This text is part of:
Re-enter the PROCURESS, with PLANESIUM, from the house of CAPPADOX.
to PLANESIUM, while opening the door . Come softly out, and prevent the noise of the doors and the creaking of the hinges, my dear Planesium, that our master mayn't perceive that that is going on which we are doing here. Stay, I'll pour a little water1 on it. Pours water on the hinges. PALINURUS
to PHÆDROMUS . Do you see how the palsied hag is giving her dose? She herself has learnt right well to drink up the wine; to the door she's giving water for it to drink. PLANESIUM
looking around . Where are you--you who have summoned me on the recognizances of Venus2? To you do I present myself, and, in the same way do I call on you, on the other hand, to present yourself to me. PHÆD.
stepping forward . Here I am; for could I be absent, I wouldn't repine for any misfortune to befall me, my honey. PLAN. My life, it is not becoming for one thus in love to be at a distance. PHÆD.
Palinurus, Palinurus! PALINURUS
Say on; why is it that you call upon Palinurus? PHÆD.
aside . She is a charming one. PALINURUS
aside . Aye, too charming. PHÆD. I am a God. PALINURUS
Why, no--a mortal, of no great value. PHÆD.
What have you seen, or what will you see, more nearly to be compared with the Gods? PALINURUS
You are not in your senses, master; a thing that's grievous to me. PHÆD.
You are not sufficiently respectful to me: hold your tongue. PALINURUS
The person that sees3 the object which he loves, and enjoys not the opportunity while he may, is one who torments his own self. PHÆD.
Rightly does he rebuke me; really there's nothing which for this long time past I have more eagerly desired. PLANESIUM
Clasp me, embrace me then. PHÆD.
embracing her . This, too, is a reason for which I could wish to live; because your master restrains, you, in secret do I court you. PLANESIUM
Restrain me? He neither can restrain me, nor will he restrain me, unless death should separate my soul from you. PHÆD.
Let monarchs keep their kingdoms to themselves, the rich their riches to themselves, to themselves their honors, to themselves their prowess, to themselves their combats, to themselves their battles; so long as they abstain from envying me, let each one of them keep what is his own. PALINURUS
aside . Of a truth, I cannot refrain from giving a lecture to my master; for, really, it is good to love in a moderate degree; to distraction, it is not good; but to love to entire distraction, is the thing that my master's doing. Aloud. What say you, sir? Have you made a vow, Phædromus, you'd watch the night through for Venus? For really, upon my faith, before very long hence the dawn will be breaking. PRÆD.
Do hold your tongue. PALINURUS
Why hold my tongue? What, are you going to sleep? PHÆD.
I am asleep; don't you make a noise. PALINURUS
Why, but you're broad awake. PHÆD.
Age, but after my own fashion I'm asleep; this is my slumber. PALINURUS
to PLANESIUM . A word with you, madam; 'tis thoughtlessness to treat amiss one who deserves it not. PLANESIUM
You would be angry, if, when you are eating, he were to drive you away4 from your food. PALINURUS
aside . It's all over with him. I see that these two are equally in love to distraction; and both of them are mad. D'ye see how intensely they hug each other? They cannot embrace enough. Addressing them. Are you going to part yet? PLANESIUM
No human being has blessings that last5 for ever. To this pleasure, then, is that plague added. PALINURUS
What say you, you shocking hussy6? What, you little tipsy ninny7, are even you with your owlish eyes8 to be calling me a plague, you whipper-snapper? PHÆD.
What, you abusing my own Venus? And really, is a slave well trounced with the rod to be commencing a discussion with myself? But, by the powers, you've surely said that to your own misfortune. Strikes him. There, take that, by way of punishment for this abusive language, that you may be able to put a check upon your speech. PALINURUS
to PLANESIUM . Your aid, I pray, you night- watching Venus. PHÆD.
What, do you still persist, whip- scoundrel? Strikes hint. PLANESIUM
Don't, there's a dear, be beating a stone, lest you should hurt your hand. PALINURUS
You perpetrate, Phædromus, a flagitious and a shameful deed of great enormity; one who directs you aright, you pummel with your fists; her you are in love with, a mere nonentity. Is it right that you should behave yourself in this unreasonable manner? PHÆD.
Find me a reasonable lover against his weight in gold; here, take the gold of me. Holds out his purse. PALINURUS
Do you find me a person for me to serve in his sound senses against his weight in double-distilled gold. PLANESIUM
Kindly fare you well, apple of my eye, for I hear the sound and creaking of doors; I think the keeper9 is opening the temple. But, prithee, in this same manner shall we always enjoy our love by stealth? PHÆD.
Far from it; for I sent my Parasite four days since to Caria to fetch some money; he'll be here to-day. PLANESIUM
You are very long in your contriving. PHÆD.
So may Venus love me, I'll never allow you to be three days in this house here, before I procure your liberty. PLANESIUM
Take care to remember it. Once more, before I go hence, take this kiss. Kisses him. PHÆD.
By heavens, really if a kingdom now were offered me, I should not obtain it with greater pleasure. When shall I see you again? PLANESIUM
Why now, for that expression get ready the Prætor's rod10; if you love me, purchase my freedom; don't make any haggling. Take care to prevail with your offer. Kindly adieu! Goes into the house of the PROCURER. PHÆD.
And am I then left behind? Palinurus, I'm Lilled outright. PALINURUS
And I as well, who am dying with thumps and sleepiness. PHÆD.
Do you follow me. They go into the house of PHÆDROMUS.
1 Pour a little water: To prevent their creaking, so that Cappadox may not hear them.
2 Recognizances of Venus: "Veneriis vadimoniis." She borrows a legal phrase here. "Vadimonium legere" was, "to call a person on his bail" or "recognizances." When the Prætor had granted an action, the plaintiff required the defendant to give security for his appearance on the day named. The defendant, on finding a surety, was said "vadem dare," or "vadimonium facere;" and the "vas," or "surety," was said "spondere." The plaintiff, if satisfied with the surety, was said "vadari reum," "to let the defendant go on his sureties." Planesium probably means that she considers herself summoned on pain of forfeiting the love of Phædromus.
3 Person that sees: He is censuring his master for his backwardness in not embracing Planesium instantly on her appearance.
4 To drive you away: As Palinurus wishes his master to withdraw against the wish of Planesium, she asks him how he would like his victuals to be taken away from him--implying that Phædromus is as dear to herself as her very sustenance.
5 Blessings that last: This is like the sentiment in
6 Shocking hussy: "Propudium." This was a very harsh term of reproach; and it is not to be wondered at that Phædromus is angry with Palinurus for using it.
7 Tipsy ninny: "Ebriola," and not "ebriolæ," seems to be the correct reading here. She has perhaps been taking her share of the wine, to which fact he alludes. "Persolla" means either "a little mask" or a "diminutive person;" much as we call a little interfering body a "whipper-snapper."
8 Owlish eyes: Though grey eyes were admired among the Greeks Palinurus does not intend this as a compliment to Planesium. He perhaps alludes to her intended vocation, as having eyes peculiarly adapted for the night- time.
9 The keeper: Ædituum. The "æditui" were persons who took care of the Temples, and attended to the cleaning of them. They, however, partook in some measure of the priestly character, and are sometimes called priests by the Greek Grammarians. They lived in or near to the Temples, and showed them to those persons who wished to see them.
10 The Prœtor's rod: Vindicta. This was the rod which was lats on the head of the person who received his freedom.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.