Imatges de pÓgina
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In Troy there lies the scene. From isles of Greece
The princes orgulous a, their high blood chaf'd,
Have to the port of Athens sent their ships,
Fraught with the ministers and instruments
Of cruel war: Sixty and nine that wore
Their crownets regal, from the Athenian bay
Put forth toward Phrygia: and their vow is made
To ransack Troy, within whose strong immures
The ravish'd Helen, Menelaus' queen,
With wanton Paris sleeps,—and that 's the quarrel.
To Tenedos they come;
And the deep-drawing barks do there disgorge
Their warlike fraughtage: Now on Dardan plains
The fresh and yet unbruised Greeks do pitch
Their brave pavilions : Priam's six-gated city,
Dardan, and Tymbria, Ilias, Chetas, Trojan,

a Orgulous-proud—the French orgueilleux. Lord Berners, in his translation of Froissart, several times uses the word; as, “ The Flemings were great, fierce, and orgulous."

And Antenorides a, with massy staples,
And corresponsive and fulfilling bolts,
Sperr up the sons of Troy.
Now expectation, tickling skittish spirits,
On one and other side, Trojan and Greek,
Sets all on hazard :-And hither am I come
A prologue arm'd ,—but not in confidence
Of author's pen, or actor's voice; but suited
In like conditions as our argument, —
To tell you, fair beholders, that our play
Leaps o'er the vaunt and firstlings of those broils,
Beginning in the middle; starting thence away
To what may be digested in a play.
Like, or find fault; do as your pleasures are ;
Now good, or bad, 't is but the chance of war.

a The names of the gates thus stand in the folio of 1623:

“Darden and Timbria, Helias, Chetas, Troien,

And Antenonidus." There can be little doubt that Shakspere had before him Caxton's translation of the 'Recuyel of the Historyes of Troy,' and there the names of the gates are thus given: “In this cittie were sixe principall gates: of which the one was named Dardane, the second Tymbria, the thyrd Helias, the fourth Chetas, the fifth Troyan, and the sixt Antenorides.” But he was also familiar with the “Troye Boke' of Lydgate, in which the six gates are described as Dardanydes, Tymbria, Helyas, Cetheas, Trojana, Anthonydes. It is difficult to say whether Shakspere meant to take the Antenorides of Caxton, or the Anthonydes of Lydgate; or whether, the names being pure inventions of the middle age of romance-writers, he deviated from both. As it is, we have retained the Antenorides of the modern editors.

Fulfilling. The verb fulfil is here used in the original sense of fill full.

Sperr up. The original has stirre up, which Tieck considers preferable to Theobald's substitution of sperr up. Desirous as we are to hold to the original, we cannot agree with Tieck. The relative positions of each force are contrasted. The Greeks pitch their pavilions on Dardan plains; the Trojans are shut up in their six-gated city. The commentators give us examples of the use of sperr, in the sense of to fasten, by Spenser and earlier writers. They have overlooked a passage in Chaucer's · Troilus and Cressida' (book v.), which Shakspere must have had before him in the composition of his play :

“For when he saw her dorés sperred all,

Wel nigh for sorrow adoun he gan to fall.” Arm'd. Johnson has pointed out that the Prologue was spoken by one of the characters in armour. This was noticed, because in general the speaker of the Prologue wore a black cloak. (See Collier's · Annals of the Stage,' vol. iii. p. 442.)

Vaunt-the van.

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Tro. Call here my varleta, I 'll unarm again :

Why should I war without the walls of Troy,
That find such cruel battle here within ?
Each Trojan that is master of his heart,

Let him to field; as, alas ! hath none.
Pan. Will this geer ue'er be mended ?
Tro. The Greeks are strong, and skilful to their strength,

a Varlet-a servant. Tooke considers that varlet and valet are the same; and that, as well as harlot, they mean hireling.

Fierce to their skill, and to their fierceness valiant;
But I am weaker than a woman's tear,
Tamer than sleep, fonder than ignorance,
Less valiant than the virgin in the night,

And skill-less as unpractis'd infancy.
Pan. Well, I have told you enough of this: for my part I'll not meddle nor

make no farther. He that will have a cake out of the wheat must needs a

tarry the grinding. TRO. Have I not tarried ? Pan. Ay, the grinding : but you must tarry the bolting. TRO. Have I not tarried ? Pan. Ay, the bolting : but you must tarry the leavening. TRO. Still have I tarried. Pan. Ay, to the leavening: but here's yet in the word hereafter, the kneading,

the making of the cake, the heating of the oven, and the baking: nay, you

must stay the cooling too, or you may chance to burn your lips. Tro. Patience herself, what goddess e'er she be,

Doth lesser blench at sufferance than I do.
At Priam's royal table do I sit;
And when fair Cressid comes into my thoughts,—

So, traitor! when she comes !-When is she thence b?
Pan. Well, she looked yesternight fairer than ever I saw her look, or any woman

else.
TRO. I was about to tell thee,—When my heart,

As wedged with a sigh would rive in twain ;
Lest Hector or my father should perceive me,
I have (as when the sun doth light a storm)
Buried this sigh in wrinkle of a smile:
But sorrow that is couch'd in seeming gladness

Is like that mirth fate turns to sudden sadness.
Pan. An her hair were not somewhat darker than Helen's, (well, go to,) there

were no more comparison between the women.-But, for my part, she is my kinswoman; I would not, as they term it, praise her. But I would somebody had heard her talk yesterday, as I did. I will not dispraise your sister

Cassandra's wit; but-
TRO. 0, Pandarus ! I tell thee, Pandarus,-

When I do tell thee, there my hopes lie drown'd,
Reply not in how many fathoms deep
They lie indrench'd. I tell thee, I am mad
In Cressid's love: Thou answer'st, she is fair;

* Needs is not found in the quarto, and is consequently omitted in all modern editions.

This line as it stands is an ingenious and tasteful correction by Rowe. The line in both the originals appears thus:

“ So (traitor) then she comes when she is thence.”

Pourist in the open ulcer of my heart
Her eyes, her hair, her cheek, her gait, her voice;
Handlest in thy discourse, O, that her hand,
In whose comparison all whites are ink,
Writing their own reproach a; to whose soft seizure
The cygnet's down is harsh, and spirit of sense b
Hard as the palm of ploughman ;-this thou tellist me,
As true thou tell’st me, when I say I love her;
But, saying thus, instead of oil and balm,
Thou lay'st in every gash that love hath given me

The knife that made it.
Pan. I speak no more than truth.
Tro. Thou dost not speak so much.
Pan. 'Faith, I 'll not meddle in 't. Let her be as she is: if she be fair 't is

the better for her; an she be not she has the mends in her own hands. Tro. Good Pandarus! How now, Pandarus ? Pan. I have had my labour for my travel; ill-thought on of her, and ill-thought

on of you : gone between and between, but small thanks for my labour. Tro. What, art thou angry, Pandarus? what, with me? Pan. Because she is kin to me, therefore she's not so fair as Helen: an she

were not kin to me, she would be as fair on Friday as Helen is on Sunday. But what care I ? I care not an she were a black-a-moor; 't is all one

to me. Tro. Say I she is not fair ? Pan. I do not care whether you do or no. She's a fool to stay behind her

father; let her to the Greeks; and so I 'll tell her the next time I see her:

for my part, I 'll meddle nor make no more in the matter. TRO. Pandarus, Pan. Not I. Tro. Sweet Pandarus,Pan. Pray you, speak no more to me; I will leave all as I found it, and there

[Exit PANDARUS. An alarum. Tro. Peace, you ungracious clamours! peace, rude sounds !

Fools on both sides ! Helen must needs be fair,
When with your blood you daily paint her thus.
I cannot fight upon this argument;
It is too starv'd a subject for my sword.
But Pandarus— gods, how do you plague me!
I cannot come to Cressid but by Pandar;
And he's as tetchy to be woo'd to woo,
As she is stubborn, chaste, against all suit.

an end.

• We do not receive this passage as an interjection beginning “0! that her hand;" for what does Troilus desire ? the wish is incomplete. The meaning we conceive to be rather,-in thy discourse thou handlest that hand of hers, in whose comparison, &c.

Johnson explains spirit of sense as the most exquisite sensibility of touch.

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