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CALCHAS, a Trojan priest, taking part with the Greeks.

PANDARUS, uncle to Cressida.

MARGARELON, a bastard son of Priam.

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THERSITES, a deformed and scurrilous Grecian.

ALEXANDER, servant to Cressida.

Servant to Troilus; Servant to Paris; Servant to Tiomedes.

HELEN, wife to Menelaus.

ANDROMACHE, wife to Hector.

CASSANDRA, daughter to Priam; a prophetess.

CRESSIDA, daughter to Calchas.

Trojan and Greek Soldiers and Attendants.

SCENE, Troy, and the Grecian camp before it.


in Troy, there lies the scene.

From isles of Greece

The princes orgulous,1 their high blood chafed,
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,
And Antenorides, with massy staples,
And corresponsive and fulfilling bolts,
Sperr 2 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

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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 vaunt1 and firstlings of those broils,
'Ginning 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, 'tis but the chance of war.

1 i. e. the avant, what went before.




Troy. Before Priam's palace.

Enter TROILUS armed, and Pandarus.

Troi. Call here my varlet; 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; Troilus, alas! hath none. Pan. Will this geer ne'er be mended?

Troi. The Greeks are strong, and skilful to their strength,

Fierce to their skill, and to their fierceness valiant;

But I am weaker than a woman's tear,

Tamer than sleep, fonder 3 than ignorance;
Less valiant than the virgin in the night,
And skill-less as unpractised infancy.

Pan. Well, I have told you enough of this: for

1 Servant.

2 Habit.

3 More foolish.

my part, I'll not meddle nor make no farther. He, that will have a cake out of the wheat, must tarry the grinding.

Troi. Have I not tarried?

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

Troi. Have I not tarried?

Pan. Ay, the bolting; but you must tarry the leavening.

Troi. 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.

Troi. Patience herself, what goddess e'er she be, Doth lesser blench1 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


Pan. Well, she looked yesternight fairer than ever I saw her look, or any woman else.

Troi. 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 :

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