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Enter PARMENO, moving along with difficulty.
. to himself. Upon my faith, my master does assuredly think my labor of little value; to have sent me for nothing, where I have been sitting the whole day to no purpose, waiting at the citadel for Callidemides, his landlord at Myconos. And so, while sitting there to-day, like a fool, as each person came by, I accosted him:--"Young man, just tell me, pray, are you a Myconian" "I am not.." "But is your name Callidemides?" "No." "Have you any former guest here named Pamphilus?" All said, "No; and I don't believe that there is any such person." At last, i' faith, I was quite ashamed, and went away. But how is it I see Bacchis coming out of our neighbor's? What business can she have there? Enter BACCHIS, from the house of PHIDIPPUS. BACCHIS
Parmeno, you make your appearance opportunely; run with all speed'1 to Pamphilus. PARMENO
Why thither? BACCHIS
Say that I entreat him to come. PARMENO
To your house? BACCH. NO;
to Philumena. PARMENO
What's the matter? BACCHIS
Nothing that concerns you; so cease to make inquiry. PARMENO
Am I to say nothing else? BACCHIS
Yes; that Myrrhina has recognized that ring as her daughter's, which he formerly gave me. PARMENO
I understand-is that all? BACCHIS
That's all. He will be here directly he has heard this from you. But do you linger? PARMENO
Far from it, indeed; for I've not had the opportunity given me to-day; so much with running and walking about have I wasted the whole day. Goes into the house of LACHES. BACCHIS
What great joy have I caused for Pamphilus by my coming to-day! How many blessings have I brought him! and from how many sorrows have I rescued him! A son I save for him, when it was nearly perishing through the agency of these women and of himself: a wife, whom he thought that he must cast off forever, I restore to him: from the suspicion that he lay under with his father and Phidippus, I have cleared him. This ring, in fact, was the cause of these discoveries being made. For I remember, that about ten months ago, at an early hour of night, he came running home to my house, out of breath, without a companion, and surcharged with wine,2 with this ring in his hand. I felt alarmed immediately: "My Pamphilus," I said, "prithee, my dear, why thus breathless, or where did you get that ring?-tell me!" He began to pretend that he was thinking of something else. When I saw that, I began to suspect I know not what, and to press him still more to tell me. The fellow confessed that he had ravished some female, he knew not whom, in the street; and said, that while she was struggling, he had taken that ring away from her. Myrrhina here recognized it just now, while I had it on my finger. She asked whence it came: I told her all the story. Hence the discovery has been made that it was Philumena ravished by him, and that this new-born child is his. I am overjoyed that this happiness hsa befallen him through my agency; although other courtesans would not have similar feelings; nor, indeed, is it to our interest that any lover should find pleasure in matrimony. But, i' faith, I never, for the sake of gain, will give my mind to base actions. So long as I had the opportunity, I found him to be kind, easy, and good-natured. This marriage has fallen out unluckily for me,--that I confess to be the fact. But, upon my word, I do think that I have done nothing for it to befall me deservedly. It is but reasonable to endure inconveniences from one from whom I have received so many benefits.
1 Run with all speed: Donatus remarks, that Parmeno is drawn as being of a lazy and inquisitive character; and that Terence, therefore, humorously contrives to keep him always on the move, and in total ignorance of what is going on.
2 Surcharged with wine: Cooke has this remark here: "I suppose that this is the best excuse the Poet could make for the young gentleman's being guilty of felony and rape at the same time. In this speech, the incident is related on which the catastrophe of the Play turns, which incident is a very barbarous one, and attended with more than one absurdity, though it is the occasion of an agreeable discovery."
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