Antony and Cleopatra

Act I
Act II
Act IV
Act V
Enter Pompey, Menecrates, and Menas, in warlike



If the great gods be just, they shall assist

The deeds of justest men.


                         Know, worthy Pompey,

That what they do delay they not deny.


Whiles we are suitors to their throne, decays
decay (v.) be destroyed, become ruined, fail

The thing we sue for.


                         We, ignorant of ourselves,

Beg often our own harms, which the wise powers
power (n.) 9 (usually plural) gods, deities, divinities

Deny us for our good; so find we profit

By losing of our prayers.


                         I shall do well.

The people love me, and the sea is mine;

My powers are crescent, and my auguring hope
auguring (adj.) prophetic, presaging, forecasting
crescent (adj.) growing, developing, increasing

Says it will come to th' full. Mark Antony

In Egypt sits at dinner, and will make

No wars without doors. Caesar gets money where

He loses hearts. Lepidus flatters both,

Of both is flattered; but he neither loves,

Nor either cares for him.


                         Caesar and Lepidus

Are in the field. A mighty strength they carry.
field, in the engaged in military operations, in military array
strength (n.) 1 troops, forces, resources, followers


Where have you this? 'Tis false.
false (adj.) 4 wrong, mistaken


                         From Silvius, sir.


He dreams. I know they are in Rome together,

Looking for Antony. But all the charms of love,
look for (v.) 2 wait for, be on the lookout for

Salt Cleopatra, soften thy waned lip!
salt (adj.) 5 lascivious, lustful, lecherous
waned (adj.) faded, diminished [in beauty]

Let witchcraft join with beauty, lust with both!

Tie up the libertine in a field of feasts;

Keep his brain fuming. Epicurean cooks
Epicurean (adj.) 2 devoted to the pleasures of eating, cultivating gluttony

Sharpen with cloyless sauce his appetite,
cloyless (adj.) never satiating, not glutting

That sleep and feeding may prorogue his honour
prorogue (v.) 2 suspend, put on hold, waive

Even till a Lethe'd dullness –

Enter Varrius
Lethe'd (adj.) oblivious, all-forgetting, stuporous

                         How now, Varrius?


This is most certain that I shall deliver:

Mark Antony is every hour in Rome

Expected. Since he went from Egypt 'tis

A space for further travel.
space (n.) 1 space of time, while


                         I could have given less matter

A better ear. Menas, I did not think

This amorous surfeiter would have donned his helm
surfeiter (n.) profligate, libertine, debaucher

For such a petty war. His soldiership

Is twice the other twain. But let us rear
rear (v.) 3 raise, lift up, boost

The higher our opinion, that our stirring

Can from the lap of Egypt's widow pluck

The ne'er lust-wearied Antony.
hope (v.) expect, anticipate, envisage


                         I cannot hope

Caesar and Antony shall well greet together.

His wife that's dead did trespasses to Caesar;
trespass (n.) wrong, offence, injustice, crime

His brother warred upon him – although, I think,

Not moved by Antony.
move (v.) 3 encourage, instigate, prompt


                         I know not, Menas,

How lesser enmities may give way to greater.

Were't not that we stand up against them all,

'Twere pregnant they should square between themselves,
pregnant (adj.) 3 very likely, extremely probable
square (v.) 1 quarrel, fall out, disagree

For they have entertained cause enough
entertain (v.) 3 receive, sustain, meet with

To draw their swords. But how the fear of us

May cement their divisions and bind up
cement (v.) firmly bring together, unite
division (n.) 1 dissension, discord, disunity

The petty difference, we yet not know.

Be't as our gods will have't! It only stands
stand upon (v.) 1 make an issue of, insist upon, bother about

Our lives upon to use our strongest hands.

Come, Menas.


  Previous scene     Next scene