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phasis, in the same manner as I and he in the preceding line. This is Warburton's explanation; whose remark, however, that the words convey a reflection on Brutus's ingratitude, seems unfounded. It is rather Brutus's simplicity that Cassius has in his mind. It would be more satisfactory, however, if other examples could be produced of the use of the verb to humor in the sense assumed. Johnson appears to have quite mistaken the meaning of the passage: he takes the he to be, not Brutus, but Cæsar; and his interpretation is, “his (that is, Cæsar's) love should not take hold of my affection, so as to make me forget my principles.”
105. In several hands. ~ Writings in several hands.
105. Let Cæsar seat him sure. — Seat himself firmly (as on horseback).
SCENE III. – The heading of Scene III. in the old copies is only - Thunder and Lightning. Enter Casca, and Cicero."
106. Brought you Cæsar home? - Bring, which is now ordinarily restricted to the sense of carrying hither (so that we cannot say, Bring there), was formerly used in that of carrying or conveying generally. To bring one on his way, for instance, was to accompany him even if he had been leaving the speaker. So “ Brought you Cæsar home?” is, Did you go home with Cæsar? [Compare Genesis xviii. 16; Acts xxi. 5; Romans xv. 24.] To fetch, again, seems always to have meant more than to bring or to carry. “ A horse cannot fetch, but only carry," says Launce in The Two Gent. of Ver. iii. 1.
107. All the sway of earth. – That is, the balanced swing of earth.
107. Like a thing unfirm. – We have now lost the adjective unfirm, and we have appropriated infirm almost exclusively to the human body and mind, and their states and movements. For infirm generally we can only say not firm.
107. Have rived. — We have nearly lost this form, which is the one Shakespeare uses in the only two passages in which (if we may trust to Mrs. Clarke) the past participle passive of the verb to rive is found in his works. The other is also in this Play: “ Brutus hath rived my heart,” in 553. Milton, again, has our modern riven in the only passage of his poetry in which any part of the verb to rive occurs, (P. L. vi. 449) :“ His riven arms to havoc hewn.”
107. To be exalted with. — That is, in order, or in the effort, to be raised to the same height with.
107. A tempest dropping fire. — In the original text these three words are joined together by hyphens.
107. A civil strife in heaven. — A strife in which one part of heaven wars with another.
108. Any thing more wonderful. - That is, anything more that was wonderful. So in Coriolanus, iv. 6:
The slave's report is seconded, and more,
More fearful, is delivered.
Some reasons of this double coronation
109. You know him well by sight. — Is it to be supposed that Casca really means to say that the common slave whom he chanced to meet was a particular individual well known to Cicero? Of what importance could that circumstance be? Or for what purpose should Casca notice it, even supposing him to have been acquainted with the fact that Cicero knew the man well, and yet knew him only by sight? It is impossible not to suspect some interpolation or corruption. Perhaps the true reading may be, “You knew him well by sight,” meaning that any one would have known him at once to be but a common slave (notwithstanding the preternatural appearance, as if almost of something godlike, which his uplifted hand exhibited, burning but unhurt). [The incident is taken from North’s Plutarch. “ There was a slave of the souldiers that did cast a marvellous burning flame out of his hands, insomuch as they that saw it thought he had been burnt; but when the fire was out, it was found that he had no hurt.” – Life of Julius Cæsar. “You know him well by sight " seems to me a less singular expression than the one which Craik suggests as an emendation. It is nothing strange that both Cicero and Casca should happen to know a particular slave by sight, and it is natural enough that Casca in relating this prodigy to his friend should say, And you yourself know the man.]
109. Besides (I have not since, etc. — In the Folios, “ I ha' not since.”
109. Against the Capitol. — Over against, opposite to.
109. Who glared upon me. — In all the Folios the word is glazed. Pope first changed it to glared. Malone afterwards substituted gazed, partly on the strength of a passage in Stowe's Chronicle, — which gave Steevens an opportunity of maliciously rejoining, after quoting other instances of Shakespeare's use of glare, “I therefore continue to repair the poet with his own animated phraseology, rather than with the cold expression suggested by the narrative of Stowe; who, having been a tailor, was undoubtedly equal to the task of mending Shakespeare's hose, but, on poetical emergencies, must not be allowed to patch his dialogue.” Glared is also the correction of Mr. Collier's MS. annotator.
109. Drawn upon a heap. — Gathered together in a heap, or crowd. “ Among this princely heap,” says Gloster in Richard III. ii. 1. Heap was in common use in this sense throughout the seventeenth century. [Compare Chaucer, Prioresses Tale: –
A litel scole of Cristen folk ther stood :
Children an hepe comen of Cristen blood.] 109. The bird of night. — The owl; as the “bird of dawning” (the cock) in Hamlet, i. 1.
109. Hooting and shrieking. — Howting is the word in the first three Folios, houting in the Fourth.
109. Even at noonday, etc. — There may be a question as to the prosody of this line; whether we are to count even a monosyllable and throw the accent upon day, or making even a dissyllable and accenting noon, to reckon day supernumerary.
109. These are their reasons, etc. — That such and such are their reasons. It is the same form of expression that we have afterwards in 147: “Would run to these and these extremities.” But the present line has no claim to either a distinctive type or inverted commas. It is not as if it were 66 These are our reasons.” [Collier in his “Regulated Text” adopts the emendation, seasons, of his MS. annotator, but in his second edition he returns to the old reading.]
109. Unto the climate. — The region of the earth, according to the old geographical division of the globe into so many Climates, which had no reference, or only an accidental one, to differences of temperature.
110. A strange-disposed time. — We should now have to use the adverb in this kind of combination. If we still say strange-shaped, it is because there we seem to have a substantive for the adjective to qualify; just as we have in high-mind-ed, strong-minded, able-bodi-ed, and other similar forms. In other cases, again, it is the adjective, and not the adverb, that enters into the composition of the verb ; thus we say strange-looking, mad-looking, heavy-looking, etc., because the verb is to look strange, etc., not to look strangely (which has quite another meaning). Foreign-built may be regarded as an irregular formation, occasioned probably by our having no such adverb as foreignly. Even in home-built, homebaked, home-brewed, home-grown, home-made, etc., the adverb home has a meaning (at home) which it never has when standing alone.
110. Clean from the purpose. — A use of clean (for completely) now come to be accounted inelegant, though common in the translation of the Bible. [See Ps. lxxvii. 8; Isa. xxiv. 19, etc.] “From the purpose” is away from the purpose.
112. The metre of this speech stands, or rather stumbles, thus in the original edition:
Good night then, Caska:
This disturbed Skie is not to walke in. 117. Your ear is good, etc. - The old copies have " What night is this?” But, notwithstanding the supernumerary short syllable, the only possible reading seems to be the one which I have given : “ Cassius, what a night is this !” The a is plainly indispensable ; for surely Casca cannot be supposed to