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Luc. My lord ?
Bru. Didst thou dream, Lucius, that thou so
criedst out? How ill this taper burns !– Ha! who comes here? Luc. My lord, I do not know that I did cry. I think it is the weakness of mine eyes
Bru. Yes, that thou didst: didst thou see anyThat shapes this monstrous apparition.
thing? It comes upon me!-Art thou anything ?
Luc. Nothing, my lord. Art thou some god, some angel, or some devil, Bru. Sleep again, Lucius.—Sirrah, Claudius ! That mak'st
my blood cold, and my hair to stare ? Fellow thou! awake! Speak to me what thou art.
VAR. My lord ? Ghost. Thy evil spirit, Brutus.
CLAU. My lord ? BRU.
Why com'st thou ? Bru. Why did you so cry out, sirs, in your Ghost. To tell thee, thou shalt see me at Phi
VAR., Clau. Did we, my lord ? Bru. Well: then I shall see thee again ? (3) BRU.
Ay; saw you anything? Ghost.
Ay, at Philippi. VAR. No, my lord, I saw nothing. Bru. Why, I will see thee at Philippi then. - CLAU.
Nor I, my lord. [Ghost vanishes. Bru. Go and commend me to my brother Now I have taken heart thou vanishest :
It shall be done, my lord. Luc. The strings, my lord, are false.
[Exeunt. BRU. He thinks he still is at his instrument. Lucius, awake!
Ant. Octavius, lead your battle softly on, Upon the left hand of the even field.
Oct. Upon the right hand I ; keep thou the left. Ant. Why do you cross me in this exigent? Oct. I do not cross you; but I will do so.
Enter Octavius, Antony, and their Army.
Oct. Now, Antony, our hopes are answered : You said the enemy would not come down, But keep the hills and upper regions ; It proves not so: their battles are at hand; They mean to warn" us at Philippi here, Answering before we do demand of them.
Ant. Tut, I am in their bosoms, and I know Wherefore they do it: they could be content To visit other places ; and come down With fearful bravery, thinking, by this face, To fasten in our thoughts that they have courage ; But 't is not so.
Drum. Enter BRUTU'S, CASSIUS, and their
Army ; LUCILIUS, TITINIUS, MESSALA, and others.
Enter a Messenger.
Bru. They stand, and would have parley.
battle ? Ant. No, Cæsar, we will answer on their
charge. Make forth; the generals would have some worls.
Oct. Stir not until the signal.
Prepare you, generals : The enemy comes on in gallant show; Their bloody sign of battle is hung out, A'id something to be done immediately.
a They mean lo warn us-) That is, to summon us. " Richard III." Act I, Sc. 3,
"And sent to warn them to his royal presence ;” and again in “ Romeo and Juliet,” Act V. Sc. 3,
- is as a bell That warns my old age to a sepulchre." b With fearful bravery,-) With alarming ostentation. Though some critics conjecture that "fearful” is not used here in its active sense, but with the ordinary meaning, full of fear,
c – by this face,-) By this bravado, or brag.
Oct. Not that we love words better, as you do. Defiance, traitors, hurl we in your teeth!
you dare fight to-day, come to the field;
If not, when you have stomachs. Ant. In your bad strokes, Brutus, you give [Exeunt Octavius, ANTONY, and their Army. good words:
Cas. Why now, blow, wind; swell, biliow; and Witness the hole you made in Cæsar's heart,
swim, bark ! Crying, Long live ! hail Cæsar !
The storm is up, and all is on the hazard. Cas.
Bru. Ho, Lucilius ! hark, a word with you. The posture of your blows are * yet unknown;
My lord ? But for your words, they rob the Hybla bees,
[Brutus and LUCILIUS converse apart. And leave them honeyless.
Cas. Messala, —
What says my general ? Bru. O, yes, and soundless too ;
Messala, For you have stol'n their buzzing, Antony, This is my birthday; as this very day And, very wisely, threat before you sting.
Was Cassius born. Give me thy hand, Messala : Ant. Villains, you did not so, when your vile Be thou my witness that, against my will, daggers
As Pompey was, am I compelld to set
And his opinion : now I change my mind,
Coming from Sardis, on our former o ensign Struck Cæsar on the neck. O, you flatterers ! Two mighty eagles fell; and there they perch'd, Cas. Flatterers !-Now Brutus, thank your- Gorging and feeding from our soldiers' hands, self:
Who to Philippi here consorted us : This tongue had not offended so to-day,
This morning are they fled away
and If Cassius might have ruld.
And in their steads do ravens, crows, and kites, Oct. Come, come, the cause : if arguing make Fly o'er our heads, and downward look on us, us sweat,
As we were sickly prey; their shadows seem The proof of it will turn to redder drops.
A canopy most fatal, under which
I but believe it partly; Be well aveng'd; or till another Cæsar
For I am fresh of spirit, and resolvid Have added slaughter to the sword of traitors. To meet all perils very constantly. Bru. Cæsar, thou canst not die by traitors' Bru. Even so, Lucilius. [Advancing. hands,
Now, most noble Brutus, Unless thou bring'st them with thee.
The gods to-day stand friendly, that we may, Oct.
Lovers in peace, lead on our days to age ! I was not born to die on Brutus' sword.
But, since the affairs of men rest still incertain, Bru. O, if thou wert the noblest of thy strain, Let's reason with the worst that
befall. Young man, thou couldst not die more honour- If we do lose this battle, then is this able.
The very last time we shall speak together : Cas. A peevish schoolboy, worthless of such What are you, then, determined to do? honour,
Bru. Even by the rule of that philosophy Join'd with a masker and a reveller!
By which I did blame Cato for the death Ant. Old Cassius still !
Which he did give himself:--I know not how, Ост.
Come, Antony ; away!-- But I do find it cowardly and vile,
gone ; (1)
So I hope ;
* The posture of your blows are yet unknown ;) The commentators have all something to say on the grammatical irregularity in this line, but are mute upon what is of far more importance, the exceptional use of “posture." Elsewhere Shakespeare always employs the word in its ordinary sense of attitude, position, &c. ; but here, if not a misprint, it must be taken to mean quality or composition.
"A peevish, self-will'd harlotry it is."
Romeo and Juliet, Act IV. Sc. 2. “And when she's froward, peerish, sullen, sour," &c.
Taming of the Shrew, Act V. Sc. 2. “Being wrong'd, as we are, by this peevish town," &c.
b'A peevish schoolboy,-) Although there are one or two passages in these plays where "peevish" implies foolish, childish, &c., the editors are certainly not justified in attributing this signification to the word in every instance where it occurs. In nine cases out of ten, indeed, the poet uses it, as here, in the sense of headstrong, stubborn, wilful, the meaning which it usually carried in his time. For example,
King John, Act II, Sc. 2. on our former ensign-] “Former" meant foremost or fore. In proof of this, Ritson quotes the following from Adlyngtou's translation of Apuleius, 1596 :-"First hee instructed me to sit at the table upon my taile, and howe I should leape and daunce, holding up my former feete.''
For fear of what might fall, so to prevent
This ensign here of mine was turning back ; The time of life :-arming myself with patience, I slew the coward, and did take it from him. To stay the providence of some high powers, Tir. O, Cassius, Brutus gave the word too That govern us below.
Then, if we lose this battle, Who, having some advantage on Octavius, You are contented to be led in triumph
Took it too eagerly ; his soldiers fell to spoil, Thorough the streets of Rome ?
Whilst we by Antony are all inclos’d.
Pin. Fly further off, my lord, fly further off! And whether we shall meet again I know not.
Mark Antony is in your tents, my lord ! Therefore our everlasting farewell take :
Fly therefore, voble Cassius, fly far off ! For ever, and for ever, farewell, Cassius !
Cas. This hill is far enough. Look, look, If we do meet again, why, we shall smile ;
Titinius; If not, why, then, this parting was well made.
Are those my tents where I perceive the fire ? Cas. For ever, and for ever, farewell, Brutus !
Tit. They are, my lord.
Cas. If we do meet again, we'll smile indeed ;
Titinius, if thou lov'st me, If not,'t is true this parting was well made.
Mount thou my horse, and hide thy spurs in him,
Till he have brought thee up to yonder troops, Bru. Why then, lead on.—0, that a man might know
And here again ; that I may rest assurd The end of this day's business ere it come!
Whether yond troops are friend or enemy. But it sufficeth that the day will end,
Tit. I will be here again, even with a thought.
Erit. And then the end is known.—Come, ho! away!
Cas. Go, Pindarus, get higher on that hill; My sight was ever thick ; regard Titinius,
And tell me what thou not'st about the field.SCENE II.-The same. The Field of Battle.
This day I breathed first : time is come round, Alarum. Enter Brutus and MESSALA,
And where I did begin, there shall I end ; e
My life is run his compass.—Sirrah, what news ? Bru. Ride, ride, Messala, ride, and give these
Prn. [Above.] O my lord !
Cas. What news ? bills Unto the legions on the other side! [Loud alarum.
Pin. [Above.] Titinius is inclosed round about
With horsemen that make to him on the spur ;Let them set on at once : for I perceive But cold demeanour in Octavius' wing,
Yet he spurs on.—Now they are almost on him ;
Now, Titinius !—Now some 'light :-0, he 'lights And sudden push gives them the overthrow.
too :Ride, ride, Messala ! let them all come down.
Cas. Come down, behold no more.SCENE III.-The same. Another Part of the
0, coward that I am, to live so long, Field.
To see my best friend ta'en before my face!
Alarum. Enter Cassius and TITINIUS.
Cas. 0, look, Titinius, look, the villains fly! Myself have to mine own turn'd enemy :
Come hither, sirrah :
to prevent The time of life:-) That is, to anticipate the natural period of existence. The expression, time of life, for duration of life, occurs again in "
“Henry IV." Part II. Act V. Sc. 2,
“0, gentlemen, the time of life is short;" a fact Mr. Craik must bave forgotten when he adopted the specious modernization, “term of life," from Capell.
b This ensign here of mine was turning back ;] "Here the term ensign may almost be said to be used with the double meaning of
both the standard and the standard-bearer."-CRAIK.
This day I breathed first: time is come round,
And where I did begin, there shall I end ;) It would not be difficult to find persons even now, perhaps, who indulge the visionary notion that their life will terminate on the same day of the week or month or at the same place that it began. Shakespeare seems to have been impressed by this superstition, for he has twice or thrice adverted to it. Curiously enough, too, he might have said of his own existence, “The wheel is come fall circle," for he died on the same day of the same month in which he was born, and at the same place.