Troilus and Cressida


Act I
Act II
Act IV
Act V
Enter Pandarus and Cressida


Be moderate, be moderate.


Why tell you me of moderation?

The grief is fine, full perfect, that I taste,
fine (adj.) 7 clear, pure
full (adv.) 1 fully, completely, properly

And violenteth in a sense as strong
sense (n.) 2 ability to respond to sensation, physical perception
violent (v.) rage with violence, seethe, rampage

As that which causeth it. How can I moderate it?

If I could temporize with my affection,
affection (n.) 2 emotion, feeling
temporize (v.) 2 negotiate, come to terms, effect a compromise

Or brew it to a weak and colder palate,
brew (v.) dilute, water down

The like allayment could I give my grief.
allayment (n.) modifying agent, countermeasure, mitigation
like (adj.) 1 same, similar, alike, equal See Topics: Frequency count

My love admits no qualifying dross;
admit (v.) 4 be compatible with, be capable of
dross (n.) impure matter, tainted substance, rubbish
qualifying (adj.) moderating, diluting, weakening

No more my grief, in such a precious loss.

Enter Troilus


Here, here, here he comes. Ah, sweet ducks!


(embracing Troilus)

O Troilus! Troilus!


What a pair of spectacles is here! Let me
spectacle (n.) thing to be seen, sight

embrace too. ‘ O heart,’ as the goodly saying is –

‘ – O heart, heavy heart,
heavy (adj.) 1 sorrowful, sad, gloomy See Topics: Frequency count

Why sigh'st thou without breaking?’

where he answers again:

‘ Because thou canst not ease thy smart

By friendship nor by speaking.’

There was never a truer rhyme. Let us cast away

nothing, for we may live to have need of such a verse.

We see it, we see it, – How now, lambs!


Cressid, I love thee in so strained a purity
strained (adj.) 3 refined, purified, distilled

That the blest gods, as angry with my fancy,
fancy (n.) 1 love, amorousness, infatuation

More bright in zeal than the devotion which

Cold lips blow to their deities, take thee from me.
cold (adj.) 1 chaste, modest, lacking sensual passion


Have the gods envy?


Ay, ay, ay, ay, 'tis too plain a case.


And is it true that I must go from Troy?


A hateful truth.


                         What, and from Troilus too?


From Troy and Troilus.


                         Is't possible?


And suddenly; where injury of chance
chance (n.) 6 falling out of events, fortuitous circumstance
injury (n.) 1 grievance, wrong, complaint
suddenly (adv.) 1 immediately, at once, without delay

Puts back leave-taking, jostles roughly by
put back (v.) repulse, reject, refuse

All time of pause, rudely beguiles our lips
beguile (v.) 2 deprive by deception, cheat out of
rudely (adv.) 1 violently, roughly, with great force

Of all rejoindure, forcibly prevents
rejoindure (n.) reunion, reuniting

Our locked embrasures, strangles our dear vows
embrasure (n.) embrace, clasping

Even in the birth of our own labouring breath:

We two, that with so many thousand sighs

Did buy each other, must poorly sell ourselves

With the rude brevity and discharge of one.
discharge (n.) 1 performance, fulfilment, execution
rude (adj.) 1 violent, harsh, unkind

Injurious Time now, with a robber's haste,
injurious (adj.) 1 causing injury, harmful, offending, unjust

Crams his rich thievery up, he knows not how;
cram up (v.) force into a small space, stuff in
thievery (n.) plunder, booty, stolen property

As many farewells as be stars in heaven,

With distinct breath and consigned kisses to them,
consigned (adj.) entrusted, committed, delivered

He fumbles up into a loose adieu,
loose (adj.) 1 casual, lax, careless

And scants us with a single famished kiss,
scant (v.) 2 limit, restrict, constrain

Distasted with the salt of broken tears.
broken (adj.) 1 disjointed, fragmentary, disconnected
distaste (v.) 3 make distasteful, destroy the relish of



My lord, is the lady ready?


Hark, you are called: some say the Genius so
genius (n.) 3 attendant spirit, guardian spirit

Cries ‘ Come!’ to him that instantly must die. –

Bid them have patience; she shall come anon.
anon (adv.) 1 soon, shortly, presently See Topics: Frequency count


Where are my tears? Rain, to lay this wind,
lay (v.) 6 allay, reduce, moderate
wind (n.) 2 sighing, lamenting breath

or my heart will be blown up by the root.



I must, then, to the Grecians?


                         No remedy.


A woeful Cressid 'mongst the merry Greeks!
Greek, foolish / merry buffoon, merry person, silly joker

When shall we see again?
see (v.) 1 meet, see each other


Hear me, my love: be thou but true of heart –
true (adj.) 2 constant, faithful in love


I true? How now, what wicked deem is this?
deem (n.) thought, notion, opinion


Nay, we must use expostulation kindly,
expostulation (n.) protestation, reproof, remonstration
kindly (adv.) 3 lovingly, gently, affectionately

For it is parting from us.

I speak not ‘ be thou true ’ as fearing thee;

For I will throw my glove to Death himself

That there's no maculation in thy heart.
maculation (n.) stain, sport, defilement

But ‘ be thou true,’ say I, to fashion in
fashion in (v.) frame, work in, introduce

My sequent protestation: be thou true,
sequent (adj.) 1 following, ensuing, consequent

And I will see thee.


O, you shall be exposed, my lord, to dangers

As infinite as imminent; but I'll be true!


And I'll grow friend with danger. Wear this sleeve.


And you this glove. When shall I see you?


I will corrupt the Grecian sentinels,
corrupt (v.) 2 bribe, grease the palms of

To give thee nightly visitation –

But yet, be true.


                         O heavens! ‘ Be true ’ again?


Hear why I speak it, love.

The Grecian youths are full of quality;
quality (n.) 2 accomplishment, capacity, ability

Their loving well composed with gifts of nature,

And flowing o'er with arts and exercise.
exercise (n.) 2 manly sport, martial practice

How novelty may move, and parts with person,
part (n.) 1 quality, attribute, gift, accomplishment [of mind or body]
person (n.) 1 fine figure, personality

Alas, a kind of godly jealousy –

Which, I beseech you, call a virtuous sin –

Makes me afraid.


                         O heavens, you love me not!


Die I a villain then!

In this I do not call your faith in question

So mainly as my merit: I cannot sing,
mainly (adv.) 1 greatly, very much, mightily

Nor heel the high lavolt, nor sweeten talk,
lavolt, lavolta (n.) lively, high-leaping dance

Nor play at subtle games – fair virtues all,
subtle, subtile (adj.) 1 crafty, cunning, wily

To which the Grecians are most prompt and pregnant;
pregnant (adj.) 1 well-disposed, ready, inclined, receptive
prompt (adj.) 1 inclined, disposed, prone

But I can tell that in each grace of these

There lurks a still and dumb-discoursive devil
dumb-discoursive (adj.) silently persuasive, with compelling silent arguments
grace (n.) 2 virtue, good quality

That tempts most cunningly. But be not tempted.


Do you think I will?



But something may be done that we will not;
will (v.), past form would 1 desire, wish, want

And sometimes we are devils to ourselves,

When we will tempt the frailty of our powers,
power (n.) 8 faculty, function, ability

Presuming on their changeful potency.
changeful (adj.) changing, variable, unreliable
potency (n.) power, authority, command
presume on (v.) take insufficiently into account, rely too readily on
tempt (v.) 1 try, test, make trial of



Nay, good my lord –


                         Come, kiss, and let us part.



Brother Troilus!


                         Good brother, come you hither,

And bring Aeneas and the Grecian with you.


My lord, will you be true?
true (adj.) 2 constant, faithful in love


Who, I? Alas, it is my vice, my fault:

Whiles others fish with craft for great opinion,
craft (n.) 3 cunning, deceit, guile
opinion (n.) 2 reputation, character, honour

I with great truth catch mere simplicity;
mere (adj.) 1 complete, total, absolute, utter See Topics: Frequency count

Whilst some with cunning gild their copper crowns,
crown (n.) 1 type of coin [usually bearing the imprint of a monarch's crown] See Topics: Money

With truth and plainness I do wear mine bare.

Fear not my truth: the moral of my wit
moral (n.) 1 hidden meaning, import, significance
truth (n.) 1 loyalty, allegiance, faithfulness

Is ‘ plain and true;’ there's all the reach of it.
wit (n.) 3 reasoning, thinking, deliberation

Enter Aeneas, Paris, Antenor, Deiphobus, and


Welcome, Sir Diomed; here is the lady

Which for Antenor we deliver you.

At the port, lord, I'll give her to thy hand,
port (n.) 1 portal, entrance, gateway

And by the way possess thee what she is.
possess (v.) 1 notify, inform, acquaint

Entreat her fair, and by my soul, fair Greek,
entreat, intreat (v.) 4 treat, handle, deal with
fair (adv.) 1 kindly, encouragingly, courteously

If e'er thou stand at mercy of my sword,

Name Cressid, and thy life shall be as safe

As Priam is in Ilium.


                         Fair Lady Cressid,

So please you, save the thanks this prince expects.

The lustre in your eye, heaven in your cheek,

Pleads your fair usage, and to Diomed

You shall be mistress, and command him wholly.


Grecian, thou dost not use me courteously,
use (v.) 2 treat, deal with, manage

To shame the zeal of my petition to thee
zeal (n.) ardour, fervour; or: loyalty, devotion

In praising her. I tell thee, lord of Greece,

She is as far high-soaring o'er thy praises

As thou unworthy to be called her servant.
servant (n.) 1 devotee, one who gives dedicated service, lover

I charge thee use her well, even for my charge;
charge (n.) 1 command, order, injunction, instruction
charge (v.) 1 order, command, enjoin

For, by the dreadful Pluto, if thou dost not,
dreadful (adj.) 1 inspiring dread, causing fear, daunting

Though the great bulk Achilles be thy guard,
bulk (n.) 1 body, trunk, frame

I'll cut thy throat.
moved (adj.) 2 aroused, provoked, exasperated


                         O, be not moved, Prince Troilus;

Let me be privileged by my place and message
place (n.) 1 position, post, office, rank See Topics: Frequency count

To be a speaker free. When I am hence,

I'll answer to my lust, and know, my lord,
answer (v.) 11 act along with, sustain, respond to
lust (n.) desire, pleasure, delight

I'll nothing do on charge. To her own worth
charge (n.) 1 command, order, injunction, instruction

She shall be prized; but that you say ‘ Be't so,’

I'll speak it in my spirit and honour: ‘ No.’


Come, to the port. – I'll tell thee, Diomed,
port (n.) 1 portal, entrance, gateway

This brave shall oft make thee to hide thy head.
brave (n.) boast, bravado, blustering threat
oft (adv.) often See Topics: Frequency count

Lady, give me your hand, and, as we walk,

To our own selves bend we our needful talk.
bend (v.) 1 aim, direct, level, turn
needful (adj.) 1 necessary, needed, indispensable

Exeunt Troilus, Cressida, and Diomedes

Sound trumpet
spend (v.) 4 waste, pass unprofitably


Hark! Hector's trumpet!


                         How have we spent this morning!

The prince must think me tardy and remiss,

That swore to ride before him to the field.
field (n.) 1 field of battle, battleground, field of combat See Topics: Frequency count


‘Tis Troilus' fault; come, come, to field with him.


Let us make ready straight.
straight (adv.) straightaway, immediately, at once See Topics: Frequency count


Yea, with a bridegroom's fresh alacrity,

Let us address to tend on Hector's heels.
address (v.) 1 prepare, make ready, poise to act

The glory of our Troy doth this day lie

On his fair worth and single chivalry.
chivalry (n.) 1 knightly prowess, warlike distinction


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