List iconTroilus and Cressida:
Act 5, scene 11
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Troilus and Cressida
Act 5, scene 11



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,…


This preface appears in some copies of the play’s first printing in quarto in 1609.


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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Quill icon
Scene 11
Enter Aeneas, Paris, Antenor, Deiphobus, and Trojan

 Stand, ho! Yet are we masters of the field.
 Never go home; here starve we out the night.

Enter Troilus.

 Hector is slain.
ALL  Hector! The gods forbid!
5 He’s dead, and at the murderer’s horse’s tail,
 In beastly sort, dragged through the shameful field.
 Frown on, you heavens; effect your rage with speed.
 Sit, gods, upon your thrones, and smite at Troy!
 I say at once: let your brief plagues be mercy,
10 And linger not our sure destructions on!
 My lord, you do discomfort all the host.

Troilus and Cressida
ACT 5. SC. 11

 You understand me not that tell me so.
 I do not speak of flight, of fear, of death,
 But dare all imminence that gods and men
15 Address their dangers in. Hector is gone.
 Who shall tell Priam so, or Hecuba?
 Let him that will a screech-owl aye be called
 Go into Troy and say their Hector’s dead.
 There is a word will Priam turn to stone,
20 Make wells and Niobes of the maids and wives,
 Cold statues of the youth and, in a word,
 Scare Troy out of itself. But march away.
 Hector is dead. There is no more to say.
 Stay yet. You vile abominable tents,
25 Thus proudly pitched upon our Phrygian plains,
 Let Titan rise as early as he dare,
 I’ll through and through you! And, thou great-sized
 No space of earth shall sunder our two hates.
30 I’ll haunt thee like a wicked conscience still,
 That moldeth goblins swift as frenzy’s thoughts.
 Strike a free march to Troy! With comfort go.
 Hope of revenge shall hide our inward woe.

Enter Pandarus.

PANDARUS But hear you, hear you!
35 Hence, broker, lackey! Ignomy and shame
 Pursue thy life, and live aye with thy name!
All but Pandarus exit.
PANDARUS A goodly medicine for my aching bones! O
 world, world, world! Thus is the poor agent despised.
 O traitors and bawds, how earnestly are
40 you set a-work, and how ill requited! Why should
 our endeavor be so loved and the performance so
 loathed? What verse for it? What instance for it?

Troilus and Cressida
ACT 5. SC. 11

 Let me see:
 Full merrily the humble-bee doth sing,
45 Till he hath lost his honey and his sting;
 And being once subdued in armèd tail,
 Sweet honey and sweet notes together fail.

 Good traders in the flesh, set this in your painted
50 As many as be here of panders’ hall,
 Your eyes, half out, weep out at Pandar’s fall;
 Or if you cannot weep, yet give some groans,
 Though not for me, yet for your aching bones.
 Brethren and sisters of the hold-door trade,
55 Some two months hence my will shall here be made.
 It should be now, but that my fear is this:
 Some gallèd goose of Winchester would hiss.
 Till then I’ll sweat and seek about for eases,
 And at that time bequeath you my diseases.
He exits.