A monologue from the play "Troilus and Cressida" by William Shakespeare

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About this Monologue

  • Character: Cressida
  • Gender: Female
  • Age Range(s): Teenager (13-19), Young Adult (20-35), Adult (36-50)
  • Type of monologue / Character is: In love, Insecure
  • Type: Serio-comic
  • Period: Renaissance
  • Genre: Action, Historical, Tragedy, War
  • Description: Cressida professes her love for Troilus
  • Location: ACT III, Scene 2

Summary

The prologue introduces us to the story. The play is about the Trojan War, the mythological war between Troy and several Greek kings led by Menelaus of Sparta. The war starts when Paris of Troy steals the beautiful Helen from Menelaus. In response, the Spartan king gathers 69 princes from several cities in Greece and attacks Troy in order to rescue Helen. The play starts in the middle of the war, that is 7 years after the war started.

There are several storylines and one is Troilus' love for Cressida. In the first scene of the play we find Troilus, a prince of Troy and Paris' younger brother, with Pandarus, who ...

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Excerpt

CRESSIDA
Hard to seem won: but I was won, my lord,
With the first glance that ever--pardon me--
If I confess much, you will play the tyrant.
I love you now; but not, till now, so much
But I might master it: in faith, I lie;
My thoughts were like unbridled children, grown
Too headstrong for their mother. See, we fools!
Why have I blabb'd? who shall be true to us,
When we are so unsecret to ourselves?
But, though I loved you well, I woo'd you not;
And yet, good faith, I wish'd myself a man,
Or that we women had men's privilege
Of speaking first. Sweet, bid me hold my tongue,
For in this rapture I shall surely speak
The thing I shall repent. See, see, your silence,
Cunning in dumbness, from my weakness draws
My very soul of counsel! stop my mouth.



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