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THEUROPIDES, PHANISCUS, and another SERVANT.
coming forward . Really, I don't hear either the sound of revellers here, as once it was, nor yet the music-girl singing, nor any one else. Goes towards the door. THEUROPIDES
What's the matter here? What are these people seeking at my house? What do they want? What are they peeping in for? PHANISCUS
I shall proceed to knock at the door. Knocks. Hallo there, unlock the door! Hallo, Tranio! are you going to open it, I say? THEUROPIDES
advancing . What story's this, I wonder? PHANISCUS
aloud . Are you going to open it, I say? I've come to fetch my master Callidamates. THEUROPIDES
Harkye, you lads! what are you doing there? Why are you breaking down that door? PHANISCUS
Our master's at a drinking-party here. THEUROPIDES
Your master at a drinking-party here? PHANISCUS
I say so. THEUROPIDES
You're carrying the joke too far, my lad. PHANISCUS
We've come to fetch him. THEUROPIDES
What person? PHANISCUS
Our master. Prithee, how often must I tell you? THEUROPIDES
There's no one living here my lad; for I do think that you are a decent lad. PHANISCUS
Doesn't a young gentleman called Philolaches live in this house? ANOTHER SERVANT of Callidamates.
aside . This old fellow's crack-brained, surely. PHANISCUS
You are entirely mistaken, respected sir1; for unless he moved from here to-day or yesterday, I know for certain that he's living here. THEUROPIDES
Why, no one has been living here for these six months past. ANOTHER SERVANT of Callidamates.
You are dreaming. THEUROPIDES
What, I? ANOTHER SERVANT of Callidamates.
Don't you be impertinent. Let me speak to the lad. Pointing to PHANISCUS. PHANISCUS
No one lives there? O dear---- THEUROPIDES
It's the fact. PHANISCUS
Really! why, yesterday and the day before, four, five, six days ago, all along, in fact, since his father went abroad from here, eating and drinking have never ceased for a single three days here. THEUROPIDES
What is it you say? PHANISCUS
That eating and drinking have never stopped for a single three days here, bringing in wenches, living like Greeks, hiring harpists and music-girls. THEUROPIDES
Who was it did this? PHANISCUS
What Philolaches? PHANISCUS
He whose father I take to be Theuropides. THEUROPIDES
apart . O dear, O dear! I'm utterly undone, if he says the truth in this. I'll continue to question him still Do you say that this Philolaches, whoever he is, has been in the habit of drinking here together with your master? PHANISCUS
Here, I tell you. THEUROPIDES
My lad, contrary to your appearance, you are a fool. See now, please, that you've not perchance been dropping in somewhere for an afternoon's whet2, and have been drinking there a little more than was enough. PHANISCUS
What do you mean? THEUROPIDES
Just what I say: don't be going by mistake to other persons' houses. PHANISCUS
I know where I ought to go, and the place to which I was to come. Philolaches lives here, whose father is Theuropides; and who, after his father went away to trade, made free a music-girl here. THEUROPIDES
Philolaches, say you? PHANISCUS
Just so; Philematium, I mean. THEUROPIDES
For how much? ANOTHER SERVANT of Callidamates.
For thirty talents. PHANISCUS
No, by Apollo3; you mean minæ. THEUROPIDES
Do you say that a mistress was purchased for Philolaches for thirty minæ? PHANISCUS
I do say so. THEUROPIDES
And that he gave her her freedom? PHANISCUS
I do say so. THEUROPIDES
And that after his father had departed hence abroad, he has been carousing here continually with your master? PHANISCUS
I do say so. THEUROPIDES
Well, has he made purchase of the house next door here? PHANISCUS
I don't say so. THEUROPIDES
Has he given forty minæ, too, to this person, to be as a deposit? PHANISCUS
Nor yet do I say so. THEUROPIDES
Ah me! you've proved my ruin! PHANISCUS
Aye, and he has proved the ruin of his father. THEUROPIDES
You prophesy the truth! I could wish it false! PHANISCUS
A friend of his father, I suppose? THEUROPIDES
Ah me! Upon my faith, you do pronounce him to be a wretched father. PHANISCUS
Why really, this is nothing at all-thirty minæ, in comparison with the other expenses he has incurred in good living. He has ruined his father. There's one servant there a very great scoundrel, Tranio by name; he could even waste the revenue of a Hercules4. On my word, I'm sadly distrest for his father; for when he comes to know that things have gone on thus, a hot coal will be scorching his breast, poor man. THEUROPIDES
If, indeed, this is the truth. PHANISCUS
What am I to gain, that I should tell a lie? Knocks again at the door. Hallo, you! is any one coming to open this door? ANOTHER SERVANT of Callidamates.
Why do you knock in this way, when there's no one in the house? PHANISCUS
I fancy that he's gone elsewhere to carouse. Now then, let's begone. They move as if going. THEUROPIDES
What, my lad, are you off then? Liberty's the overcoat for your back5. PHANISCUS
Nothing have I with which to cover my back, except to pay respect and service to my master. (Exeunt PHANISCUS and SERVANT.)
1 Respected sir: "Pater." Literally, "father."
2 An afternoon's whet: "Merendam." According to some, this meal was the same as the "prandium," or "breakfast;" while others take it to have been a slight meal or luncheon, taken at about four or five in the afternoon.
4 The revenue of a Hercules: It was the custom with many to devote to Hercules the tenth part of their possessions. Consequently, the revenues belonging to the Temples of this Deity would be especially large.
5 The overcoat for your back: Schmieder thinks this is said insultingly to Phaniscus. It would, however, appear otherwise: Phaniscus having no "pænnla," or "overcoat," on, Theuropides, who thinks him a very worthy fellow, says, "My good fellow, your freedom would make yon a very fine overcoat."
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