Antony and Cleopatra


Text
Act I
Act II
Act III
Act IV
Act V
Enter Cleopatra, Charmian, Iras, and Mardian


CLEOPATRA

Charmian!


CHARMIAN

Madam?


CLEOPATRA

(yawning)

Ha, ha!

Give me to drink mandragora.
mandragora (n.) mandrake plant [seen as a narcotic] See Topics: Plants


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

O, 'tis treason!


CHARMIAN

                         Madam, I trust, not so.


CLEOPATRA

Thou, eunuch Mardian!


MARDIAN

                         What's your highness' pleasure?


CLEOPATRA

Not now to hear thee sing. I take no pleasure

In aught an eunuch has. 'Tis well for thee
aught (n.) anything, [with negative word] nothing See Topics: Frequency count

That, being unseminared, thy freer thoughts
unseminared (adj.) emasculated, deprived of virility

May not fly forth of Egypt. Hast thou affections?
affection (n.) 3 desire, passion, lustful feeling


MARDIAN

Yes, gracious madam.


CLEOPATRA

Indeed?


MARDIAN

Not in deed, madam; for I can do nothing

But what indeed is honest to be done.
honest (adj.) 1 chaste, pure, virtuous

Yet have I fierce affections, and think

What Venus did with Mars.


CLEOPATRA

                         O, Charmian,

Where think'st thou he is now? Stands he, or sits he?

Or does he walk? Or is he on his horse?

O happy horse, to bear the weight of Antony!

Do bravely, horse, for wot'st thou whom thou mov'st?
wot (v.) 1 learn, know, be told See Topics: Frequency count

The demi-Atlas of this earth, the arm
arm (n.) 1 strong arm [in attack]; or: might, power
demi-Atlas (n.) supporter of half the world

And burgonet of men. He's speaking now,
burgonet (n.) [type of] small light helmet See Topics: Body-armour

Or murmuring ‘ Where's my serpent of old Nile?’

For so he calls me. Now I feed myself

With most delicious poison. Think on me,

That am with Phoebus' amorous pinches black

And wrinkled deep in time. Broad-fronted Caesar,
broad-fronted (adj.) with a broad forehead or face

When thou wast here above the ground, I was

A morsel for a monarch; and great Pompey

Would stand and make his eyes grow in my brow;
brow (n.) 1 appearance, aspect, countenance See Topics: Frequency count

There would he anchor his aspect, and die
aspect (n.) 3 gaze, look

With looking on his life.

Enter Alexas


ALEXAS

                         Sovereign of Egypt, hail!


CLEOPATRA

How much unlike art thou Mark Antony!

Yet, coming from him, that great medicine hath

With his tinct gilded thee.
tinct (n.) 2 [alchemy] tincture, elixir

How goes it with my brave Mark Antony?
brave (adj.) 2 noble, worthy, excellent


ALEXAS

Last thing he did, dear Queen,

He kissed – the last of many doubled kisses –

This orient pearl. His speech sticks in my heart.
orient (adj.) 1 lustrous, brilliant, bright


CLEOPATRA

Mine ear must pluck it thence.
quoth (v.) said See Topics: Frequency count


ALEXAS

                         ‘ Good friend,’ quoth he,

‘ Say the firm Roman to great Egypt sends
firm (adj.) 1 constant, steadfast, resolute

This treasure of an oyster; at whose foot,

To mend the petty present, I will piece
piece (v.) 1 add to, join to, augment

Her opulent throne with kingdoms. All the East,

Say thou, shall call her mistress.’ So he nodded,

And soberly did mount an arrogant steed,
arm-gaunt (adj.) [unclear meaning] in fine condition; with gaunt limbs; with armoured trappings

Who neighed so high that what I would have spoke

Was beastly dumbed by him.
beastly (adv.) like an animal, in a beastly manner
dumb (v.) make inaudible, reduce to silence
sad (adj.) 1 serious, grave, solemn See Topics: Frequency count


CLEOPATRA

                         What was he, sad or merry?


ALEXAS

Like to the time o'th' year between the extremes

Of hot and cold, he was nor sad nor merry.


CLEOPATRA

O well-divided disposition! Note him,
disposition (n.) 1 composure, state of mind, temperament
well-divided (adj.) well-balanced, evenly shared

Note him, good Charmian, 'tis the man; but note him!

He was not sad, for he would shine on those

That make their looks by his; he was not merry,

Which seemed to tell them his remembrance lay

In Egypt with his joy; but between both.
remembrance (n.) 1 memory, bringing to mind, recollection See Topics: Frequency count

O heavenly mingle! Be'st thou sad or merry,

The violence of either thee becomes,
become (v.) 1 be fitting, befit, be appropriate to See Topics: Frequency count

So does it no man else. Met'st thou my posts?
post (n.) 1 express messenger, courier See Topics: Frequency count


ALEXAS

Ay, madam, twenty several messengers.
several (adj.) 1 separate, different, distinct See Topics: Frequency count

Why do you send so thick?


CLEOPATRA

                         Who's born that day

When I forget to send to Antony

Shall die a beggar. Ink and paper, Charmian.

Welcome, my good Alexas. Did I, Charmian,

Ever love Caesar so?
brave (adj.) 1 fine, excellent, splendid, impressive See Topics: Frequency count


CHARMIAN

                         O, that brave Caesar!


CLEOPATRA

Be choked with such another emphasis!
emphasis (n.) vigorous expression, forceful utterance

Say ‘ the brave Antony.’


CHARMIAN

                         The valiant Caesar!


CLEOPATRA

By Isis, I will give thee bloody teeth,

If thou with Caesar paragon again
paragon (v.) 1 compare, match, place side by side

My man of men.


CHARMIAN

                         By your most gracious pardon,

I sing but after you.


CLEOPATRA

                         My salad days,

When I was green in judgement, cold in blood,
green (adj.) 2 youthful, inexperienced, immature

To say as I said then. But come, away,

Get me ink and paper.

He shall have every day a several greeting,
several (adj.) 1 separate, different, distinct See Topics: Frequency count

Or I'll unpeople Egypt.
unpeople (v.) empty of people, depopulate

Exeunt

 
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