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men of

Flav. Go, go, good countrymen, and, for this fault,
Assemble all the poor your sort;
Draw them to Tyber banks, and weep your tears
Into the channel, till the lowest stream
Do kiss the most exalted shores of all. (Exeunt Citizens.
See, whe'r' their basest metal be not mov'd ;
They vanish tongue-tied in their guiltiness.
Go you down that way towards the Capitol ;
This way will I: Disrobe the images,
If you do find them deck'd with ceremonies.”

Mar. May we do so ?
You know, it is the feast of Lupercal.

Flav. It is no matter ; let no images
Be hung with Cæsar's trophies. I'll about,
And drive away the vulgar from the streets :
So do you too, where you perceive them thick.
These growing feathers pluck'd from Cæsar's wing,
Will make him fly an ordinary pitch ;
Who else would soar above the view of men,
And keep us all in servile fearfulness.

[Exeunt.

[blocks in formation]

Enter in Procession, with Musick, CÆSAR; ANTONY,
for the course ; CALPHURNIA, Portia, Decius,
CICERO, Brutus, Cassius, and Casca, a great
Croud following ; among them a Soothsayer.
Cæs. Calphurnia,
Casca.

Peace, ho ! Cæsar speaks.

[Musick ceases.

9

See, whe'r-] whether.

deck'd with ceremonies.] Ceremonies are honorary ornaments; tokens of respect.

3 This person was not Decius, but Decimus Brutus. The poet (as Voltaire has done since) confounds the characters of Marcus

Cæs.

Calphurnia, Cal. Here, my lord.

Cæs. Stand you directly in Antonius' way, When he doth run his course. - Antonius.

Ant. Cæsar, my lord.

Cæs. Forget not, in your speed, Antonius,
To touch Calphurnia : for our elders say,
The barren touched in this holy chase,
Shake off their steril curse.
Ant.

I shall remember :
When Cæsar says, Do this, it is perform’d.

Cæs. Set on; and leave no ceremony out. [Musick.
Sooth. Cæsar.
Ces. Ha ! Who calls ?
Casca. Bid every noise be still :-Peace yet again.

[Musick ceases. Cæs. Who is it in the

press,

that calls on me?
I hear a tongue, shriller than all the musick,
Cry, Cæsar : Speak; Cæsar is turn'd to hear.

Sooth. Beware the ides of March.
Cas.

What man is that? Bru. A soothsayer, bids you beware the ides of

March. Cæs. Set him before me, let me see his face. Cas. Fellow, come from the throng: Look upon

Cæsar. Cæs. What say'st thou to me now? Speak once again. Sooth. Beware the ides of March. Cæs. He is a dreamer ; let us leave him ;—pass.

[Sennet. Exeunt all brut BRU. and Cas.

and Decimus. Decimus Brutus was the most cherished by Cæsar of all his friends, while Marcus kept aloof, and declined so large a share of his favours and honours, as the other had constantly accepted.

* Sennet.] I have been informed that sennet is derived from senneste, an antiquated French tune formerly used in the army; but the dictionaries which I have consulted exhibit no such word. It may be a corruption from sonata, Ital. STEEVENS.

Cas. Will you go see the order of the course ?
Bru. Not I.
Cas. I pray you, do.

Brų. I am not gamesome; I do lack some part
Of that quick spirit that is in Antony.
Let me not hinder, Cassius, your desires ;

I'll leave you.

Cas. Brutus, I do observe you now of late :
I have not from your eyes that gentleness,
And show of love, as I was wont to have :
You bear too stubborn and too strange a hand“
Over your friend that loves you.
Bru.

Cassius,
Be not deceiv'd: If I have veil'd my look,
I turn the trouble of my countenance
Merely upon myself. Vexed I am,
Of late, with passions of some difference,
Conceptions only proper to myself,
Which give some soil, perhaps, to my behaviours :
But let not therefore my good friends be griev’d;
(Among which number, Cassius, be you one;)
Nor construe any further my neglect,
Than that poor Brutus, with himself at war,
Forgets the shows of love to other men.
Cas. Then, Brutus, I have much mistook your

passion; 7
By means whereof, this breast of mine hath buried
Thoughts of great value, worthy cogitations.
Tell me, good Brutus, can you see your face?

Bru. No, Cassius : for the eye sees not itself,
But by reflection, by some other things.

6

strange a hand-] Strange, is alien, unfamiliar, such as might become a stranger.

passions of some difference,] With a fluctuation of discordant opinions and desires.

- your passion ;] i.e. the nature of the feelings from which are now suffering.

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Cas. 'Tis just;
And it is very much lamented, Brutus,
That you have no such mirrors, as will turn
Your hidden worthiness into your eye,
That you might see your shadow. I have heard,
Where many of the best respect in Rome,
(Except immortal Cæsar,) speaking of Brutus,
And groaning underneath this age's yoke,
Have wish'd that noble Brutus had his eyes.

Bru. Into what dangers would you lead me, Cassius,
That you would have me seek into myself
For that which is not in me?

Cas. Therefore, good Brutus, be prepar’d to hear : And, since you know you cannot see yourself So well as by reflection, I, your glass, Will modestly discover to yourself That of yourself which you yet know not of. And be not jealous of me, gentle Brutus: Were I a common laugher, or did use To stale with ordinary oaths my love To every new protester ; if

you

know
That I do fawn on men, and hug them hard,
And after scandal them; or if you know
That I profess myself in banqueting
To all the rout, then hold me dangerous.

[Flourish, and shout.
Bru. What means this shouting ? I do fear the people
Choose Cæsar for their king.
Cas.

you

fear it? Then must I think you would not have it so.

Bru. I would not, Cassius; yet I love him well :
But wherefore do you hold me here so long?
What is it that you would impart to me?
If it be aught toward the general good,

8

Ay, do

8 To slale with ordinary oaths my love, &c.] To invite every new protester to my affection by the stale or allurement of customary oaths.

Set honour in one eye, and death i'the other,
And I will look on both indifferently:
For, let the gods so speed me, as I love
The name of honour more than I fear death.

Cas. I know that virtue to be in you, Brutus,
As well as I do know your outward favour.
Well, honour is the subject of my story.-
I cannot tell, what

you

and other men Think of this life : but, for my single self, I had as lief not be, as live to be In awe of such a thing as I myself. I was born free as Cæsar ; so were you : We both have fed as well; and we can both Endure the winter's cold, as well as he. For once, upon a raw and gusty day, The troubled Tyber chafing with her shores, Cæsar said to me, Dar'st thou, Cassius, now Leap in with me into this angry flood, And swim to yonder point ? — Upon the word, Accouter'd as I was, I plunged in, And bade him follow : so, indeed, he did. The torrent roar'd: and we did buffet it With lusty sinews; throwing it aside And stemming it with hearts of controversy. But ere we could arrive the point propos’d, Cæsar cry'd, Help me, Cassius, or I sink. I, as Æneas, our great ancestor, Did from the flames of Troy upon his shoulder The old Anchises bear, so from the waves of Tyber Did I the tired Cæsar: And this man Is now become a god; and Cassius is A wretched creature, and must bend his body, If Cæsar carelessly but nod on him. He had a fever when he was in Spain, And, when the fit was on him, I did mark, How he did shake: 'tis true, this god did shake : His coward lips did from their colour fly; And that same eye, whose bend doth awe the world,

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