Cyrano de Bergerac
How we cite our quotes:
Oh, if I had words
To say what I have here!
If I could be
A handsome little Musketeer with eyes!
Besides – you know Roxane – how sensitive –
One rough word, and the sweet illusion – gone!
I wish you might be my interpreter.
I wish I had your wit –
Borrow it, then!
Your beautiful young manhood – lend me that,
And we two make one hero of romance! (II. 553 – 560)
Christian’s cowardice with respect to his verbal abilities mirrors Cyrano’s doubts as to his own appearances. Both men are courageous, however.
I have your theme – bring on your memory! –
Here is your chance now to surpass yourself,
No time to lose – Come! Look intelligent –
Come home and learn your lines.
Here for Roxane.
What lunacy is this?
No, I say! I have had enough –
Taking my words, my letters, all from you –
Making our love a little comedy!
It was a game at first; but now – she cares…
Thanks to you. I am not afraid. I’ll speak
For myself now.
Why not? I am no such fool – you shall see!
Besides – my dear friend – you have taught me much.
I ought to know something…By God, I know
Enough to take a woman in my arms! (III. 152 – 167)
Christian shows his mettle by wanting to speak for himself, though he knows his words are clumsy.
FIRST CADET (With a shrug)
Always the clever answer!
Always the answer – yes! Let me die so –
Under some rosy-golden sunset, saying
A good thing, for a good cause! By the sword,
The point of honor – by the hand of one
Worthy to be my foeman, let me fall –
Steel in my heart, and laughter on my lips! (IV. 66-71)
Cyrano describes the way he wants to die – courageously and in battle with a worthy adversary. In some ways, he does indeed fulfill this desire – not by fighting with swords, but by fighting for love and honor.