ACT V
Scene 3.
 

Troy. Before PRIAM'S palace

Enter HECTOR and ANDROMACHE

ANDROMACHE
When was my lord so much ungently temper'd
To stop his ears against admonishment?
Unarm, unarm, and do not fight to-day.

HECTOR
You train me to offend you; get you in.
By all the everlasting gods, I'll go.

ANDROMACHE
My dreams will, sure, prove ominous to the day.

HECTOR
No more, I say.

Enter CASSANDRA

CASSANDRA
Where is my brother Hector?

ANDROMACHE
Here, sister, arm'd, and bloody in intent.
Consort with me in loud and dear petition,
Pursue we him on knees; for I have dreamt
Of bloody turbulence, and this whole night
Hath nothing been but shapes and forms of slaughter.

CASSANDRA
O, 'tis true!

HECTOR
Ho! bid my trumpet sound.

CASSANDRA
No notes of sally, for the heavens, sweet brother!

HECTOR
Be gone, I say. The gods have heard me swear.

CASSANDRA
The gods are deaf to hot and peevish vows;
They are polluted off'rings, more abhorr'd
Than spotted livers in the sacrifice.

ANDROMACHE
O, be persuaded! Do not count it holy
To hurt by being just. It is as lawful,
For we would give much, to use violent thefts
And rob in the behalf of charity.

CASSANDRA
It is the purpose that makes strong the vow;
But vows to every purpose must not hold.
Unarm, sweet Hector.

HECTOR
Hold you still, I say.
Mine honour keeps the weather of my fate.
Life every man holds dear; but the dear man
Holds honour far more precious dear than life.

Enter TROILUS

How now, young man! Mean'st thou to fight to-day?

ANDROMACHE
Cassandra, call my father to persuade.

Exit CASSANDRA

HECTOR
No, faith, young Troilus; doff thy harness, youth;
I am to-day i' th' vein of chivalry.
Let grow thy sinews till their knots be strong,
And tempt not yet the brushes of the war.
Unarm thee, go; and doubt thou not, brave boy,
I'll stand to-day for thee and me and Troy.

TROILUS
Brother, you have a vice of mercy in you
Which better fits a lion than a man.

HECTOR
What vice is that, good Troilus?
Chide me for it.

TROILUS
When many times the captive Grecian falls,
Even in the fan and wind of your fair sword,
You bid them rise and live.

HECTOR
O, 'tis fair play!

TROILUS
Fool's play, by heaven, Hector.

HECTOR
How now! how now!

TROILUS
For th' love of all the gods,
Let's leave the hermit Pity with our mother;
And when we have our armours buckled on,
The venom'd vengeance ride upon our swords,
Spur them to ruthful work, rein them from ruth!

HECTOR
Fie, savage, fie!

TROILUS
Hector, then 'tis wars.

HECTOR
Troilus, I would not have you fight to-day.

TROILUS
Who should withhold me?
Not fate, obedience, nor the hand of Mars
Beck'ning with fiery truncheon my retire;
Not Priamus and Hecuba on knees,
Their eyes o'ergalled with recourse of tears;
Nor you, my brother, with your true sword drawn,
Oppos'd to hinder me, should stop my way,
But by my ruin.

Re-enter CASSANDRA, with PRIAM

CASSANDRA
Lay hold upon him, Priam, hold him fast;
He is thy crutch; now if thou lose thy stay,
Thou on him leaning, and all Troy on thee,
Fall all together.

PRIAM
Come, Hector, come, go back.
Thy wife hath dreamt; thy mother hath had visions;
Cassandra doth foresee; and I myself
Am like a prophet suddenly enrapt
To tell thee that this day is ominous.
Therefore, come back.

HECTOR
Aeneas is a-field;
And I do stand engag'd to many Greeks,
Even in the faith of valour, to appear
This morning to them.

PRIAM
Ay, but thou shalt not go.

HECTOR
I must not break my faith.
You know me dutiful; therefore, dear sir,
Let me not shame respect; but give me leave
To take that course by your consent and voice
Which you do here forbid me, royal Priam.

CASSANDRA
O Priam, yield not to him!

ANDROMACHE
Do not, dear father.

HECTOR
Andromache, I am offended with you.
Upon the love you bear me, get you in.

Exit ANDROMACHE

TROILUS
This foolish, dreaming, superstitious girl
Makes all these bodements.

CASSANDRA
O, farewell, dear Hector!
Look how thou diest. Look how thy eye turns pale.
Look how thy wounds do bleed at many vents.
Hark how Troy roars; how Hecuba cries out;
How poor Andromache shrills her dolours forth;
Behold distraction, frenzy, and amazement,
Like witless antics, one another meet,
And all cry, Hector! Hector's dead! O Hector!

TROILUS
Away, away!

CASSANDRA
Farewell!-yet, soft! Hector, I take my leave.
Thou dost thyself and all our Troy deceive.

Exit

HECTOR
You are amaz'd, my liege, at her exclaim.
Go in, and cheer the town; we'll forth, and fight,
Do deeds worth praise and tell you them at night.

PRIAM
Farewell. The gods with safety stand about thee!

Exeunt severally PRIAM and HECTOR. Alarums

TROILUS
They are at it, hark! Proud Diomed, believe,
I come to lose my arm or win my sleeve.

Enter PANDARUS

PANDARUS
Do you hear, my lord? Do you hear?

TROILUS
What now?

PANDARUS
Here's a letter come from yond poor girl.

TROILUS
Let me read.

PANDARUS
A whoreson tisick, a whoreson rascally tisick so troubles
me, and the foolish fortune of this girl, and what one thing,
what another, that I shall leave you one o' th's days; and I have
a rheum in mine eyes too, and such an ache in my bones that
unless a man were curs'd I cannot tell what to think on't. What
says she there?

TROILUS
Words, words, mere words, no matter from the heart;
Th' effect doth operate another way.

[Tearing the letter]

Go, wind, to wind, there turn and change together.
My love with words and errors still she feeds,
But edifies another with her deeds.

Exeunt severally