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What he requests of us. Good Diomed,
Furnish you fairly for this enterchange :
Withal, bring word, if Hector will to-morrow
Be answer'd in his challenge:-Ajax is ready.
Diom. This shall I undertake, and 'tis a burden Which I am proud to bear. [Exit Diomed and Calcbas.
Enter Achilles and Patroclus, before their tent.
Ulys. Achilles stands i’ the entrance of his tent,
Please it our general to pass strangely by him,
As if he were forgot; and, princes all,
Lay negligent and loose regard upon him :-
I will come last; 'tis like he'll question me,
Why such unplausive eyes are bent, why turn’d on
If so, I have 8 derision med'cinable
To use between your strangeness and his pride,
Which his own will shall have desire to drink;
It may do good: pride hath no other glass
To sew itielf, but pride; for supple knees
Feed arrogance, and are the proud man's fees.
Aga. We'll execute your purpose, and put on
A form of strangeness as we pass along;
So do each lord; and either greet him not,
Or else disdainfully, which shall shake him more
Than if not look'd on. I will lead the way.
Achil. What, comes the general to speak with me? You know my mind, I'll fight no more 'gainst Troy.
Aga. What says Achilles? Would he aught with us?
Neft. Would you, my lord, aught with the general?
Neft. Nothing, my lord.
Aga. The better.
derision med'cinable] All the modern editions have decision. The old copies are apparently right. The folio in this place agrees with the quarto, so that the corruption was at firit merely accidental. Johnson.
Achil. Good day, good day.
Men. How do you? how do you?
Achil. What, does the cuckold scorn me?
Ajax. How now, Patroclus?
Achil. Good-morrow, Ajax.
Ajax. Ay, and good next day too. [Exeunt.
Achil. What mean these fellows? Know they not
Patr. They pass by strangely. They were us’d to
To send their smiles before them to Achilles ;
To come as humbly as they us’d to creep
To holy altars.
Achil. What, am I poor
of late ?
'Tis certain, greatness, once fallen out with fortune,
Must fall out with men too: what the declin'd is
He shall as soon read in the eyes of others,
As feel in his own fall: for nen, like butterflies,
Shew not their mealy wings, but to the summer ;
And not a man, for being simply man,
Hath any honour; but's honour'd for those honours
That are without him, as place, riches, favour,
Prizes of accident as oft as merit:
Which, when they fall (as being Nippery standers)
The love that lean'd on them, as Nippery too,
Doth one pluck down another, and together
Die in the fall. But 'tis not so with me :
Fortune and I are friends; I do enjoy
At ample point all that I did poffefs,
Save these men's looks; who do, methinks, find out
Something in me not worth that rich beholding,
As they have often.given. Here is Ulylles :
I'll interrupt his reading.- How now, Ulysses ?
Ulyl. Now, great Thetis' fon?
Achil. What are you reading? VOL. IX.
Ulys. A strange fellow here
Writes me, that man, 9 how dearly ever parted,
How much in having, or without, or in,
Cannot make boast to have that which he hath,
Nor feels not what he owes, but by reflection;
As when his virtues shining upon others
Heat them, and they retort that heat again
To the first giver.
Achil. This is not strange, Ulysses.
The beauty that is borne here in the face
The bearer knows not, but commends itself
'To others' eyes : nor doth the eye itself,
(That most pure fpirit of fenfe) behold itself
Not going from itself; but eye to eye oppos’d,
Salutes each other with each other's form.
For speculation turns not to itself,
Till it hath travell’d, and is marry'd there
Where it may see its felf. This is not strange at all.
Ulys. I do not strain at the position,
It is familiar, but the author's drift :
Who, 2 in his circumstance, expressly proves
That no man is the lord of any thing,
(Tho' in and of him there be much consisting)
Till he communicate his parts to others :
Nor doth he of himself know them for aught
Low dearly ever parted,] i. e. how exquisitely soever his virtues be divided and balanced in him. So in Romeo and Juliet, “ Scuffd, as they say, with hanourable parts, proportioned as one's thoughts would wish a man."
WARBURTON. I do not think that in the word parted is included any idea of division; it means, however excellently endowed, with however dear or precious parts enriched or adorned. JOHNSON 1 Io others' eyes,
&c. (That most pure fpirit, &c.] These two lines are totally omitted in all the editions but the firit quarto. Pore.
in his circumstance, -] In the detail or circumduction of his argument. JOHNSON.
Till he behold them form'd in the applause
Where they are extended; which, like an arch, re-
The voice again ; or, like a gate of steel
Fronting the sun, receives and renders back
His figure and his heat. I was much wrapt in this ;
And apprehended here immediately
3 The unknown Ajax.
Heavens! what a man is there! a very horse,
That has he knows not what. Nature, what things
Most abject in regard, and dear in use!
What things again most dear in the esteem,
And poor in worth! Now shall we see to-morrow
An act, that very chance doth throw upon him,
Ajax renown'd! Oh heavens, what some men do,
While some men leave to do!
4 How some men creep in skittish Fortune's hall,
While others play the idiots in her eyes !
How one man eats into another's pride,
While pride is 5 feasting in his wantonness!
To see these Grecian lords ! why even already
They clap the lubber Ajax on the shoulder;
As if his foot were on brave Hector's breast,
And great Troy shrinking.
Achil. I do believe it :
For they pass’d by me, as misers do by beggars,
Neither gave to me good word, nor good look.
What! are my deeds forgot?
3 The unknown Ajax.] Ajax, who has abilities which were never brought into view or use. Johnson.
* How some men CREEP in skittish Fortune's hall,] To creep is to keep out of fight from whatever motive. Some men keep out of notice in the hall of Fortune, while others, though they but play the idiot, are always in her eye, in the way of diftinction.
JOHNSON - feasting — ] Folio. The quarto has fafting. Either word may bear a good sense. JOHNSON.
Ulyl. 6 Time hath, my lord, a wallet at his back,
Wherein he puts alms for oblivion,
A great fiz'd monster of ingratitudes.
Those scraps are good deeds past; which are devour'd
As fast as they are made, forgot as soon
As done: 7 perseverance, dear my lord,
Keeps honour bright: to have done, is to hang
Quite out of fashion, like a rusty mail
In monumental mockery. Take the instant way,
For honour travels in a streight so narrow,
Where one but goes abreaft: keep then the path;
For emulation hath a thousand sons,
That one by one pursue; if you give way,
Or hedge aside from the direct forth-right,
Like to an entred tide, they all rush by,
And leave you hindmost 8 :
Or like a gallant horse fallen in first rank,
Lie there for pavement 9 to the abject rear,
• O'er run and trampled on: then what they do in
6 Time hath, my lord, a wallet at his back,] This speech is
printed in all the modern editions with such deviations from
the old copy, as exceed the lawful power of an editor. Johns.
perji verance, dear my lord,
Keeps honour bright: to have done, is to hang
Quite out of fashion, like a rufiy mail
In monumentel mockery. Take the instant way,
For honour, &c.] Thus the old copy. Dr. Johnson's former edition reads,
perseverance keeps honour bright:
To have done, is to hang quite out of fashion,
Like rufty nail in monumental mockery. STEEVENS.
and there you lie:] These words are not in the fol. John. Nor in
copy that I have seen. I have given the pafiage as I found it in the folio. STEEVENS.
to the abject rear,] So HANMER. All the editors before him read,
to the abject, near. Johnson.
I O’er-run, &c.] The quarto wholly omits the fimile of the
horse, and reads thus :
And leave you hindmost, then what they do in present.
The folio fcems to have some omislion, for the timile begins,
Cr like a gallant horie JOHNSON.