Imatges de pÓgina

My mortified spirit. Now bid me run,
And I will strive with things impossible;

Yea, get the better of them. What's to do?

Bru. A piece of work, that will make sick men whole. Lig. But are not some whole, that we must make sick? Bru. That must we also. What it is, my Caius,

I shall unfold to thee, as we

To whom it must be done.

Lig. Set on your foot;

are going

And, with a heart new-fir'd, I follow you,

To do I know not what : but it sufficeth,

That Brutus leads me on.

Bru. Follow me then.

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The same. A Room in CESAR's Palace. Thunder and lightning. Enter CESAR, in his night-gown.

Cas. Nor heaven, nor earth, have been at peace to

night :

Thrice hath Calphurnia in her sleep cried out,
Help, ho! They murder Casar! Who's within?
Enter a Servant.

Serv. My lord?

Cas. Go bid the priests do present sacrifice, And bring me their opinions of success.

Serv. I will, my lord.



Cal. What mean you, Cæsar? Think you to walk forth? You shall not stir out of your house to-day.

Cas. Cæsarshall forth: The things that threaten'd me,
Ne'er look'd but on my back; when they shall see
The face of Cæsar, they are vanished.

Cal. Cæsar, I never stood on ceremonies,4
Yet now they fright me. There is one within,
Besides the things that we have heard and seen,
Recounts most horrid sights seen by the watch.

A lioness hath whelped in the streets;

And graves have yawn'd, and yielded up their dead :
Fierce fiery warriors fight upon the clouds,

In ranks, and squadrons, and right form of war,
Which drizzled blood upon the Capitol :

The noise of battle hurtled in the air,

[4] i.e. I never paid a superstitious regard to prodigies or omens, STEE.

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Calpburnia. Let me on my knees prevail in this

Cesar. Mark Antony shall say I am not well, and for thy humour I will stay at home..

Horses did neigh, and dying men did groan;

And ghosts did shriek, and squeal about the streets: O Cæsar! these things are beyond all use,

And I do fear them.

Cas. What can be avoided,

Whose end is purpos'd by the mighty gods?
Yet Cæsar shall go forth for these predictions
Are to the world in general, as to Cæsar.

Cal. When beggars die, there are no comets seen ; The heavens themselves blaze forth the death of princes. Cas. Cowards die many times before their deaths; The valiant never taste of death but once.

Of all the wonders that I yet have heard,

It seems to me most strange that men should fear
Seeing that death, a necessary end,

Will come, when it will come.5

Re-enter a Servant.

What say the augurers?

Serv. They would not have you stir forth to-day.
Plucking the entrails of an offering forth,

They could not find a heart within the beast.
Cas. The gods do this in shame of cowardice :6
Cæsar should be a beast without a heart,

If he should stay at home to-day for fear.
No, Cæsar shall not: Danger knows full well,
That Cæsar is more dangerous than he.
We were two lions litter'd in one day,
And I the elder and more terrible ;
And Cæsar shall go forth.

Cal. Alas, my lord,

Your wisdom is consum'd in confidence.

Do not go forth to-day: Call it my fear,

That keeps you in the house, and not your own.
We'll send Mark Antony to the senate-house ;
And he shall say, you are not well to-day:
Let me, upon my knee, prevail in this.

Cas. Mark Antony shall say, I am not well ;
And, for thy humour, I will stay at home.


Here's Decius Brutus, he shall tell them so.


Dec. Cæsar, all hail! Good morrow, worthy Cæsar:

I come to fetch you to the senate-house.

[5] This is a sentence derived from the stoical doctrine of predestination, and is therefore improper in the mouth of Cæsar. JOHNS.

[6] The ancients did not place courage, but wisdom in the heart. JOHN.

Cas. And you are come in very happy time,
To bear my greeting to the senators,

And tell them, that I will not come to-day :
Cannot, is false; and that I dare not, falser;
I will not come to-day: Tell them so, Decius.
Cal. Say, he is sick.

Cas. Shall Cæsar send a lie?

Have I in conquest stretch'd mine arm so far,
To be afeard to tell grey-beards the truth?
Decius, go tell them, Cæsar will not come.

Dec. Most mighty Cæsar, let me know some cause, Lest I be laugh'd at, when I tell them so.

Cas. The cause is in my will, I will not come ; That is enough to satisfy the senate.

But, for your private satisfaction,

Because I love you, I will let you know.
Calphurnia here, my wife, stays me at home:
She dreamt to-night she saw my statua,
Which like a fountain, with a hundred spouts,
Did run pure blood; and many lusty Romans
Came smiling, and did bathe their hands in it.
And these does she apply for warnings, portents,
And evils imminent; and on her knee
Hath begg'd, that I will stay at home to-day.
Dec. This dream is all amiss interpreted;
It was a vision, fair and fortunate :

Your statue spouting blood in many pipes,
In which so many smiling Romans bath'd,
Signifies that from you great Rome shall suck
Reviving blood; and that great men shall press
For tinctures, stains, relicks, and cognizance.7
This by Calphurnia's dream is signified.

Cas. And this way have you well expounded it.
Dec. I have, when you have heard what I can say:
And know it now; The senate have concluded
To give, this day, a crown to mighty Cæsar.
If you shall send them word, you will not come,
Their minds may change. Besides, it were a mock
Apt to be render'd, for some one to say,
Break up the senate till another time,

[7] This speech, which is intentionally pompous, is somewhat confused. There are two allusions: one to coats armorial, to which princes make additions, or give new tinctures, and new marks of cognizance; the other to martyrs, whose reliques are preserved with veneration. The Romans, says Decius, all come to you as to a saint for reliques, as to a prince for hom ours. JOHNS.

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