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lEne. Ay, Greek, that is my name.

Agam. What's your affair, I pray you?

Mne. Sir, pardon; 'tis for Agamemnon's ears.

Agam. He hears nought privately, that comes from Troy.

JEne. Nor I from Troy come not to whisper him: I bring a trumpet to awake liis ear; To set his sense on the attentive bent, And then to speak.

Agam. Speak frankly as the wind;

It is not Agamemnon's sleeping hour:
That thou shalt know, Trojan, he is awake,
He tells thee so himself.

JEne. Trumpet, blow loud,

Send thy brass voice through all these lazy tents;—
And every Greek of mettle, let him know,
What Troy means fairly, shall be spoke alqud.

[Trumpet sounds.

We have, great Agamemnon, here in Troy
A prince call'd Hector, (Priam is his father,)
Who in this dull and long-continued truce14
Is rusty grown; he bade me take a trumpet,
And to this purpose speak. Kings, princes, lords!
If there be one, among the fair'st of Greece,
That holds his honour higher than his ease;
That seeks his praise more than he fears his peril;
That knows his valour, and knows not his fear;
That loves his mistress more than in confession,
(With truant vows to her own lips he loves,)
And dare avow her beauty and her worth,

In other arms than hers,—to him this challenge.
Hector, in view of Trojans and of Greeks,
Shall make it good, or do his best to do it,
He hath a lady, wiser, fairer, truer,
Than ever Greek did compass in his arms;
And will to-morrow with his trumpet call,
Mid-way between your tents and walls of Troy,
To rouse a Grecian that is true in love:
If any come, Hector shall honour him;
If none, he'll say in Troy, when he retires,
The Grecian dames are sun-burn'd, and not worth
The splinter of a lance. Even so much.

Agam. This shall be told our lovers, lord /Eneas;
If none of them have soul in such a kind,
We left them all at home: But we are soldiers;
And may that soldier a mere recreant prove.
That means not, hath not, or is not in love!
If then one is, or hath, or means to be,
That one meets Hector; if none else, I am he.

Nest. Tell him of Nestor, one that was a man When Hector's grandsire suck'd: he is old now; But, if there be not in our Grecian host One noble man, that hath one spark of fire To answer for hU love, Tell him from me,— I'll hide my silver bcard in a gold beaver, And in my vantbrace11 put this wither'd brawn; And, meeting him, will tell him, That my lady Was fairer than his grandame, and as chaste As may be in the world: His youth in flood, I'll prove this truth with my three drops of blood.

JEne. Now heavens forbid such scarcity of youth!

Ulyss. Amen.

Agam. Fair lord JEneas, let me touch your hand; To our pavilion shall I lead yon, sir. Achilles shall have word of this intent; So shall each lord of Greece, from tent to tent: Yourself shall feast with us before you go, And find the welcome of a noble foe.

[Exeunt all but Ulysses <mrf Nestor.

Ulyss. Nestor,

Nest. What says Ulysses?

Ulyss. I have n young conception in my brain, Be you my time to bring it to some shape.

Nest. What is't?

Ulyss. This 'tis:

Blunt wedges rive hard knots: The seeded pride
That hath to this maturity blown up
In rank Achilles, must or now be cropp'd,
Or, shedding, breed a nursery of like evil,
To orerbulk us all.

Nest. Well, and how?

Ulyss. This challenge that the gallant Hector sands, However it is spread in general name> Relates in purpose only to Achilles.

Nest. The purpose is.perspicuous even as substance, Whose grossness little characters sum tip: And, in the publication, make no strain, But that Achilles, were his brain as barren As banks of Lybia,—though, Apollo knows, 'Tis dry enough,—will with great speed of judgement,

Ay, with celerity, find Hector's purpose
Pointing on him.

Ulyts. And wake him to the answer, think you .
Nest. Yes/

It is most meet; Whom may you else oppose,
That can from Hector bring those honours off,
If not Achilles t Though't be a sportful combat,
Yet in the trial much opinion dwells;
For here the Trojans taste our dear'st repute
With their fin'st palate: And trust to me, Ulysses,
Our imputation shall be oddly pois'd
In this wild action: for the success,
Although particular, shall give a scantling
Of good or bad unto the general;
And in such indexes, although small pricks
To their subsequent volumes, there is seen
The baby figure of the giant mass
Of things to come at large. It is suppos'd,
He, that meets Hector, issues from our choice:
And choice, being mutual act of all our souls,
Makes merit her election; and doth boil,
As 'twere from forth us all, a man distill'd
Out of our virtues; Who miscarrying,
What heart receives from hence a conquering part,
To steel a strong opinion to themselves?
Which entertain'd, limbs are his instruments,
In no less working, than are swords and bows
Directive by the limbs.

Ulytt. Give pardon to my speech;—
Therefore 'tis meet, Achilles meet not Hector.

Let us, like merchants, show our foulest wares,

And think, perchance, they'll sell; if not,

The lustre of the better shall exceed,

By showing the worst first. Do not consent,

That ever Hector and Achilles meet;

For both our honour and our shame, in this,

Are dogg'd with two strange followers.

Nest. I see them not with my old eyes; what are


Ulyst. What glory our Achilles shares from Hector, Were he not proud, we all should share with him: But he already is too insolent; And we were better parch in Africk sun, Than in the pride and salt scorn of his eyes, Should he 'scape Hector fair: If he were fuil'd, Why, then we did our main opinion crush In taint of our best man. No, make a lottery; And, by device, let blockish Ajax draw The sort to fight with Hector: Among ourselves, Give him allowance for the better man, For that will physick the great Myrmidon, Who broils in loud applause; and make him fall His crest, that prouder than blue Iris bends. If the dull brainless Ajax come safe oft', We'll dress him up in voices: If he fail, Yet go we under our opinion still, That we have better men. But, hit or miss, Our project's life this shape of sense assuines,— Ajax, employ'd, plucks down Achilles' plumes, Nest. Ulysses,

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