A line-by-line translation

Troilus and Cressida

Troilus and Cressida Translation Act 4, Scene 1

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Enter, from one side, AENEAS, and Servant with a torch; from the other, PARIS, DEIPHOBUS, ANTENOR, DIOMEDES, and others, with torches

PARIS

See, ho! who is that there?

PARIS

Look there! Who is that?

DEIPHOBUS

It is the Lord AEneas.

DEIPHOBUS

It's the lord Aeneas.

AENEAS

Is the prince there in person? Had I so good occasion to lie long As you, prince Paris, nothing but heavenly business Should rob my bed-mate of my company.

AENEAS

Are you the Prince himself? If I had as good a reason not to get out of bed as you, prince Paris, nothing but prayer would get me to leave my wife alone.

DIOMEDES

That's my mind too. Good morrow, Lord AEneas.

DIOMEDES

I agree. Good morning, Lord Aeneas.

PARIS

A valiant Greek, AEneas,—take his hand,— Witness the process of your speech, wherein You told how Diomed, a whole week by days, Did haunt you in the field.

PARIS

A brave Greek, Aeneas, greet him! You told me he has been finding you out on the battle field all week and never leaving you alone, and here he is again!

AENEAS

Health to you, valiant sir, During all question of the gentle truce; But when I meet you arm'd, as black defiance As heart can think or courage execute.

AENEAS

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DIOMEDES

The one and other Diomed embraces. Our bloods are now in calm; and, so long, health! But when contention and occasion meet, By Jove, I'll play the hunter for thy life With all my force, pursuit and policy.

DIOMEDES

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AENEAS

And thou shalt hunt a lion, that will fly With his face backward. In humane gentleness, Welcome to Troy! now, by Anchises' life, Welcome, indeed! By Venus' hand I swear, No man alive can love in such a sort The thing he means to kill more excellently.

AENEAS

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DIOMEDES

We sympathize: Jove, let AEneas live, If to my sword his fate be not the glory, A thousand complete courses of the sun! But, in mine emulous honour, let him die, With every joint a wound, and that to-morrow!

DIOMEDES

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AENEAS

We know each other well.

AENEAS

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DIOMEDES

We do; and long to know each other worse.

DIOMEDES

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PARIS

This is the most despiteful gentle greeting,The noblest hateful love, that e'er I heard of.What business, lord, so early?

PARIS

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AENEAS

I was sent for to the king; but why, I know not.

AENEAS

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PARIS

His purpose meets you: 'twas to bring this Greek To Calchas' house, and there to render him, For the enfreed Antenor, the fair Cressid: Let's have your company, or, if you please,Haste there before us: I constantly do think—Or rather, call my thought a certain knowledge—My brother Troilus lodges there to-night:Rouse him and give him note of our approach.With the whole quality wherefore: I fearWe shall be much unwelcome.

PARIS

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AENEAS

That I assure you:Troilus had rather Troy were borne to GreeceThan Cressid borne from Troy.

AENEAS

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PARIS

There is no help;The bitter disposition of the timeWill have it so. On, lord; we'll follow you.

PARIS

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AENEAS

Good morrow, all.

AENEAS

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Exit with Servant

PARIS

And tell me, noble Diomed, faith, tell me true,Even in the soul of sound good-fellowship,Who, in your thoughts, merits fair Helen best,Myself or Menelaus?

PARIS

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DIOMEDES

Both alike:He merits well to have her, that doth seek her,Not making any scruple of her soilure,With such a hell of pain and world of charge,And you as well to keep her, that defend her,Not palating the taste of her dishonour,With such a costly loss of wealth and friends:He, like a puling cuckold, would drink upThe lees and dregs of a flat tamed piece;You, like a lecher, out of whorish loinsAre pleased to breed out your inheritors:Both merits poised, each weighs nor less nor more;But he as he, the heavier for a whore.

DIOMEDES

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PARIS

You are too bitter to your countrywoman.

PARIS

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DIOMEDES

She's bitter to her country: hear me, Paris:For every false drop in her bawdy veinsA Grecian's life hath sunk; for every scrupleOf her contaminated carrion weight,A Trojan hath been slain: since she could speak,She hath not given so many good words breathAs for her Greeks and Trojans suffer'd death.

DIOMEDES

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PARIS

Fair Diomed, you do as chapmen do,Dispraise the thing that you desire to buy:But we in silence hold this virtue well,We'll but commend what we intend to sell.Here lies our way.

PARIS

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Exeunt

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Tom hill
About the Translator: Tom Hill

Tom Hill lives in his native London where he has just finished studying for an MA in Shakespeare Studies at King's College London and Shakespeare's Globe Theatre. He has worked in education both in the UK and in Asia. His favorite Shakespeare play is The Merchant of Venice.