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I say you are not. Try your fortune.
Ant. I have to th' utmost.
Dost thou think me
Without just cause? No, when I found all lost
And learn'd to scorn it here; which now I do
The cost of keeping.
Cæsar thinks not so:
He'll thank you for the gift he could not take.
Vent. I can die with you too, when time shall
But fortune calls upon us now to live,
To fight, to conquer.
Sure thou dream'st, Ventidius.
Vent. No; 'tis you dream: you sleep away your
In desperate sloth, miscall'd philosophy.
Up, up, for honour's sake; twelve legions wait you,
Down from the Parthian marches to the Nile.
Their scarr'd cheeks, and chopp'd hands; there's virtue in 'em ;
They'll sell those mangled limbs at dearer rates
Than yon trim bands can buy.
They will not come.
Ant. Why didst thou mock my hopes with promised
To double my despair? They're mutinous.
Vent. Most firm and loyal.
I am besieged.
Vent. There's but one way shut up-How came I
Ant. I will not stir.
A better reason.
They would perhaps desire
I have never used
My soldiers to demand a reason of
My actions. Why did they refuse to march ?
Vent. They said they would not fight for Cleopatra. Ant. What was't they said?
Vent. They said they would not fight for Cleopatra. Why should they fight, indeed, to make her conquer, And make you more a slave? To gain you kingdoms,
Which, for a kiss, at your next midnight feast,
Ant. Ventidius, I allow your tongue free licence On all my other faults; but on your life,
No word of Cleopatra; she deserves
Behold, you powers,
To whom you have entrusted human kind;
See Europe, Afric, Asia put in balance;
And all weigh'd down by one light worthless
I think the gods are Antonies, and give,
Like prodigals, this nether world away
To none but wasteful hands.
Ant. You grow presumptuous. Vent. I take the privilege of plain love to speak. Ant. Plain love! plain arrogance, plain insolence! Thy men are cowards; thou an envious traitor,
Who, under seeming honesty, hast vented
For showing you yourself, Which none else durst have done. But had I been That name, which I disdain to speak again, I needed not have sought your abject fortunes, Come to partake your fate, to die with you. What hinder'd me t' have led my conq'ring eagles To fill Octavius' band? I could have been A traitor then, a glorious, happy traitor, And not have been so call'd.
I've been too passionate.
Forgive me, soldier;
You thought me false;
Thought my old age betray'd you. Kill me, Sir;
Nor durst another man have ventured it :
Go on; for I can bear it now.
Ant. Thou dar'st not trust my passion; but thou
Thou only lov'st, the rest have flatter'd me.
Vent. Heaven's blessing on your heart for that kind
May I believe you love me? Speak again.
Ant. Indeed I do. Speak this, and this, and this. Thy praises were unjust; but I'll deserve 'em, And yet mend all. Do with me what thou wilt; Lead me to victory, thou know'st the way. Vent. And, will you leave this
Pr'ythee do not curse her,
And I will leave her; though, Heav'n knows, I
Beyond life, conquest, empire, all but honour;
But I will leave her.
And shall we fight?
That's my royal master.
I warrant thee, old soldier;
Thou shalt behold me once again in iron,
And, at the head of our old troops, that beat
Vent. Oh, now I hear my emperor! In that word Octavius fell. Gods, let me see that day,
And, if I have ten years behind, take all;
I'll thank you for the exchange.
Oh, Cleopatra !
I've done. In that last sigh she went;
Cæsar shall know what 'tis to force a lover
From all he holds most dear.
Methinks you breathe
Another soul; your looks are more divine
You speak a hero, and you move a god.
Ant. Oh, thou hast fired me! my soul's up in
And mans each part about me. Once again
I won the trenches, while my foremost men
For such another honour!
Ye gods, ye gods,
STORY OF LE FEVRE.
T was some time in the summer of that year in which Dendermond was taken by the allies, when my uncle Toby was one evening getting his supper, with Trim sitting behind him at a small sideboard-I say sitting, for in consideration of the Corporal's lame knee (which sometimes gave him exquisite pain), when my uncle Toby dined or supped alone he would never suffer the Corporal to stand; and the poor fellow's veneration for his master was such, that, with a proper artillery, my uncle Toby could have taken Dendermond itself with less trouble than he was able to gain this point over him; for many a time, when my uncle Toby supposed the Corporal's leg was at rest, he would look back, and detect him standing behind him with the most dutiful respect; this bred more little squabbles betwixt them than all other causes for five-andtwenty years together. But this is neither here nor there-why do I mention it? Ask my pen-it governs me-I govern not it.