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Ant. Yet hear me, countrymen; yet hear me speak.
Ant. Why, friends, you go to do you know not what:
loves ? Alas, you know not:-I must tell you, then :You have forgot the will I told you of.
Cit. Most true ;—the will;-let's stay, and hear the will. 441. Ant. Here is the will, and under Cæsar's seal.
To every Roman citizen he gives,
2 Cit. Most noble Cæsar !-we'll revenge his death.
Cit. Peace, ho!
His private arbours, and new-planted orchards,
Here was a Cæsar: When comes such another? 450. 1 Cit. Never, never !--Come, away, away!
We'll burn his body in the holy place,
2 Cit. Go, fetch fire.
[Exeunt CITIZENS, with the body. 454. Ant. Now let it work: Mischief, thou art afoot,
Take thou what course thou wilt!-How now, fellow?
Enter a SERVANT.
Serv. Sir, Octavius is already come to Rome.
Serv. He and Lepidus are at Cæsar's house. 458. Ant. And thither will I straight to visit him.
He comes upon a wish. Fortune is merry,
And in this mood will give us anything. 459. Serv. I heard them say, Brutus and Cassius
Are rid like madmen through the gates of Rome. 460. Ant. Belike they had some notice of the people,
How I had moved them. Bring me to Octavius.
370. For Cit. here the original edition has Ple.; and afterwards for 1 Cit., 2 Cit., 3 Cit., it has 1 Ple., 2, 3; and for Cit. at 376, etc., it has All.
371. And part the numbers.—Divide the multitude.
371. And public reasons shall be rendered.—To render is to give back or in return for. Thus in 349, as we have seen, Antony asks Brutus and his confederates to render him their hands in return for his own. Here the act which had been done, the slaughter of Cæsar, is that in return or compensation for which, as it were, the reasons are to be given.-For the prosody of the present line see the note on She dreamt to-night she saw my statue” in 246. It may be observed that in the First Folio, where the elision of the e in the verbal affix -ed is usually marked, the spelling is here rendred; but this may leave it still doubtful whether the word was intended to be represented as of two or of three syllables. It is the same in 373.
373. Exit Cassius, etc. Brutus goes into the Rostrum. - This stage direction is all modern. The Rostrum is the same that is called “ the public chair" in 389, and“ the pulpit” elsewhere : Vid. 318, 320, 355, 358, 360. Rostrum is not a word which Shakespeare anywhere uses. Nor, indeed, is it a legitimate formation. It ought to be Rostra, in the plural, as it always is in Latin. Nevertheless few persons in their senses will be inclined to go with Dr Webster for the immediate origin of Rostrum, in any of its English applications, to the Welsh rhetgyr, a snout, or rhethern, a pike.
374. The noble Brutus is ascended. In this form of expression it is plain that we use the verb to ascend in quite a different sense from that which it has when we say " Brutus has ascended the pulpit.” According to the one form, it is Brutus that is ascended ; according to the other, it is the pulpit that is ascended. In point of fact, if to ascend be taken in its proper sense of to mount
or climb up, it is only the pulpit that can be ascended; in saying that Brutus is ascended we employ the verb as if its meaning were to lift, carry, or bear up. Clear, however, as is the violation of principle, the right of perpetrating it must be held to be one of the established liberties of the language. Even still we commonly say is come, is become, is gone, is arrived, is fled, is escaped, etc. In the freer condition of the language formerly such a mode of expression was carried a good deal farther. Thus, in the present Play, we have in 329 “[Antony is] fled to his house amazed;” in 399, “ O judgment! thou art fled to brutish beasts;” in 459, “ Brutus and Cassius Are rid like madmen through the gates of Rome;" in 510, “Hark, he is arrived;" in 624, " The deep of night
“ is crept upon our talk ;" in 704, “This morning are they fled away
and gone;" in 722, “ Time is come round;" and “ My life is run his compass.'
This last instance carries the irregularity to its height; for here the verb to run is actually used at the same time in two senses; both in the sense in which we say “to run a ship on a rock,” or “to run a nail into a door” (that is, to make move rapidly), and also in that in which we say “to run a race" (that is, to move rapidly through or over). In the first sense only can Cassius say that his life is
in the second alone can he speak of it as running his-that is, its (Vid. 54)—compass. In the one case it is the thing moved that is run (the same as when we talk of running a thread through a cloth or a rope over a pulley, or of running a metal, or running off wine) ; in the other case, what is said to be run is the act or process through which the movement is made (the same as when we talk of running a risk, or running the gauntlet, or running a muck). This latter sense is not to be confounded with that which we have in “ to run a mile;' there the verb is intransitive, and the noun expresses only the extent, or as it were manner, of the verbal action, and is no
more governed by the verb than it is in the phrase “to live a year," or than the qualifying adverb is so governed in the phrase "to run fast.” If Cassius had said that his life was run its compass halfway, we should have had a combination of all the three senses.
The following are examples of this form of construction from other plays :“Is our whole dissembly appeared ?”
(Dogberry, in Much Ado about Noth., iv. 2); “ Prince John is this morning secretly stolen away.”
Sexton, Ibid.); “His lordship is walked forth into the orchard."
(Porter, in Second Part of Henry IV., i. 1); “ He said mine eyes were black, and my hair black, And, now I am remembered, scorned at me.”
(Phebe, in As You Like It, iii. 5); “You being then, if you be remembered, cracking the stones.”
(Clown, in Meas. for Meas. ii. 1); “I telling you then, if you be remembered.”—(Ibid.);
“But, if you be remembered, “I did not bid you mar it to the time.”
(Petrucio, in Tam. of Shrew, iv. 3) ; “ If your majesty is remembered of it.”
(Fluellen, in Henry V., iv. 7);
(York, in Rich. III., ië. 4); “Be you remembered, Marcus, she's gone, she's fled.”
(Titus, in Titus Andronicus, iv. 3). 375. Romans, countrymen, and lovers.—Vid. 260.
375. Have respect to mine honour.—That is, merely, look to (not look up to). We still employ such words as respect and regard in different senses according to circumstances. I look with regard, or with respect, upon this man, or upon that institution. With regard, or with respect, to another man or institution I have nothing to say but what is condemnatory, or nothing to say at all.
6 free men
375. Censure me. That is, merely, pass judgment upon me.
Vid. 329. 375. Any dear friend of Cæsar's, to him I say. It is "to them I say" in the second Folio.
375. Not that I loved Cæsar less.-Less than he (the “ dear friend ") loved Cæsar.
375. But that I loved Rome more.- More than he (the “dear friend of Cæsar') loved Rome. 375. Had
rather.–Vid. note on Had as lief in 54. 375. To live all freemen. - It is commonly printed “free men,” in two words. But the writer cannot have intended that such prominence should be given to the term men, the notion conveyed by which is equally contained in slaves; for which, indeed, we might have had bondmen, with no difference of effect. If it ought to be
here, it should be “ Who is here so base that would be a bond man ?” a few lines farther on. In the original edition it is "freemen."
375. There is tears, etc.—In many modern editions this is changed into “ There are.” But the tears, joy, etc., are regarded as making one thing. Instead of "There is,” it might have been “ This is,” or “ That is."
376. The stage direction is modern.
377. The question of his death.—The word question is here used in a somewhat peculiar sense. It seems to mean the statement of the reasons. In a note on the expression in Hamlet, ii. 2, “ Little eyases, that cry out on the top of question,” Steevens gives it as his opinion that question“ in this place, as in many others, signifies conversation, dialogue." And he quotes in corroboration Antonio's remark, in The Merchant of Venice, iv. 1, "I pra you, think you question with the Jew.” But in that passage the meaning of the word is merely the ordinary one, you debate, argue, hold controversy, with. The following may perhaps be adduced as an instance of the use of the word in a somewhat larger sense, involving