William Shakespeare: The History of Troilus and Cressida

SCENE 1. The Grecian camp. Before the tent of ACHILLES (continued)

Out, gall!

Finch egg!

My sweet Patroclus, I am thwarted quite
From my great purpose in to-morrow's battle.
Here is a letter from Queen Hecuba,
A token from her daughter, my fair love,
Both taxing me and gaging me to keep
An oath that I have sworn. I will not break it.
Fall Greeks; fail fame; honour or go or stay;
My major vow lies here, this I'll obey.
Come, come, Thersites, help to trim my tent;
This night in banqueting must all be spent.
Away, Patroclus!

[Exit with PATROCLUS.]

With too much blood and too little brain these two may
run mad; but, if with too much brain and to little blood they do,
I'll be a curer of madmen. Here's Agamemnon, an honest fellow
enough, and one that loves quails, but he has not so much brain
as ear-wax; and the goodly transformation of Jupiter there, his
brother, the bull, the primitive statue and oblique memorial of
cuckolds, a thrifty shoeing-horn in a chain, hanging at his
brother's leg, to what form but that he is, should wit larded
with malice, and malice forced with wit, turn him to? To an ass,
were nothing: he is both ass and ox. To an ox, were nothing: he
is both ox and ass. To be a dog, a mule, a cat, a fitchew, a
toad, a lizard, an owl, a put-tock, or a herring without a roe, I
would not care; but to be Menelaus, I would conspire against
destiny. Ask me not what I would be, if I were not Thersites; for
I care not to be the louse of a lazar, so I were not Menelaus.
Hey-day! sprites and fires!

MENELAUS, and DIOMEDES, with lights.]

We go wrong, we go wrong.

No, yonder 'tis;
There, where we see the lights.

I trouble you.

No, not a whit.

Here comes himself to guide you.

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