List iconTroilus and CressidaList icon

Troilus and Cressida
Act 4, scene 2

Synopsis:

Contents

Characters in the Play

Entire Play

Set during the Trojan War, Troilus and Cressida recounts the love affair of its title characters. Inside the besieged city of Troy,…

Prologue

Act 1, scene 1

Troilus refuses to fight because he is too disturbed by his unrequited love for Cressida. Pandarus, her uncle, complains of…

Act 1, scene 2

Cressida gossips with her servant Alexander, and then with Pandarus, who strives to interest her in Troilus. After Pandarus and…

Act 1, scene 3

As the general, Agamemnon, and his councillors Nestor and Ulysses discuss the refusal of their principal warriors, Achilles and Ajax,…

Act 2, scene 1

Ajax beats Thersites for refusing to tell him the terms of the challenge, terms that are provided by Achilles when…

Act 2, scene 2

The Trojan leaders discuss whether to keep Helen and thereby continue the war. They decide to do so in spite…

Act 2, scene 3

Thersites rails against Achilles and Ajax, and then, joined by Achilles and Patroclus, ridicules them to their faces. As Agamemnon…

Act 3, scene 1

Pandarus asks Paris to make excuses for Troilus’s absence from his father Priam’s supper table that night. At Helen’s insistence,…

Act 3, scene 2

Pandarus brings together Troilus and a seemingly reluctant Cressida, who finally acknowledges her love for Troilus.

Act 3, scene 3

Calchas asks the Greek leaders to demand his daughter Cressida from the Trojans in exchange for Antenor, whom the Greeks…

Act 4, scene 1

Aeneas, summoned to Priam’s palace, meets Paris and a deputation from the Greek camp bringing Antenor to be exchanged for…

Act 4, scene 2

As morning breaks after Troilus and Cressida’s night of lovemaking, Troilus, Pandarus, and Cressida each learn in turn that Cressida…

Act 4, scene 3

Paris sends Troilus to bring Cressida to Diomedes.

Act 4, scene 4

As Troilus and Cressida part, he urges her to be faithful to him, and he promises to visit her in…

Act 4, scene 5

The Greek leaders, Menelaus and Ulysses excepted, kiss Cressida as Diomedes brings her to the Greek camp. After Hector and…

Act 5, scene 1

Achilles receives a letter from Queen Hecuba of Troy requiring him to keep an oath he has sworn to seek…

Act 5, scene 2

Diomedes pressures Cressida to keep her promise to have sex with him; they are overheard by an enraged Troilus, an…

Act 5, scene 3

Andromache and Cassandra enlist Priam in their efforts to persuade Hector to refrain from battle. He, in turn, futilely attempts…

Act 5, scene 4

A railing Thersites watches Troilus and Diomedes go off fighting and, surprised by Hector, escapes death only through the Trojan’s…

Act 5, scene 5

Diomedes sends the horse he has won from Troilus to Cressida. Agamemnon and Nestor recount the slaughter of Greeks by…

Act 5, scene 6

Troilus fights both Diomedes and Ajax. Hector bests Achilles but allows him to live, and pursues another Greek in order…

Act 5, scene 7

Achilles, now accompanied by Myrmidons, searches for Hector.

Act 5, scene 8

Thersites comments on the combat between Menelaus and Paris. Then, surprised by Priam’s bastard son, Thersites escapes by refusing to…

Act 5, scene 9

Hector, having killed the Greek in the splendid armor, unarms himself and is surprised by Achilles, who orders his Myrmidons…

Act 5, scene 10

The rest of the Greek forces hear the shouts of the Myrmidons announcing Hector’s death.

Act 5, scene 11

Troilus announces Hector’s death to the Trojans. Marching back to Troy, Troilus meets Pandarus and reviles him.

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Scene 2
Enter Troilus and Cressida.

TROILUS 
 Dear, trouble not yourself. The morn is cold.
CRESSIDA 
 Then, sweet my lord, I’ll call mine uncle down.
 He shall unbolt the gates.
TROILUS  Trouble him not.
5 To bed, to bed! Sleep kill those pretty eyes
 And give as soft attachment to thy senses
 As infants’ empty of all thought!
CRESSIDA 
 Good morrow, then.
TROILUS  I prithee now, to bed.
CRESSIDA 10Are you aweary of me?
TROILUS 
 O Cressida! But that the busy day,
 Waked by the lark, hath roused the ribald crows,
 And dreaming night will hide our joys no longer,
 I would not from thee.
CRESSIDA 15 Night hath been too brief.
TROILUS 
 Beshrew the witch! With venomous wights she stays
 As tediously as hell, but flies the grasps of love
 With wings more momentary-swift than thought.
 You will catch cold and curse me.

165
Troilus and Cressida
ACT 4. SC. 2

CRESSIDA 
20 Prithee, tarry. You men will never tarry.
 O foolish Cressid! I might have still held off,
 And then you would have tarried. Hark, there’s one up.
PANDARUS, within What’s all the doors open here?
TROILUS It is your uncle.
CRESSIDA 
25 A pestilence on him! Now will he be mocking.
 I shall have such a life!

Enter Pandarus.

PANDARUS How now, how now? How go maidenheads?
 Here, you maid! Where’s my Cousin Cressid?
CRESSIDA 
 Go hang yourself, you naughty mocking uncle.
30 You bring me to do—and then you flout me too.
PANDARUS To do what, to do what?—Let her say
 what.—What have I brought you to do?
CRESSIDA 
 Come, come, beshrew your heart! You’ll ne’er be good
 Nor suffer others.
PANDARUS 35Ha, ha! Alas, poor wretch! Ah, poor capocchia!
 Has ’t not slept tonight? Would he not—a
 naughty man—let it sleep? A bugbear take him!
CRESSIDA, to Troilus 
 Did not I tell you? Would he were knocked i’ th’ head!
One knocks.
 Who’s that at door?—Good uncle, go and see.—
40 My lord, come you again into my chamber.
 You smile and mock me, as if I meant naughtily.
TROILUS Ha, ha!
CRESSIDA 
 Come, you are deceived. I think of no such thing.
Knock.
 How earnestly they knock! Pray you, come in.
45 I would not for half Troy have you seen here.
Troilus and Cressida exit.

167
Troilus and Cressida
ACT 4. SC. 2

PANDARUS Who’s there? What’s the matter? Will you
 beat down the door?

Enter Aeneas.

 How now? What’s the matter?
AENEAS Good morrow, lord, good morrow.
PANDARUS 50Who’s there? My Lord Aeneas? By my troth,
 I knew you not. What news with you so early?
AENEAS Is not Prince Troilus here?
PANDARUS Here? What should he do here?
AENEAS 
 Come, he is here, my lord. Do not deny him.
55 It doth import him much to speak with me.
PANDARUS Is he here, say you? It’s more than I know,
 I’ll be sworn. For my own part, I came in late.
 What should he do here?
AENEAS Ho, nay, then! Come, come, you’ll do him
60 wrong ere you are ware. You’ll be so true to him to
 be false to him. Do not you know of him, but yet go
 fetch him hither. Go.

Enter Troilus.

TROILUS How now? What’s the matter?
AENEAS 
 My lord, I scarce have leisure to salute you,
65 My matter is so rash. There is at hand
 Paris your brother and Deiphobus,
 The Grecian Diomed, and our Antenor
 Delivered to us; and for him forthwith,
 Ere the first sacrifice, within this hour,
70 We must give up to Diomedes’ hand
 The Lady Cressida.
TROILUS  Is it so concluded?
AENEAS 
 By Priam and the general state of Troy.
 They are at hand and ready to effect it.

169
Troilus and Cressida
ACT 4. SC. 2

TROILUS 75How my achievements mock me!
 I will go meet them. And, my Lord Aeneas,
 We met by chance; you did not find me here.
AENEAS 
 Good, good, my lord; the secrets of nature
 Have not more gift in taciturnity.
Troilus and Aeneas exit.
PANDARUS 80Is ’t possible? No sooner got but lost? The
 devil take Antenor! The young prince will go mad.
 A plague upon Antenor! I would they had broke ’s
 neck!

Enter Cressida.

CRESSIDA 
 How now? What’s the matter? Who was here?
PANDARUS 85Ah, ah!
CRESSIDA 
 Why sigh you so profoundly? Where’s my lord?
 Gone? Tell me, sweet uncle, what’s the matter?
PANDARUS Would I were as deep under the earth as I
 am above!
CRESSIDA 90O the gods! What’s the matter?
PANDARUS Pray thee, get thee in. Would thou hadst
 ne’er been born! I knew thou wouldst be his death.
 O, poor gentleman! A plague upon Antenor!
CRESSIDA Good uncle, I beseech you, on my knees I
95 beseech you, what’s the matter?
PANDARUS Thou must be gone, wench; thou must be
 gone. Thou art changed for Antenor. Thou must to
 thy father and be gone from Troilus. ’Twill be his
 death; ’twill be his bane. He cannot bear it.
CRESSIDA 
100 O you immortal gods! I will not go.
PANDARUS Thou must.
CRESSIDA 
 I will not, uncle. I have forgot my father.

171
Troilus and Cressida
ACT 4. SC. 3

 I know no touch of consanguinity,
 No kin, no love, no blood, no soul so near me
105 As the sweet Troilus. O you gods divine,
 Make Cressid’s name the very crown of falsehood
 If ever she leave Troilus! Time, force, and death
 Do to this body what extremes you can,
 But the strong base and building of my love
110 Is as the very center of the Earth,
 Drawing all things to it. I’ll go in and weep—
PANDARUS Do, do.
CRESSIDA 
 Tear my bright hair, and scratch my praisèd cheeks,
 Crack my clear voice with sobs, and break my heart
115 With sounding “Troilus.” I will not go from Troy.
They exit.