Speeches (Lines) for Hector
in "Troilus and Cressida"

Total: 57

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# Act, Scene, Line
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Speech text

1

II,2,997

Priam. After so many hours, lives, speeches spent,
Thus once again says Nestor from the Greeks:
'Deliver Helen, and all damage else—
As honour, loss of time, travail, expense,
Wounds, friends, and what else dear that is consumed
In hot digestion of this cormorant war—
Shall be struck off.' Hector, what say you to't?

Hector. Though no man lesser fears the Greeks than I
As far as toucheth my particular,
Yet, dread Priam,
There is no lady of more softer bowels,
More spongy to suck in the sense of fear,
More ready to cry out 'Who knows what follows?'
Than Hector is: the wound of peace is surety,
Surety secure; but modest doubt is call'd
The beacon of the wise, the tent that searches
To the bottom of the worst. Let Helen go:
Since the first sword was drawn about this question,
Every tithe soul, 'mongst many thousand dismes,
Hath been as dear as Helen; I mean, of ours:
If we have lost so many tenths of ours,
To guard a thing not ours nor worth to us,
Had it our name, the value of one ten,
What merit's in that reason which denies
The yielding of her up?


2

II,2,1043

Troilus. You are for dreams and slumbers, brother priest;
You fur your gloves with reason. Here are
your reasons:
You know an enemy intends you harm;
You know a sword employ'd is perilous,
And reason flies the object of all harm:
Who marvels then, when Helenus beholds
A Grecian and his sword, if he do set
The very wings of reason to his heels
And fly like chidden Mercury from Jove,
Or like a star disorb'd? Nay, if we talk of reason,
Let's shut our gates and sleep: manhood and honour
Should have hare-hearts, would they but fat
their thoughts
With this cramm'd reason: reason and respect
Make livers pale and lustihood deject.

Hector. Brother, she is not worth what she doth cost
The holding.


3

II,2,1046

Troilus. What is aught, but as 'tis valued?

Hector. But value dwells not in particular will;
It holds his estimate and dignity
As well wherein 'tis precious of itself
As in the prizer: 'tis mad idolatry
To make the service greater than the god
And the will dotes that is attributive
To what infectiously itself affects,
Without some image of the affected merit.


4

II,2,1094

Cassandra. [Within] Cry, Trojans!

Hector. It is Cassandra.


5

II,2,1098

Cassandra. Cry, Trojans, cry! lend me ten thousand eyes,
And I will fill them with prophetic tears.

Hector. Peace, sister, peace!


6

II,2,1109

(stage directions). [Exit]

Hector. Now, youthful Troilus, do not these high strains
Of divination in our sister work
Some touches of remorse? or is your blood
So madly hot that no discourse of reason,
Nor fear of bad success in a bad cause,
Can qualify the same?


7

II,2,1161

Paris. Sir, I propose not merely to myself
The pleasures such a beauty brings with it;
But I would have the soil of her fair rape
Wiped off, in honourable keeping her.
What treason were it to the ransack'd queen,
Disgrace to your great worths and shame to me,
Now to deliver her possession up
On terms of base compulsion! Can it be
That so degenerate a strain as this
Should once set footing in your generous bosoms?
There's not the meanest spirit on our party
Without a heart to dare or sword to draw
When Helen is defended, nor none so noble
Whose life were ill bestow'd or death unfamed
Where Helen is the subject; then, I say,
Well may we fight for her whom, we know well,
The world's large spaces cannot parallel.

Hector. Paris and Troilus, you have both said well,
And on the cause and question now in hand
Have glozed, but superficially: not much
Unlike young men, whom Aristotle thought
Unfit to hear moral philosophy:
The reasons you allege do more conduce
To the hot passion of distemper'd blood
Than to make up a free determination
'Twixt right and wrong, for pleasure and revenge
Have ears more deaf than adders to the voice
Of any true decision. Nature craves
All dues be render'd to their owners: now,
What nearer debt in all humanity
Than wife is to the husband? If this law
Of nature be corrupted through affection,
And that great minds, of partial indulgence
To their benumbed wills, resist the same,
There is a law in each well-order'd nation
To curb those raging appetites that are
Most disobedient and refractory.
If Helen then be wife to Sparta's king,
As it is known she is, these moral laws
Of nature and of nations speak aloud
To have her back return'd: thus to persist
In doing wrong extenuates not wrong,
But makes it much more heavy. Hector's opinion
Is this in way of truth; yet ne'ertheless,
My spritely brethren, I propend to you
In resolution to keep Helen still,
For 'tis a cause that hath no mean dependance
Upon our joint and several dignities.


8

II,2,1205

Troilus. Why, there you touch'd the life of our design:
Were it not glory that we more affected
Than the performance of our heaving spleens,
I would not wish a drop of Trojan blood
Spent more in her defence. But, worthy Hector,
She is a theme of honour and renown,
A spur to valiant and magnanimous deeds,
Whose present courage may beat down our foes,
And fame in time to come canonize us;
For, I presume, brave Hector would not lose
So rich advantage of a promised glory
As smiles upon the forehead of this action
For the wide world's revenue.

Hector. I am yours,
You valiant offspring of great Priamus.
I have a roisting challenge sent amongst
The dun and factious nobles of the Greeks
Will strike amazement to their drowsy spirits:
I was advertised their great general slept,
Whilst emulation in the army crept:
This, I presume, will wake him.


9

IV,5,2739

Diomedes. As Hector pleases.

Hector. Why, then will I no more:
Thou art, great lord, my father's sister's son,
A cousin-german to great Priam's seed;
The obligation of our blood forbids
A gory emulation 'twixt us twain:
Were thy commixtion Greek and Trojan so
That thou couldst say 'This hand is Grecian all,
And this is Trojan; the sinews of this leg
All Greek, and this all Troy; my mother's blood
Runs on the dexter cheek, and this sinister
Bounds in my father's;' by Jove multipotent,
Thou shouldst not bear from me a Greekish member
Wherein my sword had not impressure made
Of our rank feud: but the just gods gainsay
That any drop thou borrow'dst from thy mother,
My sacred aunt, should by my mortal sword
Be drain'd! Let me embrace thee, Ajax:
By him that thunders, thou hast lusty arms;
Hector would have them fall upon him thus:
Cousin, all honour to thee!


10

IV,5,2763

Ajax. I thank thee, Hector
Thou art too gentle and too free a man:
I came to kill thee, cousin, and bear hence
A great addition earned in thy death.

Hector. Not Neoptolemus so mirable,
On whose bright crest Fame with her loud'st Oyes
Cries 'This is he,' could promise to himself
A thought of added honour torn from Hector.


11

IV,5,2769

Aeneas. There is expectance here from both the sides,
What further you will do.

Hector. We'll answer it;
The issue is embracement: Ajax, farewell.


12

IV,5,2776

Diomedes. 'Tis Agamemnon's wish, and great Achilles
Doth long to see unarm'd the valiant Hector.

Hector. AEneas, call my brother Troilus to me,
And signify this loving interview
To the expecters of our Trojan part;
Desire them home. Give me thy hand, my cousin;
I will go eat with thee and see your knights.


13

IV,5,2782

Ajax. Great Agamemnon comes to meet us here.

Hector. The worthiest of them tell me name by name;
But for Achilles, mine own searching eyes
Shall find him by his large and portly size.


14

IV,5,2794

Agamemnon. Worthy of arms! as welcome as to one
That would be rid of such an enemy;
But that's no welcome: understand more clear,
What's past and what's to come is strew'd with husks
And formless ruin of oblivion;
But in this extant moment, faith and troth,
Strain'd purely from all hollow bias-drawing,
Bids thee, with most divine integrity,
From heart of very heart, great Hector, welcome.

Hector. I thank thee, most imperious Agamemnon.


15

IV,5,2799

Menelaus. Let me confirm my princely brother's greeting:
You brace of warlike brothers, welcome hither.

Hector. Who must we answer?


16

IV,5,2801

Aeneas. The noble Menelaus.

Hector. O, you, my lord? by Mars his gauntlet, thanks!
Mock not, that I affect the untraded oath;
Your quondam wife swears still by Venus' glove:
She's well, but bade me not commend her to you.


17

IV,5,2806

Menelaus. Name her not now, sir; she's a deadly theme.

Hector. O, pardon; I offend.


18

IV,5,2826

Aeneas. 'Tis the old Nestor.

Hector. Let me embrace thee, good old chronicle,
That hast so long walk'd hand in hand with time:
Most reverend Nestor, I am glad to clasp thee.


19

IV,5,2831

Nestor. I would my arms could match thee in contention,
As they contend with thee in courtesy.

Hector. I would they could.


20

IV,5,2837

Ulysses. I wonder now how yonder city stands
When we have here her base and pillar by us.

Hector. I know your favour, Lord Ulysses, well.
Ah, sir, there's many a Greek and Trojan dead,
Since first I saw yourself and Diomed
In Ilion, on your Greekish embassy.


21

IV,5,2846

Ulysses. Sir, I foretold you then what would ensue:
My prophecy is but half his journey yet;
For yonder walls, that pertly front your town,
Yond towers, whose wanton tops do buss the clouds,
Must kiss their own feet.

Hector. I must not believe you:
There they stand yet, and modestly I think,
The fall of every Phrygian stone will cost
A drop of Grecian blood: the end crowns all,
And that old common arbitrator, Time,
Will one day end it.


22

IV,5,2860

Achilles. I shall forestall thee, Lord Ulysses, thou!
Now, Hector, I have fed mine eyes on thee;
I have with exact view perused thee, Hector,
And quoted joint by joint.

Hector. Is this Achilles?


23

IV,5,2862

Achilles. I am Achilles.

Hector. Stand fair, I pray thee: let me look on thee.


24

IV,5,2864

Achilles. Behold thy fill.

Hector. Nay, I have done already.


25

IV,5,2867

Achilles. Thou art too brief: I will the second time,
As I would buy thee, view thee limb by limb.

Hector. O, like a book of sport thou'lt read me o'er;
But there's more in me than thou understand'st.
Why dost thou so oppress me with thine eye?


26

IV,5,2875

Achilles. Tell me, you heavens, in which part of his body
Shall I destroy him? whether there, or there, or there?
That I may give the local wound a name
And make distinct the very breach whereout
Hector's great spirit flew: answer me, heavens!

Hector. It would discredit the blest gods, proud man,
To answer such a question: stand again:
Think'st thou to catch my life so pleasantly
As to prenominate in nice conjecture
Where thou wilt hit me dead?


27

IV,5,2881

Achilles. I tell thee, yea.

Hector. Wert thou an oracle to tell me so,
I'd not believe thee. Henceforth guard thee well;
For I'll not kill thee there, nor there, nor there;
But, by the forge that stithied Mars his helm,
I'll kill thee every where, yea, o'er and o'er.
You wisest Grecians, pardon me this brag;
His insolence draws folly from my lips;
But I'll endeavour deeds to match these words,
Or may I never—


28

IV,5,2896

Ajax. Do not chafe thee, cousin:
And you, Achilles, let these threats alone,
Till accident or purpose bring you to't:
You may have every day enough of Hector
If you have stomach; the general state, I fear,
Can scarce entreat you to be odd with him.

Hector. I pray you, let us see you in the field:
We have had pelting wars, since you refused
The Grecians' cause.


29

IV,5,2902

Achilles. Dost thou entreat me, Hector?
To-morrow do I meet thee, fell as death;
To-night all friends.

Hector. Thy hand upon that match.


30

V,1,3004

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

Hector. I trouble you.


31

V,1,3011

Agamemnon. So now, fair prince of Troy, I bid good night.
Ajax commands the guard to tend on you.

Hector. Thanks and good night to the Greeks' general.


32

V,1,3013

Menelaus. Good night, my lord.

Hector. Good night, sweet lord Menelaus.


33

V,1,3024

Diomedes. I cannot, lord; I have important business,
The tide whereof is now. Good night, great Hector.

Hector. Give me your hand.


34

V,1,3029

Troilus. Sweet sir, you honour me.

Hector. And so, good night.


35

V,3,3279

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!


36

V,3,3282

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

Hector. No more, I say.


37

V,3,3291

Cassandra. O, 'tis true.

Hector. Ho! bid my trumpet sound!


38

V,3,3293

Cassandra. No notes of sally, for the heavens, sweet brother.

Hector. Be gone, I say: the gods have heard me swear.


39

V,3,3304

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:
Lie every man holds dear; but the brave man
Holds honour far more precious-dear than life.
[Enter TROILUS]
How now, young man! mean'st thou to fight to-day?


40

V,3,3312

(stage directions). [Exit CASSANDRA]

Hector. No, faith, young Troilus; doff thy harness, youth;
I am to-day i' the 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.


41

V,3,3320

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.


42

V,3,3324

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.


43

V,3,3326

Troilus. Fool's play, by heaven, Hector.

Hector. How now! how now!


44

V,3,3332

Troilus. For the love of all the gods,
Let's leave the hermit pity with our mothers,
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!


45

V,3,3334

Troilus. Hector, then 'tis wars.

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


46

V,3,3354

Priam. Come, Hector, come, go back:
Thy wife hath dream'd; 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 engaged to many Greeks,
Even in the faith of valour, to appear
This morning to them.


47

V,3,3359

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.


48

V,3,3366

Andromache. Do not, dear father.

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


49

V,3,3383

(stage directions). [Exit]

Hector. You are amazed, 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.


50

V,4,3439

(stage directions). [Enter HECTOR]

Hector. What art thou, Greek? art thou for Hector's match?
Art thou of blood and honour?


51

V,4,3443

Thersites. No, no, I am a rascal; a scurvy railing knave:
a very filthy rogue.

Hector. I do believe thee: live.


52

V,6,3528

(stage directions). [Enter HECTOR]

Hector. Yea, Troilus? O, well fought, my youngest brother!


53

V,6,3531

Achilles. Now do I see thee, ha! have at thee, Hector!

Hector. Pause, if thou wilt.


54

V,6,3538

(stage directions). [Exit]

Hector. Fare thee well:
I would have been much more a fresher man,
Had I expected thee. How now, my brother!


55

V,6,3549

(stage directions). [Enter one in sumptuous armour]

Hector. Stand, stand, thou Greek; thou art a goodly mark:
No? wilt thou not? I like thy armour well;
I'll frush it and unlock the rivets all,
But I'll be master of it: wilt thou not,
beast, abide?
Why, then fly on, I'll hunt thee for thy hide.


56

V,8,3588

(stage directions). [Enter HECTOR]

Hector. Most putrefied core, so fair without,
Thy goodly armour thus hath cost thy life.
Now is my day's work done; I'll take good breath:
Rest, sword; thou hast thy fill of blood and death.
[Puts off his helmet and hangs his shield]
behind him]


57

V,8,3599

Achilles. Look, Hector, how the sun begins to set;
How ugly night comes breathing at his heels:
Even with the vail and darking of the sun,
To close the day up, Hector's life is done.

Hector. I am unarm'd; forego this vantage, Greek.


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