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Cin. I am Cinna the poet, I am Cinna the poet.
4 Cit. Tear him for his bad verses, tear him for his bad verses. 483. Cin. I am not Cinna the conspirator. 484. 2 Cit. It is no matter, his name's Cinna; pluck but his name out of his heart, and turn him going.
3 Cit. Tear him, tear him. Come, brands, ho! fire-brands. To Brutus', to Cassius' ; burn all. Some to Decius' house, and some to Casca’s: some to Ligarius': away; go.
461. And things unlikely charge my fantasy.-Instead of unlikely the old text has unluckily. Unlikely, which appears for the first time in Mr Collier's one volume edition, is the restoration of his MS. annotator. It at once, and in the most satisfactory manner, turns nonsense into sense. Heno "mlucky"; ming mind - porseded with unluetlog
461. I have no will, etc. Very well illustrated by forebodingue Steevens in a quotation from The Merchant of Venice, ii. 5, where Shylock says:
"I have no mind of feasting forth to night:
But I will go.”
The only stage direction here in the original edition is before this speech :-" Enter Cinna the Poet, and after him the Plebeians.”
469. Ay, and truly, you were best. — This is strictly equivalent to "You would be best," and might perhaps be more easily resolved than the more common idiom, “You had best.” But all languages have phraseologies coming under the same head with this, which are not to be explained upon strictly logical principles. Witness the various applications of the Greek čxel, the French il y a, etc. In the following sentence from As You Like It, i. 1, we have both the idioms that have been referred to:“I had as lief thou didst break his neck as his finger and thou wert best look to it."
470. Wisely, I say, I am a bachelor.–Cinna's meaning evidently is, Wisely I am a bachelor. But that is not
conveyed by the way in which the passage has hitherto been always pointed—“Wisely I say."
471. You'll bear me a bang for that.-You'll get a bang for that (from some one). The me goes for nothing. Vid. &9 and 205.
483. Cin. I am not, etc.—This speeeh was carelessly omitted in the generality of the modern texts, including that of the standard edition of Malone and Boswell, till restored by Mr Knight. It is given, however, in Jennens's collation (1774), and he does not note its omission by any preceding editor.
484. Turn him going.–Turn him off; let him go. The expression occurs also in As You Like It, iii. 1:-"Do this expediently, and turn him going.” So in Sir Thomas Urquhart's translation of Rabelais, B. i. ch. 35; "Avoid hence, and get thee going.”—This story of Cinna is told by Plutarch in his Life of Cæsar. He says, the people, falling upon him in their rage, slew him outright in the market-place.
The stage direction with which the Act terminates in the original edition is, “ Exeunt all the Plebeians."
SCENE 1.-The same. A Room in ANTONY's House.
ANTONY, OCTAVIUS, and LEPIDUS, seated at a Table. 486. Ant. These many, then, shall die; their names are pricked.
Oct. Your brother too must die. Consent you, Lepidus ?
Oct. Prick him down, Antony.
Who is your sister's son, Mark Antony.
But, Lepidus, go you to Cæsar's house;
Lep. What, shall I find you here?
Oct. Or here, or at
[Exit LEPIDUS. 494. Ant. This is a slight unmeritable man,
Meet to be sent on errands: Is it fit,
Oct. So you thought him;
In our black sentence and proscription.
And though we lay these honours on this man,
and sweat under the business,
Oct. You may do your will;
I do appoint him store of provender.
And open perils surest answered.
And bayed about with many enemies ;
[Exeunt. The Same. A Room in Antony's House.—The original heading is only, “ Enter Antony, Octavius, and Lepidus.". The Same, meaning at Rome, was supplied by Rowe. It is evident (especially from 492 and 493) that the scene is placed at Rome, although in point of fact the triumvirs held their meeting in a small island in the river Rhenus (now the Reno) near Bononia (Bologna), where, Plutarch says, they remained three days together. 486. These many.-An archaic form for so many,
486. Their names are pricked.–Vid. 352.
490. Who is your sister's son, Mark Antony. This is a mistake. The person meant is Lucius Cæsar, who was Mark Antony's uncle, the brother of his mother.
491. Look, with a spot I damn him.- Note him as condemned, by a mark or stigma (called pricking his name in 486, and pricking him down in 489, and pricking him in 495).
491. Fetch the will hither, and we shall determine.-This is the reading of all the old copies, and is properly retained by Mr Knight. In the Variorum edition we have and without warning) will substituted for shall; and this alteration Mr Collier also adopts in his regulated text, although it does not appear to be one of the corrections of his manuscript annotator.
494. This is a slight unmeritable man.--So afterwards in 535, “ Away, slight man !” said by Brutus, in momentary anger, to Cassius. Vid. 522. - Unmeritable should mean incapable of deserving. 494. Meet to be sent on errands.
Errand is an Original English word, ærend (perhaps from ær, or ar, before, whence also ere and early). It has no connexion with errant, wandering (from the Latin erro, whence also err, and error, and erroneous).
and sweat under the business.-- Business is commonly only a dissyllable with Shakespeare; and it may be no more here upon the principle explained in the note on She dreamt to-night she saw my statue” in 246. There are a good many more instances of lines concluding with business, in which either it is a trisyllable (although commonly only a dissyllable in the middle of a line) or the verse must be regarded as a hemistich, or truncated verse, of nine syllables.
496. Either led or driven, etc.— The three last Folios, and also Rowe, have "print the way." The we of this line, and the our and the we of the next, are all emphatic. There is the common irregularity of a single short superfluous syllable (the er of either).
496. And graze on commons.—In is the reading of all the old copies. On is the correction of Mr Collier's MS. annotator.
498. Store of provender.-Provender, which Johnson explains to mean “ dry food for brutes,” and which also appears in the forms provand and provant, is immediately from the French provende, having the same signification; but the origin of the French word is not so clear. The Italian, indeed, has provianda, a feminine substantive in the singular; but this signifies victuals in general, or flesh-meat in particular, and is the same word with the French viande and the English viands, which are commonly traced to the Latin vivere (quasi vivenda), an etymology which receives some support from the existence of vivanda in the Italian as apparently only another form of provianda. Another derivation of the French provende brings it from provenire and proventus, in which case it would signify properly increase, growth, crop; and another would bring it from provideo, making it only a variation or corruption of provision. The parentage of the word, therefore, may be said to be contested between vivo, venio, and video. Possibly vendo might also put in