Part 4 out of 63
Perform't, or else we damn thee.'
ANTONY. How, my love?
CLEOPATRA. Perchance? Nay, and most like,
You must not stay here longer; your dismission
Is come from Caesar; therefore hear it, Antony.
Where's Fulvia's process? Caesar's I would say? Both?
Call in the messengers. As I am Egypt's Queen,
Thou blushest, Antony, and that blood of thine
Is Caesar's homager. Else so thy cheek pays shame
When shrill-tongu'd Fulvia scolds. The messengers!
ANTONY. Let Rome in Tiber melt, and the wide arch
Of the rang'd empire fall! Here is my space.
Kingdoms are clay; our dungy earth alike
Feeds beast as man. The nobleness of life
Is to do thus [emhracing], when such a mutual pair
And such a twain can do't, in which I bind,
On pain of punishment, the world to weet
We stand up peerless.
CLEOPATRA. Excellent falsehood!
Why did he marry Fulvia, and not love her?
I'll seem the fool I am not. Antony
Will be himself.
ANTONY. But stirr'd by Cleopatra.
Now for the love of Love and her soft hours,
Let's not confound the time with conference harsh;
There's not a minute of our lives should stretch
Without some pleasure now. What sport to-night?
CLEOPATRA. Hear the ambassadors.
ANTONY. Fie, wrangling queen!
Whom everything becomes- to chide, to laugh,
To weep; whose every passion fully strives
To make itself in thee fair and admir'd.
No messenger but thine, and all alone
To-night we'll wander through the streets and note
The qualities of people. Come, my queen;
Last night you did desire it. Speak not to us.
Exeunt ANTONY and CLEOPATRA, with the train
DEMETRIUS. Is Caesar with Antonius priz'd so slight?
PHILO. Sir, sometimes when he is not Antony,
He comes too short of that great property
Which still should go with Antony.
DEMETRIUS. I am full sorry
That he approves the common liar, who
Thus speaks of him at Rome; but I will hope
Of better deeds to-morrow. Rest you happy! Exeunt
Alexandria. CLEOPATRA'S palace
Enter CHARMIAN, IRAS, ALEXAS, and a SOOTHSAYER
CHARMIAN. Lord Alexas, sweet Alexas, most anything Alexas, almost
most absolute Alexas, where's the soothsayer that you prais'd so
to th' Queen? O that I knew this husband, which you say must
charge his horns with garlands!
SOOTHSAYER. Your will?
CHARMIAN. Is this the man? Is't you, sir, that know things?
SOOTHSAYER. In nature's infinite book of secrecy
A little I can read.
ALEXAS. Show him your hand.
ENOBARBUS. Bring in the banquet quickly; wine enough
Cleopatra's health to drink.
CHARMIAN. Good, sir, give me good fortune.
SOOTHSAYER. I make not, but foresee.
CHARMIAN. Pray, then, foresee me one.
SOOTHSAYER. You shall be yet far fairer than you are.
CHARMIAN. He means in flesh.
IRAS. No, you shall paint when you are old.
CHARMIAN. Wrinkles forbid!
ALEXAS. Vex not his prescience; be attentive.
SOOTHSAYER. You shall be more beloving than beloved.
CHARMIAN. I had rather heat my liver with drinking.
ALEXAS. Nay, hear him.
CHARMIAN. Good now, some excellent fortune! Let me be married to
three kings in a forenoon, and widow them all. Let me have a
child at fifty, to whom Herod of Jewry may do homage. Find me to
marry me with Octavius Caesar, and companion me with my mistress.
SOOTHSAYER. You shall outlive the lady whom you serve.
CHARMIAN. O, excellent! I love long life better than figs.
SOOTHSAYER. You have seen and prov'd a fairer former fortune
Than that which is to approach.
CHARMIAN. Then belike my children shall have no names.
Prithee, how many boys and wenches must I have?
SOOTHSAYER. If every of your wishes had a womb,
And fertile every wish, a million.
CHARMIAN. Out, fool! I forgive thee for a witch.
ALEXAS. You think none but your sheets are privy to your wishes.
CHARMIAN. Nay, come, tell Iras hers.
ALEXAS. We'll know all our fortunes.
ENOBARBUS. Mine, and most of our fortunes, to-night, shall be-
drunk to bed.
IRAS. There's a palm presages chastity, if nothing else.
CHARMIAN. E'en as the o'erflowing Nilus presageth famine.
IRAS. Go, you wild bedfellow, you cannot soothsay.
CHARMIAN. Nay, if an oily palm be not a fruitful prognostication, I
cannot scratch mine ear. Prithee, tell her but worky-day fortune.
SOOTHSAYER. Your fortunes are alike.
IRAS. But how, but how? Give me particulars.
SOOTHSAYER. I have said.
IRAS. Am I not an inch of fortune better than she?
CHARMIAN. Well, if you were but an inch of fortune better than I,
where would you choose it?
IRAS. Not in my husband's nose.
CHARMIAN. Our worser thoughts heavens mend! Alexas- come, his
fortune, his fortune! O, let him marry a woman that cannot go,
sweet Isis, I beseech thee! And let her die too, and give him a
worse! And let worse follow worse, till the worst of all follow
him laughing to his grave, fiftyfold a cuckold! Good Isis, hear
me this prayer, though thou deny me a matter of more weight; good
Isis, I beseech thee!
IRAS. Amen. Dear goddess, hear that prayer of the people! For, as
it is a heartbreaking to see a handsome man loose-wiv'd, so it is
a deadly sorrow to behold a foul knave uncuckolded. Therefore,
dear Isis, keep decorum, and fortune him accordingly!
ALEXAS. Lo now, if it lay in their hands to make me a cuckold, they
would make themselves whores but they'ld do't!
ENOBARBUS. Hush! Here comes Antony.
CHARMIAN. Not he; the Queen.
CLEOPATRA. Saw you my lord?
ENOBARBUS. No, lady.
CLEOPATRA. Was he not here?
CHARMIAN. No, madam.
CLEOPATRA. He was dispos'd to mirth; but on the sudden
A Roman thought hath struck him. Enobarbus!
CLEOPATRA. Seek him, and bring him hither. Where's Alexas?
ALEXAS. Here, at your service. My lord approaches.
Enter ANTONY, with a MESSENGER and attendants
CLEOPATRA. We will not look upon him. Go with us.
Exeunt CLEOPATRA, ENOBARBUS, and the rest
MESSENGER. Fulvia thy wife first came into the field.
ANTONY. Against my brother Lucius?
But soon that war had end, and the time's state
Made friends of them, jointing their force 'gainst Caesar,
Whose better issue in the war from Italy
Upon the first encounter drave them.
ANTONY. Well, what worst?
MESSENGER. The nature of bad news infects the teller.
ANTONY. When it concerns the fool or coward. On!
Things that are past are done with me. 'Tis thus:
Who tells me true, though in his tale lie death,
I hear him as he flatter'd.
This is stiff news- hath with his Parthian force
Extended Asia from Euphrates,
His conquering banner shook from Syria
To Lydia and to Ionia,
ANTONY. Antony, thou wouldst say.
MESSENGER. O, my lord!
ANTONY. Speak to me home; mince not the general tongue;
Name Cleopatra as she is call'd in Rome.
Rail thou in Fulvia's phrase, and taunt my faults
With such full licence as both truth and malice
Have power to utter. O, then we bring forth weeds
When our quick minds lie still, and our ills told us
Is as our earing. Fare thee well awhile.
MESSENGER. At your noble pleasure. Exit
ANTONY. From Sicyon, ho, the news! Speak there!
FIRST ATTENDANT. The man from Sicyon- is there such an one?
SECOND ATTENDANT. He stays upon your will.
ANTONY. Let him appear.
These strong Egyptian fetters I must break,
Or lose myself in dotage.
Enter another MESSENGER with a letter
What are you?
SECOND MESSENGER. Fulvia thy wife is dead.
ANTONY. Where died she?
SECOND MESSENGER. In Sicyon.
Her length of sickness, with what else more serious
Importeth thee to know, this bears. [Gives the letter]
ANTONY. Forbear me. Exit MESSENGER
There's a great spirit gone! Thus did I desire it.
What our contempts doth often hurl from us
We wish it ours again; the present pleasure,
By revolution low'ring, does become
The opposite of itself. She's good, being gone;
The hand could pluck her back that shov'd her on.
I must from this enchanting queen break off.
Ten thousand harms, more than the ills I know,
My idleness doth hatch. How now, Enobarbus!
ENOBARBUS. What's your pleasure, sir?
ANTONY. I must with haste from hence.
ENOBARBUS. Why, then we kill all our women. We see how mortal an
unkindness is to them; if they suffer our departure, death's the
ANTONY. I must be gone.
ENOBARBUS. Under a compelling occasion, let women die. It were pity
to cast them away for nothing, though between them and a great
cause they should be esteemed nothing. Cleopatra, catching but
the least noise of this, dies instantly; I have seen her die
twenty times upon far poorer moment. I do think there is mettle
in death, which commits some loving act upon her, she hath such a
celerity in dying.
ANTONY. She is cunning past man's thought.
ENOBARBUS. Alack, sir, no! Her passions are made of nothing but the
finest part of pure love. We cannot call her winds and waters
sighs and tears; they are greater storms and tempests than
almanacs can report. This cannot be cunning in her; if it be, she
makes a show'r of rain as well as Jove.
ANTONY. Would I had never seen her!
ENOBARBUS. O Sir, you had then left unseen a wonderful piece of
work, which not to have been blest withal would have discredited
ANTONY. Fulvia is dead.
ANTONY. Fulvia is dead.
ENOBARBUS. Why, sir, give the gods a thankful sacrifice. When it
pleaseth their deities to take the wife of a man from him, it
shows to man the tailors of the earth; comforting therein that
when old robes are worn out there are members to make new. If
there were no more women but Fulvia, then had you indeed a cut,
and the case to be lamented. This grief is crown'd with
consolation: your old smock brings forth a new petticoat; and
indeed the tears live in an onion that should water this sorrow.
ANTONY. The business she hath broached in the state
Cannot endure my absence.
ENOBARBUS. And the business you have broach'd here cannot be
without you; especially that of Cleopatra's, which wholly depends
on your abode.
ANTONY. No more light answers. Let our officers
Have notice what we purpose. I shall break
The cause of our expedience to the Queen,
And get her leave to part. For not alone
The death of Fulvia, with more urgent touches,
Do strongly speak to us; but the letters to
Of many our contriving friends in Rome
Petition us at home. Sextus Pompeius
Hath given the dare to Caesar, and commands
The empire of the sea; our slippery people,
Whose love is never link'd to the deserver
Till his deserts are past, begin to throw
Pompey the Great and all his dignities
Upon his son; who, high in name and power,
Higher than both in blood and life, stands up
For the main soldier; whose quality, going on,
The sides o' th' world may danger. Much is breeding
Which, like the courser's hair, hath yet but life
And not a serpent's poison. Say our pleasure,
To such whose place is under us, requires
Our quick remove from hence.
ENOBARBUS. I shall do't. Exeunt
Alexandria. CLEOPATRA'S palace
Enter CLEOPATRA, CHARMIAN, IRAS, and ALEXAS
CLEOPATRA. Where is he?
CHARMIAN. I did not see him since.
CLEOPATRA. See where he is, who's with him, what he does.
I did not send you. If you find him sad,
Say I am dancing; if in mirth, report
That I am sudden sick. Quick, and return. Exit ALEXAS
CHARMIAN. Madam, methinks, if you did love him dearly,
You do not hold the method to enforce
The like from him.
CLEOPATRA. What should I do I do not?
CHARMIAN. In each thing give him way; cross him in nothing.
CLEOPATRA. Thou teachest like a fool- the way to lose him.
CHARMIAN. Tempt him not so too far; I wish, forbear;
In time we hate that which we often fear.
But here comes Antony.
CLEOPATRA. I am sick and sullen.
ANTONY. I am sorry to give breathing to my purpose-
CLEOPATRA. Help me away, dear Charmian; I shall fall.
It cannot be thus long; the sides of nature
Will not sustain it.
ANTONY. Now, my dearest queen-
CLEOPATRA. Pray you, stand farther from me.
ANTONY. What's the matter?
CLEOPATRA. I know by that same eye there's some good news.
What says the married woman? You may go.
Would she had never given you leave to come!
Let her not say 'tis I that keep you here-
I have no power upon you; hers you are.
ANTONY. The gods best know-
CLEOPATRA. O, never was there queen
So mightily betray'd! Yet at the first
I saw the treasons planted.
CLEOPATRA. Why should I think you can be mine and true,
Though you in swearing shake the throned gods,
Who have been false to Fulvia? Riotous madness,
To be entangled with those mouth-made vows,
Which break themselves in swearing!
ANTONY. Most sweet queen-
CLEOPATRA. Nay, pray you seek no colour for your going,
But bid farewell, and go. When you sued staying,
Then was the time for words. No going then!
Eternity was in our lips and eyes,
Bliss in our brows' bent, none our parts so poor
But was a race of heaven. They are so still,
Or thou, the greatest soldier of the world,
Art turn'd the greatest liar.
ANTONY. How now, lady!
CLEOPATRA. I would I had thy inches. Thou shouldst know
There were a heart in Egypt.
ANTONY. Hear me, queen:
The strong necessity of time commands
Our services awhile; but my full heart
Remains in use with you. Our Italy
Shines o'er with civil swords: Sextus Pompeius
Makes his approaches to the port of Rome;
Equality of two domestic powers
Breed scrupulous faction; the hated, grown to strength,
Are newly grown to love. The condemn'd Pompey,
Rich in his father's honour, creeps apace
Into the hearts of such as have not thrived
Upon the present state, whose numbers threaten;
And quietness, grown sick of rest, would purge
By any desperate change. My more particular,
And that which most with you should safe my going,
Is Fulvia's death.
CLEOPATRA. Though age from folly could not give me freedom,
It does from childishness. Can Fulvia die?
ANTONY. She's dead, my Queen.
Look here, and at thy sovereign leisure read
The garboils she awak'd. At the last, best.
See when and where she died.
CLEOPATRA. O most false love!
Where be the sacred vials thou shouldst fill
With sorrowful water? Now I see, I see,
In Fulvia's death how mine receiv'd shall be.
ANTONY. Quarrel no more, but be prepar'd to know
The purposes I bear; which are, or cease,
As you shall give th' advice. By the fire
That quickens Nilus' slime, I go from hence
Thy soldier, servant, making peace or war
As thou affects.
CLEOPATRA. Cut my lace, Charmian, come!
But let it be; I am quickly ill and well-
So Antony loves.
ANTONY. My precious queen, forbear,
And give true evidence to his love, which stands
An honourable trial.
CLEOPATRA. So Fulvia told me.
I prithee turn aside and weep for her;
Then bid adieu to me, and say the tears
Belong to Egypt. Good now, play one scene
Of excellent dissembling, and let it look
Like perfect honour.
ANTONY. You'll heat my blood; no more.
CLEOPATRA. You can do better yet; but this is meetly.
ANTONY. Now, by my sword-
CLEOPATRA. And target. Still he mends;
But this is not the best. Look, prithee, Charmian,
How this Herculean Roman does become
The carriage of his chafe.
ANTONY. I'll leave you, lady.
CLEOPATRA. Courteous lord, one word.
Sir, you and I must part- but that's not it.
Sir, you and I have lov'd- but there's not it.
That you know well. Something it is I would-
O, my oblivion is a very Antony,
And I am all forgotten!
ANTONY. But that your royalty
Holds idleness your subject, I should take you
For idleness itself.
CLEOPATRA. 'Tis sweating labour
To bear such idleness so near the heart
As Cleopatra this. But, sir, forgive me;
Since my becomings kill me when they do not
Eye well to you. Your honour calls you hence;
Therefore be deaf to my unpitied folly,
And all the gods go with you! Upon your sword
Sit laurel victory, and smooth success
Be strew'd before your feet!
ANTONY. Let us go. Come.
Our separation so abides and flies
That thou, residing here, goes yet with me,
And I, hence fleeting, here remain with thee.
Rome. CAESAR'S house
Enter OCTAVIUS CAESAR, reading a letter; LEPIDUS, and their train
CAESAR. You may see, Lepidus, and henceforth know,
It is not Caesar's natural vice to hate
Our great competitor. From Alexandria
This is the news: he fishes, drinks, and wastes
The lamps of night in revel; is not more manlike
Than Cleopatra, nor the queen of Ptolemy
More womanly than he; hardly gave audience, or
Vouchsaf'd to think he had partners. You shall find there
A man who is the abstract of all faults
That all men follow.
LEPIDUS. I must not think there are
Evils enow to darken all his goodness.
His faults, in him, seem as the spots of heaven,
More fiery by night's blackness; hereditary
Rather than purchas'd; what he cannot change
Than what he chooses.
CAESAR. You are too indulgent. Let's grant it is not
Amiss to tumble on the bed of Ptolemy,
To give a kingdom for a mirth, to sit
And keep the turn of tippling with a slave,
To reel the streets at noon, and stand the buffet
With knaves that smell of sweat. Say this becomes him-
As his composure must be rare indeed
Whom these things cannot blemish- yet must Antony
No way excuse his foils when we do bear
So great weight in his lightness. If he fill'd
His vacancy with his voluptuousness,
Full surfeits and the dryness of his bones
Call on him for't! But to confound such time
That drums him from his sport and speaks as loud
As his own state and ours- 'tis to be chid
As we rate boys who, being mature in knowledge,
Pawn their experience to their present pleasure,
And so rebel to judgment.
Enter a MESSENGER
LEPIDUS. Here's more news.
MESSENGER. Thy biddings have been done; and every hour,
Most noble Caesar, shalt thou have report
How 'tis abroad. Pompey is strong at sea,
And it appears he is belov'd of those
That only have fear'd Caesar. To the ports
The discontents repair, and men's reports
Give him much wrong'd.
CAESAR. I should have known no less.
It hath been taught us from the primal state
That he which is was wish'd until he were;
And the ebb'd man, ne'er lov'd till ne'er worth love,
Comes dear'd by being lack'd. This common body,
Like to a vagabond flag upon the stream,
Goes to and back, lackeying the varying tide,
To rot itself with motion.
MESSENGER. Caesar, I bring thee word
Menecrates and Menas, famous pirates,
Make the sea serve them, which they ear and wound
With keels of every kind. Many hot inroads
They make in Italy; the borders maritime
Lack blood to think on't, and flush youth revolt.
No vessel can peep forth but 'tis as soon
Taken as seen; for Pompey's name strikes more
Than could his war resisted.
Leave thy lascivious wassails. When thou once
Was beaten from Modena, where thou slew'st
Hirtius and Pansa, consuls, at thy heel
Did famine follow; whom thou fought'st against,
Though daintily brought up, with patience more
Than savages could suffer. Thou didst drink
The stale of horses and the gilded puddle
Which beasts would cough at. Thy palate then did deign
The roughest berry on the rudest hedge;
Yea, like the stag when snow the pasture sheets,
The barks of trees thou brows'd. On the Alps
It is reported thou didst eat strange flesh,
Which some did die to look on. And all this-
It wounds thine honour that I speak it now-
Was borne so like a soldier that thy cheek
So much as lank'd not.
LEPIDUS. 'Tis pity of him.
CAESAR. Let his shames quickly
Drive him to Rome. 'Tis time we twain
Did show ourselves i' th' field; and to that end
Assemble we immediate council. Pompey
Thrives in our idleness.
LEPIDUS. To-morrow, Caesar,
I shall be furnish'd to inform you rightly
Both what by sea and land I can be able
To front this present time.
CAESAR. Till which encounter
It is my business too. Farewell.
LEPIDUS. Farewell, my lord. What you shall know meantime
Of stirs abroad, I shall beseech you, sir,
To let me be partaker.
CAESAR. Doubt not, sir;
I knew it for my bond. Exeunt
Alexandria. CLEOPATRA'S palace
Enter CLEOPATRA, CHARMIAN, IRAS, and MARDIAN
CLEOPATRA. Ha, ha!
Give me to drink mandragora.
CHARMIAN. Why, madam?
CLEOPATRA. That I might sleep out this great gap of time
My Antony is away.
CHARMIAN. You think of him too much.
CLEOPATRA. O, 'tis treason!
CHARMIAN. Madam, I trust, not so.
CLEOPATRA. Thou, eunuch Mardian!
MARDIAN. What's your Highness' pleasure?
CLEOPATRA. Not now to hear thee sing; I take no pleasure
In aught an eunuch has. 'Tis well for thee
That, being unseminar'd, thy freer thoughts
May not fly forth of Egypt. Hast thou affections?
MARDIAN. Yes, gracious madam.
MARDIAN. Not in deed, madam; for I can do nothing
But what indeed is honest to be done.
Yet have I fierce affections, and think
What Venus did with Mars.
CLEOPATRA. O Charmian,
Where think'st thou he is now? Stands he or sits he?
Or does he walk? or is he on his horse?
O happy horse, to bear the weight of Antony!
Do bravely, horse; for wot'st thou whom thou mov'st?
The demi-Atlas of this earth, the arm
And burgonet of men. He's speaking now,
Or murmuring 'Where's my serpent of old Nile?'
For so he calls me. Now I feed myself
With most delicious poison. Think on me,
That am with Phoebus' amorous pinches black,
And wrinkled deep in time? Broad-fronted Caesar,
When thou wast here above the ground, I was
A morsel for a monarch; and great Pompey
Would stand and make his eyes grow in my brow;
There would he anchor his aspect and die
With looking on his life.
ALEXAS. Sovereign of Egypt, hail!
CLEOPATRA. How much unlike art thou Mark Antony!
Yet, coming from him, that great med'cine hath
With his tinct gilded thee.
How goes it with my brave Mark Antony?
ALEXAS. Last thing he did, dear Queen,
He kiss'd- the last of many doubled kisses-
This orient pearl. His speech sticks in my heart.
CLEOPATRA. Mine ear must pluck it thence.
ALEXAS. 'Good friend,' quoth he
'Say the firm Roman to great Egypt sends
This treasure of an oyster; at whose foot,
To mend the petty present, I will piece
Her opulent throne with kingdoms. All the East,
Say thou, shall call her mistress.' So he nodded,
And soberly did mount an arm-gaunt steed,
Who neigh'd so high that what I would have spoke
Was beastly dumb'd by him.
CLEOPATRA. What, was he sad or merry?
ALEXAS. Like to the time o' th' year between the extremes
Of hot and cold; he was nor sad nor merry.
CLEOPATRA. O well-divided disposition! Note him,
Note him, good Charmian; 'tis the man; but note him!
He was not sad, for he would shine on those
That make their looks by his; he was not merry,
Which seem'd to tell them his remembrance lay
In Egypt with his joy; but between both.
O heavenly mingle! Be'st thou sad or merry,
The violence of either thee becomes,
So does it no man else. Met'st thou my posts?
ALEXAS. Ay, madam, twenty several messengers.
Why do you send so thick?
CLEOPATRA. Who's born that day
When I forget to send to Antony
Shall die a beggar. Ink and paper, Charmian.
Welcome, my good Alexas. Did I, Charmian,
Ever love Caesar so?
CHARMIAN. O that brave Caesar!
CLEOPATRA. Be chok'd with such another emphasis!
Say 'the brave Antony.'
CHARMIAN. The valiant Caesar!
CLEOPATRA. By Isis, I will give thee bloody teeth
If thou with Caesar paragon again
My man of men.
CHARMIAN. By your most gracious pardon,
I sing but after you.
CLEOPATRA. My salad days,
When I was green in judgment, cold in blood,
To say as I said then. But come, away!
Get me ink and paper.
He shall have every day a several greeting,
Or I'll unpeople Egypt. Exeunt
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ACT II. SCENE I.
Messina. POMPEY'S house
Enter POMPEY, MENECRATES, and MENAS, in warlike manner
POMPEY. If the great gods be just, they shall assist
The deeds of justest men.
MENECRATES. Know, worthy Pompey,
That what they do delay they not deny.
POMPEY. Whiles we are suitors to their throne, decays
The thing we sue for.
MENECRATES. We, ignorant of ourselves,
Beg often our own harms, which the wise pow'rs
Deny us for our good; so find we profit
By losing of our prayers.
POMPEY. I shall do well.
The people love me, and the sea is mine;
My powers are crescent, and my auguring hope
Says it will come to th' full. Mark Antony
In Egypt sits at dinner, and will make
No wars without doors. Caesar gets money where
He loses hearts. Lepidus flatters both,
Of both is flatter'd; but he neither loves,
Nor either cares for him.
MENAS. Caesar and Lepidus
Are in the field. A mighty strength they carry.
POMPEY. Where have you this? 'Tis false.
MENAS. From Silvius, sir.
POMPEY. He dreams. I know they are in Rome together,
Looking for Antony. But all the charms of love,
Salt Cleopatra, soften thy wan'd lip!
Let witchcraft join with beauty, lust with both;
Tie up the libertine in a field of feasts,
Keep his brain fuming. Epicurean cooks
Sharpen with cloyless sauce his appetite,
That sleep and feeding may prorogue his honour
Even till a Lethe'd dullness-
How now, Varrius!
VARRIUS. This is most certain that I shall deliver:
Mark Antony is every hour in Rome
Expected. Since he went from Egypt 'tis
A space for farther travel.
POMPEY. I could have given less matter
A better ear. Menas, I did not think
This amorous surfeiter would have donn'd his helm
For such a petty war; his soldiership
Is twice the other twain. But let us rear
The higher our opinion, that our stirring
Can from the lap of Egypt's widow pluck
The ne'er-lust-wearied Antony.
MENAS. I cannot hope
Caesar and Antony shall well greet together.
His wife that's dead did trespasses to Caesar;
His brother warr'd upon him; although, I think,
Not mov'd by Antony.
POMPEY. I know not, Menas,
How lesser enmities may give way to greater.
Were't not that we stand up against them all,
'Twere pregnant they should square between themselves;
For they have entertained cause enough
To draw their swords. But how the fear of us
May cement their divisions, and bind up
The petty difference we yet not know.
Be't as our gods will have't! It only stands
Our lives upon to use our strongest hands.
Come, Menas. Exeunt
Rome. The house of LEPIDUS
Enter ENOBARBUS and LEPIDUS
LEPIDUS. Good Enobarbus, 'tis a worthy deed,
And shall become you well, to entreat your captain
To soft and gentle speech.
ENOBARBUS. I shall entreat him
To answer like himself. If Caesar move him,
Let Antony look over Caesar's head
And speak as loud as Mars. By Jupiter,
Were I the wearer of Antonius' beard,
I would not shave't to-day.
LEPIDUS. 'Tis not a time
For private stomaching.
ENOBARBUS. Every time
Serves for the matter that is then born in't.
LEPIDUS. But small to greater matters must give way.
ENOBARBUS. Not if the small come first.
LEPIDUS. Your speech is passion;
But pray you stir no embers up. Here comes
The noble Antony.
Enter ANTONY and VENTIDIUS
ENOBARBUS. And yonder, Caesar.
Enter CAESAR, MAECENAS, and AGRIPPA
ANTONY. If we compose well here, to Parthia.
CAESAR. I do not know, Maecenas. Ask Agrippa.
LEPIDUS. Noble friends,
That which combin'd us was most great, and let not
A leaner action rend us. What's amiss,
May it be gently heard. When we debate
Our trivial difference loud, we do commit
Murder in healing wounds. Then, noble partners,
The rather for I earnestly beseech,
Touch you the sourest points with sweetest terms,
Nor curstness grow to th' matter.
ANTONY. 'Tis spoken well.
Were we before our arinies, and to fight,
I should do thus. [Flourish]
CAESAR. Welcome to Rome.
ANTONY. Thank you.
ANTONY. Sit, sir.
CAESAR. Nay, then. [They sit]
ANTONY. I learn you take things ill which are not so,
Or being, concern you not.
CAESAR. I must be laugh'd at
If, or for nothing or a little,
Should say myself offended, and with you
Chiefly i' the world; more laugh'd at that I should
Once name you derogately when to sound your name
It not concern'd me.
ANTONY. My being in Egypt, Caesar,
What was't to you?
CAESAR. No more than my residing here at Rome
Might be to you in Egypt. Yet, if you there
Did practise on my state, your being in Egypt
Might be my question.
ANTONY. How intend you- practis'd?
CAESAR. You may be pleas'd to catch at mine intent
By what did here befall me. Your wife and brother
Made wars upon me, and their contestation
Was theme for you; you were the word of war.
ANTONY. You do mistake your business; my brother never
Did urge me in his act. I did inquire it,
And have my learning from some true reports
That drew their swords with you. Did he not rather
Discredit my authority with yours,
And make the wars alike against my stomach,
Having alike your cause? Of this my letters
Before did satisfy you. If you'll patch a quarrel,
As matter whole you have not to make it with,
It must not be with this.
CAESAR. You praise yourself
By laying defects of judgment to me; but
You patch'd up your excuses.
ANTONY. Not so, not so;
I know you could not lack, I am certain on't,
Very necessity of this thought, that I,
Your partner in the cause 'gainst which he fought,
Could not with graceful eyes attend those wars
Which fronted mine own peace. As for my wife,
I would you had her spirit in such another!
The third o' th' world is yours, which with a snaffle
You may pace easy, but not such a wife.
ENOBARBUS. Would we had all such wives, that the men might go to
wars with the women!
ANTONY. So much uncurbable, her garboils, Caesar,
Made out of her impatience- which not wanted
Shrewdness of policy too- I grieving grant
Did you too much disquiet. For that you must
But say I could not help it.
CAESAR. I wrote to you
When rioting in Alexandria; you
Did pocket up my letters, and with taunts
Did gibe my missive out of audience.
He fell upon me ere admitted. Then
Three kings I had newly feasted, and did want
Of what I was i' th' morning; but next day
I told him of myself, which was as much
As to have ask'd him pardon. Let this fellow
Be nothing of our strife; if we contend,
Out of our question wipe him.
CAESAR. You have broken
The article of your oath, which you shall never
Have tongue to charge me with.
LEPIDUS. Soft, Caesar!
Lepidus, let him speak.
The honour is sacred which he talks on now,
Supposing that I lack'd it. But on, Caesar:
The article of my oath-
CAESAR. To lend me arms and aid when I requir'd them,
The which you both denied.
ANTONY. Neglected, rather;
And then when poisoned hours had bound me up
From mine own knowledge. As nearly as I may,
I'll play the penitent to you; but mine honesty
Shall not make poor my greatness, nor my power
Work without it. Truth is, that Fulvia,
To have me out of Egypt, made wars here;
For which myself, the ignorant motive, do
So far ask pardon as befits mine honour
To stoop in such a case.
LEPIDUS. 'Tis noble spoken.
MAECENAS. If it might please you to enforce no further
The griefs between ye- to forget them quite
Were to remember that the present need
Speaks to atone you.
LEPIDUS. Worthily spoken, Maecenas.
ENOBARBUS. Or, if you borrow one another's love for the instant,
you may, when you hear no more words of Pompey, return it again.
You shall have time to wrangle in when you have nothing else to
ANTONY. Thou art a soldier only. Speak no more.
ENOBARBUS. That truth should be silent I had almost forgot.
ANTONY. You wrong this presence; therefore speak no more.
ENOBARBUS. Go to, then- your considerate stone!
CAESAR. I do not much dislike the matter, but
The manner of his speech; for't cannot be
We shall remain in friendship, our conditions
So diff'ring in their acts. Yet if I knew
What hoop should hold us stanch, from edge to edge
O' th' world, I would pursue it.
AGRIPPA. Give me leave, Caesar.
CAESAR. Speak, Agrippa.
AGRIPPA. Thou hast a sister by the mother's side,
Admir'd Octavia. Great Mark Antony
Is now a widower.
CAESAR. Say not so, Agrippa.
If Cleopatra heard you, your reproof
Were well deserv'd of rashness.
ANTONY. I am not married, Caesar. Let me hear
Agrippa further speak.
AGRIPPA. To hold you in perpetual amity,
To make you brothers, and to knit your hearts
With an unslipping knot, take Antony
Octavia to his wife; whose beauty claims
No worse a husband than the best of men;
Whose virtue and whose general graces speak
That which none else can utter. By this marriage
All little jealousies, which now seem great,
And all great fears, which now import their dangers,
Would then be nothing. Truths would be tales,
Where now half tales be truths. Her love to both
Would each to other, and all loves to both,
Draw after her. Pardon what I have spoke;
For 'tis a studied, not a present thought,
By duty ruminated.
ANTONY. Will Caesar speak?
CAESAR. Not till he hears how Antony is touch'd
With what is spoke already.
ANTONY. What power is in Agrippa,
If I would say 'Agrippa, be it so,'
To make this good?
CAESAR. The power of Caesar, and
His power unto Octavia.
ANTONY. May I never
To this good purpose, that so fairly shows,
Dream of impediment! Let me have thy hand.
Further this act of grace; and from this hour
The heart of brothers govern in our loves
And sway our great designs!
CAESAR. There is my hand.
A sister I bequeath you, whom no brother
Did ever love so dearly. Let her live
To join our kingdoms and our hearts; and never
Fly off our loves again!
LEPIDUS. Happily, amen!
ANTONY. I did not think to draw my sword 'gainst Pompey;
For he hath laid strange courtesies and great
Of late upon me. I must thank him only,
Lest my remembrance suffer ill report;
At heel of that, defy him.
LEPIDUS. Time calls upon's.
Of us must Pompey presently be sought,
Or else he seeks out us.
ANTONY. Where lies he?
CAESAR. About the Mount Misenum.
ANTONY. What is his strength by land?
CAESAR. Great and increasing; but by sea
He is an absolute master.
ANTONY. So is the fame.
Would we had spoke together! Haste we for it.
Yet, ere we put ourselves in arms, dispatch we
The business we have talk'd of.
CAESAR. With most gladness;
And do invite you to my sister's view,
Whither straight I'll lead you.
ANTONY. Let us, Lepidus,
Not lack your company.
LEPIDUS. Noble Antony,
Not sickness should detain me. [Flourish]
Exeunt all but ENOBARBUS, AGRIPPA, MAECENAS
MAECENAS. Welcome from Egypt, sir.
ENOBARBUS. Half the heart of Caesar, worthy Maecenas! My honourable
AGRIPPA. Good Enobarbus!
MAECENAS. We have cause to be glad that matters are so well
digested. You stay'd well by't in Egypt.
ENOBARBUS. Ay, sir; we did sleep day out of countenance and made
the night light with drinking.
MAECENAS. Eight wild boars roasted whole at a breakfast, and but
twelve persons there. Is this true?
ENOBARBUS. This was but as a fly by an eagle. We had much more
monstrous matter of feast, which worthily deserved noting.
MAECENAS. She's a most triumphant lady, if report be square to her.
ENOBARBUS. When she first met Mark Antony she purs'd up his heart,
upon the river of Cydnus.
AGRIPPA. There she appear'd indeed! Or my reporter devis'd well for
ENOBARBUS. I will tell you.
The barge she sat in, like a burnish'd throne,
Burn'd on the water. The poop was beaten gold;
Purple the sails, and so perfumed that
The winds were love-sick with them; the oars were silver,
Which to the tune of flutes kept stroke, and made
The water which they beat to follow faster,
As amorous of their strokes. For her own person,
It beggar'd all description. She did lie
In her pavilion, cloth-of-gold, of tissue,
O'erpicturing that Venus where we see
The fancy out-work nature. On each side her
Stood pretty dimpled boys, like smiling Cupids,
With divers-colour'd fans, whose wind did seem
To glow the delicate cheeks which they did cool,
And what they undid did.
AGRIPPA. O, rare for Antony!
ENOBARBUS. Her gentlewomen, like the Nereides,
So many mermaids, tended her i' th' eyes,
And made their bends adornings. At the helm
A seeming mermaid steers. The silken tackle
Swell with the touches of those flower-soft hands
That yarely frame the office. From the barge
A strange invisible perfume hits the sense
Of the adjacent wharfs. The city cast
Her people out upon her; and Antony,
Enthron'd i' th' market-place, did sit alone,
Whistling to th' air; which, but for vacancy,
Had gone to gaze on Cleopatra too,
And made a gap in nature.
AGRIPPA. Rare Egyptian!
ENOBARBUS. Upon her landing, Antony sent to her,
Invited her to supper. She replied
It should be better he became her guest;
Which she entreated. Our courteous Antony,
Whom ne'er the word of 'No' woman heard speak,
Being barber'd ten times o'er, goes to the feast,
And for his ordinary pays his heart
For what his eyes eat only.
AGRIPPA. Royal wench!
She made great Caesar lay his sword to bed.
He ploughed her, and she cropp'd.
ENOBARBUS. I saw her once
Hop forty paces through the public street;
And, having lost her breath, she spoke, and panted,
That she did make defect perfection,
And, breathless, pow'r breathe forth.
MAECENAS. Now Antony must leave her utterly.
ENOBARBUS. Never! He will not.
Age cannot wither her, nor custom stale
Her infinite variety. Other women cloy
The appetites they feed, but she makes hungry
Where most she satisfies; for vilest things
Become themselves in her, that the holy priests
Bless her when she is riggish.
MAECENAS. If beauty, wisdom, modesty, can settle
The heart of Antony, Octavia is
A blessed lottery to him.
AGRIPPA. Let us go.
Good Enobarbus, make yourself my guest
Whilst you abide here.
ENOBARBUS. Humbly, sir, I thank you. Exeunt
Rome. CAESAR'S house
Enter ANTONY, CAESAR, OCTAVIA between them
ANTONY. The world and my great office will sometimes
Divide me from your bosom.
OCTAVIA. All which time
Before the gods my knee shall bow my prayers
To them for you.
ANTONY. Good night, sir. My Octavia,
Read not my blemishes in the world's report.
I have not kept my square; but that to come
Shall all be done by th' rule. Good night, dear lady.
OCTAVIA. Good night, sir.
CAESAR. Good night. Exeunt CAESAR and OCTAVIA
ANTONY. Now, sirrah, you do wish yourself in Egypt?
SOOTHSAYER. Would I had never come from thence, nor you thither!
ANTONY. If you can- your reason.
SOOTHSAYER. I see it in my motion, have it not in my tongue; but
yet hie you to Egypt again.
ANTONY. Say to me,
Whose fortunes shall rise higher, Caesar's or mine?
Therefore, O Antony, stay not by his side.
Thy daemon, that thy spirit which keeps thee, is
Noble, courageous, high, unmatchable,
Where Caesar's is not; but near him thy angel
Becomes a fear, as being o'erpow'r'd. Therefore
Make space enough between you.
ANTONY. Speak this no more.
SOOTHSAYER. To none but thee; no more but when to thee.
If thou dost play with him at any game,
Thou art sure to lose; and of that natural luck
He beats thee 'gainst the odds. Thy lustre thickens
When he shines by. I say again, thy spirit
Is all afraid to govern thee near him;
But, he away, 'tis noble.
ANTONY. Get thee gone.
Say to Ventidius I would speak with him.
He shall to Parthia.- Be it art or hap,
He hath spoken true. The very dice obey him;
And in our sports my better cunning faints
Under his chance. If we draw lots, he speeds;
His cocks do win the battle still of mine,
When it is all to nought, and his quails ever
Beat mine, inhoop'd, at odds. I will to Egypt;
And though I make this marriage for my peace,
I' th' East my pleasure lies.
O, come, Ventidius,
You must to Parthia. Your commission's ready;
Follow me and receive't. Exeunt
Rome. A street
Enter LEPIDUS, MAECENAS, and AGRIPPA
LEPIDUS. Trouble yourselves no further. Pray you hasten
Your generals after.
AGRIPPA. Sir, Mark Antony
Will e'en but kiss Octavia, and we'll follow.
LEPIDUS. Till I shall see you in your soldier's dress,
Which will become you both, farewell.
MAECENAS. We shall,
As I conceive the journey, be at th' Mount
Before you, Lepidus.
LEPIDUS. Your way is shorter;
My purposes do draw me much about.
You'll win two days upon me.
BOTH. Sir, good success!
LEPIDUS. Farewell. Exeunt
Alexandria. CLEOPATRA'S palace
Enter CLEOPATRA, CHARMIAN, IRAS, and ALEXAS
CLEOPATRA. Give me some music- music, moody food
Of us that trade in love.
ALL. The music, ho!
Enter MARDIAN the eunuch
CLEOPATRA. Let it alone! Let's to billiards. Come, Charmian.
CHARMIAN. My arm is sore; best play with Mardian.
CLEOPATRA. As well a woman with an eunuch play'd
As with a woman. Come, you'll play with me, sir?
MARDIAN. As well as I can, madam.
CLEOPATRA. And when good will is show'd, though't come too short,
The actor may plead pardon. I'll none now.
Give me mine angle- we'll to th' river. There,
My music playing far off, I will betray
Tawny-finn'd fishes; my bended hook shall pierce
Their slimy jaws; and as I draw them up
I'll think them every one an Antony,
And say 'Ah ha! Y'are caught.'
CHARMIAN. 'Twas merry when
You wager'd on your angling; when your diver
Did hang a salt fish on his hook, which he
With fervency drew up.
CLEOPATRA. That time? O times
I laughed him out of patience; and that night
I laugh'd him into patience; and next morn,
Ere the ninth hour, I drunk him to his bed,
Then put my tires and mantles on him, whilst
I wore his sword Philippan.
Enter a MESSENGER
O! from Italy?
Ram thou thy fruitful tidings in mine ears,
That long time have been barren.
MESSENGER. Madam, madam-
CLEOPATRA. Antony's dead! If thou say so, villain,
Thou kill'st thy mistress; but well and free,
If thou so yield him, there is gold, and here
My bluest veins to kiss- a hand that kings
Have lipp'd, and trembled kissing.
MESSENGER. First, madam, he is well.
CLEOPATRA. Why, there's more gold.
But, sirrah, mark, we use
To say the dead are well. Bring it to that,
The gold I give thee will I melt and pour
Down thy ill-uttering throat.
MESSENGER. Good madam, hear me.
CLEOPATRA. Well, go to, I will.
But there's no goodness in thy face. If Antony
Be free and healthful- why so tart a favour
To trumpet such good tidings? If not well,
Thou shouldst come like a Fury crown'd with snakes,
Not like a formal man.
MESSENGER. Will't please you hear me?
CLEOPATRA. I have a mind to strike thee ere thou speak'st.
Yet, if thou say Antony lives, is well,
Or friends with Caesar, or not captive to him,
I'll set thee in a shower of gold, and hail
Rich pearls upon thee.
MESSENGER. Madam, he's well.
CLEOPATRA. Well said.
MESSENGER. And friends with Caesar.
CLEOPATRA. Th'art an honest man.
MESSENGER. Caesar and he are greater friends than ever.
CLEOPATRA. Make thee a fortune from me.
MESSENGER. But yet, madam-
CLEOPATRA. I do not like 'but yet.' It does allay
The good precedence; fie upon 'but yet'!
'But yet' is as a gaoler to bring forth
Some monstrous malefactor. Prithee, friend,
Pour out the pack of matter to mine ear,
The good and bad together. He's friends with Caesar;
In state of health, thou say'st; and, thou say'st, free.
MESSENGER. Free, madam! No; I made no such report.
He's bound unto Octavia.
CLEOPATRA. For what good turn?
MESSENGER. For the best turn i' th' bed.
CLEOPATRA. I am pale, Charmian.
MESSENGER. Madam, he's married to Octavia.
CLEOPATRA. The most infectious pestilence upon thee!
[Strikes him down]
MESSENGER. Good madam, patience.
CLEOPATRA. What say you? Hence, [Strikes him]
Horrible villain! or I'll spurn thine eyes
Like balls before me; I'll unhair thy head;
[She hales him up and down]
Thou shalt be whipp'd with wire and stew'd in brine,
Smarting in ling'ring pickle.
MESSENGER. Gracious madam,
I that do bring the news made not the match.
CLEOPATRA. Say 'tis not so, a province I will give thee,
And make thy fortunes proud. The blow thou hadst
Shall make thy peace for moving me to rage;
And I will boot thee with what gift beside
Thy modesty can beg.
MESSENGER. He's married, madam.
CLEOPATRA. Rogue, thou hast liv'd too long. [Draws a knife]
MESSENGER. Nay, then I'll run.
What mean you, madam? I have made no fault. Exit
CHARMIAN. Good madam, keep yourself within yourself:
The man is innocent.
CLEOPATRA. Some innocents scape not the thunderbolt.
Melt Egypt into Nile! and kindly creatures
Turn all to serpents! Call the slave again.
Though I am mad, I will not bite him. Call!
CHARMIAN. He is afear'd to come.
CLEOPATRA. I will not hurt him.
These hands do lack nobility, that they strike
A meaner than myself; since I myself
Have given myself the cause.
Enter the MESSENGER again
Come hither, sir.
Though it be honest, it is never good
To bring bad news. Give to a gracious message
An host of tongues; but let ill tidings tell
Themselves when they be felt.
MESSENGER. I have done my duty.
CLEOPATRA. Is he married?
I cannot hate thee worser than I do
If thou again say 'Yes.'
MESSENGER. He's married, madam.
CLEOPATRA. The gods confound thee! Dost thou hold there still?
MESSENGER. Should I lie, madam?
CLEOPATRA. O, I would thou didst,
So half my Egypt were submerg'd and made
A cistern for scal'd snakes! Go, get thee hence.
Hadst thou Narcissus in thy face, to me
Thou wouldst appear most ugly. He is married?
MESSENGER. I crave your Highness' pardon.
CLEOPATRA. He is married?
MESSENGER. Take no offence that I would not offend you;
To punish me for what you make me do
Seems much unequal. He's married to Octavia.
CLEOPATRA. O, that his fault should make a knave of thee
That art not what th'art sure of! Get thee hence.
The merchandise which thou hast brought from Rome
Are all too dear for me. Lie they upon thy hand,
And be undone by 'em! Exit MESSENGER
CHARMIAN. Good your Highness, patience.
CLEOPATRA. In praising Antony I have disprais'd Caesar.
CHARMIAN. Many times, madam.
CLEOPATRA. I am paid for't now. Lead me from hence,
I faint. O Iras, Charmian! 'Tis no matter.
Go to the fellow, good Alexas; bid him
Report the feature of Octavia, her years,
Her inclination; let him not leave out
The colour of her hair. Bring me word quickly.
Let him for ever go- let him not, Charmian-
Though he be painted one way like a Gorgon,
The other way's a Mars. [To MARDIAN]
Bid you Alexas
Bring me word how tall she is.- Pity me, Charmian,
But do not speak to me. Lead me to my chamber. Exeunt
Flourish. Enter POMPEY and MENAS at one door, with drum and trumpet;
at another, CAESAR, ANTONY, LEPIDUS, ENOBARBUS, MAECENAS, AGRIPPA,
with soldiers marching
POMPEY. Your hostages I have, so have you mine;
And we shall talk before we fight.
CAESAR. Most meet
That first we come to words; and therefore have we
Our written purposes before us sent;
Which if thou hast considered, let us know
If 'twill tie up thy discontented sword
And carry back to Sicily much tall youth
That else must perish here.
POMPEY. To you all three,
The senators alone of this great world,
Chief factors for the gods: I do not know
Wherefore my father should revengers want,
Having a son and friends, since Julius Caesar,
Who at Philippi the good Brutus ghosted,
There saw you labouring for him. What was't
That mov'd pale Cassius to conspire? and what
Made the all-honour'd honest Roman, Brutus,
With the arm'd rest, courtiers of beauteous freedom,
To drench the Capitol, but that they would
Have one man but a man? And that is it
Hath made me rig my navy, at whose burden
The anger'd ocean foams; with which I meant
To scourge th' ingratitude that despiteful Rome
Cast on my noble father.
CAESAR. Take your time.
ANTONY. Thou canst not fear us, Pompey, with thy sails;
We'll speak with thee at sea; at land thou know'st
How much we do o'er-count thee.
POMPEY. At land, indeed,
Thou dost o'er-count me of my father's house.
But since the cuckoo builds not for himself,
Remain in't as thou mayst.
LEPIDUS. Be pleas'd to tell us-
For this is from the present- how you take
The offers we have sent you.
CAESAR. There's the point.
ANTONY. Which do not be entreated to, but weigh
What it is worth embrac'd.
CAESAR. And what may follow,
To try a larger fortune.
POMPEY. You have made me offer
Of Sicily, Sardinia; and I must
Rid all the sea of pirates; then to send
Measures of wheat to Rome; this 'greed upon,
To part with unhack'd edges and bear back
Our targes undinted.
ALL. That's our offer.
POMPEY. Know, then,
I came before you here a man prepar'd
To take this offer; but Mark Antony
Put me to some impatience. Though I lose
The praise of it by telling, you must know,
When Caesar and your brother were at blows,
Your mother came to Sicily and did find
Her welcome friendly.
ANTONY. I have heard it, Pompey,
And am well studied for a liberal thanks
Which I do owe you.
POMPEY. Let me have your hand.
I did not think, sir, to have met you here.
ANTONY. The beds i' th' East are soft; and thanks to you,
That call'd me timelier than my purpose hither;
For I have gained by't.
CAESAR. Since I saw you last
There is a change upon you.
POMPEY. Well, I know not
What counts harsh fortune casts upon my face;
But in my bosom shall she never come
To make my heart her vassal.
LEPIDUS. Well met here.
POMPEY. I hope so, Lepidus. Thus we are agreed.
I crave our composition may be written,
And seal'd between us.
CAESAR. That's the next to do.
POMPEY. We'll feast each other ere we part, and let's
Draw lots who shall begin.
ANTONY. That will I, Pompey.
POMPEY. No, Antony, take the lot;
But, first or last, your fine Egyptian cookery
Shall have the fame. I have heard that Julius Caesar
Grew fat with feasting there.
ANTONY. You have heard much.
POMPEY. I have fair meanings, sir.
ANTONY. And fair words to them.
POMPEY. Then so much have I heard;
And I have heard Apollodorus carried-
ENOBARBUS. No more of that! He did so.
POMPEY. What, I pray you?
ENOBARBUS. A certain queen to Caesar in a mattress.
POMPEY. I know thee now. How far'st thou, soldier?
And well am like to do, for I perceive
Four feasts are toward.
POMPEY. Let me shake thy hand.
I never hated thee; I have seen thee fight,
When I have envied thy behaviour.
I never lov'd you much; but I ha' prais'd ye
When you have well deserv'd ten times as much
As I have said you did.
POMPEY. Enjoy thy plainness;
It nothing ill becomes thee.
Aboard my galley I invite you all.
Will you lead, lords?
ALL. Show's the way, sir.
POMPEY. Come. Exeunt all but ENOBARBUS and MENAS
MENAS. [Aside] Thy father, Pompey, would ne'er have made this
treaty.- You and I have known, sir.
ENOBARBUS. At sea, I think.
MENAS. We have, sir.
ENOBARBUS. You have done well by water.
MENAS. And you by land.
ENOBARBUS. I Will praise any man that will praise me; though it
cannot be denied what I have done by land.
MENAS. Nor what I have done by water.
ENOBARBUS. Yes, something you can deny for your own safety: you
have been a great thief by sea.
MENAS. And you by land.
ENOBARBUS. There I deny my land service. But give me your hand,
Menas; if our eyes had authority, here they might take two
MENAS. All men's faces are true, whatsome'er their hands are.
ENOBARBUS. But there is never a fair woman has a true face.
MENAS. No slander: they steal hearts.
ENOBARBUS. We came hither to fight with you.
MENAS. For my part, I am sorry it is turn'd to a drinking.
Pompey doth this day laugh away his fortune.
ENOBARBUS. If he do, sure he cannot weep't back again.
MENAS. Y'have said, sir. We look'd not for Mark Antony here. Pray
you, is he married to Cleopatra?
ENOBARBUS. Caesar' sister is call'd Octavia.
MENAS. True, sir; she was the wife of Caius Marcellus.
ENOBARBUS. But she is now the wife of Marcus Antonius.
MENAS. Pray ye, sir?
ENOBARBUS. 'Tis true.
MENAS. Then is Caesar and he for ever knit together.
ENOBARBUS. If I were bound to divine of this unity, I would not
MENAS. I think the policy of that purpose made more in the marriage
than the love of the parties.
ENOBARBUS. I think so too. But you shall find the band that seems
to tie their friendship together will be the very strangler of
their amity: Octavia is of a holy, cold, and still conversation.
MENAS. Who would not have his wife so?
ENOBARBUS. Not he that himself is not so; which is Mark Antony. He
will to his Egyptian dish again; then shall the sighs of Octavia
blow the fire up in Caesar, and, as I said before, that which is
the strength of their amity shall prove the immediate author of
their variance. Antony will use his affection where it is; he
married but his occasion here.
MENAS. And thus it may be. Come, sir, will you aboard? I have a
health for you.
ENOBARBUS. I shall take it, sir. We have us'd our throats in Egypt.
MENAS. Come, let's away. Exeunt
On board POMPEY'S galley, off Misenum
Music plays. Enter two or three SERVANTS with a banquet
FIRST SERVANT. Here they'll be, man. Some o' their plants are
ill-rooted already; the least wind i' th' world will blow them
SECOND SERVANT. Lepidus is high-colour'd.
FIRST SERVANT. They have made him drink alms-drink.
SECOND SERVANT. As they pinch one another by the disposition, he
cries out 'No more!'; reconciles them to his entreaty and himself
to th' drink.
FIRST SERVANT. But it raises the greater war between him and his
SECOND SERVANT. Why, this it is to have a name in great men's
fellowship. I had as lief have a reed that will do me no service
as a partizan I could not heave.
FIRST SERVANT. To be call'd into a huge sphere, and not to be seen
to move in't, are the holes where eyes should be, which pitifully
disaster the cheeks.
A sennet sounded. Enter CAESAR, ANTONY, LEPIDUS,
POMPEY, AGRIPPA, MAECENAS, ENOBARBUS, MENAS,
with other CAPTAINS
ANTONY. [To CAESAR] Thus do they, sir: they take the flow o' th'
By certain scales i' th' pyramid; they know
By th' height, the lowness, or the mean, if dearth
Or foison follow. The higher Nilus swells
The more it promises; as it ebbs, the seedsman
Upon the slime and ooze scatters his grain,
And shortly comes to harvest.
LEPIDUS. Y'have strange serpents there.
ANTONY. Ay, Lepidus.
LEPIDUS. Your serpent of Egypt is bred now of your mud by the
operation of your sun; so is your crocodile.
ANTONY. They are so.
POMPEY. Sit- and some wine! A health to Lepidus!
LEPIDUS. I am not so well as I should be, but I'll ne'er out.
ENOBARBUS. Not till you have slept. I fear me you'll be in till
LEPIDUS. Nay, certainly, I have heard the Ptolemies' pyramises are
very goodly things. Without contradiction I have heard that.
MENAS. [Aside to POMPEY] Pompey, a word.
POMPEY. [Aside to MENAS] Say in mine ear; what is't?
MENAS. [Aside to POMPEY] Forsake thy seat, I do beseech thee,
And hear me speak a word.
POMPEY. [ Whispers in's ear ] Forbear me till anon-
This wine for Lepidus!
LEPIDUS. What manner o' thing is your crocodile?
ANTONY. It is shap'd, sir, like itself, and it is as broad as it
hath breadth; it is just so high as it is, and moves with it own
organs. It lives by that which nourisheth it, and the elements
once out of it, it transmigrates.
LEPIDUS. What colour is it of?
ANTONY. Of it own colour too.
LEPIDUS. 'Tis a strange serpent.
ANTONY. 'Tis so. And the tears of it are wet.
CAESAR. Will this description satisfy him?
ANTONY. With the health that Pompey gives him, else he is a very
POMPEY. [Aside to MENAS] Go, hang, sir, hang! Tell me of that!
Do as I bid you.- Where's this cup I call'd for?
MENAS. [Aside to POMPEY] If for the sake of merit thou wilt hear
Rise from thy stool.
POMPEY. [Aside to MENAS] I think th'art mad. [Rises and walks
aside] The matter?
MENAS. I have ever held my cap off to thy fortunes.
POMPEY. Thou hast serv'd me with much faith. What's else to say?-
Be jolly, lords.
ANTONY. These quicksands, Lepidus,
Keep off them, for you sink.
MENAS. Wilt thou be lord of all the world?
POMPEY. What say'st thou?
MENAS. Wilt thou be lord of the whole world? That's twice.
POMPEY. How should that be?
MENAS. But entertain it,
And though you think me poor, I am the man
Will give thee all the world.
POMPEY. Hast thou drunk well?
MENAS. No, Pompey, I have kept me from the cup.
Thou art, if thou dar'st be, the earthly Jove;
Whate'er the ocean pales or sky inclips
Is thine, if thou wilt ha't.
POMPEY. Show me which way.
MENAS. These three world-sharers, these competitors,
Are in thy vessel. Let me cut the cable;
And when we are put off, fall to their throats.
All there is thine.
POMPEY. Ah, this thou shouldst have done,
And not have spoke on't. In me 'tis villainy:
In thee't had been good service. Thou must know
'Tis not my profit that does lead mine honour:
Mine honour, it. Repent that e'er thy tongue
Hath so betray'd thine act. Being done unknown,
I should have found it afterwards well done,
But must condemn it now. Desist, and drink.
MENAS. [Aside] For this,
I'll never follow thy pall'd fortunes more.
Who seeks, and will not take when once 'tis offer'd,
Shall never find it more.
POMPEY. This health to Lepidus!
ANTONY. Bear him ashore. I'll pledge it for him, Pompey.
ENOBARBUS. Here's to thee, Menas!
MENAS. Enobarbus, welcome!
POMPEY. Fill till the cup be hid.
ENOBARBUS. There's a strong fellow, Menas.
[Pointing to the servant who carries off LEPIDUS]
ENOBARBUS. 'A bears the third part of the world, man; see'st not?
MENAS. The third part, then, is drunk. Would it were all,
That it might go on wheels!
ENOBARBUS. Drink thou; increase the reels.
POMPEY. This is not yet an Alexandrian feast.
ANTONY. It ripens towards it. Strike the vessels, ho!
Here's to Caesar!
CAESAR. I could well forbear't.
It's monstrous labour when I wash my brain
And it grows fouler.
ANTONY. Be a child o' th' time.
CAESAR. Possess it, I'll make answer.
But I had rather fast from all four days
Than drink so much in one.
ENOBARBUS. [To ANTONY] Ha, my brave emperor!
Shall we dance now the Egyptian Bacchanals
And celebrate our drink?
POMPEY. Let's ha't, good soldier.
ANTONY. Come, let's all take hands,
Till that the conquering wine hath steep'd our sense
In soft and delicate Lethe.
ENOBARBUS. All take hands.
Make battery to our ears with the loud music,
The while I'll place you; then the boy shall sing;
The holding every man shall bear as loud
As his strong sides can volley.
[Music plays. ENOBARBUS places them hand in hand]
Come, thou monarch of the vine,
Plumpy Bacchus with pink eyne!
In thy fats our cares be drown'd,
With thy grapes our hairs be crown'd.
Cup us till the world go round,
Cup us till the world go round!
CAESAR. What would you more? Pompey, good night. Good brother,
Let me request you off; our graver business
Frowns at this levity. Gentle lords, let's part;
You see we have burnt our cheeks. Strong Enobarb
Is weaker than the wine, and mine own tongue
Splits what it speaks. The wild disguise hath almost
Antick'd us all. What needs more words? Good night.
Good Antony, your hand.
POMPEY. I'll try you on the shore.
ANTONY. And shall, sir. Give's your hand.
POMPEY. O Antony,
You have my father's house- but what? We are friends.
Come, down into the boat.
ENOBARBUS. Take heed you fall not.
Exeunt all but ENOBARBUS and MENAS
Menas, I'll not on shore.
MENAS. No, to my cabin.
These drums! these trumpets, flutes! what!
Let Neptune hear we bid a loud farewell
To these great fellows. Sound and be hang'd, sound out!
[Sound a flourish, with drums]
ENOBARBUS. Hoo! says 'a. There's my cap.
MENAS. Hoo! Noble Captain, come. Exeunt
ACT III. SCENE I.
A plain in Syria
Enter VENTIDIUS, as it were in triumph, with SILIUS
and other Romans, OFFICERS and soldiers; the dead body
of PACORUS borne before him
VENTIDIUS. Now, darting Parthia, art thou struck, and now
Pleas'd fortune does of Marcus Crassus' death
Make me revenger. Bear the King's son's body
Before our army. Thy Pacorus, Orodes,
Pays this for Marcus Crassus.
SILIUS. Noble Ventidius,
Whilst yet with Parthian blood thy sword is warm
The fugitive Parthians follow; spur through Media,
Mesopotamia, and the shelters whither
The routed fly. So thy grand captain, Antony,
Shall set thee on triumphant chariots and
Put garlands on thy head.
VENTIDIUS. O Silius, Silius,
I have done enough. A lower place, note well,
May make too great an act; for learn this, Silius:
Better to leave undone than by our deed
Acquire too high a fame when him we serve's away.
Caesar and Antony have ever won
More in their officer, than person. Sossius,
One of my place in Syria, his lieutenant,
For quick accumulation of renown,
Which he achiev'd by th' minute, lost his favour.
Who does i' th' wars more than his captain can
Becomes his captain's captain; and ambition,
The soldier's virtue, rather makes choice of loss
Than gain which darkens him.
I could do more to do Antonius good,
But 'twould offend him; and in his offence
Should my performance perish.
SILIUS. Thou hast, Ventidius, that
Without the which a soldier and his sword
Grants scarce distinction. Thou wilt write to Antony?
VENTIDIUS. I'll humbly signify what in his name,
That magical word of war, we have effected;
How, with his banners, and his well-paid ranks,
The ne'er-yet-beaten horse of Parthia
We have jaded out o' th' field.
SILIUS. Where is he now?
VENTIDIUS. He purposeth to Athens; whither, with what haste
The weight we must convey with's will permit,
We shall appear before him.- On, there; pass along.
SCENE II. Rome. CAESAR'S house
Enter AGRIPPA at one door, ENOBARBUS at another
AGRIPPA. What, are the brothers parted?
ENOBARBUS. They have dispatch'd with Pompey; he is gone;
The other three are sealing. Octavia weeps
To part from Rome; Caesar is sad; and Lepidus,
Since Pompey's feast, as Menas says, is troubled
With the green sickness.
AGRIPPA. 'Tis a noble Lepidus.
ENOBARBUS. A very fine one. O, how he loves Caesar!
AGRIPPA. Nay, but how dearly he adores Mark Antony!
ENOBARBUS. Caesar? Why he's the Jupiter of men.
AGRIPPA. What's Antony? The god of Jupiter.
ENOBARBUS. Spake you of Caesar? How! the nonpareil!
AGRIPPA. O, Antony! O thou Arabian bird!
ENOBARBUS. Would you praise Caesar, say 'Caesar'- go no further.
AGRIPPA. Indeed, he plied them both with excellent praises.
ENOBARBUS. But he loves Caesar best. Yet he loves Antony.
Hoo! hearts, tongues, figures, scribes, bards, poets, cannot
Think, speak, cast, write, sing, number- hoo!-
His love to Antony. But as for Caesar,
Kneel down, kneel down, and wonder.
AGRIPPA. Both he loves.
ENOBARBUS. They are his shards, and he their beetle. [Trumpets
This is to horse. Adieu, noble Agrippa.
AGRIPPA. Good fortune, worthy soldier, and farewell.
Enter CAESAR, ANTONY, LEPIDUS, and OCTAVIA
ANTONY. No further, sir.
CAESAR. You take from me a great part of myself;
Use me well in't. Sister, prove such a wife
As my thoughts make thee, and as my farthest band
Shall pass on thy approof. Most noble Antony,
Let not the piece of virtue which is set
Betwixt us as the cement of our love
To keep it builded be the ram to batter
The fortress of it; for better might we
Have lov'd without this mean, if on both parts
This be not cherish'd.
ANTONY. Make me not offended
In your distrust.
CAESAR. I have said.
ANTONY. You shall not find,
Though you be therein curious, the least cause
For what you seem to fear. So the gods keep you,
And make the hearts of Romans serve your ends!
We will here part.
CAESAR. Farewell, my dearest sister, fare thee well.
The elements be kind to thee and make
Thy spirits all of comfort! Fare thee well.
OCTAVIA. My noble brother!
ANTONY. The April's in her eyes. It is love's spring,
And these the showers to bring it on. Be cheerful.
OCTAVIA. Sir, look well to my husband's house; and-
CAESAR. What, Octavia?
OCTAVIA. I'll tell you in your ear.
ANTONY. Her tongue will not obey her heart, nor can
Her heart inform her tongue- the swan's down feather,
That stands upon the swell at the full of tide,
And neither way inclines.
ENOBARBUS. [Aside to AGRIPPA] Will Caesar weep?
AGRIPPA. [Aside to ENOBARBUS] He has a cloud in's face.
ENOBARBUS. [Aside to AGRIPPA] He were the worse for that, were he a
So is he, being a man.
AGRIPPA. [Aside to ENOBARBUS] Why, Enobarbus,
When Antony found Julius Caesar dead,
He cried almost to roaring; and he wept
When at Philippi he found Brutus slain.
ENOBARBUS. [Aside to AGRIPPA] That year, indeed, he was troubled
with a rheum;
What willingly he did confound he wail'd,
Believe't- till I weep too.
CAESAR. No, sweet Octavia,
You shall hear from me still; the time shall not
Out-go my thinking on you.
ANTONY. Come, sir, come;
I'll wrestle with you in my strength of love.
Look, here I have you; thus I let you go,
And give you to the gods.
CAESAR. Adieu; be happy!
LEPIDUS. Let all the number of the stars give light
To thy fair way!
CAESAR. Farewell, farewell! [Kisses OCTAVIA]
ANTONY. Farewell! Trumpets sound. Exeunt
Alexandria. CLEOPATRA'S palace
Enter CLEOPATRA, CHARMIAN, IRAS, and ALEXAS
CLEOPATRA. Where is the fellow?
ALEXAS. Half afeard to come.
CLEOPATRA. Go to, go to.
Enter the MESSENGER as before
Come hither, sir.
ALEXAS. Good Majesty,
Herod of Jewry dare not look upon you
But when you are well pleas'd.
CLEOPATRA. That Herod's head
I'll have. But how, when Antony is gone,
Through whom I might command it? Come thou near.
MESSENGER. Most gracious Majesty!
CLEOPATRA. Didst thou behold Octavia?
MESSENGER. Ay, dread Queen.
MESSENGER. Madam, in Rome
I look'd her in the face, and saw her led
Between her brother and Mark Antony.
CLEOPATRA. Is she as tall as me?
MESSENGER. She is not, madam.
CLEOPATRA. Didst hear her speak? Is she shrill-tongu'd or low?
MESSENGER. Madam, I heard her speak: she is low-voic'd.
CLEOPATRA. That's not so good. He cannot like her long.
CHARMIAN. Like her? O Isis! 'tis impossible.
CLEOPATRA. I think so, Charmian. Dull of tongue and dwarfish!
What majesty is in her gait? Remember,
If e'er thou look'dst on majesty.
MESSENGER. She creeps.
Her motion and her station are as one;
She shows a body rather than a life,
A statue than a breather.
CLEOPATRA. Is this certain?
MESSENGER. Or I have no observance.
CHARMIAN. Three in Egypt
Cannot make better note.
CLEOPATRA. He's very knowing;
I do perceive't. There's nothing in her yet.
The fellow has good judgment.
CLEOPATRA. Guess at her years, I prithee.
She was a widow.
CLEOPATRA. Widow? Charmian, hark!
MESSENGER. And I do think she's thirty.
CLEOPATRA. Bear'st thou her face in mind? Is't long or round?
MESSENGER. Round even to faultiness.
CLEOPATRA. For the most part, too, they are foolish that are so.
Her hair, what colour?
MESSENGER. Brown, madam; and her forehead
As low as she would wish it.
CLEOPATRA. There's gold for thee.
Thou must not take my former sharpness ill.
I will employ thee back again; I find thee
Most fit for business. Go make thee ready;
Our letters are prepar'd. Exeunt MESSENGER
CHARMIAN. A proper man.
CLEOPATRA. Indeed, he is so. I repent me much
That so I harried him. Why, methinks, by him,
This creature's no such thing.
CHARMIAN. Nothing, madam.
CLEOPATRA. The man hath seen some majesty, and should know.
CHARMIAN. Hath he seen majesty? Isis else defend,
And serving you so long!
CLEOPATRA. I have one thing more to ask him yet, good Charmian.
But 'tis no matter; thou shalt bring him to me
Where I will write. All may be well enough.
CHARMIAN. I warrant you, madam. Exeunt
Athens. ANTONY'S house
Enter ANTONY and OCTAVIA
ANTONY. Nay, nay, Octavia, not only that-
That were excusable, that and thousands more
Of semblable import- but he hath wag'd
New wars 'gainst Pompey; made his will, and read it
To public ear;
Spoke scandy of me; when perforce he could not
But pay me terms of honour, cold and sickly
He vented them, most narrow measure lent me;
When the best hint was given him, he not took't,
Or did it from his teeth.
OCTAVIA. O my good lord,
Believe not all; or if you must believe,
Stomach not all. A more unhappy lady,
If this division chance, ne'er stood between,
Praying for both parts.
The good gods will mock me presently
When I shall pray 'O, bless my lord and husband!'
Undo that prayer by crying out as loud
'O, bless my brother!' Husband win, win brother,
Prays, and destroys the prayer; no mid-way
'Twixt these extremes at all.
ANTONY. Gentle Octavia,
Let your best love draw to that point which seeks
Best to preserve it. If I lose mine honour,
I lose myself; better I were not yours
Than yours so branchless. But, as you requested,
Yourself shall go between's. The meantime, lady,
I'll raise the preparation of a war
Shall stain your brother. Make your soonest haste;
So your desires are yours.
OCTAVIA. Thanks to my lord.
The Jove of power make me, most weak, most weak,
Your reconciler! Wars 'twixt you twain would be
As if the world should cleave, and that slain men
Should solder up the rift.
ANTONY. When it appears to you where this begins,
Turn your displeasure that way, for our faults
Can never be so equal that your love
Can equally move with them. Provide your going;
Choose your own company, and command what cost
Your heart has mind to. Exeunt
Athens. ANTONY'S house
Enter ENOBARBUS and EROS, meeting
ENOBARBUS. How now, friend Eros!
EROS. There's strange news come, sir.
ENOBARBUS. What, man?
EROS. Caesar and Lepidus have made wars upon Pompey.
ENOBARBUS. This is old. What is the success?
EROS. Caesar, having made use of him in the wars 'gainst Pompey,
presently denied him rivality, would not let him partake in the
glory of the action; and not resting here, accuses him of letters
he had formerly wrote to Pompey; upon his own appeal, seizes him.
So the poor third is up, till death enlarge his confine.
ENOBARBUS. Then, world, thou hast a pair of chaps- no more;
And throw between them all the food thou hast,
They'll grind the one the other. Where's Antony?
EROS. He's walking in the garden- thus, and spurns
The rush that lies before him; cries 'Fool Lepidus!'
And threats the throat of that his officer
That murd'red Pompey.
ENOBARBUS. Our great navy's rigg'd.
EROS. For Italy and Caesar. More, Domitius:
My lord desires you presently; my news
I might have told hereafter.
ENOBARBUS. 'Twill be naught;
But let it be. Bring me to Antony.
EROS. Come, sir. Exeunt
Rome. CAESAR'S house
Enter CAESAR, AGRIPPA, and MAECENAS
CAESAR. Contemning Rome, he has done all this and more
In Alexandria. Here's the manner of't:
I' th' market-place, on a tribunal silver'd,
Cleopatra and himself in chairs of gold
Were publicly enthron'd; at the feet sat
Caesarion, whom they call my father's son,
And all the unlawful issue that their lust
Since then hath made between them. Unto her
He gave the stablishment of Egypt; made her
Of lower Syria, Cyprus, Lydia,
MAECENAS. This in the public eye?
CAESAR. I' th' common show-place, where they exercise.
His sons he there proclaim'd the kings of kings:
Great Media, Parthia, and Armenia,
He gave to Alexander; to Ptolemy he assign'd
Syria, Cilicia, and Phoenicia. She
In th' habiliments of the goddess Isis
That day appear'd; and oft before gave audience,
As 'tis reported, so.
MAECENAS. Let Rome be thus
AGRIPPA. Who, queasy with his insolence
Already, will their good thoughts call from him.
CAESAR. The people knows it, and have now receiv'd
AGRIPPA. Who does he accuse?
CAESAR. Caesar; and that, having in Sicily
Sextus Pompeius spoil'd, we had not rated him
His part o' th' isle. Then does he say he lent me
Some shipping, unrestor'd. Lastly, he frets
That Lepidus of the triumvirate
Should be depos'd; and, being, that we detain
All his revenue.
AGRIPPA. Sir, this should be answer'd.
CAESAR. 'Tis done already, and messenger gone.
I have told him Lepidus was grown too cruel,
That he his high authority abus'd,
And did deserve his change. For what I have conquer'd
I grant him part; but then, in his Armenia
And other of his conquer'd kingdoms,
Demand the like.
MAECENAS. He'll never yield to that.
CAESAR. Nor must not then be yielded to in this.
Enter OCTAVIA, with her train
OCTAVIA. Hail, Caesar, and my lord! hail, most dear Caesar!
CAESAR. That ever I should call thee cast-away!
OCTAVIA. You have not call'd me so, nor have you cause.
CAESAR. Why have you stol'n upon us thus? You come not
Like Caesar's sister. The wife of Antony
Should have an army for an usher, and
The neighs of horse to tell of her approach
Long ere she did appear. The trees by th' way
Should have borne men, and expectation fainted,
Longing for what it had not. Nay, the dust
Should have ascended to the roof of heaven,
Rais'd by your populous troops. But you are come
A market-maid to Rome, and have prevented
The ostentation of our love, which left unshown
Is often left unlov'd. We should have met you
By sea and land, supplying every stage
With an augmented greeting.
OCTAVIA. Good my lord,
To come thus was I not constrain'd, but did it
On my free will. My lord, Mark Antony,
Hearing that you prepar'd for war, acquainted
My grieved ear withal; whereon I begg'd
His pardon for return.
CAESAR. Which soon he granted,
Being an obstruct 'tween his lust and him.
OCTAVIA. Do not say so, my lord.
CAESAR. I have eyes upon him,
And his affairs come to me on the wind.
Where is he now?
OCTAVIA. My lord, in Athens.
CAESAR. No, my most wronged sister: Cleopatra
Hath nodded him to her. He hath given his empire
Up to a whore, who now are levying
The kings o' th' earth for war. He hath assembled
Bocchus, the king of Libya; Archelaus
Of Cappadocia; Philadelphos, king
Of Paphlagonia; the Thracian king, Adallas;
King Manchus of Arabia; King of Pont;
Herod of Jewry; Mithridates, king
Of Comagene; Polemon and Amyntas,
The kings of Mede and Lycaonia, with
More larger list of sceptres.
OCTAVIA. Ay me most wretched,
That have my heart parted betwixt two friends,
That does afflict each other!
CAESAR. Welcome hither.
Your letters did withhold our breaking forth,
Till we perceiv'd both how you were wrong led
And we in negligent danger. Cheer your heart;
Be you not troubled with the time, which drives
O'er your content these strong necessities,
But let determin'd things to destiny
Hold unbewail'd their way. Welcome to Rome;
Nothing more dear to me. You are abus'd
Beyond the mark of thought, and the high gods,
To do you justice, make their ministers
Of us and those that love you. Best of comfort,
And ever welcome to us.
AGRIPPA. Welcome, lady.