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Calchas, a Trojan prieft, taking part with the Greeks. Pandarus, Uncle to Creffida.

Margarelon, a baftard fon of Priam.

Agamemnon, the Grecian General:
Menelaus, his brother.





Grecian Commanders.



Therfites, a deformed and fcurrilous Grecian.
Alexander, fervant to Creffida.

Servant to Troilus; Servant to Paris; Servant to


Helen, wife to Menelaus.

Andromache, wife to Hector.

Caffandra, daughter to Priam; a Prophetefs.
Creffida, daughter to Calchas.

Trojan and Greek Soldiers, and Attendants.

SCENE, Troy, and the Grecian Camp before it.



Troy. Before Priam's Palace.

Enter TROILUS arm'd, and PANDARUS.

TRO. Call here my varlet,' I'll unarm again:
Why should I war without the walls of Troy,
That find fuch cruel battle here within?
Each Trojan, that is master of his heart,
Let him to field; Troilus, alas! hath none.
PAN. Will this geer ne'er be mended? ❜

TRO. The Greeks are strong, and skilful to their ftrength,+

Fierce to their skill, and to their fierceness valiant; But I am weaker than a woman's tear,



my varlet,] This word anciently fignified a fervant or footman to a knight or warrior. So, Holinfhed, fpeaking of the battle of Agincourt: diverse were releeved by their varlets, and conveied out of the field." Again, in an ancient epitaph in the church-yard of faint Nicas at Arras :

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Cy gift Hakin et fon varlet,

"Tout dis-armè et tout di-pret,

"Avec fon efpé et falloche," &c. STEEVENS. Concerning the word varlet, fee Recherches hiftoriques fur les cartes à jouer. Lyon, 1757. p. 61. M. C. TUTET.

3 Will this geer ne'er be mended?] There is fomewhat proverbial in this queftion, which I likewife meet with in the Interlude of King Darius, 1565:


Wyll not yet this geere be amended,

"Nor your finful acts corrected?" STEEVENS.

-fkilful to their frength, &c.] i. e. in addition to their ftrength. The fame phrafeology occurs in Macbeth. See Vol. VII. P. 330, n. 5. STEEVENS.

Tamer than fleep, fonder than ignorance;
Lefs valiant than the virgin in the night,
And skill-lefs as unpractis'd infancy.


PAN. Well, I have told you enough of this: for my part, I'll not meddle nor make no further. He, that will have a cake out of the wheat, must tarry the grinding.

TRO. Have I not tarry'd?

PAN. Ay, the grinding; but you must tarry the bolting.

TRO. Have I not tarry'd?

PAN. Ay, the bolting; but you muft


TRO. Still have I tarry'd.

tarry the

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 leffer blench" at fufferance than I do. At Priam's royal table do I fit;

And when fair Creffid comes into my thoughts,

-fonder-] i. e. more weak, or foolish. See Vol. V. p. 483, n. 7. MALONE.

5 And fkill-lefs &c.] Mr. Dryden, in his alteration of this play, has taken this fpeech as it ftands, except that he has changed fkill-lefs to artless, not for the better, because skill-lefs refers to fkill and fkilful. JOHNSON.

6 Doth leffer blench-] To blench is to fhrink, ftart, or fly off. So, in Hamlet:


"I know

-if he but blench,


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Again, in The Pilgrim, by Beaumont and Fletcher:

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men that will not totter,

"Nor blench much at a bullet." STEEVENS.

So, traitor!-when he comes!When is fhe thence?"

PAN. Well, the look'd yefternight fairer than ever I faw her look; or any woman elfe.

TRO. I was about to tell thee,—When my heart, As wedged with a figh, would rive in twain; Left Hector or my father fhould perceive me, I have (as when the fun doth light a storm,) Bury'd this figh in wrinkle of a smile: " But forrow, that is couch'd in feeming gladness, Is like that mirth fate turns to fudden sadness.

PAN. An her hair were not fomewhat darker than Helen's, (well, go to,) there were no more comparison between the women,-But, for my part, she is my kinfwoman; I would not, as they term it, praise her,-But I would fomebody had heard her talk yesterday, as I did. I will not dispraise your fifter Caffandra's wit: but

TRO. O 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 Creffid's love: Thou answer'ft, She is fair;
Pour'ft in the open ulcer of my heart

Her eyes, her hair, her cheek, her gait, her voice;
Handleft in thy difcourfe, O, that her hand,

7 when he comes!-When is fhe thence?] Both the old copies read-then she comes, when he is thence. Mr. Rowe corrected the former error, and Mr. Pope the latter. MALONE. aftorm,)] Old copies-a fcorn. Corrected by Mr. Rowe. MALONE.



in wrinkle of a fmile :] So, in Twelfth Night: "He doth Smile his face into more lines than the new map with the augmentation of the Indies." MALONE.

Again, in The Merchant of Venice:

With mirth and laughter let old wrinkles come." STEEVENS. Handleft in thy difcourfe, O, that her hand, &c.] Handleft is

In whofe comparison all whites are ink,
Writing their own reproach; To whose soft seizure
The cygnet's down is harsh, and spirit of sense
Hard as the palm of ploughman! This thou tell❜st


here used metaphorically, with an allufion at the fame time to its literal meaning; and the jingle between hand and handleft is perfectly in our author's manner.

The beauty of a female hand feems to have made a ftrong impreffion on his mind. Antony cannot endure that the hand of Cleopatra fhould be touched :

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To let a fellow that will take rewards, "And fay, God quit you, be familar with


My playfellow, your hand,-this kingly feal, "And plighter of high hearts."

Again, in Romeo and Juliet:


they may feize

"On the white wonder of dear Juliet's hand."

In The Winter's Tale, Florizel with equal warmth, and not lefs poetically, defcants on the hand of his mistress:


I take thy hand; this hand

"As foft as dove's down, and as white as it;

"Or Ethiopian's tooth; or the fann'd fnow

"That's bolted by the northern blasts twice o'er."

This paffage has, I think, been wrong pointed in the late editions:
Pour'ft in the open ulcer of my heart

Her eyes, her hair, her cheek, her gait; her voice
Handleft in thy difcourfe;-0 that her hand!

In whofe comparison, &c.

We have the fame play of words in Titus Andronicus:

"O handle not the theme, to talk of hands,

"Left we remember still, that we have none!"

We may be certain therefore that thofe lines were part of the additions which our poet made to that play. MALONE.

Though our author has many and very confiderable obligations to Mr. Malone, I cannot regard the foregoing fuppofition as one of them; for in what does it confift? In making Shakspeare answerable for two of the worst lines in a degraded play, merely because they exhibit a jingle fimilar to that in the fpeech before us. STEEVENS.

3 and fpirit of fenfe

Hard as the palm of ploughman!] In comparison with Creffida's hand, fays he, the spirit of fenfe, the utmoft degree, the most exquifite power of fenfibility, which implies a foft hand, fince the fenfe of touching, as Scaliger fays in his Exercitations, refides

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