Antony and Cleopatra

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Original text
Act I, Scene I
Enter Demetrius and Philo.

Philo.
NAy, but this dotage of our Generals
Ore-flowes the measure: those his goodly eyes
That o're the Files and Musters of the Warre,
Haue glow'd like plated Mars: / Now bend, now turne
The Office and Deuotion of their view
Vpon a Tawny Front. His Captaines heart,
Which in the scuffles of great Fights hath burst
The Buckles on his brest, reneages all temper,
And is become the Bellowes and the Fan
To coole a Gypsies Lust.
Flourish. Enter Anthony, Cleopatra, her Ladies,
the Traine, with Eunuchs fanning
her.
Looke where they come:
Take but good note, and you shall see in him
(The triple Pillar of the world) transform'd
Into a Strumpets Foole. Behold and see.

Cleo.
If it be Loue indeed, tell me how much.

Ant.
There's beggery in the loue that can be reckon'd

Cleo.
Ile set a bourne how farre to be belou'd.

Ant.
Then must thou needes finde out new Heauen, new Earth.
Enter a Messenger.

Mes.
Newes (my good Lord) from Rome.

Ant.
Grates me, the summe.

Cleo.
Nay heare them Anthony.
Fuluia perchance is angry: Or who knowes,
If the scarse-bearded Casar haue not sent
His powrefull Mandate to you. Do this, or this;
Take in that Kingdome, and Infranchise that:
Perform't, or else we damne thee.

Ant.
How, my Loue?

Cleo.
Perchance? Nay, and most like:
You must not stay heere longer, your dismission
Is come from Casar, therefore heare it Anthony
Where's Fuluias Processe? (Casars I would say) both?
Call in the Messengers: As I am Egypts Queene,
Thou blushest Anthony, and that blood of thine
Is Casars homager: else so thy cheeke payes shame,
When shrill-tongu'd Fuluia scolds. The Messengers.

Ant.
Let Rome in Tyber melt, and the wide Arch
Of the raing'd Empire fall: Heere is my space,
Kingdomes are clay: Our dungie earth alike
Feeds Beast as Man; the Noblenesse of life
Is to do thus: when such a mutuall paire,
And such a twaine can doo't, in which I binde
One paine of punishment, the world to weete
We stand vp Peerelesse.

Cleo.
Excellent falshood:
Why did he marry Fuluia, and not loue her?
Ile seeme the Foole I am not. Anthony
will be himselfe.

Ant
But stirr'd by Cleopatra.
Now for the loue of Loue, and her soft houres,
Let's not confound the time with Conference harsh;
There's not a minute of our liues should stretch
Without some pleasure now. What sport to night?

Cleo.
Heare the Ambassadors.

Ant.
Fye wrangling Queene:
Whom euery thing becomes, to chide, to laugh,
To weepe: who euery passion fully striues
To make it selfe (in Thee) faire, and admir'd.
No Messenger but thine, and all alone,
to night / Wee'l wander through the streets, and note
The qualities of people. Come my Queene,
Last night you did desire it. Speake not to vs.
Exeunt with the Traine.

Dem.
Is Casar with Anthonius priz'd so slight?

Philo.
Sir sometimes when he is not Anthony,
He comes too short of that great Property
Which still should go with Anthony.

Dem.
I am full sorry,
that hee approues the common / Lyar, who
thus speakes of him at Rome; but I will hope
of better deeds to morrow. Rest you happy.
Exeunt
Original text
Act I, Scene II
Enter Enobarbus, Lamprius, a Southsayer, Rannius, Lucillius, Charmian, Iras, Mardian the Eunuch, and Alexas.

Char.
L. Alexas, sweet Alexas, most any thing
Alexas, almost most absolute Alexas, where's the Soothsayer
that you prais'd so to'th'Queene? Oh that I knewe
this Husband, which you say, must change his Hornes
with Garlands.

Alex.
Soothsayer.

Sooth.
Your will?

Char.
Is this the Man? Is't you sir that know
things?

Sooth.
In Natures infinite booke of Secrecie,
a little I can read.

Alex.
Shew him your hand.


Enob.
Bring in the Banket quickly: Wine enough,
Cleopatra's health to drinke.

Char.
Good sir, giue me good
Fortune.

Sooth.
I make not, but foresee.

Char.
Pray then, foresee me one.

Sooth.
You shall be yet farre fairer then you are.

Char.
He meanes in flesh.

Iras.
No, you shall paint when you are old.

Char.
Wrinkles forbid.

Alex.
Vex not his prescience, be attentiue.

Char.
Hush.

Sooth.
You shall be more belouing, then beloued.

Char.
I had rather heate my Liuer with drinking.

Alex.
Nay, heare him.

Char.
Good now some excellent Fortune: Let mee
be married to three Kings in a forenoone, and Widdow them
all: Let me haue a Childe at fifty, to whom Herode of
Iewry may do Homage. Finde me to marrie me with
Octauius Casar, and companion me with my Mistris.

Sooth.
You shall out-liue the Lady whom you serue.

Char.
Oh excellent, I loue long life better then Figs.

Sooth.
You haue seene and proued a fairer former fortune,
then that which is to approach.

Char.
Then belike my Children shall haue no
names: Prythee how many Boyes and Wenches must I
haue.

Sooth.
If euery of your wishes had a wombe,
& foretell euery wish, a Million.

Char.
Out Foole, I forgiue thee for a Witch.

Alex.
You thinke none but your sheets are priuie to your
wishes.

Char.
Nay come, tell Iras hers.

Alex.
Wee'l know all our Fortunes.

Enob.
Mine, and most of our Fortunes to night,
shall be drunke to bed.

Iras.
There's a Palme presages Chastity, if nothing els.

Char.
E'ne as the o're-flowing Nylus presageth
Famine.

Iras.
Go you wilde Bedfellow, you cannot
Soothsay.

Char.
Nay, if an oyly Palme bee not a fruitfull Prognostication,
I cannot scratch mine eare. Prythee tel her
but a worky day Fortune.

Sooth.
Your Fortunes are alike.

Iras.
But how, but how, giue me particulars.

Sooth.
I haue said.

Iras.
Am I not an inch of Fortune better then she?

Char.
Well, if you were but an inch of fortune
better then I: where would you choose it.

Iras.
Not in my Husbands nose.

Char.
Our worser thoughts Heauens mend. Alexas.
Come, / his Fortune, his Fortune. Oh let him mary a
woman that cannot go, sweet Isis, I beseech thee, and
let her dye too, and giue him a worse, and let worse
follow worse, till the worst of all follow him laughing to
his graue, fifty-fold a Cuckold. Good Isis heare me this
Prayer, though thou denie me a matter of more waight:
good Isis I beseech thee.

Iras.
Amen, deere Goddesse, heare that prayer of the people.
For, as it is a heart-breaking to see a handsome man
loose-Wiu'd, so it is a deadly sorrow, to beholde a foule
Knaue vncuckolded: Therefore deere Isis keep decorum,
and Fortune him accordingly.

Char.
Amen.

Alex.
Lo now, if it lay in their hands to make mee a
Cuckold, they would make themselues Whores, but
they'ld doo't.

Enob.
Hush, heere comes Anthony.

Char.
Not he, the Queene.
Enter Cleopatra.

Cleo.
Saue you, my Lord.

Enob.
No Lady.

Cleo.
Was he not heere?

Char.
No Madam.

Cleo.
He was dispos'd to mirth, but on the sodaine
A Romane thought hath strooke him. Enobarbus?

Enob.
Madam.

Cleo.
Seeke him, and bring him hither: wher's Alexias?

Alex.
Heere at your seruice. My Lord approaches.
Enter Anthony, with a Messenger.

Cleo.
We will not looke vpon him: Go with vs.
Exeunt.

Messen.
Fuluia thy Wife, / First came into the Field.

Ant.
Against my Brother Lucius?

Messen.
I:
but soone that Warre had end, / And the times state
Made friends of them, ioynting their force 'gainst Casar,
Whose better issue in the warre from Italy,
Vpon the first encounter draue them.

Ant.
Well, what worst.

Mess.
The Nature of bad newes infects the Teller.

Ant.
When it concernes the Foole or Coward: On.
Things that are past, are done, with me. 'Tis thus,
Who tels me true, though in his Tale lye death,
I heare him as he flatter'd.

Mes.
Labienus
(this is stiffe-newes) / Hath with his Parthian Force
Extended Asia: from Euphrates
his conquering / Banner shooke, from Syria
to Lydia, / And to Ionia,
whil'st---

Ant.
Anthony thou would'st say.

Mes.
Oh my Lord.

Ant.
Speake to me home, / Mince not the generall tongue,
name / Cleopatra as she is call'd in Rome:
Raile thou in Fuluia's phrase, and taunt my faults
With such full License, as both Truth and Malice
Haue power to vtter. Oh then we bring forth weeds,
When our quicke windes lye still, and our illes told vs
Is as our earing: fare thee well awhile.

Mes.
At your Noble pleasure.
Exit Messenger. Enter another Messenger.

Ant.
From Scicion how the newes? Speake there.

1. Mes.
The man from Scicion, / Is there such an one?

2. Mes.
He stayes vpon your will.

Ant.
Let him appeare:
These strong Egyptian Fetters I must breake,
Or loose my selfe in dotage.
Enter another Messenger with a Letter.
What are you?

3. Mes.
Fuluia thy wife is dead.

Ant.
Where dyed she.

Mes.
In Scicion,
her length of sicknesse, / With what else more serious,
Importeth thee to know, this beares.

Antho.
Forbeare me


There's a great Spirit gone, thus did I desire it:
What our contempts doth often hurle from vs,
We wish it ours againe. The present pleasure,
By reuolution lowring, does become
The opposite of it selfe: she's good being gon,
The hand could plucke her backe, that shou'd her on.
I must from this enchanting Queene breake off,
Ten thousand harmes, more then the illes I know
My idlenesse doth hatch. How now Enobarbus.
Enter Enobarbus.

Eno.
What's your pleasure, Sir?

Anth.
I must with haste from hence.

Eno.
Why then we kill all our Women. We see
how mortall an vnkindnesse is to them, if they suffer
our departure death's the word.

Ant.
I must be gone.

Eno.
Vnder a compelling an occasion, let women die.
It were pitty to cast them away for nothing, though
betweene them and a great cause, they should be esteemed
nothing. Cleopatra catching but the least noyse of this,
dies instantly: I haue seene her dye twenty times vppon
farre poorer moment: I do think there is mettle in death,
which commits some louing acte vpon her, she hath such
a celerity in dying.

Ant.
She is cunning past mans thought.

Eno.
Alacke Sir no, her passions are made of
nothing but the finest part of pure Loue. We cannot cal
her winds and waters, sighes and teares: They are greater
stormes and Tempests then Almanackes can report. This
cannot be cunning in her; if it be, she makes a showre
of Raine as well as Ioue.

Ant.
Would I had neuer seene her.

Eno.
Oh sir, you had then left vnseene a wonderfull
peece of worke, which not to haue beene blest withall,
would haue discredited your Trauaile.

Ant.
Fuluia is dead.

Eno.
Sir.

Ant.
Fuluia is dead.

Eno.
Fuluia?

Ant.
Dead.

Eno.
Why sir, giue the Gods a thankefull Sacrifice:
when it pleaseth their Deities to take the wife of a man
from him, it shewes to man the Tailors of the earth:
comforting therein, that when olde Robes are worne out,
there are members to make new. If there were no more
Women but Fuluia, then had you indeede a cut, and the
case to be lamented: This greefe is crown'd with Consolation,
your old Smocke brings foorth a new Petticoate,
aud indeed the teares liue in an Onion, that should water
this sorrow.

Ant.
The businesse she hath broached in the State,
Cannot endure my absence.

Eno.
And the businesse you haue broach'd heere
cannot be without you, especially that of Cleopatra's,
which wholly depends on your abode.

Ant.
No more light Answeres: / Let our Officers
Haue notice what we purpose. I shall breake
The cause of our Expedience to the Queene,
And get her loue to part. For not alone
The death of Fuluia, with more vrgent touches
Do strongly speake to vs: but the Letters too
Of many our contriuing Friends in Rome,
Petition vs at home. Sextus Pompeius
Haue giuen the dare to Casar, and commands
The Empire of the Sea. Our slippery people,
Whose Loue is neuer link'd to the deseruer,
Till his deserts are past, begin to throw
Pompey the great, and all his Dignities
Vpon his Sonne, who high in Name and Power,
Higher then both in Blood and Life, stands vp
For the maine Souldier. Whose quality going on,
The sides o'th'world may danger. Much is breeding,
Which like the Coursers heire, hath yet but life,
And not a Serpents poyson. Say our pleasure,
To such whose places vnder vs, require
Our quicke remoue from hence.

Enob.
I shall doo't.

Original text
Act I, Scene III
Enter Cleopatra, Charmian, Alexas, and Iras.

Cleo.
Where is he?

Char.
I did not see him since.

Cleo.
See where he is, / Whose with him, what he does:
I did not send you. If you finde him sad,
Say I am dauncing: if in Myrth, report
That I am sodaine sicke. Quicke, and returne.

Char.
Madam, me thinkes if you did loue him deerly,
You do not hold the method, to enforce
The like from him.

Cleo.
What should I do, I do not?

Ch.
In each thing giue him way, crosse him in nothing.

Cleo.
Thou teachest like a foole: the way to lose him.

Char.
Tempt him not so too farre. I wish forbeare,
In time we hate that which we often feare.
Enter Anthony.
But heere comes Anthony.

Cleo.
I am sicke, and sullen.

An.
I am sorry to giue breathing to my purpose.

Cleo.
Helpe me away deere Charmian, I shall fall,
It cannot be thus long, the sides of Nature
Will not sustaine it.

Ant.
Now my deerest Queene.

Cleo.
Pray you stand farther from mee.

Ant.
What's the matter?

Cleo.
I know by that same eye ther's some good news.
What sayes the married woman you may goe?
Would she had neuer giuen you leaue to come.
Let her not say 'tis I that keepe you heere,
I haue no power vpon you: Hers you are.

Ant.
The Gods best know.

Cleo.
Oh neuer was there Queene
So mightily betrayed: yet at the fitst
I saw the Treasons planted.

Ant.
Cleopatra.

Cleo.
Why should I thinke you can be mine, & true,
(Though you in swearing shake the Throaned Gods)
Who haue beene false to Fuluia? / Riotous madnesse,
To be entangled with those mouth-made vowes,
Which breake themselues in swearing.

Ant.
Most sweet Queene.

Cleo.
Nay pray you seeke no colour for your going,
But bid farewell, and goe: / When you sued staying,
Then was the time for words: No going then,
Eternity was in our Lippes, and Eyes,
Blisse in our browes bent: none our parts so poore,
But was a race of Heauen. They are so still,
Or thou the greatest Souldier of the world,
Art turn'd the greatest Lyar.

Ant.
How now Lady?

Cleo.
I would I had thy inches, thou should'st know
There were a heart in Egypt.

Ant.
Heare me Queene:
The strong necessity of Time, commands
Our Seruicles a-while: but my full heart
Remaines in vse with you. Our Italy,
Shines o're with ciuill Swords; Sextus Pompeius
Makes his approaches to the Port of Rome,
Equality of two Domesticke powers,
Breed scrupulous faction: The hated growne to strength
Are newly growne to Loue: The condemn'd Pompey,
Rich in his Fathers Honor, creepes apace
Into the hearts of such, as haue not thriued
Vpon the present state, whose Numbers threaten,
And quietnesse growne sicke of rest, would purge
By any desperate change: My more particular,
And that which most with you should safe my going,
Is Fuluias death.

Cleo.
Though age from folly could not giue me freedom
It does from childishnesse. Can Fuluia dye?

Ant.
She's dead my Queene.
Looke heere,
and at thy Soueraigne leysure read
The Garboyles she awak'd: at the last, best,
See when, and where shee died.

Cleo.
O most false Loue!
Where be the Sacred Violles thou should'st fill
With sorrowfull water? Now I see, I see,
In Fuluias death, how mine receiu'd shall be.

Ant.
Quarrell no more, but bee prepar'd to know
The purposes I beare: which are, or cease,
As you shall giue th'aduice. By the fire
That quickens Nylus slime, I go from hence
Thy Souldier, Seruant, making Peace or Warre,
As thou affects.

Cleo.
Cut my Lace, Charmian come,
But let it be, I am quickly ill, and well,
So Anthony loues.

Ant.
My precious Queene forbeare,
And giue true euidence to his Loue, which stands
An honourable Triall.

Cleo.
So Fuluia told me.
I prythee turne aside, and weepe for her,
Then bid adiew to me, and say the teares
Belong to Egypt. Good now, play one Scene
Of excellent dissembling, and let it looke
Like perfect Honor.

Ant.
You'l heat my blood no more?

Cleo.
You can do better yet: but this is meetly.

Ant.
Now by Sword.

Cleo.
And Target. Still he mends.
But this is not the best. Looke prythee Charmian,
How this Herculean Roman do's become
The carriage of his chafe.

Ant.
Ile leaue you Lady.

Cleo.
Courteous Lord, one word:
Sir, you and I must part, but that's not it:
Sir, you and I haue lou'd, but there's not it:
That you know well, something it is I would:
Oh, my Obliuion is a very Anthony,
And I am all forgotten.

Ant.
But that your Royalty
Holds Idlenesse your subiect, I should take you
For Idlenesse it selfe.

Cleo.
'Tis sweating Labour,
To beare such Idlenesse so neere the heart
As Cleopatra this. But Sir, forgiue me,
Since my becommings kill me, when they do not
Eye well to you. Your Honor calles you hence,
Therefore be deafe to my vnpittied Folly,
And all the Gods go with you. Vpon your Sword
Sit Lawrell victory, and smooth successe
Be strew'd before your feete.

Ant.
Let vs go./ Come:
Our separation so abides and flies,
That thou reciding heere, goes yet with mee;
And I hence fleeting, heere remaine with thee.
Away.
Exeunt.
Original text
Act I, Scene IV
Enter Octauius reading a Letter, Lepidus, and
their Traine.

Cas.
You may see Lepidus, and henceforth know,
It is not Casars Naturall vice, to hate
One great Competitor. From Alexandria
This is the newes: He fishes, drinkes, and wastes
The Lampes of night in reuell: Is not more manlike
Then Cleopatra: nor the Queene of Ptolomy
More Womanly then he. Hardly gaue audience / Or
vouchsafe to thinke he had Partners. You / Shall finde there
a man, who is th' abstracts of all faults,
That all men follow.

Lep.
I must not thinke / There are,
euils enow to darken all his goodnesse:
His faults in him, seeme as the Spots of Heauen,
More fierie by nights Blacknesse; Hereditarie,
Rather then purchaste: what he cannot change,
Then what he chooses.

Cas.
You are too indulgent. Let's graunt it is not
Amisse to tumble on the bed of Ptolomy,
To giue a Kingdome for a Mirth, to sit
And keepe the turne of Tipling with a Slaue,
To reele the streets at noone, and stand the Buffet
With knaues that smels of sweate: Say this becoms him
(As his composure must be rare indeed,
Whom these things cannot blemish) yet must Anthony
No way excuse his foyles, when we do beare
So great waight in his lightnesse. If he fill'd
His vacancie with his Voluptuousnesse,
Full surfets, and the drinesse of his bones,
Call on him for't. But to confound such time,
That drummes him from his sport, and speakes as lowd
As his owne State, and ours, 'tis to be chid:
As we rate Boyes, who being mature in knowledge,
Pawne their experience to their present pleasure,
And so rebell to iudgement.
Enter a Messenger.

Lep.
Heere's more newes.

Mes.
Thy biddings haue beene done, & euerie houre
Most Noble Casar, shalt thou haue report
How 'tis abroad. Pompey is strong at Sea,
And it appeares, he is belou'd of those
That only haue feard Casar: to the Ports
The discontents repaire, and mens reports
Giue him much wrong'd.

Cas.
I should haue knowne no lesse,
It hath bin taught vs from the primall state
That he which is was wisht, vntill he were:
And the ebb'd man, / Ne're lou'd, till ne're worth loue,
Comes fear'd, by being lack'd. This common bodie,
Like to a Vagabond Flagge vpon the Streame,
Goes too, and backe, lacking the varrying tyde
To rot it selfe with motion.

Mes.
Casar I bring thee word,
Menacrates and Menas famous Pyrates
Makes the Sea serue them, which they eare and wound
With keeles of euery kinde. Many hot inrodes
They make in Italy, the Borders Maritime
Lacke blood to thinke on't, and flush youth reuolt,
No Vessell can peepe forth: but 'tis as soone
Taken as seene: for Pompeyes name strikes more
Then could his Warre resisted

Casar.
Anthony,
Leaue thy lasciuious Vassailes. When thou once
Was beaten from Medena, where thou slew'st
Hirsius, and Pausa Consuls, at thy heele
Did Famine follow, whom thou fought'st against,
(Though daintily brought vp) with patience more
Then Sauages could suffer. Thou did'st drinke
The stale of Horses, and the gilded Puddle
Which Beasts would cough at. Thy pallat thẽ did daine
The roughest Berry, on the rudest Hedge.
Yea, like the Stagge, when Snow the Pasture sheets,
The barkes of Trees thou brows'd. On the Alpes,
It is reported thou did'st eate strange flesh,
Which some did dye to looke on: And all this
(It wounds thine Honor that I speake it now)
Was borne so like a Soldiour, that thy cheeke
So much as lank'd not.

Lep.
'Tis pitty of him.

Cas.
Let his shames quickely
Driue him to Rome, 'tis time we twaine
Did shew our selues i'th' Field, and to that end
Assemble me immediate counsell, Pompey
Thriues in our Idlenesse.

Lep.
To morrow Casar,
I shall be furnisht to informe you rightly
Both what by Sea and Land I can be able
To front this present time.

Cas.
Til which encounter,
it is my busines too. Farwell.

Lep.
Farwell my Lord, what you shal know mean time
Of stirres abroad, I shall beseech you Sir
To let me be partaker.

Casar.
Doubt not sir,
I knew it for my Bond.
Exeunt
Original text
Act I, Scene V
Enter Cleopatra, Charmian, Iras, & Mardian.

Cleo.
Charmian.

Char.
Madam.

Cleo.
Ha, ha,
giue me to drinke Mandragora.

Char.
Why Madam?

Cleo.
That I might sleepe out this great gap of time:
My Anthony is away.

Char.
You thinke of him too much.

Cleo.
O 'tis Treason.

Char.
Madam, I trust not so.

Cleo.
Thou, Eunuch Mardian?

Mar.
What's your Highnesse pleasure?

Cleo.
Not now to heare thee sing. I take no pleasure
In ought an Eunuch ha's: Tis well for thee,
That being vnseminar'd, thy freer thoughts
May not flye forth of Egypt. Hast thou Affections?

Mar.
Yes gracious Madam.

Cleo.
Indeed?

Mar.
Not in deed Madam, for I can do nothing
But what in deede is honest to be done:
Yet haue I fierce Affections, and thinke
What Venus did with Mars.

Cleo.
Oh Charmion:
Where think'st thou he is now? Stands he, or sits he?
Or does he walke? Or is he on his Horse?
Oh happy horse to beare the weight of Anthony!
Do brauely Horse, for wot'st thou whom thou moou'st,
The demy Atlas of this Earth, the Arme
And Burganet of men. Hee's speaking now,
Or murmuring, where's my Serpent of old Nyle,
(For so he cals me:) Now I feede my selfe
With most delicious poyson. Thinke on me
That am with Phobus amorous pinches blacke,
And wrinkled deepe in time. Broad-fronted Casar,
When thou was't heere aboue the ground, I was
A morsell for a Monarke: and great Pompey
Would stand and make his eyes grow in my brow,
There would he anchor his Aspect, and dye
With looking on his life.
Enter Alexas from Casar.

Alex.
Soueraigne of Egypt, haile.

Cleo.
How much vnlike art thou Marke Anthony?
Yet comming from him, that great Med'cine hath
With his Tinct gilded thee.
How goes it with my braue Marke Anthonie?

Alex.
Last thing he did (deere Quene)
He kist the last of many doubled kisses
This Orient Pearle. His speech stickes in my heart.

Cleo.
Mine eare must plucke it thence.

Alex.
Good Friend, quoth he:
Say the firme Roman to great Egypt sends
This treasure of an Oyster: at whose foote
To mend the petty present, I will peece
Her opulent Throne, with Kingdomes. All the East,
(Say thou) shall call her Mistris. So he nodded,
And soberly did mount an Arme-gaunt Steede,
Who neigh'd so hye, that what I would haue spoke,
Was beastly dumbe by him.

Cleo.
What was he sad, or merry?

Alex.
Like to the time o'th' yeare, between ye extremes
Of hot and cold, he was nor sad nor merrie.

Cleo.
Oh well diuided disposition: Note him,
Note him good Charmian, 'tis the man; but note him.
He was not sad, for he would shine on those
That make their lookes by his. He was not merrie,
Which seem'd to tell them, his remembrance lay
In Egypt with his ioy, but betweene both.
Oh heauenly mingle! Bee'st thou sad, or merrie,
The violence of either thee becomes,
So do's it no mans else. Met'st thou my Posts?

Alex.
I Madam, twenty seuerall Messengers.
Why do you send so thicke?

Cleo.
Who's borne that day,
when I forget to send to Anthonie,
shall dye a Begger. Inke and paper Charmian.
Welcome my good Alexas. Did I Charmian,
euer loue Casar so?

Char.
Oh that braue Casar!

Cleo.
Be choak'd with such another Emphasis,
Say the braue Anthony.

Char.
The valiant Casar.

Cleo.
By Isis, I will giue thee bloody teeth,
If thou with Casar Paragon againe:
My man of men.

Char.
By your most gracious pardon,
I sing but after you.

Cleo.
My Sallad dayes,
When I was greene in iudgement, cold in blood,
To say, as I saide then. But come, away,
Get me Inke and Paper,
he shall haue euery day a seuerall greeting,
or Ile vnpeople Egypt.
Exeunt
Modern text
Act I, Scene I
Enter Demetrius and Philo

PHILO
Nay, but this dotage of our general's
O'erflows the measure. Those his goodly eyes,
That o'er the files and musters of the war
Have glowed like plated Mars, now bend, now turn
The office and devotion of their view
Upon a tawny front. His captain's heart,
Which in the scuffles of great fights hath burst
The buckles on his breast, reneges all temper,
And is become the bellows and the fan
To cool a gypsy's lust.
Flourish. Enter Antony, Cleopatra, her ladies
Charmian and Iras, the train, with eunuchs fanning
her
Look where they come.
Take but good note, and you shall see in him
The triple pillar of the world transformed
Into a strumpet's fool. Behold and see.

CLEOPATRA
If it be love indeed, tell me how much.

ANTONY
There's beggary in the love that can be reckoned.

CLEOPATRA
I'll set a bourn how far to be beloved.

ANTONY
Then must thou needs find out new heaven, new earth.
Enter a Messenger

MESSENGER
News, my good lord, from Rome.

ANTONY
Grates me! The sum.

CLEOPATRA
Nay, hear them, Antony.
Fulvia perchance is angry; or who knows
If the scarce-bearded Caesar have not sent
His powerful mandate to you: ‘Do this, or this;
Take in that kingdom, and enfranchise that.
Perform't, or else we damn thee.'

ANTONY
How, my love?

CLEOPATRA
Perchance? Nay, and most like.
You must not stay here longer. Your dismission
Is come from Caesar. Therefore hear it, Antony.
Where's Fulvia's process? Caesar's I would say! Both!
Call in the messengers. As I am Egypt's Queen,
Thou blushest, Antony, and that blood of thine
Is Caesar's homager; else so thy cheek pays shame
When shrill-tongued Fulvia scolds. The messengers!

ANTONY
Let Rome in Tiber melt, and the wide arch
Of the ranged empire fall! Here is my space.
Kingdoms are clay. Our dungy earth alike
Feeds beast as man. The nobleness of life
Is to do thus – when such a mutual pair
And such a twain can do't, in which I bind,
On pain of punishment, the world to weet
We stand up peerless.

CLEOPATRA
Excellent falsehood!
Why did he marry Fulvia, and not love her?
I'll seem the fool I am not. Antony
Will be himself.

ANTONY
But stirred by Cleopatra.
Now for the love of Love and her soft hours,
Let's not confound the time with conference harsh.
There's not a minute of our lives should stretch
Without some pleasure now. What sport tonight?

CLEOPATRA
Hear the ambassadors.

ANTONY
Fie, wrangling queen!
Whom everything becomes – to chide, to laugh,
To weep; whose every passion fully strives
To make itself, in thee, fair and admired.
No messenger but thine; and all alone
Tonight we'll wander through the streets and note
The qualities of people. Come, my queen;
Last night you did desire it. (To the Messenger) Speak not to us.
Exeunt Antony and Cleopatra with the train

DEMETRIUS
Is Caesar with Antonius prized so slight?

PHILO
Sir, sometimes, when he is not Antony,
He comes too short of that great property
Which still should go with Antony.

DEMETRIUS
I am full sorry
That he approves the common liar, who
Thus speaks of him at Rome; but I will hope
Of better deeds tomorrow. Rest you happy!
Exeunt
Modern text
Act I, Scene II
Enter Charmian, Iras, and Alexas

CHARMIAN
Lord Alexas, sweet Alexas, most anything
Alexas, almost most absolute Alexas, where's the soothsayer
that you praised so to th' Queen? O that I knew
this husband, which you say must charge his horns
with garlands!

ALEXAS
Soothsayer!
Enter a Soothsayer

SOOTHSAYER
Your will?

CHARMIAN
Is this the man? Is't you, sir, that know
things?

SOOTHSAYER
In Nature's infinite book of secrecy
A little I can read.

ALEXAS
Show him your hand.
Enter Enobarbus

ENOBARBUS
Bring in the banquet quickly; wine enough
Cleopatra's health to drink.

CHARMIAN
(to Soothsayer) Good sir, give me good
fortune.

SOOTHSAYER
I make not, but foresee.

CHARMIAN
Pray then, foresee me one.

SOOTHSAYER
You shall be yet far fairer than you are.

CHARMIAN
He means in flesh.

IRAS
No, you shall paint when you are old.

CHARMIAN
Wrinkles forbid!

ALEXAS
Vex not his prescience; be attentive.

CHARMIAN
Hush!

SOOTHSAYER
You shall be more beloving than beloved.

CHARMIAN
I had rather heat my liver with drinking.

ALEXAS
Nay, hear him.

CHARMIAN
Good now, some excellent fortune! Let me
be married to three kings in a forenoon and widow them
all. Let me have a child at fifty, to whom Herod of
Jewry may do homage. Find me to marry me with
Octavius Caesar, and companion me with my mistress.

SOOTHSAYER
You shall outlive the lady whom you serve.

CHARMIAN
O, excellent! I love long life better than figs.

SOOTHSAYER
You have seen and proved a fairer former fortune
Than that which is to approach.

CHARMIAN
Then belike my children shall have no
names. Prithee, how many boys and wenches must I
have?

SOOTHSAYER
If every of your wishes had a womb,
And fertile every wish, a million.

CHARMIAN
Out, fool, I forgive thee for a witch.

ALEXAS
You think none but your sheets are privy to your
wishes.

CHARMIAN
Nay, come, tell Iras hers.

ALEXAS
We'll know all our fortunes.

ENOBARBUS
Mine, and most of our fortunes, tonight
shall be drunk to bed.

IRAS
There's a palm presages chastity, if nothing else.

CHARMIAN
E'en as the o'erflowing Nilus presageth
famine.

IRAS
(to Charmian) Go, you wild bedfellow, you cannot
soothsay.

CHARMIAN
Nay, if an oily palm be not a fruitful prognostication,
I cannot scratch mine ear. Prithee, tell her
but a workyday fortune.

SOOTHSAYER
Your fortunes are alike.

IRAS
But how, but how? Give me particulars.

SOOTHSAYER
I have said.

IRAS
Am I not an inch of fortune better than she?

CHARMIAN
Well, if you were but an inch of fortune
better than I, where would you choose it?

IRAS
Not in my husband's nose.

CHARMIAN
Our worser thoughts heavens mend! Alexas –
come, his fortune, his fortune! O, let him marry a
woman that cannot go, sweet Isis, I beseech thee, and
let her die too, and give him a worse, and let worse
follow worse till the worst of all follow him laughing to
his grave, fiftyfold a cuckold! Good Isis, hear me this
prayer, though thou deny me a matter of more weight;
good Isis, I beseech thee!

IRAS
Amen. Dear goddess, hear that prayer of the people!
For, as it is a heart-breaking to see a handsome man
loose-wived, so it is a deadly sorrow to behold a foul
knave uncuckolded. Therefore, dear Isis, keep decorum,
and fortune him accordingly!

CHARMIAN
Amen.

ALEXAS
Lo now, if it lay in their hands to make me a
cuckold, they would make themselves whores but
they'd do't.

ENOBARBUS
Hush! here comes Antony.

CHARMIAN
Not he; the Queen.
Enter Cleopatra

CLEOPATRA
Saw you my lord?

ENOBARBUS
No, lady.

CLEOPATRA
Was he not here?

CHARMIAN
No, madam.

CLEOPATRA
He was disposed to mirth; but on the sudden
A Roman thought hath struck him. Enobarbus!

ENOBARBUS
Madam?

CLEOPATRA
Seek him, and bring him hither. Where's Alexas?

ALEXAS
Here at your service. My lord approaches.
Enter Antony with a Messenger and Attendants

CLEOPATRA
We will not look upon him. Go with us.
Exeunt all but Antony, Messenger, and Attendants

MESSENGER
Fulvia thy wife first came into the field.

ANTONY
Against my brother Lucius?

MESSENGER
Ay.
But soon that war had end, and the time's state
Made friends of them, jointing their force 'gainst Caesar,
Whose better issue in the war from Italy
Upon the first encounter drave them.

ANTONY
Well, what worst?

MESSENGER
The nature of bad news infects the teller.

ANTONY
When it concerns the fool or coward. On.
Things that are past are done, with me. 'Tis thus:
Who tells me true, though in his tale lie death,
I hear him as he flattered.

MESSENGER
Labienus –
This is stiff news – hath with his Parthian force
Extended Asia; from Euphrates
His conquering banner shook, from Syria
To Lydia and to Ionia,
Whilst –

ANTONY
Antony, thou wouldst say –

MESSENGER
O, my lord.

ANTONY
Speak to me home; mince not the general tongue.
Name Cleopatra as she is called in Rome.
Rail thou in Fulvia's phrase, and taunt my faults
With such full licence as both truth and malice
Have power to utter. O, then we bring forth weeds
When our quick minds lie still, and our ills told us
Is as our earing. Fare thee well awhile.

MESSENGER
At your noble pleasure.
Exit

ANTONY
From Sicyon, ho, the news? Speak there!

FIRST ATTENDANT
The man from Sicyon – is there such an one?

SECOND ATTENDANT
He stays upon your will.

ANTONY
Let him appear.
(aside) These strong Egyptian fetters I must break,
Or lose myself in dotage.
Enter another Messenger, with a letter
What are you?

MESSENGER
Fulvia thy wife is dead.

ANTONY
Where died she?

MESSENGER
In Sicyon.
Her length of sickness, with what else more serious
Importeth thee to know, this bears.
He gives him the letter

ANTONY
Forbear me.
Exit Messenger
There's a great spirit gone! Thus did I desire it.
What our contempts doth often hurl from us,
We wish it ours again. The present pleasure,
By revolution lowering, does become
The opposite of itself. She's good, being gone;
The hand could pluck her back that shoved her on.
I must from this enchanting queen break off.
Ten thousand harms, more than the ills I know,
My idleness doth hatch. How now, Enobarbus!
Enter Enobarbus

ENOBARBUS
What's your pleasure, sir?

ANTONY
I must with haste from hence.

ENOBARBUS
Why, then we kill all our women. We see
how mortal an unkindness is to them. If they suffer
our departure, death's the word.

ANTONY
I must be gone.

ENOBARBUS
Under a compelling occasion, let women die.
It were pity to cast them away for nothing, though
between them and a great cause they should be esteemed
nothing. Cleopatra, catching but the least noise of this,
dies instantly. I have seen her die twenty times upon
far poorer moment. I do think there is mettle in death,
which commits some loving act upon her, she hath such
a celerity in dying.

ANTONY
She is cunning past man's thought.

ENOBARBUS
Alack, sir, no; her passions are made of
nothing but the finest part of pure love. We cannot call
her winds and waters sighs and tears; they are greater
storms and tempests than almanacs can report. This
cannot be cunning in her; if it be, she makes a shower
of rain as well as Jove.

ANTONY
Would I had never seen her!

ENOBARBUS
O, sir, you had then left unseen a wonderful
piece of work, which not to have been blessed withal
would have discredited your travel.

ANTONY
Fulvia is dead.

ENOBARBUS
Sir?

ANTONY
Fulvia is dead.

ENOBARBUS
Fulvia?

ANTONY
Dead.

ENOBARBUS
Why, sir, give the gods a thankful sacrifice.
When it pleaseth their deities to take the wife of a man
from him, it shows to man the tailors of the earth;
comforting therein that when old robes are worn out
there are members to make new. If there were no more
women but Fulvia, then had you indeed a cut, and the
case to be lamented. This grief is crowned with consolation:
your old smock brings forth a new petticoat;
and indeed the tears live in an onion that should water
this sorrow.

ANTONY
The business she hath broached in the state
Cannot endure my absence.

ENOBARBUS
And the business you have broached here
cannot be without you; especially that of Cleopatra's,
which wholly depends on your abode.

ANTONY
No more light answers. Let our officers
Have notice what we purpose. I shall break
The cause of our expedience to the Queen
And get her leave to part. For not alone
The death of Fulvia, with more urgent touches,
Do strongly speak to us, but the letters too
Of many our contriving friends in Rome
Petition us at home. Sextus Pompeius
Hath given the dare to Caesar and commands
The empire of the sea. Our slippery people,
Whose love is never linked to the deserver
Till his deserts are past, begin to throw
Pompey the Great and all his dignities
Upon his son; who, high in name and power,
Higher than both in blood and life, stands up
For the main soldier; whose quality, going on,
The sides o'th' world may danger. Much is breeding
Which, like the courser's hair, hath yet but life
And not a serpent's poison. Say our pleasure,
To such whose place is under us, requires
Our quick remove from hence.

ENOBARBUS
I shall do't.
Exeunt
Modern text
Act I, Scene III
Enter Cleopatra, Charmian, Alexas, and Iras

CLEOPATRA
Where is he?

CHARMIAN
I did not see him since.

CLEOPATRA
(to Alexas)
See where he is, who's with him, what he does.
I did not send you. If you find him sad,
Say I am dancing; if in mirth, report
That I am sudden sick. Quick, and return.
Exit Alexas

CHARMIAN
Madam, methinks, if you did love him dearly,
You do not hold the method to enforce
The like from him.

CLEOPATRA
What should I do I do not?

CHARMIAN
In each thing give him way. Cross him in nothing.

CLEOPATRA
Thou teachest like a fool: the way to lose him.

CHARMIAN
Tempt him not so too far. I wish, forbear.
In time we hate that which we often fear.
Enter Antony
But here comes Antony.

CLEOPATRA
I am sick and sullen.

ANTONY
I am sorry to give breathing to my purpose –

CLEOPATRA
Help me away, dear Charmian! I shall fall.
It cannot be thus long; the sides of nature
Will not sustain it.

ANTONY
Now, my dearest queen –

CLEOPATRA
Pray you, stand farther from me.

ANTONY
What's the matter?

CLEOPATRA
I know by that same eye there's some good news.
What says the married woman – you may go?
Would she had never given you leave to come!
Let her not say 'tis I that keep you here.
I have no power upon you. Hers you are.

ANTONY
The gods best know –

CLEOPATRA
O, never was there queen
So mightily betrayed! Yet at the first
I saw the treasons planted.

ANTONY
Cleopatra –

CLEOPATRA
Why should I think you can be mine, and true –
Though you in swearing shake the throned gods –
Who have been false to Fulvia? Riotous madness,
To be entangled with those mouth-made vows
Which break themselves in swearing!

ANTONY
Most sweet queen –

CLEOPATRA
Nay, pray you seek no colour for your going,
But bid farewell, and go. When you sued staying,
Then was the time for words. No going then!
Eternity was in our lips and eyes,
Bliss in our brows' bent; none our parts so poor
But was a race of heaven. They are so still,
Or thou, the greatest soldier of the world,
Art turned the greatest liar.

ANTONY
How now, lady!

CLEOPATRA
I would I had thy inches. Thou shouldst know
There were a heart in Egypt.

ANTONY
Hear me, Queen.
The strong necessity of time commands
Our services awhile; but my full heart
Remains in use with you. Our Italy
Shines o'er with civil swords. Sextus Pompeius
Makes his approaches to the port of Rome.
Equality of two domestic powers
Breed scrupulous faction; the hated, grown to strength,
Are newly grown to love. The condemned Pompey,
Rich in his father's honour, creeps apace
Into the hearts of such as have not thrived
Upon the present state, whose numbers threaten;
And quietness, grown sick of rest, would purge
By any desperate change. My more particular,
And that which most with you should safe my going,
Is Fulvia's death.

CLEOPATRA
Though age from folly could not give me freedom,
It does from childishness. Can Fulvia die?

ANTONY
She's dead, my queen.
Look here,
(He gives her the letter)
and at thy sovereign leisure read
The garboils she awaked. At the last, best,
See when and where she died.

CLEOPATRA
O most false love!
Where be the sacred vials thou shouldst fill
With sorrowful water? Now I see, I see,
In Fulvia's death, how mine received shall be.

ANTONY
Quarrel no more, but be prepared to know
The purposes I bear; which are, or cease,
As you shall give th' advice. By the fire
That quickens Nilus' slime, I go from hence
Thy soldier-servant, making peace or war
As thou affects.

CLEOPATRA
Cut my lace, Charmian, come.
But let it be. I am quickly ill and well,
So Antony loves.

ANTONY
My precious queen, forbear,
And give true evidence to his love, which stands
An honourable trial.

CLEOPATRA
So Fulvia told me.
I prithee turn aside and weep for her;
Then bid adieu to me, and say the tears
Belong to Egypt. Good now, play one scene
Of excellent dissembling, and let it look
Like perfect honour.

ANTONY
You'll heat my blood; no more.

CLEOPATRA
You can do better yet; but this is meetly.

ANTONY
Now by my sword –

CLEOPATRA
And target. Still he mends.
But this is not the best. Look, prithee, Charmian,
How this Herculean Roman does become
The carriage of his chafe.

ANTONY
I'll leave you, lady.

CLEOPATRA
Courteous lord, one word.
Sir, you and I must part, but that's not it.
Sir, you and I have loved, but there's not it.
That you know well. Something it is I would –
O, my oblivion is a very Antony,
And I am all forgotten.

ANTONY
But that your royalty
Holds idleness your subject, I should take you
For idleness itself.

CLEOPATRA
'Tis sweating labour
To bear such idleness so near the heart
As Cleopatra this. But, sir, forgive me,
Since my becomings kill me when they do not
Eye well to you. Your honour calls you hence.
Therefore be deaf to my unpitied folly,
And all the gods go with you! Upon your sword
Sit laurel victory, and smooth success
Be strewed before your feet!

ANTONY
Let us go. Come.
Our separation so abides and flies
That thou residing here goes yet with me,
And I hence fleeting here remain with thee.
Away!
Exeunt
Modern text
Act I, Scene IV
Enter Octavius Caesar, reading a letter, Lepidus, and
their train

CAESAR
You may see, Lepidus, and henceforth know
It is not Caesar's natural vice to hate
Our great competitor. From Alexandria
This is the news: he fishes, drinks, and wastes
The lamps of night in revel; is not more manlike
Than Cleopatra, nor the queen of Ptolemy
More womanly than he; hardly gave audience, or
Vouchsafed to think he had partners. You shall find there
A man who is the abstract of all faults
That all men follow.

LEPIDUS
I must not think there are
Evils enow to darken all his goodness.
His faults, in him, seem as the spots of heaven,
More fiery by night's blackness, hereditary
Rather than purchased, what he cannot change
Than what he chooses.

CAESAR
You are too indulgent. Let's grant it is not
Amiss to tumble on the bed of Ptolemy,
To give a kingdom for a mirth, to sit
And keep the turn of tippling with a slave,
To reel the streets at noon, and stand the buffet
With knaves that smells of sweat. Say this becomes him –
As his composure must be rare indeed
Whom these things cannot blemish – yet must Antony
No way excuse his foils when we do bear
So great weight in his lightness. If he filled
His vacancy with his voluptuousness,
Full surfeits and the dryness of his bones
Call on him for't. But to confound such time
That drums him from his sport and speaks as loud
As his own state and ours, 'tis to be chid
As we rate boys who, being mature in knowledge,
Pawn their experience to their present pleasure
And so rebel to judgement.
Enter a Messenger

LEPIDUS
Here's more news.

MESSENGER
Thy biddings have been done; and every hour,
Most noble Caesar, shalt thou have report
How 'tis abroad. Pompey is strong at sea,
And it appears he is beloved of those
That only have feared Caesar; to the ports
The discontents repair, and men's reports
Give him much wronged.

CAESAR
I should have known no less.
It hath been taught us from the primal state,
That he which is was wished until he were;
And the ebbed man, ne'er loved till ne'er worth love,
Comes deared by being lacked. This common body,
Like to a vagabond flag upon the stream,
Goes to and back, lackeying the varying tide,
To rot itself with motion.

MESSENGER
Caesar, I bring thee word
Menecrates and Menas, famous pirates,
Makes the sea serve them, which they ear and wound
With keels of every kind. Many hot inroads
They make in Italy. The borders maritime
Lack blood to think on't, and flush youth revolt.
No vessel can peep forth but 'tis as soon
Taken as seen; for Pompey's name strikes more
Than could his war resisted.

CAESAR
Antony,
Leave thy lascivious wassails. When thou once
Wast beaten from Modena, where thou slew'st
Hirtius and Pansa, consuls, at thy heel
Did famine follow, whom thou fought'st against,
Though daintily brought up, with patience more
Than savages could suffer. Thou didst drink
The stale of horses and the gilded puddle
Which beasts would cough at. Thy palate then did deign
The roughest berry on the rudest hedge.
Yea, like the stag when snow the pasture sheets,
The barks of trees thou browsed'st. On the Alps
It is reported thou didst eat strange flesh,
Which some did die to look on. And all this –
It wounds thine honour that I speak it now –
Was borne so like a soldier that thy cheek
So much as lanked not.

LEPIDUS
'Tis pity of him.

CAESAR
Let his shames quickly
Drive him to Rome. 'Tis time we twain
Did show ourselves i'th' field; and to that end
Assemble we immediate council. Pompey
Thrives in our idleness.

LEPIDUS
Tomorrow, Caesar,
I shall be furnished to inform you rightly
Both what by sea and land I can be able
To front this present time.

CAESAR
Till which encounter,
It is my business too. Farewell.

LEPIDUS
Farewell, my lord. What you shall know meantime
Of stirs abroad, I shall beseech you, sir,
To let me be partaker.

CAESAR
Doubt not, sir;
I knew it for my bond.
Exeunt
Modern text
Act I, Scene V
Enter Cleopatra, Charmian, Iras, and Mardian

CLEOPATRA
Charmian!

CHARMIAN
Madam?

CLEOPATRA
(yawning)
Ha, ha!
Give me to drink mandragora.

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
That, being unseminared, thy freer thoughts
May not fly forth of Egypt. Hast thou affections?

MARDIAN
Yes, gracious madam.

CLEOPATRA
Indeed?

MARDIAN
Not in deed, madam; for I can do nothing
But what indeed is honest to be done.
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?
The demi-Atlas of this earth, the arm
And burgonet of men. He's speaking now,
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,
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;
There would he anchor his aspect, and die
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.
How goes it with my brave Mark Antony?

ALEXAS
Last thing he did, dear Queen,
He kissed – the last of many doubled kisses –
This orient pearl. His speech sticks in my heart.

CLEOPATRA
Mine ear must pluck it thence.

ALEXAS
‘ Good friend,’ quoth he,
‘ Say the firm Roman to great Egypt sends
This treasure of an oyster; at whose foot,
To mend the petty present, I will piece
Her opulent throne with kingdoms. All the East,
Say thou, shall call her mistress.’ So he nodded,
And soberly did mount an arrogant steed,
Who neighed so high that what I would have spoke
Was beastly dumbed by him.

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,
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.
O heavenly mingle! Be'st thou sad or merry,
The violence of either thee becomes,
So does it no man else. Met'st thou my posts?

ALEXAS
Ay, madam, twenty several messengers.
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?

CHARMIAN
O, that brave Caesar!

CLEOPATRA
Be choked with such another emphasis!
Say ‘ the brave Antony.’

CHARMIAN
The valiant Caesar!

CLEOPATRA
By Isis, I will give thee bloody teeth,
If thou with Caesar paragon again
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,
To say as I said then. But come, away,
Get me ink and paper.
He shall have every day a several greeting,
Or I'll unpeople Egypt.
Exeunt
SHAKESPEARE'S WORDS © 2018 DAVID CRYSTAL & BEN CRYSTAL