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SCENE IV.

The same. A Street. Enter Lepidus, Mecænas, and AGRIPPA. Lep. Trouble yourselves no further: pray you,

hasten Your generals after. Agr.

Sir, Mark Antony
Will e'en but kiss Octavia, and we'll follow.

Lep. Till I shall see you in your soldier's dress,
Which will become you both, farewell.
Mec.

We shall,
As I conceive the journey, be at mounts
Before you, Lepidus.

Your way is shorter,
My purposes do draw me much about;
You'll win two days upon me.
Mec. Agr.

Sir, good success!
Lep. Farewell.

[Exeunt.

Lep.

SCENE V.
Alexandria. A Room in the Palace.

Enter CLEOPATRA, Charmian, Iras, and Alexas.

Cleo. Give me some musick; musick, moody food Of us that trade in love. Attend.

The musick, ho!

s at mount-] i. e. Mount Misenum.

- musick, moody food-] Moody, in this instance, means melancholy. Cotgrave explains moody, by the French words, morne and triste.

Enter MARDIAN. . Cleo. Let it alone; let us to billiards: Come, Charmian.

Char. My arm is sore, best play with Mardian.

Cleo. As well a woman with an eunuch play'd, As with a woman ;-Come, you'll play with me, sir?

Mar. As well as I can, madam.
Cleo. And when good will is show'd, though it

come too short,
The actor may plead pardon. I'll none now:
Give me mine angle, — We'll to the river: there,
My musick playing far off, I will betray
Tawny-finn'd fishes; my bended hook shall pierce,

Their slimy jaws; and, as I draw them up,
: I'll think them every one an Antony,
And say, Ah, ha! you're caught.
Char.

'Twas merry, when
You wager'd on your angling; when your diver
Did hang a salt-fish on his hook, which he
With fervency drew up.

. That time!-0 times!-
I laugh'd him out of patience; and that night
I laugh'd him into patience: and next morn,
Ere the ninth hour, I drunk him to his bed;
Then put my tires and mantles on him, whilst
I wore his sword Philippan. O! from Italy;—

Cleo.

Enter a Messenger.
Ram thou thy fruitful tidings in mine ears,
That long time have been barren.
Mess.

Madam, madam,-
Cleo. Antony's dead?-
If thou say so, villain, thou kill'st thy mistress:

1- let us to billiards :] This is one of the numerous anachronisms that are found in these plays.

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But well and free,
If thou so yield him, there is gold, and here
My bluest veins to kiss; a hand, that kings
Have lipp'd, and trembled kissing..
Mess.

First, madam, he's well.
Cleo. Why, there's more gold. But, sirrah, mark;

We use
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.

Mess. Good madam, hear me.
Cleo.

6). ¿. Well, go to, I will;
But there's no goodness in thy face: If Antony
Be free, and healthful, why so 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.
Mess.

Will't please you hear me?
Cleo. I have a mind to strike thee, ere thou

speak'st:
Yet, if thou say, Antony lives, is well,
Or friends with Cæsar, or not captive to him,
I'll set thee in a shower of gold, and hail
Rich pearls upon thee.
Mess.

Madam, he's well.
Cleo.

Well said. Mess. And friends with Cæsar. Cleo.

Thou'rt an honest man. Mess. Cæsar and he are greater friends than ever. Cleo. Make thee a fortune from me. Mess.

But yet, madam,Cleo. I do not like but yet, it does allay

8 Not like a formal man.] i. e. a man in form, i. e. shape. You should come in the form of a fury, and not in the form of a man, '

The good precedence;' fye upon but yet:
But yet is as a gaoler to bring forth
Some monstrous malefactor. Prythee, friend,
Pour out the pack of matter to mine ear,
The good and bad together: He's friend with Cæsar;
In state of health, thou say'st; and, thou say'st, free.

Mess. Free, madamn! no; I made no such report:
He's bound unto Octavia.
Cleo.

For what good turn?
Mess. For the best turn i' the bed.
Cleo.

I am pale, Charmian.
Mess. Madam, he's married to Octavia.
Cleo. The most infectious pestilence upon thee!

[Strikes him down. Mess. Good madam, patience. Cleo.

What say you? --Hence,

[Strikes him again. Horrible villain! or I'll spurn thine eyes Like balls before me; I'll unhair thy head;

[She hales him up and down. Thou shalt be whipp'd with wire, and stew'd in brine, Smarting in ling’ring pickle. Mess.

Gracious madam, I, that do bring the news, made not the match.

Cleo. Say, 'tis not so, a province I will give thee, And make thy fortunes proud: the blow thou hadst Shall make thy peace, for moving me to rage; And I will boot thee with what gift beside Thy modesty can beg. Mess.

He's married, madam. Cleo. Rogue, thou hast liv'd too long.

[Draws a dagger. Mess.

Nay, then I'll run:

9_ it does allay

The good precedence;] i. e. abates the good quality of what is already reported.

What mean you, madam? I have made no fault.

[Exit.
Char. Good madam, keep yourself within yourself;
The man is innocent.
Cleo. Some innocents 'scape not the thunder-

bolt.-
Melt Egypt into Nile! and kindly creatures
Turn all to serpents !-Call the slave again;
Though I am mad, I will not bite him:-Call.

Char. He is afeard to come.
Cleo.

I will not hurt him:-
These hands do lack nobility, that they strike
A meaner than myself;' since I myself
Have given myself the cause.—Come hither, sir.

Re-enter Messenger.
Though it be honest, it is never good
To bring bad news: Give to a gracious message
An host of tongues; but let ill tidings tell
Themselves, when they be felt.
Mess.

I have done my duty.
Cleo. Is he married?
I cannot hate thee worser than I do,
If thou again say, Yes.
Mess.

He is married, madam. Cleo. The gods confound thee! dost thou hold

there still? Mess. Should I lie, madam?

· These hands do lack nobility, that they strike

A meaner than myself ;) Perhaps here was intended an indirect censure of Queen Elizabeth, for her unprincely and unfeminine treatment of the amiable Earl of Essex. The play was probably not produced till after her death, when a stroke at her proud and passionate demeanour to her courtiers and maids of honour (for her majesty used to chastise them too) might be safely hazarded. In a subsequent part of this scene there is (as Dr. Grey has observed) an evident allusion to Elizabeth's enquiries concerning the person of her rival, Mary, Queen of Scots. MALONE.

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