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MonkeyNotes-Troilus and Cressida by William Shakespeare
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The cousin is then put with Hector into a formal pattern of syntax and rhyme. While the marshals determine the order of the fight, Ulysses proceeds to a more complimentary character sketch than the one he gave Cressida. Citing the report of Aeneas, he defines the Liberal man - the qualities that are attributed to Troilus.

After the duel, Hector develops his own stylized account of the double nature of his cousin Ajax. Then the Greek generals arrive in sequence and greet Hector. Agamemnon contrives that his welcome shall be placed in a context which excludes the Trojan War as he isolates ‘this extant moment’ from the ‘formless ruin of oblivion’ that stretches before and after. Hector’s mockery of Menelaus depends on two facetious oaths and a jest from the Metamorphoses: Menelaus becomes lame Vulcan scorned both by Venus(Helen) and the Mars the cuckold maker(Paris).

Nestor translates Hector into a god, and then places himself and Hector in the perspective of history - he recalls his own fight with Laomedon founder of Troy, and judges Hector his superior. Hector retorts by translating Nestor, the ‘good old chronicle,’ into History itself.


The sequence ends with the direct confrontation of Hector by Achilles who invokes the gods that they may foretell the manner of Hector’s death. Few scenes in the canon depend upon recognition, introduction, characterizing and identification. Identity of Diomedes is established, Cressida is named, Nestor introduces Agamemnon, Nestor then names himself, Achilles follows in the same mode, Patroclus identifies himself and Menelaus acts the part of each in turn. Ulysses, who is nameless as far as Cressida is concerned, translates both Menelaus and Helen into the realm of impossibility. The whole series moves until, at the end, it gathers up into itself before the action of the play suddenly accelerates into the fifth act.

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