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I'll not endure it: you forget yourself,
Go to; you're not, Cassius.
CAS. Urge me no more, I shall forget myself; Have mind upon your health, tempt me no further.
“ Do I come home so seldom, and that seldom
“ Am I thus baited ?" The reading of the old copy, which I have restored, is likewise supported by a passage in King Richard III: “ To be so baited, scorn'd, and storm'd at."
MALONE. The second folio, on both occasions, has-bait ; and the spirit of the reply will, in my judgment, be diminished, unless a repetition of the one or the other word be admitted. I therefore continue to read with Mr. Theobald. Bay, in our author, may be as frequently exemplified as bait. It occurs again in the play before us, as well as in A Midsummer-Night's Dream, Cymbeline, King Henry IV. P. II. &c. &c. STEEVENS.
* To hedge me in ;] That is, to limit my authority by your direction or censure.
Johnson. I am a soldier, I, Older in practice, &c.] Thus the ancient copies ; but the modern editors, instead of I, have read ay, because the vowel I sometimes stands for ay the affirmative adverb. I have replaced the old reading, on the authority of the following line:
“ And I am Brutus ; Marcus Brutus I." STEEVENS. See Vol. XII. p. 85, n. 6. MALONE.
* To make conditions.] That is, to know on what terms it is fit to confer the offices which are at my disposal. JOHNSON. 5 Cas. I am.
Bru. I say, you are not.] This passage may easily be restored to metre, if Brutus, I am.
Cassius, I say, you are not. STEEVENS.
we read :
BRU. Away, slight man !
Hear me, for I will speak.
my laughter, When you are waspish. CAS.
Is it come to this?
f you did, I care not. CAs. When Cæsar liv'd, he durst not thus have
I'll use you for my mirth,] Mr. Rowe has transplanted this insult into the mouth of Lothario: “ And use his sacred friendship for our mirth.”
BRU. Peace, peace; you durst not so have
durst not. CAs. Do not presume too much upon my love, I may do that I shall be
for. Bru. You have done that you should be sorryfor. . There is no terror, Cassius, in your threats ; For I am arm'd so strong in honesty, That they pass by me, as the idle wind, Which I respect not. I did send to you For certain sums of gold, which you denied
me;For I can raise no money by vile means: By heaven, I had rather coin my heart, And drop my blood for drachmas, than to wring From the hard hands of peasants their vile trash, By any indirection. I did send To you for gold to pay my legions,
than to wring From the hard hands of peasants their vile trash,] This is a noble sentiment, altogether in character, and expressed in a manner inimitably happy. For to wring, implies both to get unjustly, and to use force in getting: and härd hands signify both the peasant's great labour and pains in acquiring, and his great unwillingness to quit his hold. WARBURTON.
I do not believe that Shakspeare, when he wrote hard hands in this place, had any deeper meaning than in the following line in A Midsummer-Night's Dream : “ Hard-handed men that work in Athens here."
Holt WHITE. Mr. H. White might have supported his opinion, (with which I perfectly concur) by another instance, from Cymbeline :
denied me: Was that done like Cassius?
I denied you not.
I did not:-he was but a fool, That brought myanswer back.-_Brutus hath riv'd
BRU. I do not, till you practise them on me."
I do not like
faults. CAS. A friendly eye could never see such faults. BRU. A flatterer's would not, though they do
appear As huge as high Olympus.
Cas. Come, Antony, and young Octavius, come, Revenge yourselves alone on Cassius, For Cassius is aweary of the world : Hated by one he loves; brav'd by his brother; Check'd like a bondman ; all his faults observ’d, Set in a note-book, learn'd, and conn'd by rote, To cast into my teeth. O, I could weep
my answer back.] The word back is unnecessary to the sense, and spoils the measure. STEEVENS.
° Bru. I do not, till you practise them on me.] The meaning is this: I do not look for your faults, I only see them, and mention them with vehemence, when you force them into my notice, by practising them on me. Johnson.
My spirit from mine eyes !—There is my dagger,
Sheath your dagger : Be angry when you will, it shall have scope; Do what you will, dishonour shall be humour. O Cassius, you are yoked with a lamb That carries anger, as the flint bears fire; Who, much enforced, shows a hasty spark, And straight is cold again. CAS.
Hath Cassius liv'd To be but mirth and laughter to his Brutus, When grief, and blood ill-temper’d, vexeth him ?
Bru. When I spoke that, I was ill-temper'd too. ÇAs. Do you confess so much ? Give me your
hand. BRU. And my heart too. CAS.
O Brutus ! BRU.
What's the matter?
'If that thou be'st a Roman, take it forth;] I think he means only, that he is. so far from avarice, when the cause of his country requires liberality, that if any man would wish for his heart, he would not need enforce his desire any otherwise, than by showing that he was a Roman. Johnson.
This seems only a form of adjuration like that of Brutus, p. 387: “ Now, as you are a Roman, tell me true.”