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Why all these things change, from their ordinance,
Their natures, and pre-formed faculties,
To monstrous quality; why, you shall find,
That heaven hath infus'd them with these spirits,
To make them instruments of fear, and warning,
Unto some monstrous state. Now could I, Casca,
Name to thee a man most like this dreadful night;
That thunders, lightens, opens graves, and roars
As doth the lion in the Capitol :

A man no mightier than thyself, or me,
In personal action; yet prodigious grown,
And fearful, as these strange eruptions are.

Casca. 'Tis Cæsar that you mean: Is it not, Cassius?
Cas. Let it be who it is: for Romans now
Have thewes and limbs like to their ancestors;
But, woe the while! our fathers' minds are dead,
And we are govern'd with our mothers' spirits;
Our yoke and sufferance show us womanish.

Casca. Indeed, they say, the senators to-morrow
Mean to establish Cæsar as a king:

And he shall wear his crown, by sea, and land,
In every place, save here in Italy.

Cas. I know where I will wear this dagger then;
Cassius from bondage will deliver Cassius:

Therein, ye gods, you make the weak most strong;
Therein, ye gods, you tyrants do defeat:
Nor stony tower, nor walls of beaten brass,
Nor airless dungeon, nor strong links of iron,
Can be retentive to the strength of spirit;
But life, being weary of these worldly bars,
Never lacks power to dismiss itself.

If I know this, know all the world besides,
That part of tyranny, that I do bear,


prodigious grown,] Prodigious is portentous. So, in Troilus

and Cressida:

"It is prodigious, there will be some change."

See Vol. II, p. 378, n. 5. Steevens.

9 Have thewes and limbs-] Thewes is an obsolete word implying nerves or muscular strength. It is used by Falstaff, in The Second Part of King Henry IV, and in Hamlet:

"For nature, crescent, does not grow alone

"In thewes and bulk."

The two last folios, [1664 and 1685] in which some words are injudiciously modernized, read-sinews. Steevens.

I can shake off at pleasure.


So can I :

So every bondman in his own hand bears
The power to cancel his captivity.1

Cas. And why should Cæsar be a tyrant then?
Poor man! I know, he would not be a wolf,
But that he sees the Romans are but sheep:
He were no lion, were not Romans hinds.
Those that with haste will make a mighty fire,
Begin it with weak straws: What trash is Rome,
What rubbish, and what offal, when it serves
For the base matter to illuminate

So vile a thing as Cæsar? But, O, grief!
Where hast thou led me? I, perhaps, speak this
Before a willing bondman: then I know
My answer must be made :2 But I am arm'd,
And dangers are to me indifferent.

Casca. You speak to Casca; and to such a man,
That is no fleering tell-tale. Hold my hand :3
Be factious for redress of all these griefs;
And I will set this foot of mine as far,

As who goes farthest.


There's a bargain made.

Now know you, Casca, I have mov'd already
Some certain of the noblest-minded Romans,
To undergo, with me, an enterprize


- every bondman

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The power to cancel his captivity.] So, in Cymbeline, Act V, Posthumus speaking of his chains:

68 take this life,

"And cancel these cold bonds." Henley.

2 My answer must be made:] I shall be called to account, and must answer as for seditious words. Johnson.

So, in Much Ado about Nothing: "Sweet prince, let me go no further to mine answer; do you hear me, and let this count kill me."



Hold my hand:] Is the same as, Here's my hand. Johnson4 Be factious for redress-] Factious seems here to mean active.



Menenius, in

It means, I apprehend, embody a party or faction. Malone. Perhaps Dr. Johnson's explanation is the true one. Coriolanus, says: "I have been always factionary on the part of your general;" and the speaker, who is describing himself, would scarce have employed the word in its common and unfavourable sense.

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Of honourable-dangerous consequence;
And I do know, by this, they stay for me
In Pompey's porch: For now, this fearful night,
There is no stir, or walking in the streets;

And the complexion of the element,

Is favour'd, like the works* we have in hand, os favors Most bloody, fiery, and most terrible.

Enter CINNA.

Casca. Stand close awhile, for here comes one in haste.
Cas. 'Tis Cinna, I do know him by his gait;

He is a friend.-Cinna, where haste

you so?

Cin. To find out you: Who's that? Metellus Cimber}
Cas. No, it is Casca; one incorporate

To our attempts. Am I not staid for, Cinna?

Cin. I am glad on 't. What a fearful night is this? There's two or three of us have seen strange sights. Cas. Am I not staid for, Cinna? Tell me.


You are.

O, Cassius, if you could but win The noble Brutus to our party


Cas. Be you content: Good Cinna, take this paper, And look you lay it in the prætor's chair,

Where Brutus may but find it; and throw this

In at his window: set this up with wax

Upon old Brutus' statue: all this done,
Repair to Pompey's porch, where you shall find us.
Is Decius Brutus, and Trebonius, there?

5 Is favour'd, like the work-] The old edition reads :

Is favors, like the work

I think we should read:

In favour's like the work we have in hand,
Most bloody, fiery, and most terrible.

Favour is look, countenance, appearance. Johnson.

To favour is to resemble. Thus Stanyhurst, in his translation of the third Book of Virgil's Æneid, 1582:

"With the petit town gates favouring the principal old portes." We may read It favours, or-Is favour'd-i. e. is in appearance or countenance like, &c. See Vol. III, p. 432, n. 2. Steevens. Johnson is right in his explanation of the word favour. It is often used by our author in this sense. So, p. 13:

"I know that virtue to be in you, Brutus, "As well as I do know your outward favour." Again, in Vol. XII, p. 155:

"I know your favour, Lord Ulysses, well." and the note. Am. Ed.

Cin. All but Metellus Cimber; and he's gone To seek you at your house. Well, I will hie, And so bestow these papers as you bade me.

Cas. That done, repair to Pompey's theatre. [Exit CIN. Come, Casca, you and I will, yet, ere day,

See Brutus at his house: three parts of him

Is ours already; and the man entire,

Upon the next encounter, yields him ours.

Casca. O, he sits high, in all the people's hearts: And that, which would appear offence in us,

His countenance, like richest alchymy,

Will change to virtue, and to worthiness.

Cas. Him, and his worth, and our great need of him,

You have right well conceited. Let us go,

For it is after midnight; and, ere day,

We will awake him, and be sure of him.


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Bru. What, Lucius! ho!—
I cannot, by the progress of the stars,

Brutus's orchard.] The modern editors read garden, but orchard seems anciently to have had the same meaning. Steevens. That these two words were anciently synonymous, appears from a line in this play:


he hath left you all his walks,

"His private arbours, and new-planted orchards,
"On this side Tyber."

In Sir T. North's translation of Plutarch, the passage which Shakspeare has here copied, stands thus: "He left his gardens and arbours unto the people, which he had on this side of the river Tyber."

So also, in Barret's Alvearie, 1580: "A garden or an orchard, hortus."-The truth is, that few of our ancestors had in the age of Queen Elizabeth any other garden but an orchard; and hence the latter word was considered as synonymous to the former. Malone.

The number of treatises written on the subject of horticulture, even at the beginning of Queen Elizabeth's reign, very strongly controvert Mr. Malone's supposition relative to the unfrequency of gardens at so early a period. Steevens.


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!

Luc. Call'd you, my lord?

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

Luc. I will, my lord.


Bru. 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 crown'd :

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.
The abuse of greatness is, when it disjoins
Remorse from power:8 And, to speak truth of Cæsar,
I have not known when his affections sway'd

Orchard was anciently written hort-yard; hence its original meaning is obvious. Henley.

By the following quotation, however, it will appear that these words had in the days of Shakspeare acquired a distinct meaning. "It shall be good to have understanding of the ground where ye do plant either orchard or garden with fruite." A Booke of the Arte and Maner howe to plant and graffe all Sortes of Trees, &c. 1574, 4to. And when Justice Shallow invites Falstaff to see his orchard, where they are to eat a last year's pippin of his own graffing, he certainly uses the word in its present acceptation.

Leland also, in his Itinerary distinguishes them: "At Morle in Derbyshire (says he) there is as much pleasure of orchards of great variety of frute, and fair made walks, and gardens, as in any place of Lancashire." H. White.

7 When, Lucius, when?] This exclamation, indicating impatience, has already occurred in King Richard II:


"When, Harry, when ?" See Vol. VIII, p. 14, n. 5. Malone. * Remorse from power:] Remorse, for mercy. Warburton. Remorse (says Mr. Heath) signifies the conscious uneasiness arising from a sense of having done wrong; to extinguish which feeling, nothing hath so great a tendency as absolute uncontrouled power. I think Warburton right. Johnson.

Remorse is pity, tenderness; and has twice occurred in that sense in Measure for Measure. See Vol. III, p. 357, n. 7; and p.463, n. 9. The same word occurs in Othello, and several other of our au thor's dramas, with the same signification. Steevens.

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