Imagens das páginas
PDF
ePub

tit. Live, Brutus, live ! live! 1 Cit. Bring him with triumph home unto his house. 2 Cit. Give him a statue with his ancestors. 3 Cit. Let him be Cæsar. 4 Cit.

Cæsar's better parts Shall now be crown'd in Brutus.3 1 Cit. We'll bring him to his house with shouts and

clamours. Bru. My countrymen, 2 Cit.

Peace; silence! Brutus speaks. 1 Cit. Peace, ho!

Bru. Good countrymen, let me depart alone,
And, for my sake, stay here with Antony:
Do grace to Cæsar's

corpse,

and
grace

his speech
Tending to Cæsar's glories; which Mark Antony,
By our permission is allow'd to make.
I do entreat you, not a man depart,
Save I alone, till Antony have spoke.

[Exit. i Cit. Stay, ho! and let us hear Mark Antony.

3 Cit. Let him go up into the publick chair-; We'll hear him :-Noble Antony, go up.

Ant. For Brutus' sake, I am beholden to you.
4 Cit. What does he say of Brutus ?
3 Cit.

He says, for Brutus' sake,5 He finds himself beholden to us all.

4 Cit. 'Twere best he speak no harm of Brutus here. 1 Cit. This Cæsar was a tyrant. 3 Cit.

Nay, that's certain : We are bless'd, that Rome is rid of him.

2 Cit. Peace; let us hear what Antony can say.
Ant. You gentle Romans,
Cit.

Peace, ho! let us hear him. Ant. Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears;

4

3 Shall now be crown'd in Brutus ] As the present hemistich with. out some additional syllable, is offensively unmetrical, the adverb now, which was introduced by Sir Thomas Hanmer, is here admitted. Steevens.

- beholden to you.] Throughout the old copies of Shakspeare, and many other ancient authors, beholden is corruptly spelt-beholding. Steevens.

5 He says, for Brutus' sake,] Here we have another line rendered irregular, by the interpolated and needless words. He says

Steevens:

I come to bury Cæsar, not to praise him.
The evil, that men do, lives after them;
The good is oft interred with their bones;
So let it be with Cæsar. The noble Brutus
Hath told you, Cæsar was ambitious :
If it were so, it was a grievous fault;
And grievously hath Cæsar answer'd it.
Here, under leave of Brutus, and the rest,
(For Brutus is an honourable man;
So are they all, all honourable men ;)
Come I to speak in Cæsar's funeral.
He was my friend, faithful and just to me:
But Brutus says he was ambitious;
And Brutus is an honourable man.
He hath brought many captives home to Rome,
Whose ransoms did the general coffers fill :
Did this in Cæsar seem ambitious?
When that the poor have cried, Cæsar hath wept :
Ambition should be made of sterner stuff:
Yet Brutus says, he was ambitious;
And Brutus is an honourable man.
You all did see, that, on the Lupercal,
I thrice presented him a kingly crown,
Which he did thrice refuse. Was this ambition ?
Yet Brutus says, he was ambitious;
And, sure, he is an honourable man.
I speak not to disprove what Brutus spoke,
But here I am to speak what I do know.
You all did love him once, not without cause;
What cause withholds you then to mourn for him?
(judgment, thou art fled to brutish beasts,
And men have lost their reason !-Bear with me;
My heart is in the coffin there with Cæsar,
And I must pause till it come back to me..

6 My heart is in the coffin there with Cæsar,

And I must pause till it come back me.] Perhaps our author recollected the following passage in Daniel's Cleopatra, 1594 :

“ As for my love, say, Antony hath all;
“ Say that my heart is gone into the grave

“ With him, in whom it rests, and ever shall.” Malone. The passage from Daniel is little more than an imitation of part of Dido's speech in the second Æneid, v. 28 & seq:

« Ille meos-
“ Abstulit, ille habeat secum, servetque sepulchro.” Şteerens.

-amores

i Cit. Methinks there is much reason in his sayings.

2 Cit. If thou consider rightly of the matter, Cæsar has had great wrong. 3 Cit.

Has he, masters? I fear, there will a worse come in his place. 4 Cit. Mark'd ye his words? He would not take the

crown; Therefore, 'tis certain, he was not ambitious.

i Cit. If it be found so, some will dear abide it.
2 Cit. Poor soul! his eyes are red as fire with weeping.
3 Cit. There's not a nobler man in Rome, than Antony.
4 Cit. Now mark him, he begins again to speak.

Ant. But yesterday the word of Cæsar might
Have stood against the world: now lies he there,
And none so poor? to do him reverence.
O masters! if I were dispos’d to stir
Your hearts and minds to mutiny and rage,
I should do Brutus wrong, and Cassius wrong,
Who, you all know, are honourable men:
I will not do them wrong; I rather choose
To wrong the dead, to wrong myself, and you,
Than I will wrong such honourable men.
But here's a parchment, with the seal of Cæsar,
I found it in his closet, 'tis his will :
Let but the commons hear this testament,
(Which, pardon me, I do not mean to read,)
And they would go and kiss dead Cæsar's wounds,
And dip their napkins8 in his sacred blood;
Yea, beg a hair of him for

memory,
And, dying, mention it within their wills,
Bequeathing it, as a rich legacy,
Unto their issue.

4 Cit. We'll hear the will: Read it, Mark Antony. Cit. The will, the will; we will hear Cæsar's will.

Ant. Have patience, gentle friends, I must not read it; It is not meet you know how Cæsar lov'd you.

8

7 And none so poor -] The meanest man now too high to do reverence to Cæsar. Johnson.

their napkins - ] i.e. their handkerchiefs. Napery was the ancient term for all kinds of linen. Steevens.

Napkin is the Northeru term for handkerchief, and is used in this sense at this day in Scotland. Our author frequently uses the word: See Vol. V, p. 120, n. 4; and Vol. VII, p. 102, n. 1. Malone.

You are not wood, you are not stones, but men;
And, being men, hearing the will of Cæsar,
It will inflame you, it will make you mad:
'Tis good you know not that you are his heirs ;
For if you should, 0, what would come of it!

4 Cit. Read the will; we will hear it, Antony; You shall read us the will; Cæsar's will.

Ant. Will you be patient? Will you stay a while ?
I have o'ershot myself, to tell you of it.
I fear, I wrong the honourable men,
Whose daggers have stabb'd Cæsar: I do fear it.

4 Cit. They were trailors: Honourable men!
Cit. The will! the testament !

2 Cit. They were villains, murderers : The will! read the will!

Ant. You will compel me then to read the will?
Then make a ring about the corpse of Cæsar,
And let me show you liim that made the will.
Shall I descend? And will you give me leave?

Cit. Come down.
2 Cit. Descend. [He comes down from the Pulpit.
3 Cit. You shall have leave.
4 Cit. A ring; stand round.
1 Cit. Stand from the hearse, stand from the body.
2 Cit. Room for Antony ;- most noble Antony.
Ant. Nay, press not so upon me; stand far off.
Cit. Stand back! room! bear back!

Ant. If you have tears, prepare to shed them now.
You all do know this mantle : I remember
The first time ever Cæsar put it on;
'Twas on a summer's evening, in his tent;
That day he overcame the Nervii :-
Look! in this place, ran Cassius' dagger through:
See, what a rent the envious Casca made:
Through this, the well-beloved Brutus stabb'd;
And, as he pluck'd his cursed steel away,
Mark how the blood of Cæsar follow'd it;
As rushing out of doors, to be resolv'd
If Brutus so unkindly knock’d, or no;
For Brutus, as you know, was Cæsar's angel :9
Judge, O you gods, how dearly Cæsar lov'd him!

9 For Brutus, as you know, was Cæsar's angel:] This title of endearment is more than once introduced in Sidney's Arcadia. Steevers.

This was the most unkindest cut of all :
For when the noble Cæsar saw him stab,
Ingratitude, more strong than traitors' arms,
Quite vanquish'd him : then burst his mighty heart;
And, in his mantle muming up his face,
Even at the base of Pompey's statua,
Which all the while ran blood,2 great Cæsar fell.
0, what a fall was there, my countrymen!
Then I, and you, and all of us fell down,
Whilst bloody treason flourish'd over us.
O, now you weep; and, I perceive, you feel
The dint of pity :4 these are gracious drops.
Kind souls, what, weep you, when you but behold
Our Cæsar's vesture wounded? Look you here,
Here is himself, marr’d, as you see, with traitors.5

1 Even at the base of Pompey's statua,] [Old copy-statue.] It is not our author's practice to make the adverb even, a dissyllable. If it be considered as a monosyllable, the measure is defective. I sus. pect therefore he wrote-at Pompey's statua. The word was not yet comple:ely denizened in his time. Beaumont, in his Masque, writes it statua, and its plural statuges. Yet, it must be acknowledged that statue is used more than once in ihis play, as a dissyllable. Malone.

See Vol. II, p. 226, n. 5; and Voi. XI, p. 113, 11. 2.

I could bring a muliitude of instances in which statua is used for statue. Thus, in Burton's Anatomy of Melancholy, edit. 1632, 540:

and Callistratus by the helpe of Dedalus about Cupid's statua, made”' &c. Again, 574: " — his statua was to be seene in the temple of Venus Elusina.” Steevens.

2 Which all the while ran blood, ] The image seems to be that the blood of Cæsar flew upon the statue, and trickled down it. Fohnson.

Shakspeare took these words from Sir Thomas North’s translation of Plutarch: " - against the very base whereon Pompey's image stood, which ran all a gore of blood, till he was slain.” Steevens.

treason flourish'd -] i.e. flourished the sword. So, in Romeo and Juliet:

“ And flourishes his blade in spite of me.” Steevens. 4 The dint of pity: ] is the impression of pity.

The word is in common use among our ancient writers. So, in Preston's Cambyses : “ Your grace therein may hap receive, with other for your

parte, • The dent of death, &c. Again, ibid: “ He shall dye by dent of sword, or else by choking rope.”

Steevens * Here is himself, marrd, as you see, with traitors.] To mar seems

3

« AnteriorContinuar »