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Enter CALLICLES and STASIMUS.
To what effect were you speaking about this, Stasimus? STASIMUS
That Lesbonicus, the son of my master, has betrothed his sister; in those terms. CALLICLES
To what person has he betrothed her? STASIMUS
To Lysiteles, the son of Philto; without a portion, too. CALLICLES
Without a portion, will he marry her into a family so rich1? You are telling me a thing not to be credited. STASIMUS
Why, faith, you would be for never believing. If you don't believe this, at all events I shall be believing---- CALLICLES
That I don't care a fig for your belief. CALLICLES
How long since, or where, was this matter agreed to? STASIMUS
On this very spot--here, before his door pointing to PHILTO'S house . This moment-like2, as the man of Præneste says. CALLICLES
And has Lesbonicus, amid his ruined fortunes, become so much more frugal than in his prosperous circumstances? STASIMUS
Why, in fact, Philto himself came of his own accord to make the offer for his son. CALLICLES
aside. By my troth, it really will be a disgrace, if a portion is not given to the maiden. In fine, I think, i' faith, that that matter concerns myself. I will go to my corrector, and will ask advice of him. (Exit.) STASIMUS
I pretty nearly guess, and I have a strong suspicion, why he makes such speed on this: namely, that he may turn Lesbonicus out of his bit of land, after he has turned him out of his house. O Charmides, my master! since your property here is being torn to pieces in your absence, I wish I could see you return safe, that you might both take vengeance on your enemies, and give the reward to me according as I have behaved, and do behave towards you. 'Tis an extremely difficult thing for a friend to be found really such as the name imports, to whom, when you have entrusted your interests, you may sleep without any care. But lo! I perceive our son-in-law3 coming, together with his neighbour. Something--what, I know not--is wrong between them. They are walking, each with a hasty step; the one is catching the other that is before him by the cloak. They have come to a stop in no very courteous fashion. I'll step aside here a little distance. I have a wish to hear the conversation of these two that are to be connected by marriage. He retires to a distance.
1 Into a family so rich: "In tantas divitias," literally, "into so great wealth."
2 This moment-like: "Tammodo," He is joking upon the patois of the people of Præneste, who said "tammodo," instead of "modo," "this instant," or "just now." Festus also alludes to this expression, as used by the Prænestines. In the Truculentus, act iii., sc. 2, l. 23, he again takes them off for catting "Ciconia" down to "Conia." Præeste was a town of Latium, not far from Rome. Its present name is Palestrina.
3 Our son-i-law: He means Lysiteles, the contemplated son-in-law of his master Charmides, whom he has just been apostrophising.
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