Oldalképek
PDF
ePub

Give him allowance as the worthier man,
For that will phyfick the great Myrmidon,
Who broils in loud applause, and make him fall
His creft, that prouder than blue Iris bends.
If the dull brainless Ajax come safe off,
We'll dress him up in voices : if he fail,
Yet go we under our opinion still,
That we have better men. But, hit or miss,
Our project's life this shape of sense assumes,
Ajax, imploy'd, plucks down Achilles' plumes.

Net. Ulysés, now I relish thy advice,
And I will give a taste of it forthwith
To Agamemnon; go we to him straight;
Two curs Thall tame each other ; pride alone
Muft tar the maltiffs on, as 'twere their bone. (Exeunt,

[blocks in formation]

T T'fher. Agamemnow-how if he had boiles-full,

SCENE, the Grecian Camp.
Enter Ajax, and Therfites.

A) A X.
HERSITES
Ther Agamemnon-

, all over, generally.

(Talking to himself. Ajax. Tberfires,

Ther. And those boiles did run -fay fodid not the General run? were not that a botchy core ?

Ajax. Dog!

bir. Then there would come some matter from him : I see none now.

Ajax. Thou bitch wolf's fon, canst thou not hear? feel then.

Strikes him. Ther. The plague of Greece upon thee, thou mungrel beef-witted Lord!

Ajax.

2

Ajax. Speak then, you unwinnow'd'ft (16) leaven, speak; I will beat thee into handsomeness.

Ther. I shall foon rail thee into wit and holiness ; but, I think, thy horse will sooner con an oration, than thou learn a prayer without book ; thou canst strike, canst thou ? a red murrain o' thy jade's tricks !

Ajax, Toads-ftool, learn me the proclamation.

Ther. Doeft thou think, I have no fense, thou strik'A me thus ?

Ajax. 1 he proclamation
Ther. Thou art proclaim'd a fool, I think,
Ajax. Do not, porcupine, do not, my fingersitch.

Tber. I would, thou didit itch from head to foot, and I had the scratching of thee; I would make thee the loathsom'ft scab in Greece.

Ajax. I say, the proclamation

T her. Thou grumbleft and raileft every hour on Achilles, and thou art as full of envy at his greatness, as Cerberus is at Proferpina's beauty ; ay, that thou bark'ft at him.

Ajax. Mistress Therfites!
Ther. Thou shouldít strike him.

(16) Speak then, you unsalted leaven, Speak;] This is a reading obtruded upon us by Mr. Pope, that has no authority or countenance from any of the copies ; nor that approaches in any degree to the traces of the old reading, you wbinid"A leaven. This, 'tis true, is corrupted and unintelligible; but the emendation, which I have coin'd out of it, gives us a sense apt and consonant to what Ajax would say " i hou lump of fow'r dough, kneaded up out of Hra A wer unpurg d and unlifted, with all the dross and bran in it."

Kint, in Lear, uses the same metaphorical reproach to the cowardly steward;

I will tread this unboulied villain into mortar, i e. This villain of so gross a composition, that he was not fifred thro' the boulting-clorb, before he was work'd up into leavení So Pandarus says to Troilus in the first scene of this play :

Ay, the boulting; but you must tarry the leavening. I cannot without injuflice pass over another conjecture, propos'd by my ingenious friend Mr. Warburton, - you windieft leaven. An epithet, as he says, not only admirably adapted to the nature of leaven, which is made only by fermentation, but likewise moft juftly applied to the loquacious Tber sites. And, indeed, in several coun. ries of England, an idle prater is callid, a windy fellow,

[ocr errors]

Ajax, Cobloaf!

Ther. He would pound thee into thivers with his fift, as a failor breaks a bikket: Ajax. You whoreson cur!

[Beating bim Ther. Do, do. bjax. Thou stool for a witch!

Thir. Ay, do, do, thou fodden witted Lord; thou haft no more brain than I have in my elbows: an Ajinego may tutor thee. Thou scurvy valiant afs! thou art here but to thrash Frojans, and thou art bought and sold among those of any wit, like a Barbarian slave. If thou use to beat me, I will begin at thy heel, and tell what thou art by inches, thou thing of no bowels, thou !

Ajax. You dog!
Ther. You scurvy Lord!
Ajax. You cur!

[Beating him. Ther. Mars his ideot! do, rudeness ;.do, camel, do,do.

Enter Achilles and Patroclus.
Achil. Why, how now, Ajax? wherefore do you this?
How now, Therfites? what's the matter, man?

Ther. You see him there, do you?
Achil. Ay, what's the matter?
Ther. Nay, look upon him.
Achil. So I do, what's the matter?
Ther. Nay, but regard him well.
Ajax. Well, why, I do so.
Iber. But yet you lo

not well upon him; for whofoever

you

take him to be, he is Ajax.
Achil I know that, fool.
Ther. Ay, but that fool knows not himself.
Ajax. Therefore I beat thee,

Iber. Lo, lo, lo, lo, what modicums of wit he ute ters ; his evasions have ears thus long. I have bobb’d. his brain, more than he has beat my bones : I will buy nine sparrows for a penny, and his Pia Nater is not worth the ninth part of a sparrow. This lord ( Achilles) Ajax, who wears his wit in his belly, and his guts in his head, I'll tell you what I say of him,

Achil. What?

[Ajax offers to strike bim, Achilles interposes. Ther. I say, this Ajax Achil. Nay, good Ajax. Ther. Has not fo much witAchil. Nay, I must hold you.

Ther. As will stop the eye of Heler’s needle, for whom he comes to fight.

Achil. Peace, fool! Ther. I would have peace and quietness, but the fool will not: he there, that he, look you there. Ajax. O thou damn'd cur, I shallAchil. Will you set your wit to a fool's? Ther No, I warrant you'; for a fool's will shame it. Patr. Good words, Therfites. Achil. What's the quarrel?

Ajax. I bade the vile owl go learn me the tenour of the proclamation, and he rails upor me.

Ther. I serve thee not.
Ajax. Well, go to, go to.
T her. I serve here voluntary.

Achil. Your last service was sufferance, 'twas not voluntary; no man is beaten voluntary; Ajax was here the voluntary, and you as under an impress.

Ther. Even so a great deal of your wit too lies in your finews, or else there be liars. Hector shall have a great catch, if he knock out either of your brains; he were as good crack a fusty nut with no kernel.

Achil. What, with me too, Therfites ?

Ther, There's Ulyfes and old Neftor, (whose wit was mouldy ere your grandfires had nails on their toes,) (1-) yoke you like draft oxen, and make you plough up the wair.

(17) There's Ulyffes, and old Nestor, whose wit was mouldy ere their grandfires bad neiis on their toes.] This is one of these editors wise riddles. This is no folly of Therfiles's venting. What I was Neflor's wit mouldy, before his grandfire's toes had any nails ? that is, was the grandson an old man, before the grandfather was out of his swa. thing-cloaths ? Preposterous nonsense ! and yet so easy a change, as one poor derivative pronoun for another, fets all right and clear.

Achil. What! what! Ther. Yes, good footh: to, Achilles ! to, Ajax! toAjax. I shall cut out your tongue, Ther. 'Tis no matter, I shall speak as much as thou afterwards.

Pat. No more words Therfites.

Ther, I will hold my peace when Achilles' brach bids me, shall II Achil. There's for

you,

Patroclus. Ther. I will see you hang'd like clotpeles, ere I come any more to your tents. I will keep where there is wit ftirring, and leave the faction of fools. [Exit. Pat. A good riddance.

(hout,
Achil. Marry, this Sir, is proclaim'd through all our
That Hestor, by the fifth hour of the Sun,
Will, with a trumpet, 'twixt our tents and Troy,
To-morrow morning call fome knight to arms,
That hath a stomach, such a one chat dare
Maintain I know not what: 'tis trash, farewel.

Ajax. Farewel! who shall answer him
Achil. I know not, 'tis put to lott'ry ; otherwise
He knew his man.

Ajax. O, meaning you: I'll go learn more of it. (Exe.

SCENE changes to Priam's Palace in Troy. Enter Priam, Hector, Troilus, Paris, and Helenus.

FTER so many hours, lives, speeches spent,

Pri. A :

Deliver Helen, and all damage else
(As honour, loss of time, travel, expence,
Wounds, friends, and what else dear that is consum'd
In hot digestion of this cormorant war)
Shall be struck off. Hector, what say you to't?

Heet. Though no man leser fears the Greeks than I,
As far as touches my particular, yet
There is no lady of more softer bowels,
More spungy to suck in the sense of fear,
More ready to cry out, who knows what follows?

Than

« ElőzőTovább »