Hamlet, Antony and Cleopatra, King Lear, Othello, Macbeth
Antony and Cleopatra
Alexandria. A room in CLEOPATRA's palace.
Enter DEMETRIUS and 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 glow'd 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 gipsy's lust.
Flourish. Enter ANTONY, CLEOPATRA, her Ladies, 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 transform'd
Into a strumpet's fool: behold and see.
If it be love indeed, tell me how
There's beggary in the love that can be
I'll set a bourn how far to be
Then must thou needs find out new heaven, new
Enter an Attendant
News, my good lord, from Rome.
Grates me: the sum.
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
How, my love!
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!
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.
Why did he marry Fulvia, and not love her?
I'll seem the fool I am not; Antony
Will be himself.
But stirr'd 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?
Hear the ambassadors.
Fie, wrangling queen!
Whom every thing 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
To-night we'll wander through the streets and note
The qualities of people. Come, my queen;
Last night you did desire it: speak not to us.
Exeunt MARK ANTONY and CLEOPATRA with their
Is Caesar with Antonius prized so
Sir, sometimes, when he is not Antony,
He comes too short of that great property
Which still should go with Antony.
I am full sorry
That he approves the common liar, who
Thus speaks of him at Rome: but I will hope
Of better deeds to-morrow. Rest you happy!
Act 1, Scene 2
The same. Another room.
Enter CHARMIAN, IRAS, ALEXAS, and a Soothsayer
Lord Alexas, sweet Alexas, most any thing Alexas,
almost most absolute Alexas, where's the soothsayer
that you praised so to the queen? O, that I knew
this husband, which, you say, must charge his horns
Is this the man? Is't you, sir, that know
In nature's infinite book of secrecy
A little I can read.
Show him your hand.
Enter DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS
Bring in the banquet quickly; wine enough
Cleopatra's health to drink.
Good sir, give me good fortune.
I make not, but foresee.
Pray, then, foresee me one.
You shall be yet far fairer than you
He means in flesh.
No, you shall paint when you are old.
Vex not his prescience; be attentive.
You shall be more beloving than
I had rather heat my liver with
Nay, hear him.
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.
You shall outlive the lady whom you
O excellent! I love long life better than
You have seen and proved a fairer former fortune
Than that which is to approach.
Then belike my children shall have no names:
prithee, how many boys and wenches must I have?
If every of your wishes had a womb.
And fertile every wish, a million.
Out, fool! I forgive thee for a witch.
You think none but your sheets are privy to your
Nay, come, tell Iras hers.
We'll know all our fortunes.
Mine, and most of our fortunes, to-night, shall
be--drunk to bed.
There's a palm presages chastity, if nothing
E'en as the o'erflowing Nilus presageth
Go, you wild bedfellow, you cannot
Nay, if an oily palm be not a fruitful
prognostication, I cannot scratch mine ear. Prithee,
tell her but a worky-day fortune.
Your fortunes are alike.
But how, but how? give me particulars.
I have said.
Am I not an inch of fortune better than
Well, if you were but an inch of fortune better
I, where would you choose it?
Not in my husband's nose.
Our worser thoughts heavens mend! Alexas,--come,
deny me a
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 worst
follow worse, till the worst of all follow him
laughing to his grave, fifty-fold a cuckold! Good
Isis, hear me this prayer, though thou
matter of more weight; good Isis, I beseech thee!
Amen. Dear goddess, hear that prayer of the people!
for, as it is a heartbreaking 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!
Lo, now, if it lay in their hands to make me a
cuckold, they would make themselves whores, but
Hush! here comes Antony.
Not he; the queen.
Saw you my lord?
Was he not here?
He was disposed to mirth; but on the sudden
A Roman thought hath struck him. Enobarbus!
Seek him, and bring him hither.
Here, at your service. My lord
We will not look upon him: go with us.
Enter MARK ANTONY with a Messenger and
Fulvia thy wife first came into the
Against my brother Lucius?
But soon that war had end, and the time's state
Made friends of them, joining their force 'gainst Caesar;
Whose better issue in the war, from Italy,
Upon the first encounter, drave them.
Well, what worst?
The nature of bad news infects the
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 flatter'd.
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, thou wouldst say,--
O, my lord!
Speak to me home, mince not the general tongue:
Name Cleopatra as she is call'd 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.
At your noble pleasure.
From Sicyon, ho, the news! Speak
The man from Sicyon,--is there such an
He stays upon your will.
Let him appear.
These strong Egyptian fetters I must break,
Or lose myself in dotage.
Enter another Messenger
What are you?
Fulvia thy wife is dead.
Where died she?
Her length of sickness, with what else more serious
Importeth thee to know, this bears.
Gives a letter
Exit Second Messenger
There's a great spirit gone! Thus did I desire it:
What our contempt 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!
Re-enter DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS
What's your pleasure, sir?
I must with haste from hence.
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.
I must be gone.
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.
She is cunning past man's thought.
Alack, sir, no; her passions are made of nothing
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.
Would I had never seen her.
O, sir, you had then left unseen a wonderful piece
of work; which not to have been blest withal would
have discredited your travel.
Fulvia is dead.
Fulvia is dead.
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.
The business she hath broached in the state
Cannot endure my absence.
And the business you have broached here cannot be
without you; especially that of Cleopatra's, which
wholly depends on your abode.
No more light answers. Let our officers
dare to Caesar, and commands
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
The empire of the sea: our slippery people,
Whose love is never link'd 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' the world may