Fiction > Harvard Classics > Gotthold Ephraim Lessing > Minna von Barnhelm
Gotthold Ephraim Lessing (1729–1781).  Minna von Barnhelm.
The Harvard Classics.  1909–14.
Act I
Scene IV

  Just.  (stamping with his foot and spitting after the LANDLORD). Ugh!
  Maj. T.  What is the matter?  2
  Just.  I am choking with rage.  3
  Maj. T.  That is as bad as from plethora.  4
  Just.  And for you sir, I hardly know you any longer. May I die before your eyes, if you do not encourage this malicious, unfeeling wretch. In spite of gallows, axe, and torture I could … yes, I could have throttled him with these hands, and torn him to pieces with these teeth!  5
  Maj. T.  You wild beast!  6
  Just.  Better a wild beast than such a man!  7
  Maj. T.  But what is it that you want?  8
  Just.  I want you to perceive how much he insults you.  9
  Maj. T.  And then—  10
  Just.  To take your revenge… No, the fellow is beneath your notice!  11
  Maj. T.  But to commission you to avenge me? That was my intention from the first. He should not have seen me again, but have received the amount of his bill from your hands. I know that you can throw down a handful of money with a tolerably contemptuous mien.  12
  Just.  Oh! a pretty sort of revenge!  13
  Maj. T.  Which, however, we must defer. I have not one heller of ready money, and I know not where to raise any.  14
  Just.  No money! What is that purse then with five hundred dollars’ worth of louis d’ors, which the Landlord found in your desk?  15
  Maj. T.  That is money given into my charge.  16
  Just.  Not the hundred pistoles which your old sergeant brought you four or five weeks back?  17
  Maj. T.  The same. Paul Werner’s; right.  18
  Just.  And you have not used them yet? Yet, sir, you may do what you please with them. I will answer for it that—  19
  Maj. T.  Indeed!  20
  Just.  Werner heard from me, how they had treated your claims upon the War Office. He heard—  21
  Maj. T.  That I should certainly be a beggar soon, if I was not one already. I am much obliged to you, Just. And the news induced Werner to offer to share his little all with me. I am very glad that I guessed this. Listen, Just; let me have your account, directly, too; we must part.  22
  Just.  How! what!  23
  Maj. T.  Not a word. There is someone coming.  24


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