Antony and Cleopatra simplified

Synopsis

 Mark Antony and his forces defeated Brutus and Cassius on the Plains of Philippi in 30 BC.  That historic time may have been only a few months before this play begins. Brutus and Cassius had been the leaders of the Conspirators who murdered Julius Caesar in 32 BC.  Mark Antony had been Julius Caesar’s chief of staff.  Julius Caesar had been stabbed to death there on the steps of the Roman Senate by the Conspirators on the ides of March, the fifteenth of March, 32 BC.  His death created a political vacuum in Rome; a vacuum that was soon filled by Mark Antony, Octavius Caesar and Lepidus, the three of them becoming known as the triumvirate. The triumvirate had no competition following their win at Philippi. 

Pompey the Great had died in 48 BC and had by reference an important role in the very beginning of the play Julius Caesar.  He also by reference plays an important role in this play, having around 50 BC fled to Egypt after losing a battle.  He was murdered there.  Egypt to a considerable extent was important in this period of Roman history. Roman leaders were spending a good amount of time there, often with Cleopatra, Pompey the Great having been one of them.  In this play, Sextus Pompeius, one of Pompey the Great’s sons, known here less dramatically as Pompey, plays a significant role as an external threat to Rome and the triumvirate.  The triumvirate also had to deal with plenty of internal issues, a central theme of this play. 

Soon after this play begins, Antony, there in Alexandria to be with Cleopatra, learns that his wife Fulvia has died. He also learns that Pompey, who controls the seas, along with help from the pirates Menecrates and Menas, is challenging Antony’s tri-leader Octavius Caesar. As a result of Fulvia’s death and the threat posed by Pompey, Antony desperately feels the need to return to Rome, but he has a difficult time telling Cleopatra, and she has a difficult time hearing it. Cleopatra vows to write to him every day.  Rhetorically, Cleopatra asks Charmian, one of her aides “if she ever loved Caesar so,” meaning Julius.  She also reminisces about her time with Pompey the Great. She was quite the woman.

Antony does return to Rome and does meet with Octavius Caesar, but the meeting is frosty.  Antony’s wife and her brother had made mischief for Rome while Antony was off carousing in Egypt, all of which have understandably upset Caesar.  Caesar’s aide, Agrippa, changes the tone of the meeting when he suggests that perhaps Antony marry Octavia, Caesar’s newly-widowed sister.  Antony and Caesar promptly agree to the suggestion; Octavia unaware of what her future holds; Antony not planning to not continue to see Cleopatra.  When the principals exit, Enobarbus, an aide to Antony, gloriously describes to Maecenas and Agrippa (two of Caesar’s aides) the scene when Antony first laid eyes on Cleopatra. Shakespeare lays out quite a description of her charismatic charm when she and Antony were first together. She captivated him totally.

Back in Alexandria, Cleopatra berates the messenger when she learns Antony has married Octavia.  We also learn that Enobarbus (Antony’s chief aide) believes that Antony’s marriage to Octavia will lead to more stress between Antony and Caesar.  Enobarbus has it right.

In Rome, trying to negotiate a resolution to his differences with the triumvirate, Pompey invites his adversaries to join him aboard his galley. While on the ship, Pompey rejects Menas’ suggestion that they cut the throats of the “three world-sharers.”  While on the ship, Lepidus has too much to drink, the party going on for some time.  He is later carried off the vessel.  The other principals, including Pompey, leave the galley aware that they too are feeling the effects of the wine.

As a side issue and to make a point, Shakespeare has one of Antony’s military officers suggest to another that he put “garlands on his head” and that he ride his chariot proudly through Mesopotamia, the two soldiers having led Antony’s army in a far off land to a convincing victory over the Parthians.  To make his point, Shakespeare has the other officer wisely note that “’tis better to leave undone than by our deed acquire too high a fame when him we serve is away.”

Antony and Octavia leave for Athens, Antony being a little miffed with Caesar, feeling he does not treat him with enough respect.  Caesar and his sister Octavia have a very nice relationship.  Octavia soon leaves Athens for Rome to see her brother and to see if she can help mend the rift.  Caesar and Lepidus engage Pompey in a battle.  Pompey is killed, rumored to be the result of action by one of Antony’s officers.  Consolidating his power, Caesar has Lepidus imprisoned, accusing him of having been too close to Pompey.  Octavius Caesar secures Pompey’s renowned navy.  Antony leaves for Alexandria; Antony and Caesar’s rocky relationship deteriorates. 

Antony unilaterally decides to confront Caesar at sea, rather than on land, as advised by his advisors.  Cleopatra offers her sixty ships to help the cause; help that ends up being worthless.  Antony’s navel forces and the Egyptian navy fall quickly. An embarrassed and depressed Antony indirectly asks Caesar for a pardon.  His request is denied.  Caesar sends an agent to Cleopatra to determine if she is willing to leave Antony; to begin spending time with him. She isn’t. A jealous Antony learns of the request, is infuriated, and decides to regroup his and her navies and once again go after Caesar. Antony has a strong army, but he wants to redeem himself at sea.  Cleopatra lauds his bravery.  It’s her birthday.  They party. 

Antony writes a taunting letter to Caesar.  Antony and Caesar prepare for land and sea battles.  Antony’s long-time friend Enobarbus, thinking he sees the handwriting on the wall, leaves Antony for Caesar before the land battle begins.  While the servants prepare a feast, Antony thanks those around him for their service. It’s a very nice moment. A land battle ensues.  Caesar’s forces retreat and retire. Enobarbus dies, but not in the battle.  Antony and his troops return victoriously to Alexandria.  His thoughts promptly turn to another sea battle.  As the sea battle begins, Antony, from a distance, watches his and Egypt’s navies concede the battle to Caesar.  Antony, having had little sleep, turns on Cleopatra, claiming she has betrayed him. He lashes out at her. Believing he is mad, Cleopatra rushes to her tomb to hide.  Falsely, Antony is told that Cleopatra has died.  Antony demands Eros kill him, Eros having been his slave, now being his servant.  When Antony turns his head, Eros denies him, stabbing and killing himself.  A distraught Antony then tries to kill himself and fails, but in the suicide attempt injures himself seriously.  Learning that Cleopatra is not dead, Antony has his servants carry him to her, where he talks with her briefly and then dies.

Learning of Antony’s death and upset that Cleopatra has denied his interests in her, Caesar (semi-secretly) decides to parade Cleopatra through the streets of Rome as a spoil of war.  Dolabella, an aide to Caesar, but having sympathy for Cleopatra, tells her of Caesar’s plan. Caesar visits Cleopatra and tries to win her over, but she holds her own, Caesar unable to convince her that he will provide her with a safe haven.  Cleopatra then famously has a countryman from the Nile provide her with a basket of poisonous snakes. Caesar makes an attempt to capture her, but before he can get to her, stoic Cleopatra, Charmian, and Iras let the snakes bite them, the three women dying promptly.  With some beautiful comments to Dolabella, as Shakespeare can so easily do, Caesar honors Antony and Cleopatra.

Principal Characters

Antony.  Mark Antony has real talents and a fascination for Cleopatra.  He’s one of the three “shared-leaders” of the world.  He overplays his hand with the young Octavius Caesar.  Antony is defeated by Caesar’s forces in a naval battle at Actium, in the Adriatic Sea, in 31 B.C., the time of his break with Cleopatra, when he jealously and wrongly believes she has left him for Caesar.  He dies from a self inflicted wound.  As an historic footnote, with help from Octavius and Lepidus, Antony had defeated Brutus and Cassius on the Plains of Philippi in 32 B.C., they having killed Julius, Octavius’ adoptive father. 

Cleopatra.   She’s wonderful in many ways.  Cleopatra had had a long affair with the late Julius Caesar, who had designated her Queen of Egypt, as well of Queen of Syria and Cyprus.  The two of them had at least three sons, Caesarion the youngest.  The two older boys, Alexander and Ptolemy, had been named kings of regions controlled by the Romans.  Pompey the Great, who died in 48 B.C., also had had an affair with Cleopatra.  But in this story her heart was with Antony.  Her hair had turned gray by the time she was with Antony.  After Antony kills himself, she dies from a snake bite, legitimately afraid that Caesar would parade her through Rome. She sure thought the world of Antony, as Shakespeare beautifully lets her tell us. 

Enobarbus.  Shakespeare shows us through Enobarbus how a clear and rational mind can remain focused in the most desperate of situations, mostly.  For most of the play Enobarbus is Antony’s sober, close and loyal associate.  But Enobarbus leaves Antony for Caesar on the eve of the land battle; leaves him while Antony and Cleopatra are celebrating her birthday.  But true to his character, he soon senses he’s made a mistake.  When he receives his treasure chest from Antony and witnesses Caesar’s land defeat, he knows he’s made a mistake and dies, enormously disappointed with himself.    

Octavius Caesar.  Octavius Caesar was one-third of Rome’s ruling triumvirate.  He was Julius Caesar’s grandnephew.  Actually, Julius Caesar had through his will adopted Octavius as his son, Octavius occasionally referring to Julius Caesar as his father.  He came to be the successor to the triumvirate, in part because Lepidus drank too much and Antony spent too much time in Alexandria with Cleopatra.  As a footnote, in 27 B.C. Octavius became Augustus Caesar, Rome’s first emperor.

The Play


  • Act 1, Scene 1
  • Demetrius and Philo, two of Mark Antony’s friends, are on stage. Mark Antony, along with Octavius Caesar and Lepidus, rule Rome as the triumvirate. Fulvia is Antony’s wife. She is in Greece; he is in Egypt. Antony, Cleopatra and her ladies enter.
  • PHILO TO DEMETRIUS
  • Take but good note, and you shall see in him the triple pillar of the world transformed into a strumpet’s fool. Behold and see.
  • A Messenger enters.
  • MESSENGER
  • News, my good lord, from Rome.
  • ANTONY
  • Grates me, the sum.
  • CLEOPTRA
  • Nay, hear them Antony. Fulvia perchance is angry. Or who knows if the scarce-bearded Caesar have not sent his powerful mandate to you: “Do this, or this.”
  • ANTONY
  • How, my love?
  • CLEOPATRA
  • You must not stay here longer; your dismission is come from Caesar. Therefore hear it, Antony.
  • ANTONY
  • Let Rome in Tiber melt and the wide arch of the ranged empire fall. Here is my space. Kingdoms are clay.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Excellent falsehood! Why did he marry Fulvia, and not love her? I’ll seem the fool I am not.
  • ANTONY
  • Let’s not confound the time with conference harsh. There’s not a minute of our lives should stretch without some pleasure now. What sport tonight?
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Hear the ambassadors.
  • ANTONY
  • Fie, wrangling queen. Tonight we’ll wander through the streets and note the qualities of people.
  • ANTONY TO MESSENGER
  • Speak not to us.
  • Antony and Cleopatra exit.
  • DEMETRIUS
  • Is Caesar with Antonius prized so slight?
  • PHILO
  • Sir, sometimes when he is not Antony he comes too short of that great property which still should go with Antony.
  • DEMETRIUS
  • I will hope of better deeds tomorrow. Rest you happy!
  • They exit.
  • Act 1, Scene 2
  • Enobarbus, a friend of Antony’s, a soothsayer, and two of Cleopatra’s aides, Charmian and Iras, are on stage.
  • CHARMIAN
  • Soothsayer!
  • SOOTHSAYER
  • Your will?
  • CHARMIAN
  • Is ‘t you, sir, that know things?
  • SOOTHSAYER
  • In nature’s infinite book of secrecy a little I can read.
  • CHARMIAN
  • Good sir, give me good fortune.
  • SOOTHSAYER
  • I make not, but foresee.
  • CHARMIAN
  • Pray then, foresee me one.
  • SOOTHSAYER
  • You shall be more beloving than beloved.
  • CHARMIAN
  • I had rather heat my liver with drinking. Good now, some excellent fortune! Let me be married to three kings in a forenoon and widow them all. Find me to marry me with Octavius Caesar, and companion me with my mistress.
  • SOOTHSAYER
  • You shall outlive the lady whom you serve.
  • CHARMIAN
  • O, excellent! Nay, come. Tell Iras hers. Prithee tell her but a workaday fortune.
  • SOOTHSAYER
  • Your fortunes are alike.
  • IRAS
  • But how, but how? Give me particulars.
  • SOOTHSAYER
  • I have said.
  • IRAS
  • Am I not an inch of fortune better than she?
  • CHARMIAN
  • Well, if you were but an inch of fortune better than I, where would you choose it?
  • ENOBARBUS
  • Hush, here comes Antony.
  • CHARMIAN
  • Not he. The Queen.
  • Cleopatra enters.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Saw you my lord?
  • ENOBARBUS
  • No, lady.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • He was disposed to mirth, but on the sudden a Roman thought hath struck him.
  • Antony with a Messenger enter.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • We will not look upon him. Go with us.
  • All but Antony and the Messenger exit.
  • MESSENGER
  • The nature of bad news infects the teller.
  • ANTONY
  • When it concerns the fool or coward. On. Things that are past are done, with me. Mince not the general tongue. Name Cleopatra as she is called in Rome; rail thou in Fulvia’s phrase, and taunt my faults with such full license as both truth and malice have power to utter. Fare thee well awhile.
  • The Messenger exits. Another Messenger enters with a letter.
  • ANTONY
  • What are you?
  • MESSENGER
  • Fulvia thy wife is dead.
  • ANTONY
  • Where died she?
  • MESSENGER
  • In Sicyon, in Greece. Her length of sickness this bears.
  • He hands Antony a letter and exits.
  • ANTONY
  • There’s a great spirit gone! Thus did I desire it. The present pleasure does become the opposite of itself. I must from this enchanting queen break off. Ten thousand harms more than the ills I know my idleness doth hatch.
  • Enobarbus enters.
  • ANTONY
  • I must with haste from hence. I must be gone. She is cunning past man’s thought.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • Alack, sir, no, her passions are made of nothing but the finest part of pure love. We cannot call her winds and waters sighs and tears; they are greater storms and tempests than almanacs can report.
  • ANTONY
  • Would I had never seen her!
  • ENOBARBUS
  • O, sir, you had then left unseen a wonderful piece of work, which not to have been blest withal would have discredited your travel.
  • ANTONY
  • Fulvia is dead.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • Sir?
  • ANTONY
  • Fulvia is dead.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • Fulvia? Why, sir, give the gods a thankful sacrifice. It shows to man that when old robes are worn out, there are members to make new. If there were no more women but Fulvia, then had you indeed a cut, and the case to be lamented.
  • ANTONY
  • The business she hath broached in the state cannot endure my absence.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • And the business you have broached here cannot be without you, especially that of Cleopatra’s, which wholly depends on your abode.
  • ANTONY
  • No more light answers.
  •  
  •  
  • Antony to Enobarbus
  •  
  • Enobarbus, let our officers know
  • What we purpose. To the queen I shall go
  • To let her know why we must part. Urgent
  • Touches strongly speak to us, not only
  • Fulvia’s death, but too the letters sent
  • From friends asking us to come home. Pompey
  • Hath challenged Caesar and commands the sea.
  • Honor, never linked by our slippery
  • People to the deserver till his sweets
  • Are passed, is being thrown on Pompey the
  • Great’s son, who, high in name and power, meets
  • Not the test of courage, stands but for a
  • Soldier who’s a danger to the world; whence
  • Our efforts must be to remove him hence.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • I shall do ‘t.
  • They exit.
  • Act 1, Scene 3
  • Cleopatra and Charmian are on stage.
  • CHARMIAN
  • Madam, methinks, if you did love him dearly, you do not hold the method to enforce the like from him.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • What should I do I do not?
  • CHARMIAN
  • In each thing give him way; cross him in nothing.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Thou teachest like a fool; the way to lose him.
  • CHARMIAN
  • Tempt him not so too far. I wish, forbear. In time we hate that which we often fear.
  • Antony enters.
  • ANTONY
  • I am sorry to give breathing to my purpose-------
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Help me away, dear Charmian! I shall fall.
  • ANTONY
  • Now, my dearest queen------
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Pray you stand farther from me.
  • ANTONY
  • What’s the matter?
  •  
  •  
  • Cleopatra to Antony
  •  
  • Would the married woman you may go see
  • Wish she’d ne’er given you leave to see me?
  • Let her not say ‘tis I that keep you here.
  • O, ne’er was there a queen so mightily
  • Betrayed. My power o’er you she need not fear.
  • Yet all the treasons planted I did see.
  • Why should I think you can be mine and true
  • When, while swearing to the shaken gods, you
  • Have been false to Fulvia? Riotous
  • Madness for me to become entangled
  • With those mouth-made vows made, which now break us
  • In two in swearing. Go, as I’ve been lulled.
  • There was no going, when your false love lent,
  • With bliss in your eyes and lips, and brows bent.
  • ANTONY
  • Hear me queen: the strong necessity of time commands our services awhile, but my full heart remains in use with you. Our Italy shines o’er with civil swords; Sextus Pompeius makes his approaches to the port of Rome; equality of two domestic powers breed scrupulous faction. The condemned Pompey, rich in his father’s honor, creeps apace into the hearts of such as have not thrived upon the present state. My more particular, and that which most with you should safe my going, is Fulvia’s death.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Can Fulvia die?
  • ANTONY
  • She’s dead, my queen.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • O, most false love!
  • ANTONY
  • Quarrel no more, but be prepared to know the purposes I bear, which are or cease as you shall give th’ advice.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Cut my lace, Charmian, come! I am quickly ill and well.
  • ANTONY
  • My precious queen, forbear.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • So Fulvia told me. I prithee turn aside and weep for her, then bid adieu to me, and say the tears belong to Egypt.
  • ANTONY
  • You’ll heat my blood. No more! I’ll leave you, lady.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Courteous lord, one word. Sir, you and I must part, but that’s not it; sir, you and I have loved, but that’s not it; that you know well. Something it is I would-----. O, my oblivion is a very Antony, and I am all forgotten. Your honor calls you hence; therefore be deaf to my unpitied folly, and all the gods go with you.
  • ANTONY
  • Let us go. Come. Our separation so abides and flies that thou, residing here, goes yet with me, and I here remain with thee.
  • They exit.
  • Act 1, Scene 4
  • Octavius Caesar is on stage reading a letter. Lepidus is with him.
  • CAESAR
  • From Alexandria this is the news: he fishes, drinks, and wastes the lamps of night in revel, is not more manlike than Cleopatra. You shall find there a man who is the abstract of all faults that all men follow.
  • LEPIDUS
  • I must not think there are evils enough to darken all his goodness. His faults in him seem hereditary rather than purchased, what he cannot change than what he chooses.
  • CAESAR
  • You are too indulgent. Must no way Antony excuse his foils when we do bear so great weight in his lightness.
  • A Messenger enters.
  • LEPIDUS
  • Here’s more news.
  • MESSENGER
  • Pompey is strong at sea, and it appears he is beloved of those that only have feared Caesar.
  • CAESAR
  • It hath been taught us from the primal state that he which is was wished until he were, ne’er loved till ne’er worth love, comes feared by being lacked.
  • A second Messenger enters.
  • SECOND MESSENGER
  • Caesar, I bring thee word Menecrates and Menas, famous pirates, makes the sea serve them. No vessel can peep forth but ‘tis as soon taken as seen.
  • CAESAR
  • Antony, leave thy lascivious wassails.
  • LEPIDUS
  • ‘Tis pity of him.
  • CAESAR
  • Let his shames quickly drive him to Rome. Assemble we immediate council. Pompey thrives in our idleness.
  • They exit.
  • Act 1, Scene 5
  • Cleopatra, Charmian, Iras and Mardian, a eunuch, are on stage.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Ha, ha! Give me to drink mandragora.
  • CHARMIAN
  • Why, madam?
  • CLEOPATRA
  • That I might sleep out this great gap of time my Antony is away.
  • CHARMIAN
  • You think of him too much.
  •  
  •  
  • Cleopatra to Charmian
  •  
  • O, Charmian, where stands or sits he now?
  • Where think’st he now might be? Thinketh thou
  • He on his horse? O happy horse that bears
  • The weight of Antony! Do bravely horse.
  • Know’st thou whom thou mov’st; he who cares
  • For all, the shield and armor of Rome’s force.
  • Now I find myself with most delicious
  • Poison, deeply wrinkled in time, and us,
  • Well tanned by the sun. For Caesar, when he
  • Was here above the ground, I a morsel
  • For a monarch. And great Pompey would be
  • In a trance for me. He says now “How’s well,
  • Serpent of old Nile?” for so he calls me.
  • How goes it with my brave Mark Antony?
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Who’s born that day when I forget to send to Antony shall die a beggar. Ink and paper, Charmian. Did I, Charmian, ever love Caesar so?
  • CHARMIAN
  • O, that brave Caesar!
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Be choked with such another emphasis! Say “the brave Antony.”
  • CHARMIAN
  • The valiant Caesar!
  • CLEOPATRA
  • By Isis, I will give thee bloody teeth if thou with Caesar paragon again my man of men.
  • CHARMIAN
  • By your most gracious pardon, I sing but after you.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • My salad days, when I was green in judgment, cold in blood, to say as I said then. But come, away, get me ink and paper. He shall have every day a several greeting, or I’ll unpeople Egypt.
  • They exit.
  • Act 2, Scene 1
  • Pompey, Menecrates and Menas are on stage.
  • POMPEY
  • If the great gods be just, they shall assist the deeds of justest men.
  • MENAS
  • Know, worthy Pompey, that what they do delay they not deny.
  • POMPEY
  • Whiles we are suitors to their throne, decays the thing we sue for.
  • MENAS
  • We, ignorant of ourselves, beg often our own harms.
  • POMPEY
  • The people love me, and the sea is mine. Mark Antony in Egypt sits at dinner. Caesar gets money where he loses hearts. Lepidus flatters both, but he neither loves, nor either cares for him.
  • MENAS
  • Caesar and Lepidus are in the field.
  • POMPEY
  • Where have you this? ‘Tis false.
  • MENAS
  • From Silvius, sir.
  • POMPEY
  • He dreams. I know they are in Rome together, looking for Antony.
  • Varrius enters.
  • VARRIUS
  • This is most certain that I shall deliver: Mark Antony is every hour in Rome expected.
  • POMPEY
  • Menas, I did not think this amorous surfeiter would have donned his helm for such a petty war. His soldiership is twice the other twain.
  • MENAS
  • I cannot hope Caesar and Antony shall well greet together. His wife that’s dead did trespasses to Caesar; his brother warred upon him, although I think not moved by Antony.
  • POMPEY
  • I know not, Menas. But how the fear of us may cement their divisions and bind up the petty difference, we yet not know.
  • They exit.
  • Act 2, Scene 2
  • Enobarbus and Lepidus are on stage.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • Every time serves for the matter that is then born in ‘t.
  • LEPIDUS
  • But small to greater matters must give way.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • Not if the small come first.
  • Antony enters through one door; Caesar, Maecenas and Agrippa through another.
  • LEPIDUS
  • When we debate our trivial difference loud, we do commit murder in healing wounds. Noble partners, touch you the sourest points with sweetest terms.
  • ANTONY
  • ‘Tis spoken well.
  • CAESAR
  • Welcome to Rome.
  • ANTONY
  • I learn you take things ill which are not so, or, being, concern you not.
  • CAESAR
  • I must be laughed at, and with you chiefly i’ th’ world; more laughed at.
  • ANTONY
  • My being in Egypt, Caesar, what was ‘t to you?
  • CAESAR
  • Your wife and brother made wars upon me, and their contestation was theme for you; you were the word of war.
  • ANTONY
  • You do mistake your business. My brother never did urge me in his act. If you’ll patch a quarrel, it must not be with this.
  • CAESAR
  • You praise yourself by laying defects of judgment to me; but you patched up your excuses.
  • ANTONY
  • Not so, not so. As for my wife, I would you had her spirit. She is so unmanageable, Caesar, made out of her impatience. I grieving grant did you too much disquiet. For that you must but say I could not help it.
  • CAESAR
  • I wrote to you when rioting in Alexandria; you did pocket up my letters, and with taunts did gibe my missive out of audience.
  • ANTONY
  • Sir!
  • CAESAR
  • You have broken the article of your oath, which you shall never have tongue to charge me with.
  • LEPIDUS
  • Soft, Caesar!
  • ANTONY
  • No, Lepidus, let him speak. But on, Caesar; the article of my oath?
  • CAESAR
  • To lend me arms and aid when I required them, the which you both denied.
  • ANTONY
  • Neglected, rather. Truth is that Fulvia, to have me out of Egypt, made wars here, for which myself, the ignorant motive, do so far ask pardon.
  • LEPIDUS
  • ‘Tis noble spoken.
  • MAECENAS
  • If it might please you to enforce no further the griefs between you. The present need speaks to atone you.
  • LEPIDUS
  • Worthily spoken, Maecenas.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • You shall have time to wrangle in when you have nothing else to do.
  • ANTONY
  • Thou art a soldier only. Speak no more.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • That truth should be silent I had almost forgot.
  • ANTONY
  • You wrong this presence; therefore speak no more.
  • CAESAR
  • We shall remain in friendship, our conditions so diff’ring in their acts.
  • AGRIPPA
  • Give me leave, Caesar.
  • CAESAR
  • Speak, Agrippa.
  • AGRIPPA
  • Thou hast a sister by the mother’s side, admired Octavia. Great Mark Antony is now a widower.
  • CAESAR
  • Say not so, Agrippa.
  • ANTONY
  • I am not married, Caesar. Let me hear Agrippa further speak.
  • AGRIPPA
  • To hold you in perpetual amity, to make you brothers, and to knit your hearts with an unslipping knot, take Antony Octavia to his wife. By this marriage all little jealousies, which not seem great, and all great fears, which now import their dangers, would then be nothing. Her love to both would each to other and all loves to both draw after her.
  • ANTONY
  • Will Caesar speak?
  • CAESAR
  • Not till he hears how Antony is touched with what is spoke already.
  • ANTONY
  • What power is in Agrippa, if I would say “Agrippa, be it so,” to make this good?
  • CAESAR
  • The power of Caesar, and his power unto Octavia.
  • ANTONY
  • Let me have thy hand. Further this act of grace; and from this hour the heart of brothers govern in our loves and sway our great designs.
  • CAESAR
  • There’s my hand. A sister I bequeath you whom no brother did ever love so dearly. Let her live to join our kingdoms and our hears; and never fly off our loves again.
  • LEPIDUS
  • Happily, amen! Time calls upon ‘s. Of us must Pompey presently be sought, or else he seeks out us.
  • ANTONY
  • What is his strength by land?
  • CAESAR
  • Great and increasing; but by sea he is an absolute master.
  • ANTONY
  • So is the fame. Yet, ere we put ourselves in arms, dispatch we the business we have talked of.
  • CAESAR
  • With most gladness.
  • ANTONY
  • Let us, Lepidus, not lack your company.
  • LEPIDUS
  • Noble Antony, not sickness should detain me.
  • All but Enobarbus, Agrippa and Maecenas exit.
  • MAECENAS TO ENOBARBUS
  • Welcome from Egypt, sir. You stayed well by ‘t in Egypt.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • Ay, sir, we did sleep day out of countenance and made the night light with drinking.
  • MAECENAS
  • Eight wild boars roasted whole at a breakfast, and but twelve persons there. Is this true?
  • ENOBARBUS
  • This was but as a fly an eagle.
  • MAECENAS
  • She’s a most triumphant lady, if report be square to her.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • When she first met Mark Antony, she pursed up his heart upon the river of Cydnus. I will tell you.
  •  
  •  
  • Enobarbus to Maecenas and Agrippa, No. 1
  •  
  • She sat in a beaten gold burnished throne,
  • In the stern, where sails of a purple tone
  • Were so perfumed that the lovesick winds were
  • Calmed. The barge’s silver oars were stroked to
  • The tune of flutes, making the waves faster.
  • She, in her gold-threaded silk, did outdo
  • All pictures of Venus. Dimpled boys stood
  • As smiling Cupids next to her and would
  • With divers-colored fans cool her. Tending
  • Her, as the most graceful mermaids, were her
  • Gentlewomen, bowing to her. Wending
  • To the wharfs, leaving lone Antony, were
  • The people, out to see her. He did reach
  • Out to gaze on her and there made the breach.
  • AGRIPPA
  • O, rare for Antony! Rare Egyptian!
  •  
  •  
  • Enobarbus to Maecenas and Agrippa, No. 2
  •  
  • Upon her landing, Antony sent for
  • Her, inviting her then to supper. Or,
  • Rather, be her guest, she replied. Ever
  • Courteous Antony, to whom the word
  • “No” as an answer women have never
  • Been heard to speak, to the grand feast was lured,
  • Where he paid with his heart, his meal eaten
  • Only by his eyes. I saw breath taken
  • From her as she hopped forty paces through
  • The public street only to see her pour
  • Breath forth. Other women feed sweets to woo,
  • Where she wins men’s hearts through her cunning lore.
  • Priests bless her. She makes what’s vile attractive.
  • He’ll leave her not as long as he doth live.
  • MAECENAS
  • Now Antony must leave her utterly.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • Never. He will not. Age cannot wither her, nor custom stale her infinite variety.
  • MAECENAS
  • If beauty, wisdom, modesty can settle the heart of Antony, Octavia is a gift to him.
  • AGRIPPA
  • Let us go.
  • They exit.
  • Act 2, Scene 3
  • Antony, Caesar and Octavia enter.
  • ANTONY
  • Goodnight, sir. My Octavia, read not my blemishes in the world’s report.
  • Caesar and Octavia exit. The soothsayer enters.
  • ANTONY
  • Say to me, whose fortunes shall rise higher, Caesar’s or mine?
  • SOOTHSAYER
  • Caesar’s. Therefore, O Antony, stay not by his side. Thy spirit which keeps thee----is noble, courageous, high, unmatchable, where Caesar’s is not. Therefore make space enough between you.
  • ANTONY
  • Speak this no more.
  • SOOTHSAYER
  • To none but thee. If thou dost play with him at any game, thou art sure to lose.
  • ANTONY
  • Get thee gone.
  • The Soothsayer exits.
  • ANTONY
  • Be it art or hap, he hath spoken true. The very dice obey him, and in our sports my better cunning faints under his chance. I will to Egypt. And though I make this marriage for my peace, i’ th’ East my pleasure lies.
  • Act 2, Scene 4
  • Lepidus, Maecenas and Agrippa are on stage.
  • LEPIDUS
  • Pray you hasten your generals after.
  • AGRIPPA
  • Sir, Mark Antony will e’en but kiss Octavia, and we’ll follow.
  • LEPIDUS
  • Till I shall see you in your soldiers’ dress, farewell. Your way is shorter; my purposes do draw me much about. You’ll win two days upon me.
  • AGRIPPA AND MAECENAS
  • Sir, good success.
  • They exit.
  • Act 2, Scene 5
  • Cleopatra, Charmian, Iras and Mardian are on stage.
  • A Messenger enters.
  • MESSENGER
  • Madam, madam-----
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Antonio’s dead! If thou say so, villain, thou kill’st thy mistress.
  • MESSENGER
  • First, madam, he is well.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • But, sirrah, mark, we use to say the dead are well.
  • MESSENGER
  • Good madam, hear me. He’s well. And friends with Caesar.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Th’ art an honest man.
  • MESSENGER
  • But yet, madam-----
  • CLEOPATRA
  • I do not like “But yet.” Prithee, friend, pour out the pack of matter to mine ear, the good and bad together: he’s friends with Caesar, in state of health, thou say’st, and, thou say’st, free.
  • MESSENGER
  • Free, madam, no. I made no such report. He’s bound unto Octavia.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • For what good turn?
  • MESSENGER
  • Madam, he’s married to Octavia.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • The most infectious pestilence upon thee!
  • She strikes him.
  • MESSENGER
  • Gracious madam, I that do bring the news made not the match.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Rogue, thou hast lived too long.
  • She draws a knife.
  • MESSENGER
  • Nay then, I’ll run. What mean you, madam? I have made no fault.
  • He exits.
  • CHARMIAN
  • Good madam, keep yourself within yourself. The man is innocent.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Call the slave again. Though I am mad, I will not bite him.
  • CHARMIAN
  • He is afeard to come.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • I will not hurt him.
  • The Messenger enters again.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Come hither, sir. Though it be honest, it is never good to bring bad news.
  • MESSENGER
  • I have done my duty.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Is he married? I cannot hate thee worser than I do if thou again say “yes.”
  • MESSENGER
  • He’s married, madam. Should I lie, madam? To punish me for what you make me do seems much unequal. He’s married to Octavia.
  • The Messenger exits.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Lead me from hence; I faint. O, Iras, Charmian! Go to the fellow. Bid him report the feature of Octavia, her years, her inclination; let him not leave out the color of her hair. Bring me word quickly. Bring me word how tall she is. Pity me, Charmian, but do not speak to me. Lead me to my chamber.
  • They exit.
  • Act 2, Scene 6
  • Pompey and Menas enter through one door; Caesar, Lepidus, Antony and others enter through another.
  • POMPEY
  • Your hostages I have, so have you mine, and we shall talk before we fight.
  •  
  •  
  • Pompey to the Triumvirate
  •  
  • To you all three, the agents for the gods
  • In this world, know avengers are at odds.
  • My father, having a son and friends, who,
  • There at Philippi, where the good Brutus
  • Was ghosted, saw Julius Caesar, and you
  • Laboring for him. What moved pale Cassius
  • To conspire? And what made the all-honored,
  • Honest, Roman Brutus, along with armed
  • Wishers for freedom drench the Capitol
  • To replace a man with a man? That’s why
  • At my navy the mad ocean doth roll,
  • Angered by the burden, with which mean I
  • Scourge th’ base ingratitude your Caesar,
  • Antony, and Rome cast on my father.
  • LEPIDUS
  • Be pleased to tell us-----for this if from the present----how you take the offers we have sent you.
  • POMPEY
  • You have made me offer of Sicily, Sardinia; and I must rid all the sea of pirates; then to send measures of wheat to Rome.
  • ALL
  • That’s our offer.
  • POMPEY
  • Know then I came before you here a man prepared to take this offer. But Mark Antony, you must know when Caesar and your brother were at blows, your mother came to Sicily and did find her welcome friendly.
  • ANTONY
  • I have heard it, Pompey, and am well studied for a liberal thanks, which I do owe you.
  • POMPEY
  • Let me have your hand.
  • They clasp hands.
  • POMPEY
  • We’ll feast each other ere we part, and let’s draw lots who shall begin.
  • ANTONY
  • That will I, Pompey.
  • POMPEY
  • No, Antony, take the lot. But, first or last, your fine Egyptian cookery shall have the fame. I have heard that Julius Caesar grew fat with feasting there.
  • ANTONY
  • You have heard much.
  • POMPEY
  • Aboard my galley, I invite you all. Will you lead, lords?
  • ALL
  • Show ‘s the way, sir.
  • All but Enobarbus and Menas exit.
  • MENAS ASIDE
  • Thy father, Pompey, would ne’er have made this treaty.
  • MENAS TO ENOBARBUS
  • You and I have known, sir.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • At sea, I think.
  • MENAS
  • We have, sir.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • You have done well by water.
  • MENAS
  • And you by land.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • But give me you hand, Menas.
  • They clasp hands.
  • MENAS
  • All men’s faces are true, whatsome’er their hands are.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • But there is never a fair woman has a true face.
  • MENAS
  • They steal hearts.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • We came hither to fight with you.
  • MENAS
  • For my part, I am sorry it is turned to a drinking. Pompey doth this day laugh away his fortune. We looked not for Mark Antony here. Pray you, is he married to Cleopatra?
  • ENOBARBUS
  • Caesar’s sister is called Octavia.
  • MENAS
  • True, sir. She was the wife of Caius Marcellus.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • But she is now the wife of Marcus Antonius.
  • MENAS
  • Pray you, sir?
  • ENOBARBUS
  • ‘Tis true.
  • MENAS
  • Then is Caesar and he forever knit together?
  • ENOBARBUS
  • If I were bound to divine of this unity, I would not prophesy so.
  • MENAS
  • I think the policy of that purpose made more in the marriage than the love of the parties.
  • ENOBRBUS
  • I think so, too. But you shall find the band that seems to tie their friendship together will be the very strangler of their amity. He will to his Egyptian dish again. Then shall the sighs of Octavia blow the fire up in Caesar. Antony will use his affection where it is. He married but his occasion here.
  • MENAS
  • And thus it may be. Come, sir, will you aboard?
  • ENOBARBUS
  • I shall take it, sir. We have used our throats in Egypt.
  • They exit.
  • Act 2, Scene 7
  • The scene is Pompey’s galley.
  • SECOND SERVANT
  • Lepidus is high-colored.
  • FIRST SERVANT
  • They have made him drink alms-drink.
  • SECOND SERVANT
  • He cries out “No more,” reconciles them to his entreaty and himself to th’ drink.
  • FIRST SERVANT
  • But it raises the greater war between him and his discretion.
  • Caesar, Antony, Pompey, Lepidus and their associates enter.
  • POMPEY
  • Sit, and some wine. A health to Lepidus!
  • LEPIDUS
  • I am not so well as I should be, but I’ll ne’er out.
  • ENOBARBUS ASIDE
  • Not till you have slept. I fear me you’ll be in till then.
  • Pompey and Menas walk aside.
  • ANTONY
  • These quicksands, Lepidus, keep off them, for you sink.
  • MENAS ASIDE TO POMPEY
  • Wilt thou be lord of all the world?
  • POMPEY
  • What sayst thou?
  • MENAS
  • But entertain it, and though thou think me poor, I am the man who will give thee all the world.
  • POMPEY
  • Hast thou drunk well?
  • MENAS
  • No, Pompey, I have kept me from the cup.
  • POMPEY
  • Show me which way.
  • MENAS
  • These three world-sharers, these competitors, are in thy vessel. Let me cut the cable, and when we are put off, fall to their throats. All there is thine.
  • POMPEY
  • Ay, this thou shouldst have done and not have spoke on ‘t! In me ‘tis villainy; in the ‘t had been good service. Repent that e’er thy tongue hath so betrayed thine act. Being done unknown, I should have found it afterwards well done, but must condemn it now. Desist and drink.
  • MENAS
  • Who seeks and will not take when once ‘tis offered shall never find it more.
  • POMPEY
  • This health to Lepidus!
  • ANTONY TO SERVANT
  • Bear him ashore. I’ll pledge it for him, Pompey.
  • Enobarbus points to the servant carrying Lepidus.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • There’s a strong fellow, Menas.
  • MENAS
  • Why?
  • ENOBARBUS
  • He bears the third part of the world. Seest not?
  • MENAS
  • The third part, then, is drunk.
  • ANTONY
  • Come, let’s all take hands till that the conquering wine hath steeped our sense.
  • ALL SING
  • Cup us till the world go round, cup us till the world go round.
  • CAESAR
  • Pompey, goodnight. Good brother, let me request you off. Our graver business frowns at this levity. Gentle lords, let’s part. Mine own tongue splits what it speaks. Good Antony, your hand.
  • POMPEY
  • I’ll offer more drink on the shore.
  • ANTONY
  • You shall, sir. Give ‘s your hand.
  • POMPEY
  • O, Antony, we are friends!
  • ENOBARBUS
  • Take heed you fall not.
  • All but Menas and Enobarbus exit.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • Menas, I’ll not on shore.
  • MENAS
  • No, to my cabin. Let Neptune hear we bid a loud farewell to these great fellows.
  • They exit.
  • Act 3, Scene 1
  • Ventidius, an officer in Antony’s army, wins a victory in Parthia. Silius and other officers are on stage.
  • VENTIDIUS
  • Pleased Fortune does of Marcus Crassus’ death make me revenger. Bear the King’s son’s body before our army.
  • SILIUS
  • Noble Ventidius, spur through Media, Mesopotamia, and the shelters whither they routed fly. So thy grand captain, Antony, shall set thee on triumphant chariots and put garlands on thy head.
  •  
  •  
  • Ventidius to Silius
  •  
  • O, Silius, I have done enough. Note,
  • Subordinates dare ne’er appear to gloat.
  • For learn this: ‘tis better to leave undone
  • Than by our deed acquire fame when him we
  • Serve is gone. Caesar and Antony won
  • More through their officers than person. He
  • Who is a lieutenant accumulates
  • Quick renown soon loses favor. He baits
  • Himself who does more to do good, but in
  • The doing offends his captain; soldiers’
  • Performances perish once the captain
  • Is displeased. He who does the more confers
  • Successes i’ th’ wars to the captain,
  • And then may become his captain’s captain.
  • SILIUS
  • Thou wilt write to Antony?
  • VENTIDIUS
  • I’ll humbly signify what in his name we have effected.
  • SILIUS
  • Where is he now?
  • VENTIDIUS
  • He purposeth to Athens. We shall appear before him.
  • They exit.
  • Act 3, Scene 2
  • Agrippa enters one door; Enobarbus another.
  • AGRIPPA
  • What, have Antony and Caesar parted?
  • ENOBARBUS
  • They have finished their business with Pompey; he is gone. The other three are signing documents. Octavia weeps to part from Rome. Caesar is sad, and Lepidus, since Pompey’s feast, as Menas says, is troubled with the greensickness.
  • AGRIPPA
  • ‘Tis a noble Lepidus.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • He loves Caesar best, yet he loves Antony.
  • AGRIPPA
  • Both he loves.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • They are his shards and he their beetle.
  • Caesar, Antony, Lepidus and Octavia enter.
  • CAESAR
  • Sister, prove such a wife as my thoughts make thee. Most noble Antony, let not the piece of virtue which is set betwixt us, as the cement of our love to keep it builded, be the ram to batter the fortress of it.
  • ANTONY
  • Make me not offended in your distrust.
  • CAESAR
  • I have said.
  • ANTONY
  • You shall not find the least cause for what you seem to fear. We will here part.
  • OCTAVIA TO CAESAR
  • Sir, look well to my husband’s house, and-----
  • CAESAR
  • What, Octavia?
  • OCTAVIA
  • I’ll tell you in your ear.
  • Caesar and Octavia walk aside.
  • ANTONY
  • Her tongue will not obey her heart, nor can her heart inform her tongue.
  • ENOBARBUS ASIDE TO AGRIPPA
  • Will Caesar weep?
  • AGRIPPA
  • He has a cloud in ‘s face.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • So is he being a man.
  • AGRIPPA
  • Why, Enobarbus, when Antony found Julius Caesar dead, he cried almost to roaring. And he wept when at Philippi he found Brutus slain.
  • Caesar and Octavia come forward.
  • CAESAR
  • No, sweet Octavia, you shall hear from me still. The time shall not outgo my thinking on you.
  • ANTONY
  • Come, sir, come, I’ll wrestle with you in my strength of love.
  • CAESAR
  • Adieu, be happy.
  • He kisses Octavia. They exit.
  • Act 3, Scene 3
  • Cleopatra, Charmian and Iras are on stage.
  • The Messenger as before enters.
  • MESSENGER
  • Most gracious Majesty!
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Did’st thou behold Octavia?
  • MESSENGER
  • Ay, dread queen.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Where?
  • MESSENGER
  • Madam, in Rome. I looked her in the face and saw her led between her brother and Mark Antony.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Is she as tall as me?
  • MESSENGER
  • She is not, madam.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • What majesty is in her gait?
  • MESSENGER
  • She creeps. She shows a body rather than a life, a statue than a breather.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • He’s very knowing. I do perceive ‘t.
  • CHARMIAN
  • Excellent.
  • CLEOPATRA TO MESSENGER
  • Guess at her years, I prithee.
  • MESSENGER
  • Madam, she was a widow.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Widow? Charmian, hark.
  • MESSENGER
  • And I do think she’s thirty.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Bear’st thou her face in mind. Is ‘t long or round?
  • MESSENGER
  • Round even to faultiness.
  • Cleopatra gives him money.
  • CLEOPTRA
  • There’s gold for thee. Thou must not take my former sharpness ill. I will employ thee back again.
  • Messenger exits.
  • CHARMIAN
  • A proper man.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Indeed he is so. I repent me much that so I harried him.
  • They exit.
  • Act 3, Scene 4
  • Antony and Octavia enter.
  • ANTONY
  • He hath waged new wars ‘gainst Pompey; spoke scantly of me; when perforce he could not but pay me terms of honor.
  • OCTAVIA
  • O, my good lord, believe not all. A more unhappy lady, if this division chance, ne’er stood between praying for both parts.
  • ANTONY
  • Gentle Octavia, let your best love draw to that point which seeks best to preserve it. If I lose mine honor, I lose myself. But, as you requested, yourself shall go between ‘s. Make your soonest haste, so your desires are yours.
  • They exit.
  • Act 3, Scene 5
  • Enobarbus and Eros are on stage. Eros is another aide to Antony.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • What, man?
  • EROS
  • Caesar and Lepidus have made wars upon Pompey.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • This is old. What is the success?
  • EROS
  • Caesar, having made use of him in the wars ‘gainst Pompey, presently denied him as a partner, and accuses him of letters he had formerly wrote to Pompey; upon his own appeal seizes him. So the poor third is up.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • Then, world, thou hast a pair of chaps, no more, and throw between them all the food thou hast, they’ll grind the one the other. Where’s Antony?
  • EROS
  • He’s walking in the garden, and cries “Fool Lepidus!” And threats the throat of that his officer that murdered Pompey.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • Our great navy’s rigged.
  • EROS
  • For Italy and Caesar. More, Enobarbus: my lord desires you presently.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • Bring me to Antony.
  • They exit.
  • Act 3, Scene 6
  • Caesar, Maecenas and Agrippa enter.
  • CAESAR
  • Here’s the manner of ‘t. I’ th’ marketplace, Cleopatra and himself in chairs of gold were publicly enthroned. At the feet say Caesarion, whom they call my father’s son, and all the unlawful issue that their lust since then hath made between them. Unto her he gave the stablishment of Egypt, made her of lower Syria, Cyprus, Lydia, absolute queen.
  • MAECENAS
  • This in the public eye?
  • CAESAR
  • His sons he there proclaimed the kings of kings. Great Media, Parthia, and Armenia he gave to Alexander; to Ptolemy he assigned Syria, Cilicia, and Phoenicia.
  • MAECENAS
  • Let Rome be this informed.
  • AGRIPPA
  • Who, queasy with his insolence already, will their good thoughts call from him.
  • CAESAR
  • The people know it and have now received his accusations.
  • AGRIPPA
  • Who does he accuse?
  • CAESAR
  • Caesar, and that, having in Sicily seized the land that had been Pompey’s, we had not rated him his part o’ th’ isle. Lastly, he frets that Lepidus of the triumvirate should be deposed and, being, that we detain all his revenue.
  • AGRIPPA
  • Sir, this should be answered.
  • CAESAR
  • I have told him Lepidus was grown too cruel, that he his high authority abused and did deserve his change. For what I have conquered, I grant him part; but then in his Armenia and other of his conquered kingdoms I demand the like.
  • MAECENAS
  • He’ll never yield to that.
  • CAESAR
  • Nor must not then be yielded to in this.
  • Octavia and her aides enter.
  • OCTAVIA
  • Hail, Caesar, and my lord!
  • CAESAR
  • Why have you stol’n upon us thus? You come not like Caesar’s sister. The wife on Antony should have an army for an usher and the neighs of horse to tell of her approach long ere she did appear. But you are come to Rome, and have prevented the ostentation of our love, which, left unshown, is often left unloved.
  • OCTAVIA
  • Good my lord, to come thus was I not constrained, but did it on my free will.
  • CAESAR
  • I have eyes upon him, and his affairs come to me on the wind. Where is he now?
  • OCTAVIA
  • My lord, in Athens.
  • CAESAR
  • No, my most wronged sister. Cleopatra hath nodded him to her.
  • OCTAVIA
  • Ay me, most wretched, that have my heart parted betwixt two friends that does afflict each other!
  • CAESAR
  • Welcome hither. Welcome to Rome, nothing more dear to me. You are abused beyond the mark of thought. Best of comfort, and ever welcome to us.
  • MAECENAS
  • Welcome, dear madam. Each heart in Rome does love and pity you; only th’ adulterous Antony turns you off.
  • OCTAVIA TO CAESAR
  • Is it so, sir?
  • CAESAR
  • Most certain. Sister, welcome.
  • They exit.
  • Act 3, Scene 7
  • Cleopatra and Enobarbus enter.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Thou hast spoken against my being in these wars and say’st it is not fit.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • Well, is it, is it?
  • CLEOPATRA
  • What is ‘t you say?
  • ENOBARBUS
  • ‘Tis said in Rome that your maids manage this war.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Sink Rome, and their tongues rot that speak against us! I will not stay behind.
  • Antony and another of his aides, Canidius, enter.
  • ANTONY
  • Is it not strange, Canidius, he could so quickly cut the Ionian Sea and take in Toryne? You have heard on ‘t, sweet?
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Speed is never wondered at than by the negligent.
  • ANTONY
  • A good rebuke. Canidius, we will fight with him by sea.
  • CANIDIUS
  • Why will my lord do so?
  • ANTONY
  • For that he dares us to ‘t.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • Your ships are not well manned. In Caesar’s fleet are those that often have ‘gainst Pompey fought. Their ships are maneuverable, yours heavy.
  • ANTONY
  • By sea, by sea.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • Most worthy sir, you therein throw away the absolute soldiership you have by land, distract your army, leave unexecuted your own renowned knowledge, and give up yourself merely to chance and hazard from firm security.
  • ANTONY
  • I’ll fight at sea.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • I have sixty sails, Caesar none better.
  • ANTONY
  • Our overplus of shipping will we burn, and with the rest full-manned, from th’ head of Actium beat th’ approaching Caesar. But if we fail, we than can do ‘t at land.
  • A Messenger enters.
  • MESSENGER
  • The news is true, my lord; Caesar has taken Toryne.
  • He exits.
  • ANTONY
  • Canidius, our nineteen legions thou shalt hold by land, and our twelve thousand horse. We’ll to our ship.
  • A Soldier enters.
  • SOLDIER
  • O noble emperor, do not fight by sea! Let th’ Egyptians and the Phoenicians go a-ducking. We have used to conquer standing on the earth and fighting foot to foot.
  • ANTONY
  • Well, well, away.
  • Antony, Cleopatra and Enobarbus exit.
  • SOLDIER
  • By Hercules, I think I am i’ th’ right.
  • CANIDIUS
  • Soldier, thou art. So our leader’s led, and we are women’s men.
  • SOLDIER
  • You keep by land the legions and the horse whole, do you not?
  • CANIDIUS
  • We keep whole by land. This speed of Caesar’s carries beyond belief. Who’s his lieutenant, hear you?
  • SOLDIER
  • They say one Taurus.
  • CANIDIUS
  • Well I know the man.
  • A Messenger enters.
  • MESSENGER
  • The Emperor calls Canidius.
  • They exit.
  • Act 3, Scene 8
  • Caesar with his army enter.
  • CAESAR
  • Taurus!
  • TAURUS
  • My lord?
  • CAESAR
  • Strike not by land, keep whole. Provoke not battle till we have done at sea. Do not exceed the prescript of this scroll.
  • He hands him a scroll. They exit.
  • Act 3, Scene 9
  • Antony and Enobarbus enter.
  • ANTONY
  • Set we our squadrons on yond side o’ th’ hill in eye of Caesar’s battle, from which place we may the number of the ships behold and so proceed accordingly.
  • They exit.
  • Act 3, Scene 10
  • Canidius with his land army are on one side of the stage; Taurus is on the other.
  • Enobarbus enters.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • All is lost! I can behold no longer. The Egyptian admiral, with all their sixty, fly and turn the rudder. To see ‘t mine eyes are stricken.
  • Scarus enters.
  • SCARUS
  • The greater portion of the world is lost with very ignorance. We have kissed away kingdoms and provinces.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • How appears the fight?
  • SCARUS
  • On our side, like the tokened pestilence, where death is sure. Antony claps on his sea-wing and, like a doting mallard, leaving the fight in height, flies after her. I never saw an action of such shame. Experience, manhood, honor ne’er before did violate so itself.
  • Canidius enters.
  • CANIDIUS
  • Our fortune on the sea is out of breath and sinks most lamentably. Had our general been what he knew himself, it had gone well.
  • Scarus exits.
  • CANIDIUS
  • To Caesar will I render my legions and my horse.
  • He exits.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • I’ll yet follow the wounded chance of Antony, though my reason sits in the wind against me.
  • He exits.
  • Act 3, Scene 11
  • Antony and his aides are on stage.
  •  
  •  
  • Antony to his Men
  •  
  • I have lost my way forever; the land
  • Bids me to tread no more upon it and
  • Is ashamed to bear me. Friends, laden with
  • Gold is my ship, there in the harbor. Take
  • That, divide it, make peace with Caesar, if
  • You will. Through my instructions I did make
  • Cowards, having fled myself. I blush to
  • Look upon what I followed. My hairs do
  • Mutiny; the white rebuke the brown for
  • Rashness and they them for doting and fear.
  • Friends, begone. Take the hint seen in this sore
  • Heart; let that be left which leaves itself. Hear
  • Me, I pray. Leave me now, for indeed I
  • Have lost command. I’ll see you by and by.
  • His aides step aside. Antony sits down. Cleopatra, Charmian and Iras enter. Antony rises.
  • ANTONY
  • O, whither hast thou led me, Egypt?
  • CLEOPATRA
  • O, my lord, my lord, forgive my fearful sails! I little thought you would have followed.
  • ANTONY
  • Egypt, thou knew’st too well my heart was to thy rudder tied by th’ strings, and thou should’st tow me after.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • O, my pardon!
  • ANTONY
  • You did know how much you were my conqueror, and that my sword, made weak by my affection, would obey it on all cause.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Pardon, pardon!
  • ANTONY
  • Give me a kiss.
  • They kiss.
  • ANTONY
  • Even this repays me.
  • They exit.
  • Act 3, Scene 12
  • Caesar, Agrippa, Thidias and others enter.
  • CAESAR
  • Let him appear that’s come from Antony. Know you him?
  • An Ambassador from Antony enters.
  • AMBASSADOR
  • Such as I am, I come from Antony.
  • CAESAR
  • Declare thine office.
  • AMBASSADOR
  • Lord of his fortunes he salutes thee, and requires to live in Egypt, which not granted, he sues to let him breathe between the heavens and earth, a private man in Athens.
  • CAESAR
  • For Antony, I have no ears to his request.
  • Ambassador exits.
  • CAESAR TO THIDIAS
  • To try thy eloquence now ‘tis time. Dispatch. From Antony win Cleopatra. Promise, and in our name, what she requires; add more, from thine invention. Try thy cunning, Thidias.
  • THIDIAS
  • Caesar, I go.
  • They exit.
  • Act 3, Scene 13
  • Cleopatra, Enobarbus, Charmian and Iras enter.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • What shall we do, Enobarbus?
  • ENOBARBUS
  • Think, and die.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Is Antony or we in fault for this?
  • ENOBARBUS
  • Antony only. ‘Twas a shame no less than was his loss, to course your flying flags and leave his navy gazing.
  • The Ambassador with Antony enters.
  • ANTONY
  • Is that his answer?
  • AMBASSADOR
  • Ay, my lord.
  • ANTONY TO AMBASSADOR
  • Tell him his ships and legions may be a coward’s, whose ministers would prevail under the service of a child as soon as i’ th’ command of Caesar. I dare him, sword against sword, ourselves alone. I’ll write it. Follow me.
  • Antony and the Ambassador exit.
  • ENOBARBUS ASIDE
  • Yes, high-battled Caesar will unstate his happiness and be staged to th’ show against a sworder! Caesar, thou hast subdued his judgment too.
  • Thidias enters.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Caesar’s will? Say boldly.
  • THIDIAS
  • He knows that you embrace not Antony as you did love, but as you feared him.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • O!
  • THIDIAS
  • The scars upon your honor therefore he does pity as constrained blemishes, not as deserved.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • He is a god and knows what is most right. Mine honor was not yielded, but conquered merely.
  • ENOBARBUS ASIDE
  • To be sure of that, I will ask Antony. Sir, sir, thou art so leaky that we must leave thee to thy sinking, for thy dearest quit thee.
  • Enobarbus exits.
  • THIDIAS
  • Shall I say to Caesar what you require of him? It would warm his spirits to hear from me you had left Antony and put yourself under his shroud, the universal landlord.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • What’s your name?
  • THIDIAS
  • My name is Thidias.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Most kind messenger, say to great Caesar this: I kiss his conqu’ring hand. Tell him I am prompt to lay my crown at ‘s feet, and there to kneel.
  • THIDIAS
  • ‘Tis your noblest course. Give me grace to lay my duty on your hand.
  • He kisses her hand.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Your Caesar’s father oft, when he hath mused of taking kingdoms in, bestowed his lips on that unworthy place as it rained kisses.
  • Antony and Enobarbus enter.
  • ANTONY
  • What art thou, fellow?
  • THIDIAS
  • One that but performs the bidding of the fullest man and worthiest to have command obeyed.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • You will be whipped.
  • Antony calls for Servants.
  • ANTONY
  • Have you no ears? I am Antony yet.
  • Servants enter.
  • ANTONY
  • Take hence this jack and whip him.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • ‘Tis better playing with a lion’s whelp than with an old one dying.
  • ANTONY
  • Moon and stars! Whip him! I find him so saucy with the hand of Cleopatra.
  • THIDIAS
  • Mark Antony-----
  • ANTONY
  • Tug him away. This jack of Caesar’s shall bear us an errand to him.
  • Servants exit with Thidias.
  • ANTONY TO CLEOPATRA
  • Have I my pillow left unpressed in Rome to be abused by one that looks on servants?
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Good my lord-----
  • ANTONY
  • The wise gods seal our eyes, make us adore our errors, laugh at ‘s while we strut to our confusion.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • O, is ‘t come to this?
  • ANTONY
  • I found you as a morsel cold upon dead Caesar’s platter; nay, you were a fragment of Gneius Pompey’s.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Wherefore is this?
  • ANTONY
  • To let a fellow that will take rewards and say “God quit you!” be familiar with my playfellow, your hand, this kingly seal and promiser of high hearts!
  • Thidias enters with a Servant.
  • ANTONY
  • Is he whipped?
  • SERVANT
  • Soundly, my lord.
  • ANTONY TO THIDIAS
  • Get thee back to Caesar. Look thou say he makes me angry with him; for he seems proud and disdainful, harping on what I am, not what he knew I was. He makes me angry. Begone.
  • Thidias exits.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Have you done yet?
  • ANTONY
  • The moon is now eclipsed, and ‘t portends alone the fall of Antony.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • I must stay his time.
  • ANTONY
  • To flatter Caesar, would you mingle eyes with one that ties his points?
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Not know me yet?
  • ANTONY
  • Coldhearted toward me?
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Ah, dear, if I be so, let heaven engender hail, and the first stone drop in my neck; as it determines, so dissolve my life!
  • ANTONY
  • I am satisfied. Our force by land hath nobly held; our severed navy too have knit again. Where hast thou been, my heart? Dost thou hear, lady? From the field I shall return once more to kiss these lips. There’s hope in ‘t yet.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • That’s my brave lord!
  • ANTONY
  • Come, let’s have one other gaudy night. Call to me all my sad captains. Fill our bowls once more. Let’s mock the midnight bell!
  • CLEOPATRA
  • It is my birthday. I had thought t’ have held it poor. But since my lord is Antony again, I will be Cleopatra.
  • ANTONY
  • We will yet do well. Come on, my queen. The next time I do fight I’ll make Death love me.
  • All but Enobarbus exit.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • Now he’ll outstare the lightning. To be furious is to be frighted out of fear. When valor preys on reason, it eats the sword it fights with. I will seek some way to leave him.
  • He exits.
  • Act 4, Scene 1
  • Caesar, Agrippa and Maecenas are on stage. Caesar is reading a letter from Antony.
  • CAESAR
  • He calls me “boy,” and chides as he had power to beat me out of Egypt. My messenger he hath whipped with rods, dares me to personal combat, Caesar to Antony.
  • MAECENAS
  • Caesar must think, when one so great begins to rage, he’s hunted even to falling.
  • CAESAR
  • Let our best heads know that tomorrow the last of many battles we mean to fight. Poor Antony.
  • They exit.
  • Act 4, Scene 2
  • Antony, Cleopatra, Enobarbus, Charmian Iras and others are on stage.
  • ANTONY
  • Tomorrow, soldier, be sea and land I’ll fight. Woo’t thou fight well?
  • ENOBARBUS
  • I’ll strike and cry “Take all.”
  • ANTONY
  • Well said. Come on.
  • Servants enter.
  • ANTONY TO SERVANTS
  • Let’s tonight be bounteous at our meal. You have served me well, and kings have been you fellows.
  • CLEOPATRA ASIDE TO ENOBARBUS
  • What means this?
  • ENOBARBUS ASIDE TO CLEOPATRA
  • ‘Tis one of those odd tricks which sorrow shoots out of the mind.
  • ANTONY
  • And thou art honest too. Tend me tonight; perchance tomorrow you’ll serve another master. Mine honest friends, like a master married to your good service, stay till death. Tend me tonight two hours. I ask no more.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • What mean you, sir, to give them this discomfort? Look, they weep. For shame, transform us not to women.
  • ANTONY
  • Know, my hearts, I hope well of tomorrow, and will lead you where rather I’ll expect victorious life than death and honor. Let’s to supper, come, and drown consideration.
  • They exit.
  • Act 4, Scene 3
  • Antony’s soldiers are on stage.
  • FIRST SOLDIER
  • Brother, goodnight. Tomorrow is the day.
  • SECOND SOLDIER
  • It will determine one way. Fare you well.
  • FIRST SOLDIER
  • ‘Tis a brave army, and full of purpose.
  • Music plays.
  • SECOND SOLDIER
  • Peace. What noise?
  • FIRST SOLDIER
  • Music i’ th’ air. Peace, I say. What should this mean?
  • SECOND SOLDIER
  • ‘Tis the god Hercules, whom Antony loved, now leaves him.
  • They exit.
  • Act 4, Scene 4
  • Antony, Cleopatra, Charmian are on stage.
  • ANTONY
  • Eros! Mine armor, Eros!
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Sleep a little.
  • ANTONY
  • No, my chuck.
  • Eros enters carrying armor.
  • ANTONY
  • Come, good fellow, put thine iron on.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Nay, I’ll help too.
  • ANTONY
  • Ay, let be, let be! Thou art the armorer of my heart.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Sooth, la, I’ll help.
  • Captains and Soldiers enter.
  • CAPTAIN
  • Good morrow, general.
  • ANTONY
  • ‘Tis well blown, lads. This morning, like the spirit of a youth that means to be of note, begins early. Fare thee well, dame.
  • Antony kisses Cleopatra.
  • ANTONY
  • Whatever becomes of me, this is a soldier’s kiss. I’ll leave thee now like a man of steel. You that will fight, follow me close.
  • The men exit.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • He goes forth gallantly. That he and Caesar might determine this great war in single fight, then Antony-----but now-----. Well, on.
  • She and Charmian exit.
  • Act 4, Scene 5
  • Antony and Eros enter. A soldier meets them.
  • ANTONY
  • Who’s gone this morning?
  • SOLDIER
  • Who? One ever near thee. Call for Enobarbus, he shall not hear thee.
  • ANTONY
  • What sayest thou?
  • SOLDIER
  • Sir, he is with Caesar.
  • EROS
  • Sir, his chests and treasure he has not with him.
  • ANTONY
  • Go, Eros, send his treasure after. Do it. Withhold none of it. I charge thee. O, my fortunes have corrupted honest men.
  • They exit.
  • Act 4, Scene 6
  • Caesar and Agrippa enter with Enobarbus.
  • CAESAR
  • Go forth, Agrippa, and begin the fight. Our will is Antony be took alive; make it so known.
  • AGRIPPA
  • Caesar, I shall.
  • He exits.
  • CAESAR
  • The time of universal peace is near.
  • A Messenger enters.
  • MESSENGER
  • Antony is come into the field.
  • CAESAR
  • Go charge Agrippa plant those that have revolted in the vanguard that Antony may seem to spend his fury upon himself.
  • All but Enobarbus exit.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • I have done ill, of which I do accuse myself so sorely that I will joy no more.
  • One of Caesar’s soldiers enters.
  • SOLDIER
  • Enobarbus, Antony hath after thee sent all thy treasure, with his bounty overplus.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • I give it you.
  • SOLDIER
  • Mock not, Enobarbus. I tell you true.
  • The Soldier exits.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • I am alone the villain of the earth. O Antony, how wouldst thou have paid my better service, when my turpitude thou dost so crown with gold! This blows my heart. I will go seek some ditch wherein to die.
  • Act 4, Scene 7
  • Agrippa and other soldiers of Caesar’s army are on stage.
  • AGRIPPA
  • Retire! We have engaged ourselves too far. Caesar himself has work, and our oppression exceeds what we expected.
  • They exit. Antony and Scarus enter. Scarus is wounded.
  • SCARUS
  • O my brave emperor. Had we done so at first, we had driven them home with clouts about their heads.
  • ANTONY
  • Thou bleed’st apace.
  • There is a sound of retreat far off.
  • ANTONY
  • They do retire.
  • Eros enters.
  • EROS
  • They are eaten, sir, and our advantage serves for a fair victory.
  • ANTONY
  • I will reward thee once for thy sprightly comfort and tenfold for thy good valor.
  • They exit.
  • Act 4, Scene 8
  • Antony and Scarus and others enter in a march.
  • ANTONY
  • We have beat him to his camp. Run one before and let the Queen know of our deeds.
  • A Soldier exits.
  • ANTONY
  • Tomorrow before the sun shall see ‘s, we’ll spill the blood that has today escaped. I thank you all. Enter the city. Embrace your wives, your friends. Tell them your feats, whilst they with joyful tears wash the congealment from your wounds and kiss the honored gashes whole.
  • Cleopatra enters.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Lord of lords! O infinite virtue, com’st thou smiling from the world’s great snare uncaught?
  • ANTONY
  • Mine nightingale, we have beat them to their beds. What, girl, though gray, mingle with our younger brown. Behold this man. Commend unto his lips thy favoring hand. Kiss it, my warrior.
  • Scarus kisses her hand.
  • CLEOPATRA TO SCARUS
  • I’ll give thee, friend, an armor all of gold. It was a king’s.
  • ANTONY
  • He has deserved it. Give me thy hand. Through Alexandria make a jolly march.
  • They exit.
  • Act 4, Scene 9
  • A Sentry and his company enter. Enobarbus follows.
  • SENTRY
  • The night is shiny, and they say we shall embattle by th’ second hour i’ th’ morn.
  • ENOBARBUS
  • O, bear me witness, night------
  • SECOND WATCH
  • What man is this?
  • SENTRY
  • Enobarbus?
  • ENOBARBUS
  • O sovereign mistress of true melancholy, the poisonous damp of night discharge upon me, that life, a very rebel to my will, may hang no longer on me. O Antony, nobler than my revolt is infamous, forgive me in thine own particular, but let the world rank me in register a master-leaver and a fugitive. O Antony! O Antony!
  • He dies.
  • FIRST WATCH
  • Go we to him.
  • SECOND WATCH
  • Awake, sir awake! Speak to us.
  • SENTRY
  • The hand of death hath seized him. Let us bear him to th’ court of guard; he is of note.
  • They exit, carrying Enobarbus’ body.
  • Act 4, Scene 10
  • Antony and Scarus enter.
  • ANTONY
  • Their preparation is today by sea; we please them not by land.
  • SCARUS
  • For both, my lord.
  • ANTONY
  • But this it is: our foot upon the hills adjoining to the city shall stay with us-----order for sea is given.
  • They exit.
  • Act 4, Scene 11
  • Caesar and his army enter.
  • CAESAR
  • Unless we are attacked, we will be still by land----which, as I take ‘t, we shall, for his best force is forth to man his galleys. To the vales, and hold our best advantage.
  • They exit.
  • Act 4, Scene 12
  • Antony and Scarus enter.
  • ANTONY
  • Yet they are not joined. Where yond pine does stand, I shall discover all. I’ll bring thee word straight how ‘tis like to go.
  • He exits.
  • SCARUS
  • Swallows have built in Cleopatra’s sails their nests. Antony is valiant and dejected, and by starts his fretted fortunes give him hope and fear of what he has and has not.
  • Antony enters.
  •  
  •  
  • Antony to Scarus
  •  
  • All’s lost. My fleet hath yielded to the foe.
  • Yonder, they carouse like friends long lost. O,
  • This foul Egyptian hath betrayed me; she,
  • Having sold me to this novice Caesar,
  • Makes this soldier want wars only on thee.
  • So they all cast up their caps together!
  • Bid them begone. Once avenged, I’ve done all.
  • O fair sun, shall I no more see thee fall?
  • All come to this? These soldiers who followed
  • Like spaniels at my heels now discandy
  • Their sweets on blossoming Caesar. I owed
  • This? This queen, this graven charm who becked me
  • Is Egypt’s false soul, a right gypsy sauce
  • Who hath loosely beguiled me to this loss.
  • Scarus exits. Cleopatra enters.
  • ANTONY
  • Ah, thou spell! Begone.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Why is my lord enraged against his love?
  •  
  •  
  • Antony to Cleopatra
  •  
  • Vanish, or I’ll by killing you blemish
  • Caesar’s great triumph. Let him, if thou wish,
  • Hoist thee up to the shouting commoners!
  • Like a fault on all women, be shown most
  • Monster-like, following his messengers
  • For the dolts to see. The city as host
  • May cut thy face with prepared nails. ‘Tis well
  • Thou now go; but better ‘twere if thou fell
  • Into my family’s fury; one death might
  • Have prevented many. Teach me thy wrath,
  • Thou ancestor. Let my hand with the right
  • Club subdue my worthiest self. Thou hath
  • Sold me to the young Roman boy, this bit
  • Of a soul, downing me. You die for ‘t.
  • Cleopatra and Antony exit, separately.
  • Act 4, Scene 13
  • Cleopatra, Charmian, Iras and Mardian enter.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Help me, my women! O, He’s mad.
  • CHARMIAN
  • To your tomb! There lock yourself and send him word you are dead.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • To th’ tomb! Mardian, go tell him I have slain myself. And bring me how he takes my death. To the tomb!
  • They exit.
  • Act 4, Scene 14
  • Antony and Eros enter.
  • ANTONY
  • Here I am Antony. I made these wars for Egypt, and the Queen, whose heart I thought I had. She, Eros, has packed cards with Caesar and false-played my glory unto an enemy’s triumph. Nay, weep not, gentle, Eros. There is left us ourselves to end ourselves.
  • Mardian enters.
  • ANTONY
  • O, thy vile lady! She has robbed me of my sword.
  • MARDIAN
  • No, Antony, my mistress loved thee and her fortunes mingled with thine entirely.
  • ANTONY
  • Peace! She hath betrayed me and shall die the death.
  • MARDIAN
  • Death of one person can be paid but once, and that she has discharged. The last she spake was “Antony, most noble Antony.” She rendered life thy name so buried in her.
  • ANTONY
  • Dead then?
  • MARDIAN
  • Dead.
  • ANTONY
  • Unarm, Eros. The long day’s task is done, and we must sleep. Go.
  • Mardian exits.
  • ANTONY
  • Apace Eros. You have been nobly borne. From me awhile.
  • Eros exits.
  • ANTONY
  • I will o’ertake thee, Cleopatra, and weep for my pardon. Come, Eros, Eros!
  • Eros enters.
  • EROS
  • What would my lord?
  • ANTONY
  • Since Cleopatra died I have lived in such dishonor that the gods detest my baseness. Thou art sworn, Eros, that on my command thou then wouldst kill me. Do ‘t. The time is come.
  • EROS
  • The gods withhold me! Shall I do that which all the Parthian darts lost aim and could not?
  • ANTONY
  • Eros, would thou be windowed in great Rome and see thy master thus with folded arms, bending down his submissive neck, whilst the chariot of fortunate Caesar branded his baseness that followed?
  • EROS
  • I would not see ‘t.
  • ANTONY
  • When I did make thee free, swor’st thou not then to do this when I bade thee? Do it at once.
  • EROS
  • Turn from me then that noble countenance wherein the worship of the whole world lies.
  • Antony turns away.
  • EROS
  • My dear master, let me say, before I strike this bloody stroke, farewell.
  • ANTONY
  • ‘Tis said, man, and farewell. Now, Eros.
  • EROS
  • Thus I do escape the sorrow of Antony’s death.
  • Eros stabs himself and dies.
  • ANTONY
  • Thou teachest me, O valiant Eros, what I should and thou couldst not. My queen and Eros have by their brave instruction got upon me a nobleness in record. To do thus I learned of thee.
  • Antony stabs himself, but does not die.
  • ANTONY
  • The guard, ho! O, dispatch me!
  • Guards enter.
  • ANTONY
  • I have done my work ill, friends. O, make an end of what I have begun. Let him that loves me strike me dead.
  • FIRST GUARD
  • Not I.
  • SECOND GUARD
  • Nor I.
  • The guards exit. Diomedes enters.
  • ANTONY
  • Art thou there, Diomed? Draw thy sword, and give me sufficing strokes for death.
  • DIOMEDES
  • My mistress Cleopatra sent me to thee.
  • ANTONY
  • Where is she?
  • DIOMEDES
  • Locked in her tomb. She had a prophesying fear you did suspect she had disposed with Caesar, and that your rage would not be purged. She sent you word she was dead; but fearing since how it might work, hath sent me to proclaim the truth.
  • ANTONY
  • Too late, good Diomed. Call my guard, I prithee.
  • Diomedes calls the guards. Four or five guards enter.
  • ANTONY
  • Bear me, good friends, where Cleopatra bides. ‘Tis the last service that I shall command you.
  • GUARDS
  • Most heavy day!
  • ANTONY
  • I have led you oft; carry me now, good friends, and have my thanks for all.
  • The exit carrying Antony and the body of Eros.
  • Act 4, Scene 15
  • Cleopatra, Charmian and Iras are on stage.
  • Diomedes enters.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • How now? Is he dead?
  • DIOMEDES
  • His death’s upon him, but not dead. His guards have brought him thither.
  • Enter Antony, the Guards bearing him.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • O Antony, Antony. Help, Charmian! Help, Iras, help!
  • ANTONY
  • Peace! Not Caesar’s valor hath o’erthrown Antony, but Antony’s hath triumphed on itself.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • So it should be that none but Antony should conquer Antony, but woe ‘tis so!
  • ANTONY
  • I am dying, Egypt, dying. I delay death that I might lay kisses upon thy lips.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Dear my lord, pardon, I dare not. Your wife Octavia, with her modest eyes shall acquire no honor demurring upon me.
  • ANTONY
  • I am dying, Egypt, dying. One word, sweet queen: of Caesar seek your honor with your safety.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • They do not go together. My resolution and my hands I’ll trust, none about Caesar.
  • ANTONY
  • The miserable change now at my end lament nor sorrow at, but please your thoughts in feeding them with those my former fortunes wherein I lived, and now do die, a Roman by a Roman valiantly vanquished.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Noblest of men, wilt thou die? O see, my women, the crown o’ th’ earth doth melt. My lord!
  • Antony dies.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • O, withered is the garland of the war. There is nothing left remarkable beneath the visiting moon.
  • Cleopatra swoons.
  • IRAS
  • She’s dead, too, our sovereign. Madam!
  • CHARMIAN
  • O madam, madam, madam!
  • Cleopatra stirs.
  • CHARMIAN
  • Peace, peace, Iras!
  •  
  •  
  • Cleopatra to her Ladies
  •  
  • I, as only a woman, commanded
  • By such poor passion, as the milkmaid, did
  • Love him. Till they stole our jewel, I’d throw my
  • Scepter at the injurious gods to
  • Tell them this world did equal theirs. O, why
  • For naught? Patience is but a fool and you
  • Become as a mad dog if impatient.
  • What! Is it a sin to seek to be sent
  • To the secret house of death ere death dare
  • Come to us? Ah, our lamp is spent. Good sir,
  • Take heart. We’ll bury him. Then, my friends fair,
  • What’s brave, what’s noble, let’s do it after
  • High Roman fashion most expeditious,
  • And make life’s certain death proud to take us.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Ah women, women! Come, we have no friend but resolution and the briefest end.
  • They exit, bearing Antony’s body.
  • Act 5, Scene 1
  • Caesar, Agrippa, Maecenas and other war council members are on stage.
  • Dercetus enters with the sword of Antony.
  • CAESAR
  • What are thou that dar’st appear thus to us?
  • DERCETUS
  • I am called Dercetus. Mark Antony I served, who best was worthy best to be served.
  • CAESAR
  • What is ‘t thou say’st?
  • DERCETUS
  • I say, O Caesar, Antony is dead.
  • CAESAR
  • The breaking of so great a thing should make a greater crack.
  • DERCETUS
  • He is dead, Caesar, not by a hired knife, but that self hand which writ his honor in the acts it did hath. This is his sword. I robbed his wound of it.
  • CAESAR
  • Look you sad, friends? The gods rebuke me, but it is tidings to wash the eyes of kings.
  • MAECENAS
  • His taints and honors waged equal with him.
  • AGRIPPA
  • A rarer spirit never did steer humanity. Caesar is touched.
  • CAESAR
  • O Antony, let me lament with tears that thou my brother, my competitor, my mate in empire, friend and companion in the front of war------that our stars unreconciliable should divide our equalness to this.
  • An Egyptian enters.
  • CAESAR
  • Whence are you?
  • EGYPTIAN
  • A poor Egyptian yet, the Queen my mistress of thy intents desires instruction.
  • CAESAR
  • Bid her have good heart. She soon shall know how honorable and how kindly we determine for her.
  • The Egyptian exits.
  • CAESAR
  • Come hither, Proculeius. Go and say we purpose her no shame. Give her what comforts the quality of her passion shall require, lest, in her greatness, by some mortal stroke she do defeat us, for her life in Rome would be eternal in our triumph.
  • Proculeius exits.
  • CAESAR
  • Gallus, go you along.
  • Gallus exits.
  • CAESAR
  • Dolabella, go with me to my tent. Go with me and see what I can show in this.
  • They exit.
  • Act 5, Scene 2
  • Cleopatra, Charmian and Iras enter.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • ‘Tis paltry to be Caesar; not being Fortune, he’s but Fortune’s knave, a minister of her will.
  • Proculeius enters.
  • PROCULEIUS
  • Caesar bids thee study on what fair demands thou mean’st to have him grant thee.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • What’s thy name?
  • PROCULEIUS
  • My name is Proculeius.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Antony did tell me of you, bade me trust you, but I do not greatly care to be deceived that have no use for trusting. If he please to give me conquered Egypt for my son, he gives me so much of mine own as I will kneel to him with thanks.
  • PROCULEIUS
  • Be of good cheer. You’re fall’n into a princely hand; fear nothing. Let me report to him your sweet dependency.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • I hourly learn a doctrine of obedience, and would gladly look him i’ th’ face.
  • PROCULEIUS
  • This I’ll report, dear lady.
  • Gallus and Soldiers seize Cleopatra.
  • GALLUS
  • Guard her till Caesar come.
  • CHARMIAN
  • O, Cleopatra, thou art taken, queen!
  • Cleopatra draws a dagger.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Quick, quick, good hands!
  • Proculeius seizes the dagger.
  • PROCULEIUS
  • Hold, worthy lady, hold! Do not yourself such wrong, who are in this relieved, but not betrayed?
  • CLEOPATRA
  • What, of death, too, that rids our dogs of languish?
  • PROCULEIUS
  • Let the world see his nobleness well acted, which your death will never let come forth.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Where art thou, Death?
  • PROCULEIUS
  • O, temperance, lady!
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Sir, I will eat no meat; I’ll not drink, sir. Know, sir, that I will not wait pinioned at your master’s court, nor once be chastised with the sober eye of dull Octavia.
  • Dolabella enters.
  • DOLABELLA
  • Proculeius, what thou hast done thy master Caesar knows, and he hath sent for thee. For the Queen, I’ll take her to my guard.
  • PROCULEIUS
  • It shall content me best. Be gentle to her.
  • Proculeius exits.
  • DOLABELLA
  • Most noble empress, you have heard of me. Assuredly you know me.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • No matter, sir, what I have heard or known. You laugh when boys or women tell their dreams; is ‘t not your trick?
  • DOLABELLA
  • I understand not, madam.
  •  
  •  
  • Cleopatra to Dolabella
  •  
  • Let there be another dream where I were
  • To see such a man, as an emperor
  • Antony. His face a heaven that begs
  • Attention, where stuck the sun that kept its
  • Course and lighted this little earth. His legs
  • Bestride the ocean and his reared arm fits
  • Across the world. His voice meant to cower
  • And frighten the orb as rattling thunder,
  • Except to friends. His autumn bounty grew
  • The more by reaping. There was no winter.
  • His delights showed dolphin-like in the blue
  • Oceans they lived in. Realms and islands were
  • As plates dropped from his pocket. Think there meant
  • To be such a great man as this I dreamt?
  • DOLABELLA
  • Gentle madam, no. Hear me, good madam. Your loss is as yourself, great; and you bear it an answering to the weight.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • I thank you, sir. Know you what Caesar means to do with me?
  • DOLABELLA
  • I am loath to tell you what I would you knew.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • He’ll lead me, then, in triumph.
  • DOLABELLA
  • Madam, he will. I know ‘t.
  • Caesar, Proculeius, Gallus, Maecenas and others enter.
  • CAESAR
  • Which is the Queen of Egypt?
  • Cleopatra kneels.
  • CAESAR
  • Arise. You shall not knee. I pray you, rise. Rise, Egypt.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Sir, the gods will have it thus. My master and my lord I must obey.
  • She stands.
  • CAESAR
  • The record of what injuries you did us, though written in our flesh, we shall remember as things but done by chance.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Sole sir o’ th’ world, I do confess I have been laden with like frailties which before have often shamed our sex.
  • CAESAR
  • Cleopatra, if you apply yourself to our intents, which towards you are most gentle, you shall find a benefit in this change; but if you seek to lay on me a cruelty by taking Antony’s course, you shall put your children to that destruction which I’ll guard them from if thereon you rely. I’ll take my leave.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • ‘Tis yours, and we, your scutcheons and your signs of conquest, shall hang in what place you please.
  • CAESAR
  • Cleopatra, we intend so to dispose you as yourself shall give us counsel. Feed and sleep. Our care and pity is so much upon you that we remain your friend.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • My master and my lord!
  • CAESAR
  • No so. Adieu.
  • Caesar and his associates exit.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • He words me, girls, he words me, that I should not be noble to myself.
  • She whispers to Charmian.
  • IRAS
  • Finish, good lady. The bright day is done, and we are for the dark.
  • CLEOPATRA TO CHARMIAN
  • I have spoke already, and it is provided. Go put it to the haste.
  • Charmian exits. Dolabella enters.
  • DOLABELLA
  • Madam, I tell you this: Caesar through Syria intends his journey, and within three days you with your children will he send before.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Dolabella, I shall remain your debtor.
  • DOLABELLA
  • I your servant. Adieu, good queen. I must attend on Caesar.
  • Dolabella exits.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Now, Iras, what think’st thou? Thou an Egyptian puppet shall be shown in Rome as well as I. Mechanic slaves with greasy aprons, rules, and hammers shall uplift us to the view.
  • IRAS
  • The gods forbid!
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Nay, that’s certain.
  • IRAS
  • I’ll never see ‘t! For I am sure mine nails are stronger than mine eyes.
  • Charmian enters.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Now, Charmian! Show me, my women, like a queen. Go fetch my best attires. And when thou hast done this chore, I’ll give thee leave to play till Doomsday. Bring our crown and all.
  • Iras exits. A Guardsman enters with a countryman and his basket.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Hast thou the pretty worm of Nilus there that kills and pains not?
  • COUNTRYMAN
  • Truly I have him, but I would not be the party that should desire you to touch him, for his biting is immortal. Those that do die of it do seldom or never recover.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Remember’st thou any that have died on ‘t?
  • COUNTRYMAN
  • Very many, men and women, too.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Get thee hence. Farewell.
  • COUNTRYMAN
  • I wish you all joy of the worm.
  • He sets down the basket.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Farewell.
  • COUNTRYMAN
  • Look you, the worm is not to be trusted but in the keeping of wise people, for indeed there is no goodness in the worm.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Take thou no care; it shall be heeded.
  • COUNTRYMAN
  • Give it nothing, I pray you, for it is not worth the feeding.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Will it eat me?
  • COUNTRYMAN
  • You must not think I am so simple but I know the devil himself will not eat a woman.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Well, get thee gone. Farewell.
  • COUNTRYMAN
  • Yes, forsooth. I wish you joy o’ th’ worm.
  • He exits. Iras enters bearing Cleopatra’s royal attire.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Give me my robe. Put on my crown. I have immortal longings in me.
  • Cleopatra dresses in her finest.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Methinks I hear Antony call. I hear him mock the luck of Caesar. Farewell, kind Charmian. Iras, long farewell.
  • Iras falls and dies.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • Dost fall? If thou and nature can so gently part, the stroke of death is as a lover’s pinch, which hurts and is desired. Come, thou mortal wretch.
  • She places an asp on her breast.
  • CLEOPATRA
  • With thy sharp teeth this knot intricate of life at once untie.
  • CHARMIAN
  • O eastern star!
  • CLEOPATRA
  • As sweet as balm, as soft as air, as gentle----O Antony!
  • She places an asp on her arm and dies.
  • CHARMIAN
  • Now boast thee, Death, in thy possession lies a lass unparalleled.
  • She closes Cleopatra’s eyes. Guards enter noisily.
  • FIRST GUARD
  • Where’s the Queen?
  • CHARMIAN
  • Speak softly. Wake her not.
  • Charmian takes out an asp.
  • CHARMIAN
  • It is well done, and fitting for a princess descended of so many royal kings.
  • Charmian dies. Dolabella enters.
  • DOLABELLA
  • How goes it here?
  • SECOND GUARD
  • All dead.
  • DOLABELLA
  • Caesar art coming to see performed the dreaded act which thou so sought’st to hinder.
  • Caesar and others enter.
  • DOLABELLA
  • O sir, that you did fear is done.
  • CAESAR
  • She leveled at our purposes and, being royal, took her own way. The manner of their deaths? I do not see them bleed.
  • FIRST GUARD
  • A simple countryman that brought her figs. This was his basket.
  • CAESAR
  • Poisoned, then.
  • FIRST GUARD
  • O Caesar, this Charmian lived but now; she stood and spake. Temblingly she stood, and on the sudden dropped.
  •  
  •  
  • Caesar to Dolabella
  •  
  • If she had swallowed poison, swelling ‘twould
  • Appear, but she looks like sleep, as she would
  • Catch another Antony in her strong
  • Toil of grace. Most probable she has died,
  • This being as asp’s trail, for she has long
  • Pursued conclusions of easy ways tied
  • To death, her physician tells me. She shall
  • Be buried by Antony we allow,
  • For no grave upon the earth will exceed
  • A pair so famous. Events as these sought
  • Strike those that make them. Now, accept this deed,
  • And then our army on to Rome. What brought
  • Them to be lamented as a story
  • Is no less in pity than his glory.
  • They exit, guards bearing the dead bodies.

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