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How now, lady! Cleo. I would, I had thy inches; thou should'st

know, There were a heart in Egypt. Ant.

Hear me, queen: The strong necessity of time commands Our services a while; but my full heart Remains in use with you. Our Italy Shines o'er with civil swords: Sextus Pompeius Makes his approaches to the port of Rome: Equality of two domestick powers Breeds scrupulous faction: The hated, grown to

strength, Are newly grown to love: the condemn'd Pompey, Rich in his father's honour, creeps apace Into the hearts of such as have not thriv'd Upon the present state, whose numbers threaten; And quietness, grown sick of rest, would purge By any desperate change: My more particular, And that which most with you should safe my going, Is Fulvia's death. Cleo. Though age from folly could not give me

It does from childishness:-Can Fulvia die?4

Ant. She's dead, my queen:
Look here, and, at thy sovereign leisure, read
The garboils she awak'd;' at the last, best:
See, when, and where she died.

O most false love!

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should sate my going,] i, e. should render my going not dangerous, not likely to produce any mischief to you.

4 It does from childishness :-Can Fulvia die?] i. e. Though age has not exempted me from folly, I am not so childish, as to have apprehensions from a rival that is no more. And is Fulvia dead indeed?

The garboils she awak'd;] i. e. the commotion she occasioned. The word is derived from the old French garbouil, which Cotgreave explains by hurlyburly, great stir.

Where be the sacred vials thou should'st fill
With sorrowful water? Now I see, I see,
In Fulvia's death, how mine receiv'd shall be.

Ant. Quarrel no more, but be prepar'd to know
The purposes I bear; which are, or cease,
As you shall give the advice: Now, by the fire,
That quickens Nilus' slime, I go from hence,
Thy soldier, servant; making peace, or war,
As thou affect'st.

Cut my lace, Charmian, come;But let it be.—1 am quickly ill, and well: So Antony loves.? Ant.

My precious queen, forbear; And give true evidence to his love, which stands An honourable trial. Cleo.

So Fulvia told me.
I pr’ythee, turn aside, and weep for her;

Then bid adieu to me, and say, the tears
Belong to Egypt: Good now, play one scene
Of excellent dissembling; and let it look
Like perfect honour.

You'll heat my blood; no more.
Cleo. You can do better yet; but this is meetly.
Ant. Now, by my sword,

And target,-Still he mends; But this is not the best: Look, pr’ythee, Charmian, How this Herculean Roman does become The carriage of his chafe.

O most false love!

Where be the sacred rials thou should'st fill

With sorrouful water?] Alluding to the lachrymatory vials, or bottles of tears, which the Romans sometimes put into the urn of a friend.

? So Antony loves.] i. e, uncertain as the state of my health is the love of Antony.

to Egypt:] To me, the Queen of Egypt.

Herculean Roman —] Antony traced his descent from Anton, a son of Hercules.




I'll leave you, lady.
Cleo. Courteous lord, one word.
Sir, you and I must part,—but that's not it:
Sir, you and I have lov’d,—but there's not it;
That you know well: Something it is I would, -
O, my oblivion is a very Antony,
And I am all forgotten.'

But that your royalty
Holds idleness your subject, I should take you
For idleness itself.2

'Tis sweating labour,
To bear such idleness so near the heart
As Cleopatra this. But, sir, forgive me;
Since my becomings kill me, when they do not
Eye well to you: Your honour calls you hence;
Therefore be deaf to my unpitied folly,
And all the gods go with you! upon your sword ;
Sit laureld victory! and smooth success
Be strew'd before

Let us go. Come; Our separation so abides, and flies, That thou, residing here, go'st yet with me, And I, hence fleeting, here remain with thee, Away.

your feet!

[Exeunt. , my oblivion is a very Antony,

And I am all forgotten,j Cleopatra has something to say, which seems to be suppressed by sorrow; and, after many attempts to produce her meaning, she cries out: 0, this oblivious memory of mine is as false and treucherous to me as Antony is, and I forget every thing. Oblivion, is boldly used for a memory apt to be deceitful.

But that your royalty,
Holds idleness your subject, I should take you

For idleness itself.] i. e. But that I know you to be a queen, and that your royalty holds idleness in subjection to you, exalting you far above its influence, I should suppose you to be the very genius of idleness itself.

3 Since my becomings kill me,] There is somewhat of obscurity in this expression ; perhaps she may mean—That conduct which, in my own opinion, becomes me, as often as it appears ungraceful to you, is a shock to my insensibility.



Rome. An Apartment in Cæsar's House.

Enter Octavius CÆSAR, LEPIDUS, and Attendants.

Cæs. You may see, Lepidus, and henceforth know,
It is not Cæsar's natural vice to hate
One great competitor:* From Alexandria
This is the news; He fishes, drinks, and wastes
The lamps of night in revel: is not more manlike
Than Cleopatra; nor the queen Ptolemy
More womanly than he: hardly gave audience, or
Vouchsafd to think he had partners: You shall find

A man, who is the abstract of all faults
That all men follow.

I must not think, there are
Evils enough to darken all his goodness:
His faults, in him, seem as the spots of heaven,
More fiery by night's blackness; hereditary,
Rather than purchas'd;" what he cannot change,
Than what he chooses.
Cæs. You are too indulgent: Let us grant, it is

not Amiss to tumble on the bed of Ptolemy; To give a kingdom for a mirth; to sit And keep the turn of tippling with a slave; To reel the streets at noon, and stand the buffet With knaves that smell of sweat: say, this becomes


(As his composure must be rare indeed,

One great competitor:) Competitor means here, as it does wherever the word occurs in Shakspeare, associate or partner.

purchas'd;] Procured by his own faylt or endeavour.

Whom these things cannot blemish,) yet must An

No way excuse his soils, when we do bear
So great weight in his lightness. If he fillid

vacancy with his voluptuousness,
Full surfeits, and the dryness of his bones,
Call on him for't: but, to confound such time,
That drums him from his sport, and speaks as loud
As his own state, and ours,—'tis to be chid
As we rate boys; who, being mature in knowledge,
Pawn their experience to their present pleasure,
And so rebel to judgment.

Enter a Messenger. Lep.

Here's more news.
Mess. Thy biddings have been done; and every

Most noble Cæsar, shalt thou have report
How 'tis abroad. Pompey is strong at sea;
And it appears, he is belov'd of those
That only have fear'd Cæsar: to the ports
The discontents repair, and men's reports
Give him much wrong'd.

I should have known no less :-
It hath been taught us from the primal state,
That he, which is, was wish'd, until he were ;
And the ebb'd man, ne'er lov'd, till ne'er worth love,
Comes dear'd, by being lack'd. This common body,
Like a vagabond flag upon the stream,

6 So great weight in his lightness.] The word light is one of Shakspeare's favourite play-things. The sense is His trifling levity throws so much burden upon us.

* Call on him for't:) Call on him, is, visit him. Says CæsarIf Antony followed his debaucheries at a time of leisure, I should leave him to be punished by their natural consequences, by surfeits and dry bones. Johnson.

& The discontents repair,] That is, the malecontents,

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