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Sooth. If every of your wishes had a womb,
And fertile every wish, a million.
Eno. Mine, and most of our fortunes, to-night, shall be,-drunk to bed.
Iras. There's a palm presages chastity, if nothing else.
Char. Nay, if an oily palm be not a fruitful prognostication, I cannot scratch mine ear.—Pr'ythee, tell her but a worky-day fortune.
Sooth. Your fortunes are alike.
Char. Well, if you were but an inch of fortune better than 1, where would you choose it?
Iras. Not in my husband's nose.
Char. Our worser thoughts heavens mend !-Alexas, --come, his fortune, his fortune !-0, 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, fifty-fold 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 heart-breaking to see a handsome man loose-wived, so it is a deadly sorrow to behold a foul knave uncuckolded : therefore, dear Isis, keep decorum, and fortune him accordingly!
Alex. Lo, now, if it lay in their hands to make me a cuckold, they would make themselves whores, but they'd do 't!
Eno, Hush! here comes Antony.
Not he; the queeti.
Cleo. He was disposed to mirth; but on the sudden, a Roman thought hath struck him.-Enobarbus,
[Exeunt CLEOPATRA, ENOBARBUS, ALEXAS, IRAS,
CHARMIAN, and Soothsayer.
Enter ANTONY, with a Messenger and Attendants.
Well, what worst?
Ant. When it concerns the fool, or coward.—On:-
Ant. Antony, thou wouldst say,-
Ant. Speak to me home, mince not the general tongue :
Let him appear. -
Enter another Messenger.
What are you?
2 Mess. Fulvia thy wife is dead. Ant.
Where died she? 2 Mess. In Sicyon:
Her length of sickness, with what else more serious
[Giving a letter. Ant.
[Exit second Messenger.
Eno. Why, then, we kill all our women: we see how mortal an unkindness is to them; if they suffer our departure, death's the word.
Ant. I must be gone.
Eno. 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.
Ant. She is cunning past man's thought.
Eno. 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 shower of rain as well as Jove.
Ant. Would I had never seen her!
Eno. O, Sir, you had then left unseen a wonderful piece of work; which not to have been blessed withal, would have discredited your travel.
Ant. Fulvia is dead.
Eno. Fulvia !
Eno. 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 crowned with consolation ; your old smock brings forth a new petticoat :-and, indeed, the tears live in an onion that should water this sorrow. Ant. The business she hath broached in the state
Cannot endure my absence. Eno. And the business you have broached here cannot be without you; especially that of Cleopatra's, which wholly depends on your abode. Ant. No more light answers. Let our officers
Have notice what we purpose. I shall break
For not alone
Our quick remove from hence.
I shall do it. [Exeunt.
SCENE III.-Another Room in the Palace.
Enter CLEOPATRA, CHARMIAN, IRAS, and Alexas.
I did not see him since.
I did not send you.—If you find him sad,
Char. Madam, methinks, if you did love him dearly,
What should I do, I do not.
Char. Tempt him not so too far; I wish, forbear :
I am sick, and sullen.
Cleo. Help me away, dear Charmian ; I shall fall :
Now, my dearest queen,-
What's the matter i
the married woman —You may go:
Ant. The gods best know,-
0, never was there queen
Most sweet queen,-