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Changes to the Palace in Alexandria.
Enter Cleopatra, Charmian, Iras and Alexas.
Enter Mardian the Eunuch.
Cleo. As well a woman with an Eunuch play'd,
Char. 'Twas merry, when
Cleo. That time!-oh times!
s Then put my tires and mantles on him, whilft
Enter a Messenger.
Mes. Madam! Madam!
Cleo. Antony's dead?
Mes. First, Madam, he is well.
Cleo. Why, there's more gold. But, firrah, mark, To say, the dead are well: bring it to that, The gold, I give thee, will I melt and pour Down thy ill-uttering throat.
Mef. Good Madam, hear me.
Cleo. Well, go to, I will: But there's no goodness in thy face. If Antony Be free and healthful; why fo tart a favour To trumpet such good tidings ? if not well, Thou should'st come like a fury crown'd with
snakes, Not like a formal man?
Mef. Will’t please you hear me?
Cleo. I have a mind to strike thee, ere thou speak'st; Yet, if thou say Antony lives, 'tis well, Or friends with Cæfar, or not captive to him, 5 Then put my tires and mantles on him, whilf
I wore his sword Philippan.-) This is finely imagined. The speaker is supposed to do this in imitation of Omphale, in her treatment of Hercules the great ancestor of Antony.
6 Not like a formal man.] Formal, for ordinary.
? I'll set thee in a shower of gold, and hail
Mes. Madam, he's well.
Cleo. I do not like but yet, it does allay
Mes. Free, Madam! no: I made no such report. He's bound unto Otavia.
Cleo. For what good turn?
[Strikes bim down. Mes. Good Madam, patience. Cleo. What say you ?
[Strikes bim. 7 I'll set thee in a shower of gold, and hail
Rich pearls upon thea.] That is, I will give thee a kingdom ; it being the eastern ceremony, at the coronation of their Kings, to powder them with gold-dus and feed-pearl: so Milton,
gorgeous East with liberal band Showers on her Kings barbaric pearl and gold. In the life of Timur-bec or Tamerlane written by a Persian contemporary author, are the following words, as tranflated by Monfieur Petit de la Croix, in the account there given of his coronation, Book ii. chap. !. Les Princes du sang royal & les Emirs repandirent à pleines mains fur ju téte quantitè d'or & de pierreries selon la coûtume. 8 The good precedence ;-] Precedence, for precedent.
Hence, horrible villain, or I'll spurn thine eyes
[She bales bim up and down. Thou shalt be whipt with
wire, and stew'd in brine, Smarting in lingring pickle.
Mef. Gracious Madam,
Cleo. Say, 'cis not so, a province I will give thee,
Mes. He's married, Madam.
[Draws a dagger.
self, The man is innocent.
Cleo. Some innocents 'scape not the thunderbolt Melt Ægypt into Nile; and kindly creatures Turn all to serpents! call the Nave again ; Though I am mad, I will not bite him; call.
Char. He is afraid to come,
Cleo. I will not hurt him.
Re-enter the Messenger.
Mes. I have done my duty.
I cannot hate thee worser than I do,
Mes. He's married, Madam.
there still ?
Cleo. Oh, I would, thou didit;
Mes. I crave your Highness' pardon.
The colour of her hair. Bring me word quickly,
((a) That say'A but what-Oxford Editor. Vulg. That art not what]