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

Total: 38

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# Act, Scene, Line
(Click to see in context)
Speech text

1

I,3,481

With due observance of thy godlike seat,
Great Agamemnon, Nestor shall apply
Thy latest words. In the reproof of chance
Lies the true proof of men: the sea being smooth,
How many shallow bauble boats dare sail
Upon her patient breast, making their way
With those of nobler bulk!
But let the ruffian Boreas once enrage
The gentle Thetis, and anon behold
The strong-ribb'd bark through liquid mountains cut,
Bounding between the two moist elements,
Like Perseus' horse: where's then the saucy boat
Whose weak untimber'd sides but even now
Co-rivall'd greatness? Either to harbour fled,
Or made a toast for Neptune. Even so
Doth valour's show and valour's worth divide
In storms of fortune; for in her ray and brightness
The herd hath more annoyance by the breeze
Than by the tiger; but when the splitting wind
Makes flexible the knees of knotted oaks,
And flies fled under shade, why, then the thing of courage
As roused with rage with rage doth sympathize,
And with an accent tuned in selfsame key
Retorts to chiding fortune.

2

I,3,591

Most wisely hath Ulysses here discover'd
The fever whereof all our power is sick.

3

I,3,638

And in the imitation of these twain—
Who, as Ulysses says, opinion crowns
With an imperial voice—many are infect.
Ajax is grown self-will'd, and bears his head
In such a rein, in full as proud a place
As broad Achilles; keeps his tent like him;
Makes factious feasts; rails on our state of war,
Bold as an oracle, and sets Thersites,
A slave whose gall coins slanders like a mint,
To match us in comparisons with dirt,
To weaken and discredit our exposure,
How rank soever rounded in with danger.

4

I,3,664

Let this be granted, and Achilles' horse
Makes many Thetis' sons.

5

I,3,752

Tell him of Nestor, one that was a man
When Hector's grandsire suck'd: he is old now;
But if there be not in our Grecian host
One noble man that hath one spark of fire,
To answer for his love, tell him from me
I'll hide my silver beard in a gold beaver
And in my vantbrace put this wither'd brawn,
And meeting him will tell him that my lady
Was fairer than his grandam and as chaste
As may be in the world: his youth in flood,
I'll prove this truth with my three drops of blood.

6

I,3,773

What says Ulysses?

7

I,3,776

What is't?

8

I,3,783

Well, and how?

9

I,3,787

The purpose is perspicuous even as substance,
Whose grossness little characters sum up:
And, in the publication, make no strain,
But that Achilles, were his brain as barren
As banks of Libya,—though, Apollo knows,
'Tis dry enough,—will, with great speed of judgment,
Ay, with celerity, find Hector's purpose
Pointing on him.

10

I,3,796

Yes, 'tis most meet: whom may you else oppose,
That can from Hector bring his honour off,
If not Achilles? Though't be a sportful combat,
Yet in the trial much opinion dwells;
For here the Trojans taste our dear'st repute
With their finest palate: and trust to me, Ulysses,
Our imputation shall be oddly poised
In this wild action; for the success,
Although particular, shall give a scantling
Of good or bad unto the general;
And in such indexes, although small pricks
To their subsequent volumes, there is seen
The baby figure of the giant mass
Of things to come at large. It is supposed
He that meets Hector issues from our choice
And choice, being mutual act of all our souls,
Makes merit her election, and doth boil,
As 'twere from us all, a man distill'd
Out of our virtues; who miscarrying,
What heart receives from hence the conquering part,
To steel a strong opinion to themselves?
Which entertain'd, limbs are his instruments,
In no less working than are swords and bows
Directive by the limbs.

11

I,3,829

I see them not with my old eyes: what are they?

12

I,3,850

Ulysses,
Now I begin to relish thy advice;
And I will give a taste of it forthwith
To Agamemnon: go we to him straight.
Two curs shall tame each other: pride alone
Must tarre the mastiffs on, as 'twere their bone.

13

II,3,1308

What moves Ajax thus to bay at him?

14

II,3,1310

Who, Thersites?

15

II,3,1312

Then will Ajax lack matter, if he have lost his argument.

16

II,3,1315

All the better; their fraction is more our wish than
their faction: but it was a strong composure a fool
could disunite.

17

II,3,1321

No Achilles with him.

18

II,3,1380

Yet he loves himself: is't not strange?

19

II,3,1422

[Aside to DIOMEDES] O, this is well; he rubs the
vein of him.

20

II,3,1432

How he describes himself!

21

II,3,1441

An 'twould, you'ld carry half.

22

II,3,1444

He's not yet through warm: force him with praises:
pour in, pour in; his ambition is dry.

23

II,3,1447

Our noble general, do not do so.

24

II,3,1452

Wherefore should you so?
He is not emulous, as Achilles is.

25

II,3,1457

What a vice were it in Ajax now,—

26

II,3,1480

Ay, my good son.

27

III,3,1926

Would you, my lord, aught with the general?

28

III,3,1928

Nothing, my lord.

29

IV,5,2618

Our general doth salute you with a kiss.

30

IV,5,2621

And very courtly counsel: I'll begin.
So much for Nestor.

31

IV,5,2659

A woman of quick sense.

32

IV,5,2730

Now, Ajax, hold thine own!

33

IV,5,2807

I have, thou gallant Trojan, seen thee oft
Labouring for destiny make cruel way
Through ranks of Greekish youth, and I have seen thee,
As hot as Perseus, spur thy Phrygian steed,
Despising many forfeits and subduements,
When thou hast hung thy advanced sword i' the air,
Not letting it decline on the declined,
That I have said to some my standers by
'Lo, Jupiter is yonder, dealing life!'
And I have seen thee pause and take thy breath,
When that a ring of Greeks have hemm'd thee in,
Like an Olympian wrestling: this have I seen;
But this thy countenance, still lock'd in steel,
I never saw till now. I knew thy grandsire,
And once fought with him: he was a soldier good;
But, by great Mars, the captain of us all,
Never saw like thee. Let an old man embrace thee;
And, worthy warrior, welcome to our tents.

34

IV,5,2829

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

35

IV,5,2832

Ha!
By this white beard, I'ld fight with thee to-morrow.
Well, welcome, welcome! I have seen the time.

36

V,5,3473

Go, bear Patroclus' body to Achilles;
And bid the snail-paced Ajax arm for shame.
There is a thousand Hectors in the field:
Now here he fights on Galathe his horse,
And there lacks work; anon he's there afoot,
And there they fly or die, like scaled sculls
Before the belching whale; then is he yonder,
And there the strawy Greeks, ripe for his edge,
Fall down before him, like the mower's swath:
Here, there, and every where, he leaves and takes,
Dexterity so obeying appetite
That what he will he does, and does so much
That proof is call'd impossibility.

37

V,5,3504

So, so, we draw together.

38

V,9,3620

Peace, drums!
[Within]
Achilles! Achilles! Hector's slain! Achilles.

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