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This way will I : Disrobe the images,
If you do find them deck'd with ceremonies.
Mar. May we do so?
You know, it is the feast of Lupercal.
Flav. It is no matter; let no images
Be hung with Cæsar's trophies. I'll about,
And drive away the vulgar from the streets :
So do you too, where you perceive them thick.
These growing feathers pluck'd from Cæsar's wing,
Will make him fly an ordinary pitch;
Who else would soar above the view of men,
And keep us all in servile fearfulness.
The Same. A publick Place. Enter in Procession, with Musick, CÆSAR; ANTONY, for
the course; CALPHURNIA, Portia, Decius, Cicero, BRUTUS, Cassius, and Casca, a great Croud following; among them a Soothsayer. Cæs. Calphurnia,Casca.
Peace, ho! Cæsar speaks.
[Musick ceases. Ces.
Calphurnia -Cal. Here
lord. Cas. Stand you directly in Antonius' way, When he doth run his course.-Antonius.
Ant. Cæsar, my lord.
Cæs. Forget not, in your speed, Antonius, To touch Calphurnia : for our elders say, The barren, touched in this holy chase, Shake off their steril curse,
ceremonies.] i. e. Honorary ornaments ; tokens of respect.-Malone. This person was not Decius, but Decimus Brutus. The poet (as Voltaire has done since) confounds the characters of Marcus and Decimus. Decimus Brutus was the most cherished by Casur of all his friends, while Marcus kept aloof, and declined so large a share of his favours and honours, as the other had constantly accepted. Shakspeare's mistake of Decius for Decimus, arose from the old translation of Plutarch.-FARMER. • The barren, touched in this holy chase,
Shake off their steril curse.] ** At that time the feast Lupercalia was celebrated, the which in olde time men say was the feast of shepherds or herdsmen,
I shall remember :
When Cæsar says, Do this, it is perform’d.
Cæs. Set on; and leave no ceremony out.
Cas. Ha! Who calls ?
Casca. Bid every noise be still :-Peace yet again.
Cas. Who is it in the press, that calls on me?
I hear a tongue, shriller than all the musick,
Cry, Cæsar: Speak; Cæsar is turn'd to hear.
Sooth. Beware the ides of March.
What man is that?
Bru. A soothsayer, bids you beware the ides of March.
Cæs. Set him before me, let me see his face.
Cas. Fellow, come from the throng: Look upon Cæsar.
Cæs. What say'st thou to me now? Speak once again.
Sooth. Beware the ides of March.
Cas. He is a dreamer; let us leave him ;-pass.
[Sennet. Exeunt all but Bru. and Cas.
Cas. Will you go see the order of the course?
Bru. Not I.
Cas. I pray you, do.
Bru. I am not gamesome: I do lack some part
Of that quick spirit that is in Antony.
Let me not hinder, Cassius, your desires ;
Cas. Brutus, I do observe you now of late : I have not from your eyes that gentleness, And show of love, as I was wont to have: You bear too stubborn and too stranges a hand and is much like unto the feast of Lyceans in Arcadia. But howsoever it is, that day there are diverse noble men's sonnes, young men (and some of them magistrates themselves that govern them), which run naked through the city, striking in sport them they meet in their way with leather thongs. And many noble women and gentlewomen also go on purpose to stand in their way, and doe put forth their handes to be stricken, persuading themselves that being with childe, they shall have good deliverie; and also, being barren, that it will make them conceive with child. Cæsar sat to behold that sport upon the pulpit for orations, in a clayre of gold, apparalled in triumphant manner. Antonius, who was consul at that time, was one of them that roune this holy course.” Pluturch: North's translation.--MALONE.
i Sennet.] A certain set of notes on the trumpet or cornet, different from a flourish.
- strange- ) i.e. Alien, unfamiliar, such as might become a stranger.---Jonsson.
Over your friend that loves you.
Be not deceiv'd: If I have veil'd my look,
I turn the trouble of my countenance
Merely upon myself. Vexed I am,
Of late, with passions of some difference,
Conceptions only proper to myself,
Which give some soil, perhaps, to my behaviours :
But let not therefore my good friends be griev'd;
(Among which number, Cassius, be you one ;)
Nor construe any further my neglect,
Than that poor Brutus, with himself at war,
Forgets the show of love to other men.
Cas. Then, Brutus, I have much mistook your passion ;'
By means whereof, this breast of mine hath buried
Thoughts of great value, worthy cogitations.
Tell me, good Brutus, can you see your face?
Bru. No, Cassius : for the eye sees not itself,
But by reflection, by some other things.
Cas. 'Tis just :
And it is very much lamented, Brutus,
That you have no such mirrors, as will turn
Your hidden worthiness into your eye,
That you might see your shadow. I have heard,
Where many of the best respect in Rome,
(Except immortal Cæsar,) speaking of Brutus,
And groaning underneath this age's yoke,
Have wish'd that noble Brutus had his eyes.
Bru. Into what dangers would you lead me, Cassius, That you
would have me seek into myself For that which is not in me?
Cas. Therefore, good Brutus, be prepar’d to hear :
And, since you know you cannot see yourself
So well as by reflection, I, your glass,
Will modestly discover to yourself
That of yourself which you yet know not of.
And be not jealous of me, gentle Brutus :
b-passions of some difference,] With a fluctuation of discordant opinions and desires.-Johnson.
your passion ;] i. e. The nature of the feelings from which you are now suffering. -- STEEVENS.
Were I a common laugher, or did use
To stale with ordinary oaths my lovek
To every new protester; if you know
That I do fawn on men, and hug them hard,
And after scandal them; or if you know
That I profess myself in banqueting
To all the rout, then hold me dangerous.
[Flourish, and shout.
Bru. What means this shouting? I do fear the people
Choose Cæsar for their king.
Ay, do you fear it?
Then must I think you would not have it so.
Bru. I would not, Cassius; yet I love him well :-
But wherefore do you hold me here so long?
What is it that you would impart to me?
If it be aught toward the general good,
Set honour in one eye, and death i' the other,
And I will look on both indifferently :
For, let the gods so speed me, as I love
The name of honour more than I fear death.
Cas. I know that virtue to be in you, Brutus,
As well as I do know your outward favour.
Well, honour is the subject of my story.--
I cannot tell, what you and other men
Think of this life; but, for my single self,
I had as lief not be, as live to be
In awe of such a thing as I myself.
I was born free as Cæsar; so were you :
We both have fed as well; and we can both
Endure the winter's cold, as well as he.
For once, upon a raw and gusty day,
The troubled Tyber chafing with her shores,
Cæsar said to me, Dar'st thou, Cassius, now)
Leap in with me into this angry flood,
And swim to yonder point ? _Upon the word,
Accouter'd as I was, I plunged in,
And bade him follow : so, indeed, he did.
The torrent roar’d; and we did buffet it
* To stale with ordinary oaths my love, &c.] To invite every new protestor to my affection by the stale or allurement of customary oaths.-Jounson.
With lusty sinews; throwing it aside
And stemming it with hearts of controversy.
But ere we could arrive the point propos’d,
Cæsar cry'd, Help me, Cassius, or I sink.
I, as Æneas, our great ancestor,
Did from the flames of Troy upon his shoulder
The old Anchises bear, so, from the waves of Tiber
Did I the tired Cæsar : And this man
Is now become a god; and Cassius is
A wretched creature, and must bend his body,
If Cæsar carelessly but nod on him.
He had a fever when he was in Spain,
And, when the fit was on him, I did mark
How he did shake: 'tis true, this god did shake:
His coward lips did from their colour fly;
And that same eye, whose bend doth awe the world,
Did lose his lustre: I did hear him groan:
Ay, and that tongue of his, that bade the Romans
Mark him, and write his speeches in their books,
Alas! it cried, Give me some drink, Titinius,
As a sick girl. Ye gods, it doth amaze me,
A man of such a feeble temper' should
So get the start of the majestick world,
And bear the palm alone."
Bru. Another general shout!
I do believe, that these applauses are
For some new honours that are heap'd on Cæsar.
Cas. Why, man, he doth bestride the narrow world,
Like a Colossus; and we petty men
Walk under his huge legs, and peep about
To find ourselves dishonourable graves.
Men at some time are masters of their fates :
The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars,
But in ourselves, that we are underlings.
Brutus, and Cæsar : What should be in that Cæsar?
Why should that name be sounded more than yours?
Write them together, yours is as fair a name ;
temper -] i.e. Temperament, constitution. m So get the start of the majestick world,
And bear the palm alone.] This image is extremely noble: it is taken from the Olympic games.-WARBURTON.