ページの画像
PDF
ePub

Into the channel, till the lowest stream
Do kiss the most exalted shores of all.

[Exeunt Citizens.
See, whe’rl their basest metal be not moved ;
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 decked 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 plucked 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.

SCENE II. The same.

A public Place.

Enter, in procession, with music, CÆSAR, ANTONY, for

the course ; CALPHURNIA, PORTIA, Decius,4 CICERO, Brutus, Cassius, and CASCA, a great crowd following, among them a Soothsayer. Cæs. Calphurnia, Casca.

Peace, ho! Cæsar speaks.

[Music ceases. Cæs.

Calphurnia,Cal. Here, my lord.

1 Whether. 2 Honorary ornaments. 3 These trophies were scarfs. 4 This person was not Decius, but Decimus Brutus. The Poet (as Voltaire has done since) confounds the characters of Marcus and Decimus. Decimus Brutus was the most cherished by Cæsar of all his friends, while Marcus kept aloof. The error has its source in North's translation of Plutarch, or in Holland's Suetonius, 1606.

2

VOL. VI.

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 sterile curse.
Ant.

I shall remember;
When Cæsar says, Do this, it is performed.

Cæs. Set on; and leave no ceremony out. [Music.
Sooth. Cæsar!
Cæs. Ha! who calls ?
Casca. Bid every noise be still.-—Peace yet again.

[Music ceases.
Ces. Who is it in the press that calls on me?
I hear a tongue, shriller than all the music,
Cry, Cæsar. Speak; Cæsar is turned to hear.

Sooth. Beware the ides of March.
Cæs.

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

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

1'll leave you.

1 The, old copy reads " Antonio's way;" in other places we have Octavio, Flavio. The playe's were more accustomed to Italian than Latin terminations. The allusion is to a custom at the Lupercalia.

2 See King Henry VIII. Act ii. Sc. 4.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

1

Cas. Brutus, 1 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 deceived ; if I have veiled 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 behaviors;
But let not therefore my good friends be grieved,
(Among which number, Cassius, be you one,)
Nor construe any further my neglect,
Than that poor Brutus, vrith himself at war,
Forgets the shows of love to other men.
Cas. Then, Brutus, I have much mistook your pas-

sion,
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.

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 wished that noble Brutus had his eyes.

. Bru. Into what dangers would

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 prepared to hear; And, since you know you cannot see yourself

1 i. e. the nature of the feelings which you are now suffering.

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.

Ay, do 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,
Set honor 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 honor more than I fear death.

Cas. I know that virtue to be in you, Brutus,
As well as I do know your outward favor.
Well, honor 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,

1 Johnson has erroneously given the meaning of allurement to stale, in this place.

6 To stale with ordinary oaths my love,” is “ to prostitute my love."

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,
Accoutered as I was, I plunged in,
And bade him follow ; so, indeed, he did.
The torrent roared ; 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 proposed,
Cæsar cried, 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 color fly;2
And that same eye, whose bend doth awe the world,
Did lose his lustre. I did hear him groan;
Ay, and that tongue of his, that bade the Romans
Mark him, and write his speeches in their books,
Alas! it cried, Give me some drink, Titinius;
As a sick girl. Ye gods, it doth amaze me,
A man of such a feeble temper’ should
So get the start of the majestic world,
And bear the palm alone.

[Shout. Flourish.
Bru. Another general shout!
I do believe that these applauses are
For some new honors that are heaped on Cæsar.

Cas. Why, man, he doth bestride the narrow world, Like a Colossus; and we petty men Walk under his huge legs, and peep about To find ourselves dishonorable graves.

1 The verb arrive is also used by Milton without the preposition. 2 Some commentators suppose that the allusion here is to a coward's desertion of his standard. Probably nothing more was intended than to describe the effect of the disease on the appearance of the lips.

3 Temperament, constitution.

« 前へ次へ »