Изображения страниц
PDF
EPUB

Cæs.

Leave thy lascivious wassels.4

Antony,

When thou once

Wast 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 browsed'st; 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.

Lep.

It is pity of him. Cas. Let his shames quickly

Drive him to Rome: 'Tis time we twain

Did show ourselves i'the field; and, to that end,
Assemble we immediate council: Pompey

Thrives in our idleness.

Lep.

To-morrow, Cæsar,

I shall be furnish'd to inform you rightly
Both what by sea and land I can be able,
To 'front this present time.

Cæs.

Till which encounter,

It is my business too. Farewell.

Lep. Farewell, my lord: What you shall know mean

time

Of stirs abroad, I shall beseech you, sir,

To let me be partaker.

thy lascivious wassels.] Wassel is here put for intemperance in general.

— gilded puddle-] There is frequently observable on the surface of stagnant pools that have remained long undisturbed, a reddish gold coloured slime; to this appearance the poet here refers.

[blocks in formation]

Enter CLEOPATRA, CHARMIAN, IRAS, and MARDIAN.

Cleo. Charmian, —

Char. Madam.

Cleo. Ha, ha!

Give me to drink mandragora.7

Char.

Why, madam?

Cleo. That I might sleep out this great gap of time,

[blocks in formation]

Mar.

What's your highness' pleasure?

Cleo. Not now to hear thee sing; I take no pleasure

In aught an eunuch has: 'Tis well for thee,

That, being unseminard, thy freer thoughts

May not fly forth of Egypt. Hast thou affections?
Mar. Yes, gracious madam.

Cleo. Indeed?

Mar. Not in deed, madam; for I can do nothing
But what in deed is honest to be done:

Yet I have fierce affections, and think,
What Venus did with Mars.

Cleo.

O Charmian,

Where think'st thou he is now? Stands he, or sits he?

7

6 · I knew it for my bond.] That is, to be my bounden duty. mandragora.] A plant of which the infusion was supposed to procure sleep.

+"O, 'tis treason!"- MALONE.

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 Cæsar,"
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 aspéct, and die

With looking on his life.

Alex.

Enter ALEXAS.

Sovereign of Egypt, hail!

Cleo. How much unlike art thou Mark Antony!
Yet, coming from him, that great medicine hath
With his tinct gilded thee.'-

How goes it with my brave Mark Antony?
Alex. Last thing he did, dear queen,

He kiss'd,—the last of many doubled kisses, —
This orient pearl;-His speech sticks in my heart.
Cleo. Mine ear must pluck it thence.

Alex.

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,

8 And burgonet of men.] A burgonet is a kind of helmet. Broad-fronted Cæsar,] In allusion to Cæsar's baldness. that great medicine hath

9

11

With his tinct gilded thee.] Alluding to the philosopher's stone, which, by its touch, converts base metal into gold. The alchemists call the matter, whatever it be, by which they perform transmutation, a medicine. JOHNSON.

Say thou, shall call her mistress.

So he nodded,

And soberly did mount a termagant steed,"

Who neigh'd so high, that what I would have spoke
Was beastly dumb'd by him.

Cleo.

What, was he sad, or merry?

Alex. Like to the time o'the year between the ex

tremes

Of heat and cold; he was nor sad, nor merry.

Cleo. 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?
Alex. Ay, madam, twenty several messengers:
Why do you send so thick ?3

Cleo.

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 Cæsar so?

Char.

O that brave Cæsar!

Cleo. Be chok'd with such another emphasis ! Say, the brave Antony.

Char.

The valiant Cæsar!

Cleo. By Isis, I will give thee bloody teeth,

If thou with Cæsar paragon again

My man of men.

Char.

I sing but after you.

[ocr errors]

Cleo.

By your most gracious pardon,

My sallad days;

termagant steed,] Termagant means furious; but Ms.

Malone reads arm-gaunt, or worn thin and lean in war.

3

—so thick?] i. e. in such quick succession.

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.

ACT II.

SCENE I.-Messina. A Room in Pompey's House.

Enter POMPEY, MENECRATES, and MENAS.

Pom. If the great gods be just, they shall assist The deeds of justest men.

Mene.

Know, worthy Pompey,

That what they do delay, they not deny.

Pom. Whiles we are suitors to their throne, decays

The thing we sue for.

Mene.

We, ignorant of ourselves,

Beg often our own harms, which the wise powers
Deny us for our good; so find we profit,

By losing of our prayers.

Pom.

I shall do well:

The people love me, and the sea is mine;

My power's a crescent, and my auguring hope
Says it will come to the full. Mark Antony
In Egypt sits at dinner, and will make

No wars without doors: Cæsar gets money, where
He loses hearts: Lepidus flatters both,

Of both is flatter'd; but he neither loves,

Nor either cares for him.

Men.

Cæsar and Lepidus

Are in the field; a mighty strength they carry.
Pom. Where have you this? 'tis false.
Men.

4

From Silvius, sir.

unpeople Egypt.] By sending out messengers.

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »