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to himself. I have this advantage1 from my country-house being so near at hand; no weariness, either of country or of town, ever takes possession of me; when satiety begins to come on, I change my locality. But is not that our Parmeno? Surely it is he. Whom are you waiting for, Parmeno, before the door here? PARMENO
pretends not to see him. Who is it Turning round. Oh, I'm glad that you have returned safe. LACHES
Whom are you waiting for? PARMENO
aside. I'm undone: my tongue cleaves to my mouth through fright. LACHES
Why, what is it you are trembling about? Is all quite right? Tell me. PARMENO
Master, in the first place, I would have you persuaded of what is the fact; whatever has happened in this affair has happened through no fault of mine. LACHES
What is it? PARMENO
Really you have reason to ask. I ought first to have told you the circumstances. Phaedria purchased a certain Eunuch, to make a present of to this woman here. LACHES
To what woman? PARMENO
To Thais. LACHES
Bought? Good heavens, I'm undone! For how much? PARMENO
Twenty minae. LACHES
Done for, quite. PARMENO
Then, Chaerea is in love with a certain music-girl here. Pointing to THAIS'S house. LACHES
How! What? In love? Does he know already what a courtesan means? Is he come to town? One misfortune close upon another. PARMENO
Master, don't look so at me; he didn't do these things by my encouragement. LACHES
Leave off talking about yourself. If I live, you hang-dog, I'll---- But first give me an account of it, whatever it is. PARMENO
He was taken to the house of Thais in place of the Eunuch. LACHES
In place of the Eunuch? PARMENO
Such is the fact. They have since apprehended him in the house as a ravisher, and bound him. LACHES
Mark the assurance of courtesans. >LACH.
Is there any other calamity or misfortune besides, that you have not told me of? PARMENO
That's all. LACHES
Do I delay rushing in here? Runs into the house of THAIS. PARMENO
to himself. There's no doubt but that I shall have a heavy punishment for this affair, only that I was obliged to act thus. I'm glad of this, that some mischief will befall these women here through my agency, for the old man has, for a long time, been on the look-out for some occasion2 to do them a bad turn; at last he has found it.
1 This advantage: Donatus here observes that the Poet introduces Laches, as he has Parmeno just before, in a state of perfect tranquillity, that their sudden change of feeling may be the more diverting to the Audience.
2 For some occasion: We learn from Donatus that Menander was more explicit concerning the resentment of Laches against Thais, on account of her having corrupted Phaedria.
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