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300. Bru. He is addressed: press near and second him.
Cin. Casca, you are the first that rears your hand.
Casca. Are we all ready ?
Cæs. What is now amiss,
That Cæsar, and his senate, must redress ?
Met. Most high, most mighty, and most puissant Cæsar,
Metellus Cimber throws before thy seat
An humble heart :-
[Kneeling. 305. Cæs. I must prevent thee, Cimber.
These crouchings, and these lowly courtesies,
Might fire the blood of ordinary men ;
And turn pre-ordinance, and first decree,
Into the law of children. Be not fond,
To think that Cæsar bears such rebel blood,
That will be thawed from the true quality
With that which melteth fools; I mean sweet words,
Low-crouched curt’sies, and base spaniel fawning.
Thy brother by decree is banished;
If thou dost bend, and pray, and fawn for him,
I spurn thee like a cur out of my way.
Know, Cæsar doth not wrong; nor without cause
Will he be satisfied.
Met. Is there no voice more worthy than my own,
To sound more sweetly in great Cæsar's ear
For the repealing of my banished brother?
Bru. I kiss thy hand, but not in flattery, Cæsar;
Desiring thee that Publius Cimber may
Have an immediate freedom of repeal.
Cæs. What, Brutus !
Cas. Pardon, Cæsar ; Cæsar, pardon :
As low as to thy foot doth Cassius fall,
To beg enfranchisement for Publius Cimber.
310. Cæs. I could be well moved, if I were as you ;
If I could pray to move, prayers would move me:
But I am constant as the northern star,
Of whose true fixt and resting quality
There is no fellow in the firmament.
The skies are painted with unnumbered sparks,
They are all fire, and every one doth shine;
But there's but one in all doth hold his place :
So, in the world ; 'tis furnished well with men,
And men are flesh and blood, and apprehensive ;
Yet, in the number, I do know but one
That unassailable holds on his rank,
Unshaked of motion : and, that I am he,
Let me a little show it, even in this ;
That I was constant, Cimber should be banished,
And constant do remain to keep him so.
Cin. O Cæsar, -
Cæs. Hence! wilt thou lift up Olympus ?
Dec. Great Cæsar,
Cæs. Doth not Brutus bootless kneel ? 315. Casca. Speak, hands, for me.
[Casca stabs CÆSAR in the neck. CÆSAR catches hold of
his arm. He is then stabbed by several other con
spirators, and at last by Marcus BRUTUS. Cæs. Et tu, Brute.-Then, fall, Cæsar.
[Dies. The Senators and People retire in confusion.
Cin. Liberty! Freedom! Tyranny is dead !-
Run hence, proclaim, cry it about the streets.
Cas. Some to the common pulpits, and cry out,
Liberty, freedom, and enfranchisement !
Bru. People, and senators! be not affrighted ;
Fly not; stand still :-ambition's debt is paid. 320. Casca. Go to the pulpit, Brutus.
Dec. And Cassius too.
Bru. Where's Publius ?
Cin. Here, quite confounded with this mutiny.
Met. Stand fast together, lest some friend of Cæsar's
325. Bru. Talk not of standing ; Publius, good cheer;
There is no harm intended to your person,
Nor to no Roman else : so tell them, Publius.
Cas. And leave us, Publius ; lest that the people,
Rushing on us, should do your age some mischief.
Bru. Do so ;--and let no man abide this deed,
But we the doers.
Cas. Where's Antony ?
Tre. Fled to his house amazed :
Men, wives, and children, stare, cry out, and run,
As it were doomsday.
330. Bru. Fates! we will know your pleasures :-
That we shall die, we know ; 'tis but the time,
And drawing days out, that men stand upon.
Casca. Why, he that cuts off twenty years of life
Cuts off so many years of fearing death.
Bru. Grant that, and then is death a benefit :
So are we Cæsar's friends, that have abridged
His time of fearing death.–Stoop, Romans, stoop,
And let us bathe our hands in Cæsar's blood
Up to the elbows, and besmear our swords :
Then walk we forth, even to the market-place;
And, waving our red weapons o'er our heads,
Let's all cry, Peace! Freedom! and Liberty!
Cas. Stoop, then, and wash. How many ages hence,
Shall this our lofty scene be acted over
In states unborn, and accents yet unknown!
Bru. How many times shall Cæsar bleed in sport,
That now on Pompey's basis lies along,
No worthier than the dust! 335. Cas. So oft as that shall be,
So often shall the knot of us be called
The men that gave their country liberty.
Dec. What, shall we forth ?
Cas. Ay, every man away:
Brutus shall lead ; and we will grace his heels
With the most boldest and best hearts of Rome.
Enter a SERVANT.
Bru. Soft, who comes here ? A friend of Antony's.
Serv. Thus, Brutus, did my master bid me kneel;
Thus did Mark Antony bid me fall down :
And, being prostrate, thus he bade me say.
Brutus is noble, wise, valiant, and honest;
Cæsar was mighty, bold, royal, and loving :
Say, I love Brutus, and I honour him ;
Say, I feared Cæsar, honoured him, and loved him.
If Brutus will vouchsafe, that Antony
May safely come to him, and be resolved
How Cæsar hath deserved to lie in death,
Mark Antony shall not love Cæsar dead
So well as Brutus living ; but will follow
The fortunes and affairs of noble Brutus,
Thorough the hazards of this untrod state,
With all true faith. So says my master Antony. 340. Bru. Thy master is a wise and valiant Roman;
I never thought him worse.
Tell him, so please him come unto this place,
He shall be satisfied ; and, by my honour,
Serv. I'll fetch him presently.
Bru. I know that we shall have him well to friend.
Cas. I wish we may: but yet have I a mind
That fears him much ; and my misgiving still
Falls shrewdly to the purpose.
Re-enter ANTONY. Bru. But here comes Antony.—Welcome, Mark Antony. 345. Ant. O mighty Cæsar! Dost thou lie so low?
Are all thy conquests, glories, triumphs, spoils,
Shrunk to this little measure ?-Fare thee well.-
I know not, gentlemen, what you intend,
Who else must be let blood, who else is rank :
If I myself, there is no hour so fit
As Cæsar's death's hour; nor no instrument
Of half that worth as those your swords, made rich
With the most noble blood of all this world.
I do beseech ye, if you bear me hard,
Now, whilst your purpled hands do reek and smoke
Fulfil your pleasure. Live a thousand years,
I shall not find myself so apt to die :
No place will please me so, no mean of death
As here, by Cæsar and by you, cut off,
The choice and master spirits of this age.
Bru. O Antony! beg not your death of us.
Though now we must appear bloody and cruel,
As, by your hands, and this our present act,
You see we do ; yet see you but our hands,
And this the bleeding business they have done :
Our hearts you see not, they are pitiful ;
And pity to the general wrong of Rome
(As fire drives out fire, so pity, pity),
Hath done this deed on Cæsar. For your part,
To you our swords have leaden points, Mark Antony :
Our arms, in strength of welcome, and our hearts,
Of brothers' temper, do receive you in
With all kind love, good thoughts, and reverence.
Cas. Your voice shall be as strong as any man's
In the disposing of new dignities.
Bru. Only be patient, till we have appeased
The multitude, beside themselves with fear,
And then we will deliver you the cause,
Why I, that did love Cæsar when I struck him,
Have thus proceeded.
Ant. I doubt not of your wisdom.
Let each man render me his bloody hand :
First, Marcus Brutus, will I shake with you :-
Next, Caius Cassius, do I take your hand ;-
Now, Decius Brutus, yours ;-now yours, Metellus ;
Yours, Cinna ;--and my valiant Casca, yours ;-
Though last, not least in love, yours, good Trebonius.
Gentlemen all,--alas! what shall I say?
My credit now stands on such slippery ground,
That one of two bad ways you must conceit me,
Either a coward or a flatterer.
That I did love thee, Cæsar, 0, 'tis true:
If then thy spirit look upon us now,
Shall it not grieve thee, dearer than thy death,
To see thy Antony making his peace,
Shaking the bloody fingers of thy foes,
Most noble! in the presence of thy corse ?
Had I as many eyes as thou hast wounds,
Weeping as fast as they stream forth thy blood,
It would become me better, than to close
In terms of friendship with thine enemies.
Pardon me, Julius !-Here wast thou bayed, brave heart;
Here didst thou fall; and here thy hunters stand,
Signed in thy spoil, and crimsoned in thy death.
O world! thou wast the forest to this hart;
And this, indeed, O world, the heart of thee.-
How like a deer, strucken by many princes,
Dost thou here lie!
350. Cas. Mark Antony,-
Ant. Pardon me, Caius Cassius :
The enemies of Cæsar shall say this ;
Then, in a friend, it is cold modesty.
Cas. I blame you not for praising Cæsar so;
But what compact mean you to have with us ?
Will you be pricked in number of our friends ;
Or shall we on, and not depend on you?
Ant. Therefore I took your hands; but was, indeed,
Swayed from the point, by looking down on Cæsar,
Friends am I with you all, and love you all;
Upon this hope, that you shall give me reasons,
Why, and wherein, Cæsar was dangerous.
Bru. Or else were this a savage spectacle.
Our reasons are so full of good regard,
That, were you, Antony, the son of Cæsar,
You should be satisfied. 355. Ant. That's all I seek :
And am moreover suitor, that I may
Produce his body to the market-place;
And in the pulpit, as becomes a friend,
Speak in the order of his funeral.
Bru. You shall, Mark Antony.
Cas. Brutus, a word with you.-
You know not what you do ; Do not consent,
That Antony speak in his funeral :
Know you how much the people may be moved
By that which he will utter?
Bru. By your pardon ;-
I will myself into the pulpit first,
And show the reason of our Cæsar's death :
What Antony shall speak, I will protest
He speaks by leave and by permission;
And that we are contented, Cæsar shall
Have all true rites, and lawful ceremonies.
It shall advantage more than do us wrong.