Document: All > Shakespeare > Comedies > Troilus and Cressida > Act V, scene IV
[Alarums: excursions. Enter THERSITES]
THERSITES: Now they are clapper-clawing one another; I'll go
look on. That dissembling abominable varlets Diomed,
has got that same scurvy doting foolish young knave's
sleeve of Troy there in his helm: I would fain see
them meet; that that same young Trojan ass, that
loves the whore there, might send that Greekish
whore-masterly villain, with the sleeve, back to the
dissembling luxurious drab, of a sleeveless errand.
O' the t'other side, the policy of those crafty
swearing rascals, that stale old mouse-eaten dry
cheese, Nestor, and that same dog-fox, Ulysses, is
not proved worthy a blackberry: they set me up, in
policy, that mongrel cur, Ajax, against that dog of
as bad a kind, Achilles: and now is the cur Ajax
prouder than the cur Achilles, and will not arm
to-day; whereupon the Grecians begin to proclaim
barbarism, and policy grows into an ill opinion.
Soft! here comes sleeve, and t'other.
[Enter DIOMEDES, TROILUS following]
TROILUS: Fly not; for shouldst thou take the river Styx,
I would swim after.
DIOMEDES: Thou dost miscall retire:
I do not fly, but advantageous care
Withdrew me from the odds of multitude:
Have at thee!
THERSITES: Hold thy whore, Grecian!--now for thy whore,
Trojan!--now the sleeve, now the sleeve!
[Exeunt TROILUS and DIOMEDES, fighting]
HECTOR: What art thou, Greek? art thou for Hector's match?
Art thou of blood and honour?
THERSITES: No, no, I am a rascal; a scurvy railing knave:
a very filthy rogue.
HECTOR: I do believe thee: live.
THERSITES: God-a-mercy, that thou wilt believe me; but a
plague break thy neck for frightening me! What's
become of the wenching rogues? I think they have
swallowed one another: I would laugh at that
miracle: yet, in a sort, lechery eats itself.
I'll seek them.
TROILUS AND CRESSIDA