercel, for all the ducks
1699 i’ th’ river. Go to, go to.
TROILUS 1700 55You have bereft me of all words, lady.
PANDARUS 1701 Words pay no debts; give her deeds. But
1702 she’ll bereave you o’ th’ deeds too, if she call your
1703 activity in question. (⌜They kiss.⌝) What, billing
p. 1251704 again? Here’s “In witness whereof the parties
1705 60 interchangeably—.” Come in, come in. I’ll go get a fire.
CRESSIDA 1706 Will you walk in, my lord?
TROILUS 1707 O Cressid, how often have I wished me thus!
CRESSIDA 1708 “Wished,” my lord? The gods grant—O, my
TROILUS 1710 65What should they grant? What makes this
1711 pretty abruption? What too-curious dreg espies
1712 my sweet lady in the fountain of our love?
CRESSIDA 1713 More dregs than water, if my ⌜fears⌝ have eyes.
TROILUS 1714 Fears make devils of cherubins; they never
1715 70 see truly.
CRESSIDA 1716 Blind fear, that seeing reason leads, finds
1717 safer footing than blind reason, stumbling without
1718 fear. To fear the worst oft cures the worse.
TROILUS 1719 O, let my lady apprehend no fear. In all
1720 75 Cupid’s pageant there is presented no monster.
CRESSIDA 1721 Nor nothing monstrous neither?
TROILUS 1722 Nothing but our undertakings, when we vow
1723 to weep seas, live in fire, eat rocks, tame tigers,
1724 thinking it harder for our mistress to devise imposition
1725 80 enough than for us to undergo any difficulty
1726 imposed. This ⟨is⟩ the monstruosity in love, lady, that
1727 the will is infinite and the execution confined, that
1728 the desire is boundless and the act a slave to limit.
CRESSIDA 1729 They say all lovers swear more performance
1730 85 than they are able and yet reserve an ability that
1731 they never perform, vowing more than the perfection
1732 of ten and discharging less than the tenth part
1733 of one. They that have the voice of lions and the
1734 act of hares, are they not monsters?
TROILUS 1735 90Are there such? Such are not we. Praise us as
1736 we are tasted, allow us as we prove; our head shall
1737 go bare till merit ⟨crown it. No perfection⟩ in reversion
1738 shall have a praise in present. We will not
p. 1271739 name desert before his birth, and, being born, his
1740 95 addition shall be humble. Few words to fair faith.
1741 Troilus shall be such to Cressid as what envy can
1742 say worst shall be a mock for his truth, and what
1743 truth can speak truest not truer than Troilus.
CRESSIDA 1744 Will you walk in, my lord?
PANDARUS 1745 100What, blushing still? Have you not done
1746 talking yet?
CRESSIDA 1747 Well, uncle, what folly I commit I dedicate
1748 to you.
PANDARUS 1749 I thank you for that. If my lord get a boy of
1750 105 you, you’ll give him me. Be true to my lord. If he
1751 flinch, chide me for it.
TROILUS, ⌜to Cressida⌝ 1752 You know now your hostages:
1753 your uncle’s word and my firm faith.
PANDARUS 1754 Nay, I’ll give my word for her too. Our kindred,
1755 110 though they be long ere they be wooed, they
1756 are constant being won. They are burrs, I can tell
1757 you; they’ll stick where they are thrown.
1758 Boldness comes to me now and brings me heart.
1759 Prince Troilus, I have loved you night and day
1760 115 For many weary months.
1761 Why was my Cressid then so hard to win?
1762 Hard to seem won; but I was won, my lord,
1763 With the first glance that ever—pardon me;
1764 If I confess much, you will play the tyrant.
1765 120 I love you now, but till now not so much
1766 But I might master it. In faith, I lie;
1767 My thoughts were like unbridled children grown
1768 Too headstrong for their mother. See, we fools!
1769 Why have I blabbed? Who shall be true to us
p. 1291770 125 When we are so unsecret to ourselves?
1771 But though I loved you well, I wooed you not;
1772 And yet, good faith, I wished myself a man;
1773 Or that we women had men’s privilege
1774 Of speaking first. Sweet, bid me hold my tongue,
1775 130 For in this rapture I shall surely speak
1776 The thing I shall repent. See, see, your silence,
1777 ⌜Cunning⌝ in dumbness, from my weakness draws
1778 My very soul of counsel! Stop my mouth.
1779 And shall, albeit sweet music issues thence.
PANDARUS 1780 135Pretty, i’ faith!
CRESSIDA, ⌜to Troilus⌝
1781 My lord, I do beseech you pardon me.
1782 ’Twas not my purpose thus to beg a kiss.
1783 I am ashamed. O heavens, what have I done!
1784 For this time will I take my leave, my lord.
TROILUS 1785 140Your leave, sweet Cressid?
PANDARUS 1786 Leave? An you take leave till tomorrow
CRESSIDA 1788 Pray you, content you.
TROILUS 1789 What offends you, lady?
CRESSIDA 1790 145Sir, mine own company.
TROILUS 1791 You cannot shun yourself.
CRESSIDA 1792 Let me go and try.
1793 I have a kind of self resides with you,
1794 But an unkind self that itself will leave
1795 150 To be another’s fool. I would be gone.
1796 Where is my wit? I know not what I speak.
1797 Well know they what they speak that speak so wisely.
1798 Perchance, my lord, I show more craft than love
1799 And fell so roundly to a large confession
1800 155 To angle for your thoughts. But you are wise,
p. 1311801 Or else you love not; for to be wise and love
1802 Exceeds man’s might. That dwells with gods above.
1803 O, that I thought it could be in a woman—
1804 As, if it can, I will presume in you—
1805 160 To feed for ⟨aye⟩ her lamp and flames of love,
1806 To keep her constancy in plight and youth,
1807 Outliving beauty’s outward, with a mind
1808 That doth renew swifter than blood decays!
1809 Or that persuasion could but thus convince me
1810 165 That my integrity and truth to you
1811 Might be affronted with the match and weight
1812 Of such a winnowed purity in love;
1813 How were I then uplifted! But, alas,
1814 I am as true as truth’s simplicity
1815 170 And simpler than the infancy of truth.
1816 In that I’ll war with you.
TROILUS 1817 O virtuous fight,
1818 When right with right wars who shall be most right!
1819 True swains in love shall in the world to come
1820 175 Approve their truth by Troilus. When their rhymes,
1821 Full of protest, of oath and big compare,
1822 Wants similes, truth tired with iteration—
1823 “As true as steel, as plantage to the moon,
1824 As sun to day, as turtle to her mate,
1825 180 As iron to adamant, as Earth to th’ center”—
1826 ⟨Yet,⟩ after all comparisons of truth,
1827 As truth’s authentic author to be cited,
1828 “As true as Troilus” shall crown up the verse
1829 And sanctify the numbers.
CRESSIDA 1830 185 Prophet may you be!
1831 If I be false or swerve a hair from truth,
1832 When time is old ⟨and⟩ hath forgot itself,
1833 When water drops have worn the stones of Troy
1834 And blind oblivion swallowed cities up,
p. 1331835 190 And mighty states characterless are grated
1836 To dusty nothing, yet let memory,
1837 From false to false, among false maids in love,
1838 Upbraid my falsehood! When they’ve said “as false
1839 As air, as water, wind or sandy earth,
1840 195 As fox to lamb, or wolf to heifer’s calf,
1841 Pard to the hind, or stepdame to her son,”
1842 Yea, let them say, to stick the heart of falsehood,
1843 “As false as Cressid.”
PANDARUS 1844 Go to, a bargain made. Seal it, seal it. I’ll be
1845 200 the witness. Here I hold your hand, here my
1846 cousin’s. If ever you prove false one to another, since
1847 I have taken such ⟨pains⟩ to bring you together, let
1848 all pitiful goers-between be called to the world’s
1849 end after my name: call them all panders. Let all
1850 205 constant men be Troiluses, all false women Cressids,
1851 and all brokers-between panders. Say “Amen.”
TROILUS 1852 Amen.
CRESSIDA 1853 Amen.
PANDARUS 1854 Amen. Whereupon I will show you a chamber
1855 210 ⌜with a bed,⌝ which bed, because it shall not
1856 speak of your pretty encounters, press it to death.
1857 Away.⌜Troilus and Cressida⌝ exit.
1858 And Cupid grant all tongue-tied maidens here
1859 Bed, chamber, pander to provide this gear.