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Enter MICIO, from his house.
speaking to GETA, within. Does my brother order it? Where is he? To DEMEA. Is this your order, Demea? DEMEA
Certainly, I do order it, and in this matter, and in every thing else, wish especially to make this family one with ourselves, to oblige, serve, and unite them. AESCHINUS
Father, pray let it be so. MICIO
I do not oppose it. DEMEA
On the contrary, i' faith, it is what we ought to do: in the first place, she is the mother of his wife pointing to AESCHINUS . MICIO
She is. What then? DEMEA
An honest and respectable woman. MICIO
So they say. DEMEA
Advanced in years. MICIO
I am aware of it. DEMEA
Through her years, she is long past child-bearing; there is no one to take care of her; she is a lone woman. MICIO
aside. What can be his meaning ? DEMEA
It is right you should marry her; and that you, Aeschinus, should use your endeavors to effect it. MICIO
I, marry her, indeed ? DEMEA
You, I say. MICIO
You are trifling ! DEMEA
Aeschinus, if you are a man, he'll do it AESCHINUS
My dear father---- MICIO
What, ass! do you attend to him? DEMEA
'T is all in vain; it can not be otherwise. MICIO
You are mad! AESCHINUS
Do let me prevail on you, my father. MICIO
Are you out of your senses? Take yourself off.1 DEMEA
Come, do oblige your son. MICIO
Are you quite in your right mind? Am I, in my five-and-sixtieth year, to be marrying at last? A decrepit old woman too ? Do you advise me to do this? AESCHINUS
Do; I have promised it.2 MICIO
Promised, indeed; be generous at your own cost, young man. DEMEA
Come, what if he should ask a still greater favor ? MICIO
As if this was not the greatest ! DEMEA
Do comply. AESCHINUS
Don't make any difficulty. DEMEA
Do promise. MICIO
Will you not have done? AESCHINUS
Not until I have prevailed upon you. MICIO
Really, this is downright force.3 DEMEA
Act with heartiness, Micio. MICIO
Although this seems to me4 to be wrong, foolish, absurd, and repugnant to my mode of life, yet, if you so strongly wish it, be it so. AESCHINUS
You act obligingly. DEMEA
With reason I love you; but---- MICIO
What ? DEMEA
I will tell you, when my wish has been complied with. MICIO
What now ? What remains to be done? DEMEA
Hegio here is their nearest relation; he is a connection of ours and poor; we ought to do some good for him. MICIO
Do what? DEMEA
There is a little farm here in the suburbs, which you let out; let us give it him to live upon. MICIO
But is it a little one ? DEMEA
If it were a large one, still it ought to be done; he has been as it were a father to her; he is a worthy man, and connected with us; it would be properly bestowed. In fine, I now adopt that proverb which you, Micio, a short time ago repeated with sense and wisdom--it is the common vice of all, in old age, to be too intent upon our own interests. This stain we ought to avoid: it is a true maxim, and ought to be observed in deed. MICIO
What am I to say to this? Well then, as he desires it pointing to AESCHINUS , it shall be given him. AESCHINUS
My father! DEMEA
Now, Micio, you are indeed my brother, both in spirit and in body. MICIO
I am glad of it. DEMEA
aside. I foil him at his own weapon.5
1 Take yourself off: Aeschinus, probably, in his earnestness, has seized hold of him with his hand, which Micio now pushes away.
2 I have promised it: This is not the truth; the notion has only been started since he last saw them.
3 Really, this is downright force: "Vis est haec quidem." The same expression occurs in the Captivi of Plautus, l. 755. The expression seemed to be a common one with the Romans. According to Suetonius, Julius Caesar used it when attacked by his murderers in the senate-house. On Tullius Cimber seizing hold of his garments, he exclaimed, “Ita quidem vis est!” (82.1)--" Why, really, this is violence !"
4 This seems to me: Donatus informs us that in Menander's Play, the old man did not make any resistance whatever to the match thus patched up for him. Colman has the following observation on this fact: "It is surprising that none of the critics on this passage. have taken notice of this observation of Donatus, especially as our loss of Menander makes it rather curious. It is plain that Terence in the plan of his last Act followed Menander; but though he has adopted the absurdity of marrying Micio to the old lady, yet we learn from Donatus that his judgment rather revolted at this circumstance, and he improved on his original by making Micio express a repugnance to such a match, which it seems he did not in the Play of Menander."
5 At his own weapon: He probably means, by aping the kind feeling which is a part of Micio's character.
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