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Now the witch take me, if I meant it thus!
Grace grow where those drops fall! My hearty friends,
You take me in too dolorous a sense:
I spake to you for your comfort: did desire you
To burn this night with torches: Know, my hearts,
I hope well of to-morrow; and will lead you,
Where rather I'll expect victorious life,
Than death and honour. Let's to supper; come,
And drown consideration. [Exeunt.
The same. Before the Palace.
Enter Two Soldiers, to their Guard.
1 Sold. Brother, good night: to-morrow is the day.
2 Sold. It will determine one way: fare you well. Heard you of nothing strange about the streets?
1 Sold. Nothing: What news?
2 Sold. Belike, 'tis but a rumour: Good night to you.
1 Sold. Well, sir, good night.
Enter Two other Soldiers.
2 Sold. Soldiers, Have careful watch.
3 Sold. And you: Good night, good night.
[The first Two place themselves at their Posts
4 Sold. Here we: [They take their Posts.] and if
to-morrow Our navy thrive, I have an absolute hope Our landmen will stand up.
3 Sold. 'Tis a brave army, And full of purpose.
[Musick of Hautboys under the Stage.
4 Sold. Peace, what noise? Vol. vm. H U
1 Sold. List, list!
1 Sold. Hark!
1 Sold. Musick i' the air.
3 Sold. Under the earth.
4 Sold. It signs well,3 Does't not?
3 Sold. No.
1 Sold. Peace, I say. What should this
mean? 1 Sold. 'Tis the god Hercules, whom Antony lov'd, Now leaves him.
1 Sold. Walk; let's see if other watchmen Do hear what we do. [They advance to another Post.
1 Sold. How now, masters?
Sold. How now?
How now? do you hear this?
[Several speaking together. I Sold. Ay; Is't not strange?
3 Sold. Do you hear, masters? do you hear?
1 Sold. Follow the noise so far as we have quarter; Let's see how't will give off. Sold. [Several speaking.] Content: 'Tis strange.
SCENE IV. The same. A Room in the Palace.
Enter Antony and Cleopatra; Charmian, and
Ant. Eros! mine armour, Eros!
Ant. No, my chuck.—Eros, come; mine armour,
5 It signs well, &c] i. e. it is a good sign, it bodes well.
Enter Eros, with Armour.
Come, my good fellow, put thine iron on:—
Cleo. Nay, I'll help too.
What's this for?
Ant. Ah, let be, let be! thou art
The armourer of my heart:—False, false; this, this.
Cleo. Sooth, la, I'll help: Thus it must be.
Ant. Well, well;
We shall thrive now.—Seest thou, my good fellow? Go, put on thy defences.
Eros. Briefly, sir.4
Cleo. Is not this buckled well?
Ant. Rarely, rarely:
He that unbuckles this, till we do please
Enter an Officer, armed.
A workman in't.—Good morrow to thee; welcome:
1 Off. A thousand, sir,
Early though it be, have on their riveted trim,
[Shout. Trumpets. Flourish. Enter other Officers, and Soldiers.
* Briefly, «>.] That is, quickly, sir.
5 To doffV —] To doff is to do off, to put off.
6 More tight at this, than thou:] Tight is handy, adroit.
1 Off. The morn is fair.—Good morrow, general.
All. Good morrow, general.
Ant. 'Tis well blown, lads.
This morning, like the spirit of a youth
And worthy shameful check it were, to stand
[Exeunt Antony, Eros, Officers, and Soldiers.
Char. Please you, retire to your chamber?
Cleo. Lead me.
He goes forth gallantly. That he and Caesar might
Antony's Camp near Alexandria.
Trumpets sound. Enter Antony and Eros; a Soldier meeting them.
Sold. The gods make this a happy day to Antony!
Ant. 'Would, thou and those thy scars had once prevail'd To make me fight at land!
Sold. Had'st thou done so,
The kings that have revolted, and the soldier
Ant. Who's gone this morning?
One ever near thee: Call for Enobarbus,
Ant. What say'st thou?
He is with Caesar.
Eros. Sir, his chests and treasure
He has not with him.
Ant. Is he gone?
Sold. Most certain.
Ant. Go, Eros, send his treasure after; do it; Detain no jot, I charge thee: write to him (I will subscribe) gentle adieus, and greetings: Say, that I wish he never find more cause To change a master.—O, my fortunes have Corrupted honest men:—Eros, despatch. [Exeunt.
Caesar's Camp before Alexandria.
Flourish. Enter CiESAR, with Agrippa, EnobarBus, and Others.
Cces. Go forth, Agrippa, and begin the fight: Our will is, Antony be took alive;7
7 Our wiU it, Antony be took alive;] It is observable with what judgment Shakspeare draws the character of Octavius. Antony was his hero; so the other was not to shine: yet being an historical character, there was a necessity to draw him like. But the ancient historians, his flatterers, had delivered him down so fair, that he seems ready cut and dried for a hero. Amidst these difficulties Shakspeare has extricated himself with great address. He has admitted all those great strokes of his character as he found them, and yet has made him a very unamiable character, deceitful, meanspirited, narrow-minded, proud, and revengeful. Warburton.