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Amphitryon

AMPH. Poltroon!
SOS. Nature has her caprices in forming us; she gives us differing inclinations; some find
a thousand delights in exposing themselves; I find them in taking care of myself.
AMPH. When you arrived at the house...?
SOS. When I reached the door, I wished to rehearse to myself for a short time, in what
tone and in what manner I should give a glorious account of the battle.
AMPH. What followed?
SOS. Some one came to annoy and trouble me.
AMPH. Who was he?
SOS. Sosie; another I, jealous of your orders, whom you sent to Alcmene from the port,
and who has as full knowledge of our secrets as I who am speaking to you.
AMPH. What nonsense!
SOS. No, Monsieur, it is the simple truth: this I was at your house sooner than I; and, I
swear to you, I was there before I had arrived.
AMPH. Pray, where does all this cursed nonsense come from? Is it a dream? Is it
drunkenness? Mind-wandering? Or a sorry joke?
SOS. No, it is the thing as it is, and by no means an idle tale. I am a man of honour, I give
you my word, and you must please believe it. I tell you, believing I was but one Sosie, I
found myself two at your house; and of these two I's, piqued with jealousy, one is at the
house, and the other is with you; the I who is here, tired out, found the other I fresh, jolly
and active, having no other anxiety than to fight and break bones.
AMPH. I confess I must be of a very placid temper, very peaceable, very gentle, to
permit a valet to entertain me with such nonsense!
SOS. If you become angry, no more conference between us: you know all will be over at
once.
AMPH. No; I will listen to you without being carried away; I promised it. But tell me in
good earnest, is there any shadow of likelihood in this new mystery which you have just
told me?
SOS. No; you are right, the matter must appear to everyone past credit. It is a fact past
understanding, an extravagant, ridiculous, far-fetched tale: it shocks common sense; but it
is none the less a fact.
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