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Enter Antony, borne by the Guard. Cleo. Burn the great sphere thou mov'st in! darkling
stand The varying shore o' the world !-O Antony ! Antony, Antony !--Charmian, help; help, Iras; Help, friends below : let's draw him hither.
Ant. Peace : Not Cæsar's valour hath o'erthrown Antony; But Antony's hath triumphed on itself.
Cleo. So it should be, that none but Antony Should
conquer Antony: but woe 't is so! Ant. I am dying, Egypt, dying: only I here importune death awhile, until Of many
thousand kisses the poor last I lay upon thy lips.
Cleo. I dare not, dear (Dear my lord, pardon); I dare not, Lest I be taken. Not the imperious show Of the full-fortuned Cæsar ever shall Be brooched with me:ifknife,drugs, serpents, have Edge, sting, or operation, I am safe : Your wife Octavia, with her modest eyes And still conclusion, shall acquire no honour Demurring upon me.—But come, come, Antony :Help me, my women,
-we must draw thee up: Assist, good friends.
Ant. O quick, or I am gone.
Ant. One word, sweet queen : Of Cæsar seek your honour with your safety.-0!
Cleo. They do not go together.
Ant. Gentle, hear me:
Cleo. My resolution and my hands I 'll trust : None about Cæsar.
Ant. The miserable change now at my end Lament nor sorrow at: but please your thoughts In feeding them with those my former fortunes, Wherein I lived the greatest prince o' the world, The noblest: and do now not basely die, Nor cowardly; put off my helmet To my countryman :—a Roman, by a Roman Valiantly vanquished. Now my spirit is going ! I can no more.
[Dies. Cleo. Noblest of men, woo't die? Hast thou no care of me? shall I abide In this dull world, which in thy absence is No better than a sty ?–0 see, my women, The crown o' the earth doth melt!--My lord ! 0, withered is the garland of the war; The soldier's pole is fallen : young boys and girls Are level now with men: the odds is
gone, And there is nothing left remarkable Beneath the visiting moon! [She faints.
Char. O, quietness, lady!
Charmian ? My noble girls !-- Ah, women, women! look, Our lamp is spent; it's out.—Good sirs, take heart.
[To the Guard below. We'll bury him: and then, what 's brave, what's
noble, Let's do it after the high Roman fashion, And make death proud to take us. Come, away: This case of that huge spirit now is cold. Ah, women, women ! come: we have no friend But resolution and the briefest end. [Exeunt; those above bearing off Antony's body.
Our strength is all gone into heaviness :
[ They draw ANTONY up. And welcome, welcome ! die where thou hast lived: Quicken with kissing : had my lips that power, Thus would I wear them out.
Al. A heavy sight!
Ant. I am dying, Egypt, dying:
Cleo. No, let me speak; and let me rail so high That the false housewife Fortune break her wheel, Provoked by my offence.
Scene 1.–Cæsar's Camp before Alexandria.
Enter CÆSAR, AGRIPPA, DOLABELLA, MECÆNAS,
Gallus, Proculeius, and others. Cæs. Go to him, Dolabella ; bid him yield : Being so frustrate, tell him he mocks us by The pauses that he makes.
Dol. Cæsar, I shall. [Exit DOLABELLA.
Enter Dercetas, with the sword of Antony. Cæs. Wherefore is that? and what art thou
that dar'st Appear thus to us?
Der. I am called Dercetas :
Cæs. What is 't thou sayst ?
Der. He is dead, Cæsar; Not by a public minister of justice, Nor by a hiréd knife: but that self hand Which writ his honour in the acts it did, Hath, with the courage which the heart did lend it, Splitted the heart.—This is his sword;
I robbed his wound of it: behold it stained
Cæs. Look you sad, friends ?
Agr. And strange it is
Mec. His taints and honours
Agr. A rarer spirit never Did steer humanity: but you, gods, will give us Some faults will make us men.—Cæsar is touched.
[ Aside. Mec. When such a spacious mirror's set before
him, He needs must see himself. Cæs.
O Antony, I have followed thee to this !—But we do lance Diseases in our bodies : I must perforce Have shewn to thee such a declining day, Or look on thine; we could not stall together In the whole world : but yet let me lament, With tears as sovereign as the blood of hearts, That thou, my brother, my competitor In top of all design, my mate in empire, Friend and companion in the front of war, The arm of mine own body, and the heart Where mine his thoughts did kindle,—that our stars Unreconcileable, should divide Our equalness to this.—Hear me, good friends, But I will tell you at some meeter season :
Enter a Messenger. The business of this man looks out of him; We'll hear him what he says.—Whence are you?
Mess. A poor Egyptian yet. The queen my
Cæs. Bid her have good heart :
Mess. So the gods preserve thee! [Exit.
Cæs. Come hither, Proculeius : go, and say We purpose her no shame: give her what comforts The quality of her passion shall require; Lest, in her greatness, by some mortal stroke She do defeat us: for her life in Rome Would be eternal in our triumph. Go; And, with your speediest, bring us what she says, And how you find of her.
Pro. Cæsar, I shall. [Exit Proculeius.
Cæs.Gallus, go you along.–Where's Dolabella, To second Proculeius?
Alec :} Dolabella!
Cæs. Let him alone, for I remember now How he's employed: he shall in time be ready. Go with me to my tent: where you shall see How hardly I was drawn into this war; How calm and gentle I proceeded still In all my writings. Go with me, and see What I can shew in this.
I do not greatly care to be deceived,
Pro. Be of good cheer;
Pray you tell him I am his fortune's vassal, and I send him The greatness he has got. I hourly learn A doctrine of obedience, and would gladly Look him i' the face.
Pro. This I 'll report, dear lady. Have comfort; for I know your plight is pitied Of him that caused it.
Gal. You see how easily she may be surprised.[Procureius and two of the Guard enter the
Monument by a ladder placed against a window, and come behind CLEOPATRA. Others
unbar and open the gates. Guard her till Cæsar come. [Exit Galius.
Iras. Royal queen!
[Draws a dagger. Pro. Hold, worthy lady, hold! [Disarms her. Do not yourself such wrong, who are in this Relieved, but not betrayed.
Cleo. What, of death too,
Cleo. Where art thou, death?
Pro. 0, temperance, lady!
Cleo. Sir, I will eat no meat; I 'll not drink, sir : If idle talk will once be necessary, I 'll not sleep neither : this mortal house I 'll ruin, Do Cæsar what he can. Know, sir, that I Will not wait pinioned at your master's court, Nor once be chástised with the sober eye Of dull Octavia. Shall they hoist me up, And shew me to the shouting varletry Of censuring Rome? Rather a ditch in Egypt
Scene II.-Alexandria. A Room in the Monument.
Enter CLEOPATRA, Charmian, and Iras.
Cleo. My desolation does begin to make A better life. "T is paltry to be Cæsar : Not being furtune, he's but fortune's knave; A minister of her will. And it is great To do that thing that ends all other deeds; Which shackles accidents, and bolts up change; Which sleeps, and never palates more the dung, The beggar's nurse and Cæsar's.
Enter, to the gates of the Monument, PROCULEIUS,
Gallus, and Soldiers.
Cleo. [within]. What's thy name?
Cleo. [within). Antony
Be gentle grave to me: rather on Nilus' mud
Pro. You do extend
Cleo. You lie, up to the hearing of the gods! But if there be or ever were one such, It's past the size of dreaming. Nature wants stuff To vie strange forms with fancy: yet to imagine An Antony were nature's piece 'gainst fancy, Condemning shadows quite. Dol.
Hear me, good madam : Your loss is as yourself, great ; and you bear it As answering to the weight. 'Would I might
Dol. Proculeius, What thou hast done thy master Cæsar knows, And he hath sent for thee : as for the
queen, I'll take her to my guard.
Pro. So, Dolabella,
shall please, If you 'll employ me to him. [ To CLEOPATRA. Cleo. Say, I would die.
[Exeunt ProculEius and Soldiers. Dol. Most noble empress, you have heard of
me? Cleo. I cannot tell. Dol. Assuredly you know me. Cleo. No matter, sir, what I have heard or
known. You laugh when boys or women tell their dreams: Is 't not your
trick? Dol. I understand not, madam. Cleo. I dreamed there was an emperor An
Dol. If it might please you,-
stuck A sun and moon, which kept their course, and
lighted The little 0, the earth.
Dol. Most sovereign creature,
Cleo. His legs bestrid the ocean: his reared arm Crested the world : his voice was propertied As all the tunéd spheres, and that to friends; But when he meant to quail and shake the orb, He was a rattling thunder. For his bounty, There was no winter in 't; an autumn 't was, That grew the more by reaping : his delights Were dolphin-like; they shewed his back above The element they lived in : in his livery Walked crowns and crownets; realms and
O'ertake pursued success but I do feel,
Cleo. I thank you, sir.
what Cæsar means to do with me? Dol. I am loth to tell you what I would you
Within. Make way there :-Cæsar!
SELEUCUS, and Attendants. Cæs. Which is the Queen of Egypt? Dol. It is the emperor, madam.
(CLEOPATRA kneels. Cæs. Arise ; you shall not kneel.I pray you, rise : rise, Egypt.
Cleo. Sir, the gods
Cæs. Take to you no hard thoughts :
Cleo. Sole sir o'the world,
find A benefit in this change: but if you seek To lay on me a cruelty, by taking Antony's course, you shall bereave yourself Of my good purposes, and put your children To that destruction which I 'll guard them from If thereon you rely. I 'll take my leave. Cleo. And may through all the world : 't is
yours; and we, Your 'scutcheons and your signs of conquest, Hang in what place you please. Here, my good
a man As this I dreamed of?
Dol. Gentle madam, no.
lord :Cæs. You shall advise me in all for Cleopatra. Cleo. This is the brief of money, plate, and
jewels, I am possessed of : 't is exactly valued ; Not petty things admitted.—Where's Seleucus ?
Sel. Here, madam.
lord, Upon his peril, that I have reserved To myself nothing.–Speak the truth, Seleucus.
Cleo. What have I kept back?
known. Cæs. Nay, blush not, Cleopatra : I approve Your wisdom in the deed.
Cleo. See, Cæsar! 0, behold How pomp is followed !—mine will now be yours: And, should we shift estates, yours would be
mine. The ingratitude of this Seleucus does Even make me wild :-O slave, of no more trust Than love that's hired !— What, go'st thou back?
thou shalt Go back, I warrant thee: but I 'll catch thine eyes, Though they had wings ! Slave, soulless villain,
dog! O rarely base!
Cæs. Good queen, let us entreat you.
Cleo. O Cæsar, what a wounding shame is this, That thou, vouchsafing here to visit me, Doing the honour of thy lordliness To one so meek, that mine own servant should Parcel the sum of my disgraces by Addition of his envy! Say, good Cæsar, That I some lady trifles have reserved, Immoment toys, things of such dignity As we greet modern friends withal; and say, Some nobler token I have kept apart For Livia and Octavia, to induce Their mediation ; must I be unfolded With one that I have bred ? The gods ! it smites
We answer others' merits in our name:
ledged, Put we i'the roll of conquest: still be it yours, Bestow it at your pleasure: and believe Cæsar's no merchant, to make prize with you of things that merchants sold. Therefore be
cheered; Make not your thoughts your prisons; no, dear
Cleo. My master and my lord !
I should not
[Whispers Charmian. Iras. Finish, good lady: the bright day is done, And we are for the dark.
Cleo. Hie thee again :
Char. Madam, I will.
Which my love makes religion to obey,
Dol. I your servant.
Now, Iras, what think'st thou ? Thou, an Egyptian puppet, shalt be shewn In Rome, as well as I: mechanic slaves, With greasy aprons, rules, and hammers, shall Uplift us to the view: in their thick breaths, Rank of gross diet, shall we be enclouded, And forced to drink their vapour.
Iras. The gods forbid !
Cleo. Nay, 't is most certain, Iras : saucy lictors Will catch at us like strumpets, and scald rhymers Ballad us out o'tune : the quick comedians
Beneath the fall I have.- Pr'y thee, go hence ;
[To Seleucus. Or I shall shew the cinders of my spirits Through the ashes of my chance :-wert thou a
man, Thou wouldst have mercy on me.
Cæs. Forbear, Seleucus. [Exit Seleucus. Cleo. Be it known that we, the greatest, are
mis-thought For things that others do; and when we fall,