Julius Caesar

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Original text
Act II, Scene I
Enter Brutus in his Orchard.

Brut.
What Lucius, hoe?
I cannot, by the progresse of the Starres,
Giue guesse how neere to day--- Lucius, I say?
I would it were my fault to sleepe so soundly.
When Lucius, when? awake, I say: what Lucius?
Enter Lucius.

Luc.
Call'd you, my Lord?

Brut.
Get me a Tapor in my Study, Lucius:
When it is lighted, come and call me here.

Luc.
I will, my Lord.
Exit.

Brut.
It must be by his death: and for my part,
I know no personall cause, to spurne at him,
But for the generall. He would be crown'd:
How that might change his nature, there's the question?
It is the bright day, that brings forth the Adder,
And that craues warie walking: Crowne him that,
And then I graunt we put a Sting in him,
That at his will he may doe danger with.
Th'abuse of Greatnesse, is, when it dis-ioynes
Remorse from Power: And to speake truth of Casar,
I haue not knowne, when his Affections sway'd
More then his Reason. But 'tis a common proofe,
That Lowlynesse is young Ambitions Ladder,
Whereto the Climber vpward turnes his Face:
But when he once attaines the vpmost Round,
He then vnto the Ladder turnes his Backe,
Lookes in the Clouds, scorning the base degrees
By which he did ascend: so Casar may;
Then least he may, preuent. And since the Quarrell
Will beare no colour, for the thing he is,
Fashion it thus; that what he is, augmented,
Would runne to these, and these extremities:
And therefore thinke him as a Serpents egge,
Which hatch'd, would as his kinde grow mischieuous;
And kill him in the shell.
Enter Lucius.

Luc.
The Taper burneth in your Closet, Sir:
Searching the Window for a Flint, I found
This Paper, thus seal'd vp, and I am sure
It did not lye there when I went to Bed.
Giues him the Letter.

Brut.
Get you to Bed againe, it is not day:
Is not to morrow (Boy) the first of March?

Luc.
I know not, Sir.

Brut.
Looke in the Calender, and bring me word.

Luc.
I will, Sir.
Exit.

Brut.
The exhalations, whizzing in the ayre,
Giue so much light, that I may reade by them.
Opens the Letter, and reades.
Brutus thou sleep'st; awake, and see thy selfe:
Shall Rome, &c. speake, strike, redresse.
Brutus, thou sleep'st: awake.
Such instigations haue beene often dropt,
Where I haue tooke them vp:
Shall Rome, &c. Thus must I piece it out:
Shall Rome stand vnder one mans awe? What Rome?
My Ancestors did from the streetes of Rome
The Tarquin driue, when he was call'd a King.
Speake, strike, redresse. Am I entreated
To speake, and strike? O Rome, I make thee promise,
If the redresse will follow, thou receiuest
Thy full Petition at the hand of Brutus.
Enter Lucius.

Luc.
Sir, March is wasted fifteene dayes.
Knocke within.

Brut.
'Tis good. Go to the Gate, some body knocks:
Since Cassius first did whet me against Casar,
I haue not slept.
Betweene the acting of a dreadfull thing,
And the first motion, all the Interim is
Like a Phantasma, or a hideous Dreame:
The Genius, and the mortall Instruments
Are then in councell; and the state of a man,
Like to a little Kingdome, suffers then
The nature of an Insurrection.
Enter Lucius.

Luc.
Sir, 'tis your Brother Cassius at the Doore,
Who doth desire to see you.

Brut.
Is he alone?

Luc.
No, Sir, there are moe with him.

Brut.
Doe you know them?

Luc.
No, Sir, their Hats are pluckt about their Eares,
And halfe their Faces buried in their Cloakes,
That by no meanes I may discouer them,
By any marke of fauour.

Brut.
Let 'em enter:
They are the Faction. O Conspiracie,
Sham'st thou to shew thy dang'rous Brow by Night,
When euills are most free? O then, by day
Where wilt thou finde a Cauerne darke enough,
To maske thy monstrous Visage? Seek none Conspiracie,
Hide it in Smiles, and Affabilitie:
For if thou path thy natiue semblance on,
Not Erebus it selfe were dimme enough,
To hide thee from preuention.
Enter the Conspirators, Cassius, Caska, Decius, Cinna,
Metellus, and Trebonius.

Cass.
I thinke we are too bold vpon your Rest:
Good morrow Brutus, doe we trouble you?

Brut.
I haue beene vp this howre, awake all Night:
Know I these men, that come along with you?

Cass.
Yes, euery man of them; and no man here
But honors you: and euery one doth wish,
You had but that opinion of your selfe,
Which euery Noble Roman beares of you.
This is Trebonius.

Brut.
He is welcome hither.

Cass.
This, Decius Brutus.

Brut.
He is welcome too.

Cass.
This, Caska; this, Cinna; and this, Metellus Cymber.

Brut.
They are all welcome.
What watchfull Cares doe interpose themselues
Betwixt your Eyes, and Night?

Cass.
Shall I entreat a word?
They whisper.

Decius.
Here lyes the East: doth not the Day breake heere?

Cask.
No.

Cin.
O pardon, Sir, it doth; and yon grey Lines,
That fret the Clouds, are Messengers of Day.

Cask.
You shall confesse, that you are both deceiu'd:
Heere, as I point my Sword, the Sunne arises,
Which is a great way growing on the South,
Weighing the youthfull Season of the yeare.
Some two moneths hence, vp higher toward the North
He first presents his fire, and the high East
Stands as the Capitoll, directly heere.

Bru.
Giue me your hands all ouer, one by one.

Cas.
And let vs sweare our Resolution.

Brut.
No, not an Oath: if not the Face of men,
The sufferance of our Soules, the times Abuse;
If these be Motiues weake, breake off betimes,
And euery man hence, to his idle bed:
So let high-sighted-Tyranny range on,
Till each man drop by Lottery. But if these
(As I am sure they do) beare fire enough
To kindle Cowards, and to steele with valour
The melting Spirits of women. Then Countrymen,
What neede we any spurre, but our owne cause
To pricke vs to redresse? What other Bond,
Then secret Romans, that haue spoke the word,
And will not palter? And what other Oath,
Then Honesty to Honesty ingag'd,
That this shall be, or we will fall for it.
Sweare Priests and Cowards, and men Cautelous
Old feeble Carrions, and such suffering Soules
That welcome wrongs: Vnto bad causes, sweare
Such Creatures as men doubt; but do not staine
The euen vertue of our Enterprize,
Nor th'insuppressiue Mettle of our Spirits,
To thinke, that or our Cause, or our Performance
Did neede an Oath. When euery drop of blood
That euery Roman beares, and Nobly beares
Is guilty of a seuerall Bastardie,
If he do breake the smallest Particle
Of any promise that hath past from him.

Cas.
But what of Cicero? Shall we sound him?
I thinke he will stand very strong with vs.

Cask.
Let vs not leaue him out.

Cyn.
No, by no meanes.

Metel.
O let vs haue him, for his Siluer haires
Will purchase vs a good opinion:
And buy mens voyces, to commend our deeds:
It shall be sayd, his iudgement rul'd our hands,
Our youths, and wildenesse, shall no whit appeare,
But all be buried in his Grauity.

Bru.
O name him not; let vs not breake with him,
For he will neuer follow any thing
That other men begin.

Cas.
Then leaue him out.

Cask.
Indeed, he is not fit.

Decius.
Shall no man else be toucht, but onely Casar?

Cas.
Decius well vrg'd: I thinke it is not meet,
Marke Antony, so well belou'd of Casar,
Should out-liue Casar, we shall finde of him
A shrew'd Contriuer. And you know, his meanes
If he improue them, may well stretch so farre
As to annoy vs all: which to preuent,
Let Antony and Casar fall together.

Bru.
Our course will seeme too bloody, Caius Cassius,
To cut the Head off, and then hacke the Limbes:
Like Wrath in death, and Enuy afterwards:
For Antony, is but a Limbe of Casar.
Let's be Sacrificers, but not Butchers Caius:
We all stand vp against the spirit of Casar,
And in the Spirit of men, there is no blood:
O that we then could come by Casars Spirit,
And not dismember Casar! But (alas)
Casar must bleed for it. And gentle Friends,
Let's kill him Boldly, but not Wrathfully:
Let's carue him, as a Dish fit for the Gods,
Not hew him as a Carkasse fit for Hounds:
And let our Hearts, as subtle Masters do,
Stirre vp their Seruants to an acte of Rage,
And after seeme to chide 'em. This shall make
Our purpose Necessary, and not Enuious.
Which so appearing to the common eyes,
We shall be call'd Purgers, not Murderers.
And for Marke Antony, thinke not of him:
For he can do no more then Casars Arme,
When Casars head is off.

Cas.
Yet I feare him,
For in the ingrafted loue he beares to Casar.

Bru.
Alas, good Cassius, do not thinke of him:
If he loue Casar, all that he can do
Is to himselfe; take thought, and dye for Casar,
And that were much he should: for he is giuen
To sports, to wildenesse, and much company.

Treb.
There is no feare in him; let him not dye,
For he will liue, and laugh at this heereafter.
Clocke strikes.

Bru.
Peace, count the Clocke.

Cas.
The Clocke hath stricken three.

Treb.
'Tis time to part.

Cass
But it is doubtfull yet,
Whether Casar will come forth to day, or no:
For he is Superstitious growne of late,
Quite from the maine Opinion he held once,
Of Fantasie, of Dreames, and Ceremonies:
It may be, these apparant Prodigies,
The vnaccustom'd Terror of this night,
And the perswasion of his Augurers,
May hold him from the Capitoll to day.

Decius.
Neuer feare that: If he be so resolu'd,
I can ore-sway him: For he loues to heare,
That Vnicornes may be betray'd with Trees,
And Beares with Glasses, Elephants with Holes,
Lyons with Toyles, and men with Flatterers.
But, when I tell him, he hates Flatterers,
He sayes, he does; being then most flattered.
Let me worke:
For I can giue his humour the true bent;
And I will bring him to the Capitoll.

Cas.
Nay, we will all of vs, be there to fetch him.

Bru.
By the eight houre, is that the vttermost?

Cin.
Be that the vttermost, and faile not then.

Met.
Caius Ligarius doth beare Casar hard,
Who rated him for speaking well of Pompey;
I wonder none of you haue thought of him.

Bru.
Now good Metellus go along by him:
He loues me well, and I haue giuen him Reasons,
Send him but hither, and Ile fashion him.

Cas.
The morning comes vpon's: / Wee'l leaue you Brutus,
And Friends disperse your selues; but all remember
What you haue said, and shew your selues true Romans.

Bru.
Good Gentlemen, looke fresh and merrily,
Let not our lookes put on our purposes,
But beare it as our Roman Actors do,
With vntyr'd Spirits, and formall Constancie,
And so good morrow to you euery one.
Exeunt.
Manet Brutus.
Boy: Lucius: Fast asleepe? It is no matter,
Enioy the hony-heauy-Dew of Slumber:
Thou hast no Figures, nor no Fantasies,
Which busie care drawes, in the braines of men;
Therefore thou sleep'st so sound.
Enter Portia.

Por.
Brutus, my Lord.

Bru.
Portia: What meane you? wherfore rise you now?
It is not for your health, thus to commit
Your weake condition, to the raw cold morning.

Por.
Nor for yours neither. Y'haue vngently Brutus
Stole from my bed: and yesternight at Supper
You sodainly arose, and walk'd about,
Musing, and sighing, with your armes a-crosse:
And when I ask'd you what the matter was,
You star'd vpon me, with vngentle lookes.
I vrg'd you further, then you scratch'd your head,
And too impatiently stampt with your foote:
Yet I insisted, yet you answer'd not,
But with an angry wafter of your hand
Gaue signe for me to leaue you: So I did,
Fearing to strengthen that impatience
Which seem'd too much inkindled; and withall,
Hoping it was but an effect of Humor,
Which sometime hath his houre with euery man.
It will not let you eate, nor talke, nor sleepe;
And could it worke so much vpon your shape,
As it hath much preuayl'd on your Condltion,
I should not know you Brutus. Deare my Lord,
Make me acquainted with your cause of greefe.

Bru.
I am not well in health, and that is all.

Por.
Brutus is wise, and were he not in health,
He would embrace the meanes to come by it.

Bru.
Why so I do: good Portia go to bed.

Por.
Is Brutus sicke? And is it Physicall
To walke vnbraced, and sucke vp the humours
Of the danke Morning? What, is Brutus sicke?
And will he steale out of his wholsome bed
To dare the vile contagion of the Night?
And tempt the Rhewmy, and vnpurged Ayre,
To adde vnto hit sicknesse? No my Brutus,
You haue some sicke Offence within your minde,
Which by the Right and Vertue of my place
I ought to know of: And vpon my knees,
I charme you, by my once commended Beauty,
By all your vowes of Loue, and that great Vow
Which did incorporate and make vs one,
That you vnfold to me, your selfe; your halfe
Why you are heauy: and what men to night
Haue had resort to you: for heere haue beene
Some sixe or seuen, who did hide their faces
Euen from darknesse.

Bru.
Kneele not gentle Portia.

Por.
I should not neede, if you were gentle Brutus.
Within the Bond of Marriage, tell me Brutus,
Is it excepted, I should know no Secrets
That appertaine to you? Am I your Selfe,
But as it were in sort, or limitation?
To keepe with you at Meales, comfort your Bed,
And talke to you sometimes? Dwell I but in the Suburbs
Of your good pleasure? If it be no more,
Portia is Brutus Harlot, not his Wife.

Bru.
You are my true and honourable Wife,
As deere to me, as are the ruddy droppes
That visit my sad heart.

Por.
If this were true, then should I know this secret.
I graunt I am a Woman; but withall,
A Woman that Lord Brutus tooke to Wife:
I graunt I am a Woman; but withall,
A Woman well reputed: Cato's Daughter.
Thinke you, I am no stronger then my Sex
Being so Father'd, and so Husbanded?
Tell me your Counsels, I will not disclose 'em:
I haue made strong proofe of my Constancie,
Giuing my selfe a voluntary wound
Heere, in the Thigh: Can I beare that with patience,
And not my Husbands Secrets?

Bru.
O ye Gods!
Render me worthy of this Noble Wife.
Knocke.
Harke, harke, one knockes: Portia go in a while,
And by and by thy bosome shall partake
The secrets of my Heart.
All my engagements, I will construe to thee,
All the Charractery of my sad browes:
Leaue me with hast.
Exit Portia.
Enter Lucius and Ligarius.
Lucius, who's that knockes.

Luc.
Heere is a sicke man that would speak with you.

Bru.
Caius Ligarius, that Metellus spake of.
Boy, stand aside. Caius Ligarius, how?

Cai.
Vouchsafe good morrow from a feeble tongue.

Bru.
O what a time haue you chose out braue Caius
To weare a Kerchiefe? Would you were not sicke.

Cai.
I am not sicke, if Brutus haue in hand
Any exploit worthy the name of Honor.

Bru.
Such an exploit haue I in hand Ligarius,
Had you a healthfull eare to heare of it.

Cai.
By all the Gods that Romans bow before,
I heere discard my sicknesse.
Soule of Rome,
Braue Sonne, deriu'd from Honourable Loines,
Thou like an Exorcist, hast coniur'd vp
My mortified Spirit. Now bid me runne,
And I will striue with things impossible,
Yea get the better of them. What's to do?

Bru.
A peece of worke, / That will make sicke men whole.

Cai.
But are not some whole, that we must make sicke?

Bru.
That must we also. What it is my Caius,
I shall vnfold to thee, as we are going,
To whom it must be done.

Cai.
Set on your foote,
And with a heart new-fir'd, I follow you,
To do I know not what: but it sufficeth
That Brutus leads me on.
Thunder

Bru.
Follow me then.
Exeunt
Original text
Act II, Scene II
Thunder & Lightning.
Enter Iulius Casar in his Night-gowne.

Casar.
Nor Heauen, nor Earth, / Haue beene at peace to night:
Thrice hath Calphurnia, in her sleepe cryed out,
Helpe, ho: They murther Casar. Who's within?
Enter a Seruant.

Ser.
My Lord.

Cas.
Go bid the Priests do present Sacrifice,
And bring me their opinions of Successe.

Ser.
I will my Lord.
Exit
Enter Calphurnia.

Cal.
What mean you Casar? Think you to walk forth?
You shall not stirre out of your house to day.

Cas.
Caesar shall forth; the things that threaten'd me,
Ne're look'd but on my backe: When they shall see
The face of Casar, they are vanished.

Calp.
Casar, I neuer stood on Ceremonies,
Yet now they fright me: There is one within,
Besides the things that we haue heard and seene,
Recounts most horrid sights seene by the Watch.
A Lionnesse hath whelped in the streets,
And Graues haue yawn'd, and yeelded vp their dead;
Fierce fiery Warriours fight vpon the Clouds
In Rankes and Squadrons, and right forme of Warre
Which drizel'd blood vpon the Capitoll:
The noise of Battell hurtled in the Ayre:
Horsses do neigh, and dying men did grone,
And Ghosts did shrieke and squeale about the streets.
O Casar, these things are beyond all vse,
And I do feare them.

Cas.
What can be auoyded
Whose end is purpos'd by the mighty Gods?
Yet Casar shall go forth: for these Predictions
Are to the world in generall, as to Casar.

Calp.
When Beggers dye, there are no Comets seen,
The Heauens themselues blaze forth the death of Princes

Cas.
Cowards dye many times before their deaths,
The valiant neuer taste of death but once:
Of all the Wonders that I yet haue heard,
It seemes to me most strange that men should feare,
Seeing that death, a necessary end
Will come, when it will come.
Enter a Seruant.
What say the Augurers?

Ser.
They would not haue you to stirre forth to day.
Plucking the intrailes of an Offering forth,
They could not finde a heart within the beast.

Cas.
The Gods do this in shame of Cowardice:
Casar should be a Beast without a heart
If he should stay at home to day for feare:
No Casar shall not; Danger knowes full well
That Casar is more dangerous then he.
We heare two Lyons litter'd in one day,
And I the elder and more terrible,
And Casar shall go foorth.

Calp.
Alas my Lord,
Your wisedome is consum'd in confidence:
Do not go forth to day: Call it my feare,
That keepes you in the house, and not your owne.
Wee'l send Mark Antony to the Senate house,
And he shall say, you are not well to day:
Let me vpon my knee, preuaile in this.

Cas.
Mark Antony shall say I am not well,
And for thy humor, I will stay at home.
Enter Decius.
Heere's Decius Brutus, he shall tell them so.

Deci.
Caesar, all haile: Good morrow worthy Casar,
I come to fetch you to the Senate house.

Cas.
And you are come in very happy time,
To beare my greeting to the Senators,
And tell them that I will not come to day:
Cannot, is false: and that I dare not, falser:
I will not come to day, tell them so Decius.

Calp.
Say he is sicke.

Cas.
Shall Caesar send a Lye?
Haue I in Conquest stretcht mine Arme so farre,
To be afear'd to tell Gray-beards the truth:
Decius, go tell them, Casar will not come.

Deci.
Most mighty Casar, let me know some cause,
Lest I be laught at when I tell them so.

Cas.
The cause is in my Will, I will not come,
That is enough to satisfie the Senate.
But for your priuate satisfaction,
Because I loue you, I will let you know.
Calphurnia heere my wife, stayes me at home:
She dreampt to night, she saw my Statue,
Which like a Fountaine, with an hundred spouts
Did run pure blood: and many lusty Romans
Came smiling, & did bathe their hands in it:
And these does she apply, for warnings and portents,
And euils imminent; and on her knee
Hath begg'd, that I will stay at home to day.

Deci.
This Dreame is all amisse interpreted,
It was a vision, faire and fortunate:
Your Statue spouting blood in many pipes,
In which so many smiling Romans bath'd,
Signifies, that from you great Rome shall sucke
Reuiuing blood, and that great men shall presse
For Tinctures, Staines, Reliques, and Cognisance.
This by Calphurnia's Dreame is signified.

Cas.
And this way haue you well expounded it.

Deci.
I haue, when you haue heard what I can say:
And know it now, the Senate haue concluded
To giue this day, a Crowne to mighty Casar.
If you shall send them word you will not come,
Their mindes may change. Besides, it were a mocke
Apt to be render'd, for some one to say,
Breake vp the Senate, till another time:
When Casars wife shall meete with better Dreames.
If Casar hide himselfe, shall they not whisper
Loe Casar is affraid?
Pardon me Casar, for my deere deere loue
To your proceeding, bids me tell you this:
And reason to my loue is liable.

Cas.
How foolish do your fears seeme now Calphurnia?
I am ashamed I did yeeld to them.
Giue me my Robe, for I will go.
Enter Brutus, Ligarius, Metellus, Caska, Trebonius,
Cynna, and Publius.
And looke where Publius is come to fetch me.

Pub.
Good morrow Casar.

Cas.
Welcome Publius.
What Brutus, are you stirr'd so earely too?
Good morrow Caska: Caius Ligarius,
Casar was ne're so much your enemy,
As that same Ague which hath made you leane.
What is't a Clocke?

Bru.
Casar, 'tis strucken eight.

Cas.
I thanke you for your paines and curtesie.
Enter Antony.
See, Antony that Reuels long a-nights
Is notwithstanding vp. Good morrow Antony.

Ant.
So to most Noble Casar.

Cas.
Bid them prepare within:
I am too blame to be thus waited for.
Now Cynna, now Metellus: what Trebonius,
I haue an houres talke in store for you:
Remember that you call on me to day:
Be neere me, that I may remember you.

Treb.
Casar I will: and so neere will I be,
That your best Friends shall wish I had beene further.

Cas.
Good Friends go in, and taste some wine with me.
And we (like Friends) will straight way go together.

Bru.
That euery like is not the same, O Casar,
The heart of Brutus earnes to thinke vpon.
Exeunt
Original text
Act II, Scene III
Enter

Artemidorus.
Casar, beware of Brutus, take heede of
Cassius; come not neere Caska, haue an eye to Cynna, trust
not Trebonius, marke well Metellus Cymber, Decius Brutus
loues thee not: Thou hast wrong'd Caius Ligarius. There is
but one minde in all these men, and it is bent against Casar:
If thou beest not Immortall, looke about you: Security giues
way to Conspiracie. The mighty Gods defend thee.
Thy Louer,
Artemidorus.
Heere will I stand, till Casar passe along,
And as a Sutor will I giue him this:
My heart laments, that Vertue cannot liue
Out of the teeth of Emulation.
If thou reade this, O Casar, thou mayest liue;
If not, the Fates with Traitors do contriue.
Exit.
Original text
Act II, Scene IV
Enter Portia and Lucius.

Por.
I prythee Boy, run to the Senate-house,
Stay not to answer me, but get thee gone.
Why doest thou stay?

Luc.
To know my errand Madam.

Por.
I would haue had thee there and heere agen
Ere I can tell thee what thou should'st do there:
O Constancie, be strong vpon my side,
Set a huge Mountaine 'tweene my Heart and Tongue:
I haue a mans minde, but a womans might:
How hard it is for women to keepe counsell.
Art thou heere yet?

Luc.
Madam, what should I do?
Run to the Capitoll, and nothing else?
And so returne to you, and nothing else?

Por.
Yes, bring me word Boy, if thy Lord look well,
For he went sickly forth: and take good note
What Casar doth, what Sutors presse to him.
Hearke Boy, what noyse is that?

Luc.
I heare none Madam.

Por.
Prythee listen well:
I heard a bussling Rumor like a Fray,
And the winde brings it from the Capitoll.

Luc.
Sooth Madam, I heare nothing.
Enter the Soothsayer.

Por.
Come hither Fellow, which way hast thou bin?

Sooth.
At mine owne house, good Lady.

Por.
What is't a clocke?

Sooth.
About the ninth houre Lady.

Por.
Is Casar yet gone to the Capitoll?

Sooth.
Madam not yet, I go to take my stand,
To see him passe on to the Capitoll.

Por.
Thou hast some suite to Casar, hast thou not?

Sooth.
That I haue Lady, if it will please Casar
To be so good to Casar, as to heare me:
I shall beseech him to befriend himselfe.

Por.
Why know'st thou any harme's intended towards him?

Sooth.
None that I know will be, / Much that I feare may chance:
Good morrow to you: heere the street is narrow:
The throng that followes Casar at the heeles,
Of Senators, of Praetors, common Sutors,
Will crowd a feeble man (almost) to death:
Ile get me to a place more voyd, and there
Speake to great Casar as he comes along.
Exit

Por.
I must go in: / Aye me! How weake a thing
The heart of woman is? O Brutus,
The Heauens speede thee in thine enterprize.
Sure the Boy heard me: Brutus hath a suite
That Casar will not grant. O, I grow faint:
Run Lucius, and commend me to my Lord,
Say I am merry; Come to me againe,
And bring me word what he doth say to thee.
Exeunt
Modern text
Act II, Scene I
Enter Brutus in his orchard

BRUTUS
What, Lucius, ho!
I cannot, by the progress of the stars,
Give guess how near to day. Lucius, I say!
I would it were my fault to sleep so soundly.
When, Lucius, when? Awake, I say! What, Lucius!
Enter Lucius

LUCIUS
Called you, my lord?

BRUTUS
Get me a taper in my study, Lucius;
When it is lighted, come and call me here.

LUCIUS
I will, my lord.
Exit

BRUTUS
It must be by his death; and for my part,
I know no personal cause to spurn at him,
But for the general. – He would be crowned.
How that might change his nature, there's the question.
It is the bright day that brings forth the adder,
And that craves wary walking. Crown him! – that!
And then, I grant, we put a sting in him
That at his will he may do danger with.
Th' abuse of greatness is when it disjoins
Remorse from power; and, to speak truth of Caesar,
I have not known when his affections swayed
More than his reason. But 'tis a common proof,
That lowliness is young ambition's ladder,
Whereto the climber-upward turns his face;
But when he once attains the upmost round,
He then unto the ladder turns his back,
Looks in the clouds, scorning the base degrees
By which he did ascend: so Caesar may;
Then, lest he may, prevent. And, since the quarrel
Will bear no colour for the thing he is,
Fashion it thus: that what he is, augmented,
Would run to these and these extremities;
And therefore think him as a serpent's egg
Which, hatched, would, as his kind, grow mischievous,
And kill him in the shell.
Enter Lucius

LUCIUS
The taper burneth in your closet, sir.
Searching the window for a flint, I found
This paper, thus sealed up; and I am sure
It did not lie there when I went to bed.
He gives him the letter

BRUTUS
Get you to bed again, it is not day.
Is not tomorrow, boy, the ides of March?

LUCIUS
I know not, sir.

BRUTUS
Look in the calendar and bring me word.

LUCIUS
I will, sir.
Exit

BRUTUS
The exhalations, whizzing in the air,
Give so much light that I may read by them.
He opens the letter and reads
Brutus, thou sleep'st: awake, and see thyself.
Shall Rome, etc. Speak, strike, redress.
‘ Brutus, thou sleep'st: awake.’
Such instigations have been often dropped
Where I have took them up.
‘ Shall Rome, etc.’ Thus must I piece it out:
Shall Rome stand under one man's awe? What, Rome?
My ancestors did from the streets of Rome
The Tarquin drive, when he was called a king.
‘ Speak, strike, redress.’ Am I entreated
To speak and strike? O Rome, I make thee promise,
If the redress will follow, thou receivest
Thy full petition at the hand of Brutus.
Enter Lucius

LUCIUS
Sir, March is wasted fifteen days.
Knock within

BRUTUS
'Tis good. Go to the gate; somebody knocks.
Exit Lucius
Since Cassius first did whet me against Caesar,
I have not slept.
Between the acting of a dreadful thing
And the first motion, all the interim is
Like a phantasma or a hideous dream:
The genius and the mortal instruments
Are then in council; and the state of man,
Like to a little kingdom, suffers then
The nature of an insurrection.
Enter Lucius

LUCIUS
Sir, 'tis your brother Cassius at the door,
Who doth desire to see you.

BRUTUS
Is he alone?

LUCIUS
No, sir, there are more with him.

BRUTUS
Do you know them?

LUCIUS
No, sir, their hats are plucked about their ears,
And half their faces buried in their cloaks,
That by no means I may discover them
By any mark of favour.

BRUTUS
Let 'em enter.
Exit Lucius
They are the faction. O conspiracy,
Sham'st thou to show thy dangerous brow by night,
When evils are most free? O then, by day
Where wilt thou find a cavern dark enough
To mask thy monstrous visage? Seek none, conspiracy;
Hide it in smiles and affability:
For if thou path, thy native semblance on,
Not Erebus itself were dim enough
To hide thee from prevention.
Enter the conspirators: Cassius, Casca, Decius, Cinna,
Metellus, and Trebonius

CASSIUS
I think we are too bold upon your rest.
Good morrow, Brutus; do we trouble you?

BRUTUS
I have been up this hour, awake all night.
Know I these men that come along with you?

CASSIUS
Yes, every man of them; and no man here
But honours you; and every one doth wish
You had but that opinion of yourself
Which every noble Roman bears of you.
This is Trebonius.

BRUTUS
He is welcome hither.

CASSIUS
This, Decius Brutus.

BRUTUS
He is welcome too.

CASSIUS
This, Casca; this, Cinna; and this, Metellus Cimber.

BRUTUS
They are all welcome.
What watchful cares do interpose themselves
Betwixt your eyes and night?

CASSIUS
Shall I entreat a word?
They whisper apart

DECIUS
Here lies the east; doth not the day break here?

CASCA
No.

CINNA
O pardon, sir, it doth; and yon grey lines
That fret the clouds are messengers of day.

CASCA
You shall confess that you are both deceived:
Here, as I point my sword, the sun arises,
Which is a great way growing on the south,
Weighing the youthful season of the year.
Some two months hence, up higher toward the north
He first presents his fire; and the high east
Stands, as the Capitol, directly here.

BRUTUS
Give me your hands all over, one by one.

CASSIUS
And let us swear our resolution.

BRUTUS
No, not an oath. If not the face of men,
The sufferance of our souls, the time's abuse –
If these be motives weak, break off betimes,
And every man hence to his idle bed;
So let high-sighted tyranny range on
Till each man drop by lottery. But if these,
As I am sure they do, bear fire enough
To kindle cowards and to steel with valour
The melting spirits of women, then, countrymen,
What need we any spur but our own cause
To prick us to redress? What other bond
Than secret Romans that have spoke the word,
And will not palter? And what other oath
Than honesty to honesty engaged
That this shall be, or we will fall for it?
Swear priests and cowards and men cautelous,
Old feeble carrions, and such suffering souls
That welcome wrongs; unto bad causes swear
Such creatures as men doubt; but do not stain
The even virtue of our enterprise,
Nor th' insuppressive mettle of our spirits,
To think that or our cause or our performance
Did need an oath; when every drop of blood
That every Roman bears, and nobly bears,
Is guilty of a several bastardy,
If he do break the smallest particle
Of any promise that hath passed from him.

CASSIUS
But what of Cicero? Shall we sound him?
I think he will stand very strong with us.

CASCA
Let us not leave him out.

CINNA
No, by no means.

METELLUS CIMBER
O, let us have him, for his silver hairs
Will purchase us a good opinion
And buy men's voices to commend our deeds.
It shall be said his judgement ruled our hands;
Our youths and wildness shall no whit appear,
But all be buried in his gravity.

BRUTUS
O, name him not; let us not break with him,
For he will never follow anything
That other men begin.

CASSIUS
Then leave him out.

CASCA
Indeed he is not fit.

DECIUS
Shall no man else be touched but only Caesar?

CASSIUS
Decius, well urged. I think it is not meet
Mark Antony, so well beloved of Caesar,
Should outlive Caesar. We shall find of him
A shrewd contriver; and you know his means,
If he improve them, may well stretch so far
As to annoy us all; which to prevent,
Let Antony and Caesar fall together.

BRUTUS
Our course will seem too bloody, Caius Cassius,
To cut the head off and then hack the limbs,
Like wrath in death, and envy afterwards;
For Antony is but a limb of Caesar.
Let us be sacrificers, but not butchers, Caius.
We all stand up against the spirit of Caesar,
And in the spirit of men there is no blood.
O, that we then could come by Caesar's spirit,
And not dismember Caesar! But, alas,
Caesar must bleed for it. And, gentle friends,
Let's kill him boldly, but not wrathfully;
Let's carve him as a dish fit for the gods,
Not hew him as a carcass fit for hounds.
And let our hearts, as subtle masters do,
Stir up their servants to an act of rage,
And after seem to chide 'em. This shall make
Our purpose necessary, and not envious;
Which so appearing to the common eyes,
We shall be called purgers, not murderers.
And for Mark Antony, think not of him;
For he can do no more than Caesar's arm
When Caesar's head is off.

CASSIUS
Yet I fear him;
For in the ingrafted love he bears to Caesar –

BRUTUS
Alas, good Cassius, do not think of him.
If he love Caesar, all that he can do
Is to himself: take thought, and die for Caesar;
And that were much he should; for he is given
To sports, to wildness and much company.

TREBONIUS
There is no fear in him; let him not die;
For he will live, and laugh at this hereafter.
A clock strikes

BRUTUS
Peace, count the clock.

CASSIUS
The clock hath stricken three.

TREBONIUS
'Tis time to part.

CASSIUS
But it is doubtful yet,
Whether Caesar will come forth today or no;
For he is superstitious grown of late,
Quite from the main opinion he held once
Of fantasy, of dreams, and ceremonies.
It may be these apparent prodigies,
The unaccustomed terror of this night,
And the persuasion of his augurers
May hold him from the Capitol today.

DECIUS
Never fear that. If he be so resolved,
I can o'ersway him; for he loves to hear
That unicorns may be betrayed with trees,
And bears with glasses, elephants with holes,
Lions with toils, and men with flatterers,
But when I tell him he hates flatterers,
He says he does, being then most flattered.
Let me work;
For I can give his humour the true bent,
And I will bring him to the Capitol.

CASSIUS
Nay, we will all of us be there to fetch him.

BRUTUS
By the eighth hour; is that the uttermost?

CINNA
Be that the uttermost, and fail not then.

METELLUS CIMBER
Caius Ligarius doth bear Caesar hard,
Who rated him for speaking well of Pompey;
I wonder none of you have thought of him.

BRUTUS
Now, good Metellus, go along by him;
He loves me well, and I have given him reasons.
Send him but hither, and I'll fashion him.

CASSIUS
The morning comes upon's; we'll leave you, Brutus.
And, friends, disperse yourselves; but all remember
What you have said, and show yourselves true Romans.

BRUTUS
Good gentlemen, look fresh and merrily;
Let not our looks put on our purposes,
But bear it as our Roman actors do,
With untired spirits and formal constancy.
And so good morrow to you every one.
Exeunt the conspirators
Brutus remains
Boy! Lucius! Fast asleep? It is no matter.
Enjoy the honey-heavy dew of slumber;
Thou hast no figures nor no fantasies,
Which busy care draws in the brains of men;
Therefore thou sleep'st so sound.
Enter Portia

PORTIA
Brutus, my lord!

BRUTUS
Portia! What mean you? Wherefore rise you now?
It is not for your health thus to commit
Your weak condition to the raw cold morning.

PORTIA
Nor for yours neither. Y' have ungently, Brutus,
Stole from my bed; and yesternight at supper
You suddenly arose and walked about,
Musing and sighing, with your arms across;
And when I asked you what the matter was,
You stared upon me with ungentle looks.
I urged you further; then you scratched your head,
And too impatiently stamped with your foot;
Yet I insisted, yet you answered not,
But with an angry wafture of your hand
Gave sign for me to leave you. So I did,
Fearing to strengthen that impatience
Which seemed too much enkindled, and withal
Hoping it was but an effect of humour,
Which sometime hath his hour with every man.
It will not let you eat, nor talk, nor sleep;
And could it work so much upon your shape,
As it hath much prevailed on your condition,
I should not know you Brutus. Dear my lord,
Make me acquainted with your cause of grief.

BRUTUS
I am not well in health, and that is all.

PORTIA
Brutus is wise, and were he not in health,
He would embrace the means to come by it.

BRUTUS
Why, so I do. Good Portia, go to bed.

PORTIA
Is Brutus sick? And is it physical
To walk unbraced and suck up the humours
Of the dank morning? What, is Brutus sick?
And will he steal out of his wholesome bed
To dare the vile contagion of the night,
And tempt the rheumy and unpurged air,
To add unto his sickness? No, my Brutus;
You have some sick offence within your mind,
Which, by the right and virtue of my place,
I ought to know of; and, upon my knees,
I charm you, by my once commended beauty,
By all your vows of love, and that great vow
Which did incorporate and make us one,
That you unfold to me, your self, your half,
Why you are heavy, and what men tonight
Have had resort to you; for here have been
Some six or seven, who did hide their faces
Even from darkness.

BRUTUS
Kneel not, gentle Portia.

PORTIA
I should not need, if you were gentle Brutus.
Within the bond of marriage, tell me, Brutus,
Is it excepted I should know no secrets
That appertain to you? Am I your self
But, as it were, in sort or limitation,
To keep with you at meals, comfort your bed,
And talk to you sometimes? Dwell I but in the suburbs
Of your good pleasure? If it be no more,
Portia is Brutus' harlot, not his wife.

BRUTUS
You are my true and honourable wife,
As dear to me as are the ruddy drops
That visit my sad heart

PORTIA
If this were true, then should I know this secret.
I grant I am a woman; but withal
A woman that Lord Brutus took to wife;
I grant I am a woman; but withal
A woman well reputed, Cato's daughter.
Think you I am no stronger than my sex,
Being so fathered, and so husbanded?
Tell me your counsels, I will not disclose 'em.
I have made strong proof of my constancy,
Giving myself a voluntary wound
Here, in the thigh; can I bear that with patience,
And not my husband's secrets?

BRUTUS
O ye gods,
Render me worthy of this noble wife!
Knocking
Hark, hark! one knocks, Portia, go in awhile;
And by and by thy bosom shall partake
The secrets of my heart.
All my engagements I will construe to thee,
All the charactery of my sad brows.
Leave me with haste.
Exit Portia
Enter Lucius with Ligarius
Lucius, who's that knocks?

LUCIUS
Here is a sick man that would speak with you.

BRUTUS
Caius Ligarius, that Metellus spake of.
Boy, stand aside. Caius Ligarius, how?

LIGARIUS
Vouchsafe good morrow from a feeble tongue.

BRUTUS
O, what a time have you chose out, brave Caius,
To wear a kerchief! Would you were not sick!

LIGARIUS
I am not sick if Brutus have in hand
Any exploit worthy the name of honour.

BRUTUS
Such an exploit have I in hand, Ligarius,
Had you a healthful ear to hear of it.

LIGARIUS
By all the gods that Romans bow before,
I here discard my sickness.
He throws off the kerchief
Soul of Rome!
Brave son, derived from honourable loins!
Thou, like an exorcist, hast conjured up
My mortified spirit. Now bid me run,
And I will strive with things impossible,
Yea, get the better of them. What's to do?

BRUTUS
A piece of work that will make sick men whole.

LIGARIUS
But are not some whole that we must make sick?

BRUTUS
That must we also. What it is, my Caius,
I shall unfold to thee, as we are going
To whom it must be done.

LIGARIUS
Set on your foot,
And with a heart new-fired I follow you,
To do I know not what; but it sufficeth
That Brutus leads me on.
Thunder

BRUTUS
Follow me then.
Exeunt
Modern text
Act II, Scene II
Thunder and lightning
Enter Julius Caesar in his nightgown

CAESAR
Nor heaven nor earth have been at peace tonight;
Thrice hath Calphurnia in her sleep cried out,
‘ Help, ho! They murder Caesar!’ Who's within?
Enter a Servant

SERVANT
My lord?

CAESAR
Go bid the priests do present sacrifice,
And bring me their opinions of success.

SERVANT
I will, my lord.
Exit
Enter Calphurnia

CALPHURNIA
What mean you, Caesar? Think you to walk forth?
You shall not stir out of your house today.

CAESAR
Caesar shall forth. The things that threatened me
Ne'er looked but on my back; when they shall see
The face of Caesar, they are vanished.

CALPHURNIA
Caesar, I never stood on ceremonies,
Yet now they fright me. There is one within,
Besides the things that we have heard and seen,
Recounts most horrid sights seen by the watch.
A lioness hath whelped in the streets,
And graves have yawned and yielded up their dead;
Fierce fiery warriors fought upon the clouds
In ranks and squadrons and right form of war,
Which drizzled blood upon the Capitol;
The noise of battle hurtled in the air,
Horses did neigh, and dying men did groan,
And ghosts did shriek and squeal about the streets.
O Caesar, these things are beyond all use,
And I do fear them.

CAESAR
What can be avoided
Whose end is purposed by the mighty gods?
Yet Caesar shall go forth; for these predictions
Are to the world in general as to Caesar.

CALPHURNIA
When beggars die, there are no comets seen;
The heavens themselves blaze forth the death of princes.

CAESAR
Cowards die many times before their deaths;
The valiant never taste of death but once.
Of all the wonders that I yet have heard,
It seems to me most strange that men should fear,
Seeing that death, a necessary end,
Will come when it will come.
Enter a Servant
What say the augurers?

SERVANT
They would not have you to stir forth today.
Plucking the entrails of an offering forth,
They could not find a heart within the beast.

CAESAR
The gods do this in shame of cowardice:
Caesar should be a beast without a heart
If he should stay at home today for fear.
No, Caesar shall not. Danger knows full well
That Caesar is more dangerous than he.
We are two lions littered in one day,
And I the elder and more terrible;
And Caesar shall go forth.

CALPHURNIA
Alas, my lord,
Your wisdom is consumed in confidence.
Do not go forth today: call it my fear
That keeps you in the house, and not your own.
We'll send Mark Antony to the Senate House,
And he shall say you are not well today.
Let me upon my knee prevail in this.

CAESAR
Mark Antony shall say I am not well,
And for thy humour I will stay at home.
Enter Decius
Here's Decius Brutus; he shall tell them so.

DECIUS
Caesar, all hail! Good morrow, worthy Caesar;
I come to fetch you to the Senate House.

CAESAR
And you are come in very happy time
To bear my greeting to the senators,
And tell them that I will not come today:
Cannot, is false; and that I dare not, falser;
I will not come today. Tell them so, Decius.

CALPHURNIA
Say he is sick.

CAESAR
Shall Caesar send a lie?
Have I in conquest stretched mine arm so far,
To be afeard to tell greybeards the truth?
Decius, go tell them Caesar will not come.

DECIUS
Most mighty Caesar, let me know some cause,
Lest I be laughed at when I tell them so.

CAESAR
The cause is in my will: I will not come;
That is enough to satisfy the Senate.
But for your private satisfaction,
Because I love you, I will let you know;
Calphurnia here, my wife, stays me at home.
She dreamt tonight she saw my statue,
Which, like a fountain with an hundred spouts,
Did run pure blood; and many lusty Romans
Came smiling, and did bathe their hands in it.
And these does she apply for warnings and portents
And evils imminent; and on her knee
Hath begged that I will stay at home today.

DECIUS
This dream is all amiss interpreted;
It was a vision fair and fortunate:
Your statue spouting blood in many pipes,
In which so many smiling Romans bathed,
Signifies that from you great Rome shall suck
Reviving blood, and that great men shall press
For tinctures, stains, relics, and cognizance.
This by Calphurnia's dream is signified.

CAESAR
And this way have you well expounded it.

DECIUS
I have, when you have heard what I can say:
And know it now. The Senate have concluded
To give this day a crown to mighty Caesar.
If you shall send them word you will not come,
Their minds may change. Besides, it were a mock
Apt to be rendered, for some one to say,
‘ Break up the Senate till another time,
When Caesar's wife shall meet with better dreams.’
If Caesar hide himself, shall they not whisper,
‘ Lo, Caesar is afraid ’?
Pardon me, Caesar, for my dear dear love
To our proceeding bids me tell you this,
And reason to my love is liable.

CAESAR
How foolish do your fears seem now, Calphurnia!
I am ashamed I did yield to them.
Give me my robe, for I will go.
Enter Brutus, Ligarius, Metellus, Casca, Trebonius,
Cinna, and Publius
And look where Publius is come to fetch me.

PUBLIUS
Good morrow, Caesar.

CAESAR
Welcome, Publius.
What, Brutus, are you stirred so early too?
Good morrow, Casca. Caius Ligarius,
Caesar was ne'er so much your enemy
As that same ague which hath made you lean.
What is't o'clock?

BRUTUS
Caesar, 'tis strucken eight.

CAESAR
I thank you for your pains and courtesy.
Enter Antony
See! Antony, that revels long a-nights,
Is notwithstanding up. Good morrow, Antony.

ANTONY
So to most noble Caesar.

CAESAR
Bid them prepare within.
I am to blame to be thus waited for.
Now, Cinna; now, Metellus; what, Trebonius;
I have an hour's talk in store for you;
Remember that you call on me today;
Be near me, that I may remember you.

TREBONIUS
Caesar, I will. (aside) And so near will I be
That your best friends shall wish I had been further.

CAESAR
Good friends, go in, and taste some wine with me;
And we, like friends, will straightway go together.

BRUTUS
(aside)
That every like is not the same, O Caesar,
The heart of Brutus earns to think upon.
Exeunt
Modern text
Act II, Scene III
Enter Artemidorus reading a paper

ARTEMIDORUS
Caesar, beware of Brutus; take heed of
Cassius; come not near Casca; have an eye to Cinna; trust
not Trebonius; mark well Metellus Cimber; Decius Brutus
loves thee not; thou hast wronged Caius Ligarius. There is
but one mind in all these men, and it is bent against Caesar.
If thou beest not immortal, look about you: security gives
way to conspiracy. The mighty gods defend thee!
Thy lover,
Artemidorus.
Here will I stand till Caesar pass along,
And as a suitor will I give him this.
My heart laments that virtue cannot live
Out of the teeth of emulation.
If thou read this, O Caesar, thou mayst live;
If not, the Fates with traitors do contrive.
Exit
Modern text
Act II, Scene IV
Enter Portia and Lucius

PORTIA
I prithee, boy, run to the Senate House.
Stay not to answer me, but get thee gone.
Why dost thou stay?

LUCIUS
To know my errand, madam.

PORTIA
I would have had thee there and here again
Ere I can tell thee what thou shouldst do there.
O constancy, be strong upon my side;
Set a huge mountain 'tween my heart and tongue!
I have a man's mind, but a woman's might.
How hard it is for women to keep counsel!
Art thou here yet?

LUCIUS
Madam, what should I do?
Run to the Capitol and nothing else?
And so return to you, and nothing else?

PORTIA
Yes, bring me word, boy, if thy lord look well,
For he went sickly forth; and take good note
What Caesar doth, what suitors press to him.
Hark, boy, what noise is that?

LUCIUS
I hear none, madam.

PORTIA
Prithee, listen well;
I heard a bustling rumour like a fray,
And the wind brings it from the Capitol.

LUCIUS
Sooth, madam, I hear nothing.
Enter the Soothsayer

PORTIA
Come hither fellow. Which way hast thou been?

SOOTHSAYER
At mine own house, good lady.

PORTIA
What is't o'clock?

SOOTHSAYER
About the ninth hour, lady.

PORTIA
Is Caesar yet gone to the Capitol?

SOOTHSAYER
Madam, not yet; I go to take my stand,
To see him pass on to the Capitol.

PORTIA
Thou hast some suit to Caesar, hast thou not?

SOOTHSAYER
That I have, lady, if it will please Caesar
To be so good to Caesar as to hear me:
I shall beseech him to befriend himself.

PORTIA
Why, know'st thou any harm's intended towards him?

SOOTHSAYER
None that I know will be, much that I fear may chance.
Good morrow to you. Here the street is narrow;
The throng that follows Caesar at the heels,
Of senators, of praetors, common suitors,
Will crowd a feeble man almost to death;
I'll get me to a place more void, and there
Speak to great Caesar as he comes along.
Exit

PORTIA
I must go in. Ay me, how weak a thing
The heart of woman is! O Brutus,
The heavens speed thee in thine enterprise!
(aside) Sure, the boy heard me. (to Lucius) Brutus hath a suit
That Caesar will not grant. (aside) O, I grow faint.
Run, Lucius, and commend me to my lord;
Say I am merry; come to me again,
And bring me word what he doth say to thee.
Exeunt
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