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Enter MENAECHMUS SOSICLES, from the house of EROTIUM, with the mantle on.
speaking to EROTIUM within . Can't you rest content, if this day I bring it you back in good time, nicely and properly trimmed? I'll cause you to say it isn't itself, so much shall it be disguised. PENICULUS
apart . He's carrying the mantle to the embroiderer's, the breakfast finished and the wine drunk up, and the Parasite shut out of doors. By my troth, I'm not the person that I am, if I don't handsomely avenge this injury and myself. 'Tis requisite I should watch ... I'll give something. MENAECHMUS SOSICLES
to himself . O ye immortal Gods! on what man ever have you conferred more blessings in one day, who hoped for less? I've been breakfasting, drinking, feasting with a mistress; and I've carried off this mantle, of which she shall no more be owner after this day. PENICULUS
Isn't he now talking about me, and my share of the repast? I can't well hear what he says. MENAECHMUS SOSICLES
to himself . She says that I secretly gave her this, and that I stole it away from my wife. When I perceived that she was mistaken, at once I began to assent, as though I really had had acquaintanceship with her. Whatever the woman said, the same said I. What need of many words? I was never entertained at less expense. PENICULUS
apart . I'll accost the fellow; for I quite long to have a row. MENAECHMUS SOSICLES
Who's this that's coming up towards me? Takes off the mantle, and hides it. PENICULUS
What say you, you fellow lighter than a feather, most rascally and most abandoned--you disgraceful man--you cheat, and most worthless fellow? Why have I deserved this of you? For what reason should you ruin me? How you stole yourself away from me just now at the Forum. You've been performing the funeral of the breakfast in my absence. Why did you dare to do so, when I was entitled to it in an equal degree? MENAECHMUS SOSICLES
Young man, prithee, what business with me have you, who are thus purposely insulting a person whom you know not? Do you wish a punishment to be given you for your abuse? PENICULUS
Do be quiet; by my faith, I discover that you've done that already indeed. MENAECHMUS SOSICLES
Answer me, young man, I beg; what is your name? PENICULUS
Are you laughing at me, as well, as though you didn't know my name? MENAECHMUS SOSICLES
By my troth, I never saw or knew you, that I'm aware of, before this day; but at all events, whoever you are, if you do what's right, you won't be an annoyance to me. PENICULUS
Don't you know me? MENAECHMUS SOSICLES
I shouldn't deny it if I did know you. PENICULUS
Menaechmus, awake. MENAECHMUS SOSICLES
I' troth, I really am awake, so far as I know. PENICULUS
Don't you know your own Parasite? MENAECHMUS SOSICLES
Young man, I find that your headpiece isn't sound. PENICULUS
Answer me; have you not purloined that mantle from your wife to-day, and given it to Erotium? MENAECHMUS SOSICLES
I' faith I have no wife, nor have I given the mantle to Erotium, nor have I purloined it. PENICULUS
Are you really in your senses? ... This matter's settled1. Did I not see you coming out of doors clad in a mantle? MENAECHMUS SOSICLES
Woe to your head. Do you think that all people are effeminate rogues2 because you are one? Do you declare that I was clothed in a mantle? PENICULUS
Troth, I really do. MENAECHMUS SOSICLES
Why don't you go where you are deserving to go, or else request yourself to be atoned for, you downright madman? PENICULUS
By my troth, never shall any one prevail upon me not to tell your wife the whole matter now, just as it happened. All these insults shall be retorted upon yourself. I'll take care that you shan't have devoured the breakfast unpunished. He goes into the house of MENAECHMUS of Epidamnus. MENAECHMUS SOSICLES
What's the meaning of this business? Why, Just as I see each person, do they all make fun of me in this way? But the door makes a noise.
2 Effeminate rogues: "Cinaedos." Literally, "dancers" or "dancing-masters," who, being effeminate persons, would be more likely to wear a "palla" of gay colours. [The translator is suppressing the actual meaning of the word. A cinaedus (Greek κίναιδος) is a homosexual man.]
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