תמונות בעמוד
PDF
ePub

spurn thine

Cleo.

What say you ?-Hence,

[Strikes him again. Horrible villain ! or I'll

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. Mess.

Gracious madam,
I, that do bring the news, made not the match.

Cleo. 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.
Mess.

He's married, madam.
Cleo. Rogue, thou hast liv'd too long.

[Draws a dagger. Mess.

Nay, then I'll run :What mean you, madam ? I have made no fault. [Exit.

Char. Good madam, keep yourself within yourself; The man is innocent.

Cleo. 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.

Char. He is afeard to come.
Cleo.

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.-Come hither, sir.

These hands do lack nobility, that they strike

A meaner than myself;] Perhaps here was intended an indirect censure of queen Elizabeth, for her unprincely and unfeminine treatment of the amiable earl of Essex. The play was probably not produced till after her death, when a stroke at her proud and passionate demeanour to her courtiers and maids of honour (for her majesty used to chastise them too) might be safely Re-enter Messenger.

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.
Mess.

I have done my duty
Cleo. Is he married ?
I cannot hate thee worser than I do,
If thou again say, Yes.
Mess.

He is married, madam. Cleo. The gods confound thee! dost thou hold there

still? Mess. Should I lie, madam? Cleo.

0, I would, thou didst;
So half my Egypt were submerg'd', and made
A cistern for scald snakes ! Go, get thee hence.
Hadst thou Narcissus in thy face, to me
Thou would’st appear most ugly. He is married ?

Mess. I crave your highness' pardon.
Cleo.

He is married?
Mess. Take no offence, that I would not offend you :
To punish me for wliat you make me do,
Seems much unequal: He is married to Octavia.

Cleo. O, that his fault should make a knave of thee, Thou art not !- What? thou’rt sure of't+?-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.

hazarded. In a subsequent part of this scene there is (as Dr. Grer has observed) an evident allusion to Elizabeth's enquiries concerning the person of her rival, Mary, queen of Scots. Malone.

were submerg'd,] Submerg'd is whelmed under water. + “Thou art not what thou'rt sure of.”—Malone.

2

Char.

Good your highness, patience. Cleo. In praising Antony, I have disprais'd Cæsar. Char. Many times, madam. Cleo.

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.

[Exit ALEXAS. Let him for ever go :-Let him not-Charmian, Though he be painted one way like a Gorgon, Tother way he's a Mars :-Did you Alexas

[ To MARDIAN Bring me word, how tall she is.— Pity me, Charmian, But do not speak to me. -Lead me to my chamber.

[Eceunt.

SCENE VI.

Near Misenum.

Enter POMPEY and MENAS, at one sile, with Drum and

Trumpet : at another, CÆSAR, LEPIDUS, ANTONY,
ENOBARBUS, MECÆNAS, with Soldiers marching.

Pom. Your hostages I have, so have you mine;
And we shall talk before we fight.
Cos.

Most meet,
That first we come to words; and therefore have we
Our written purposes before us sent;
Which, if thou hast consider'd, let us know

the feature of Octavia,] By feature seems to be meant the cast and make of her face. Feature, however, anciently appears to have signified beauty in general.

Let him for ever go :] She is now talking in broken sentences, not of the messenger, but of Autony. Johnson.

If 'twill tie up thy discontented sword;
And carry back to Sicily much tall youth,
That else must perish here.
Pom.

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 Cæsar,
Who at Philippi the good Brutus ghosted,
There saw you labouring for him. What was it,
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 the ingratitude that despiteful Rome
Cast on my noble father.
Cæs.

Take your time.
Ant. 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.
Pom.

At land, indeed,
Thou dost o’er-count me of my father's house o;
But, since the cuckoo builds not for himself',
Remain in't, as thou may’st.

5 Thou canst not fear us,] Thou canst not affright us with thy numerous navy. 6 At land, indeed,

Thou dost o'er-count me of my father's house;] At land, indeed, thou dost exceed me in possessions, having added to thy own my father's house. O'er-count seems to be used equivocally, and Pompey perhaps meant to insinuate that Antony not only out-number'd, but had over-reach’d, him.

7 But, since the cuckoo builds not for himself, &c.] Since, like the cuckoo, that seizes the nests of other birds, you have invaded a house which you could not build, keep it while you can.

Lep.

Be pleas'd to tell us,
(For this is from the present,) how you take
The offers we have sent you.
Caes.

There's the point.
Ant. Which do not be entreated to, but weigh
What it is worth embrac'd.
Cos.

And what may follow,
To try a larger fortune.
Pom.

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 targe undinted.

Cæs. Ant. Lep. That's our offer.
Pom.

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 Cæsar and your brothers were at blows,
Your mother came to Sicily, and did find
Her welcome friendly.
Ant.

I have heard it, Pompey;
And am well studied for a liberal thanks,
Which I do owe you.
Pom.

Let me have your hand:
I did not think, sir, to have met you here.
Ant. The beds i'the east are soft ; and thanks to

you,
That call'd me, timelier than my purpose, hither;
For I have gain’d by it.
Cæs.

Since I saw you last,
There is a change upon you.
Pom.

Well, I know not

8

this is from the present,] i. e. foreign to the object of our present discussion.

« הקודםהמשך »