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Your weak condition to the raw-cold morning.
205. Por. Nor for yours neither. You've ungently, Brutus, Stole from my bed: And yesternight, at supper,
You suddenly arose, and walked about,
I urged you further; then you scratched your head,
But, with an angry wafture of your hand,
Bru. I am not well in health, and that is all.
Bru. Why, so I do.-Good Portia, go to bed.
Bru. Kneel not, gentle Portia.
211. Por. I should not need, if you were gentle Brutus.
Iş it excepted, I should know no secrets
To keep with you at meals, comfort your bed,
Portia is Brutus' harlot, not his wife.
Bru. You are my true and honourable wife;
As dear to me as are the ruddy drops
That visit my sad heart.
213. Por. If this were true, then should I know this secret.
I grant, I am a woman; but, withal,
A woman that lord Brutus took to wife:
Tell me your counsels, I will not disclose 'em:
I have made strong proof of my constancy,
Giving myself a voluntary wound
Here, in the thigh: Can I bear that with patience,
And not my husband's secrets?
214. Bru. O ye gods,
Render me worthy of this noble wife!
Hark, hark! one knocks: Portia, go in a while;
And by and by thy bosom shall partake
The secrets of my heart.
All my engagements I will construe to thee,
All the charactery of my sad brows:
Leave me with haste.
Enter LUCIUS and LIGARIUS.
Lucius, who's that, knocks?
Luc. Here is a sick man, that would speak with you.
Boy, stand aside.-Caius Ligarius! how?
217. Lig. Vouchsafe good-morrow from a feeble tongue. 218. Bru. O, what a time have you chose out, brave Caius, To wear a kerchief? Would you were not sick!
Lig. I am not sick, if Brutus have in hand
Any exploit worthy the name of honour.
Bru. Such an exploit have I in hand, Ligarius,
221. Lig. By all the gods that Romans bow before
Bru. A piece of work that will make sick men whole.
To whom it must be done.
225. Lig. Set on your foot;
And, with a heart new-fired, I follow you,
Bru. Follow me then.
Scene I.-The heading here in the Folios (in which there is no division into Scenes), is merely " Enter Brutus in his Orchard." Assuming that Brutus was probably not possessed of what we now call distinctively an orchard (which may have been the case), the modern editors of the earlier part of the last century took upon them to change Orchard into Garden. But this is to carry the work of rectification (even if we should admit it to be such) beyond what is warrantable. To deprive Brutus in this way of his orchard was to mutilate or alter Shakespeare's conception. It is probable that the words Orchard and Garden were commonly understood in the early part of the seventeenth century in the senses which they now bear; but there is nothing in their etymology to support the manner in which they have come to be distinguished. In Much Ado About Nothing, ii. 3, although the scene is headed" Leonato's Garden," Benedick, sending the Boy for a book from his chamber-window,
says, "Bring it hither to me in the orchard." A Garden (or yard, as it is still called in Scotland) means merely a piece of ground girded in or enclosed; and an Orchard (properly Ortyard) is, literally, such an enclosure for worts, or herbs. At one time Orchard used to be written Hortyard, under the mistaken notion that it was derived from hortus (which may, however, be of the same stock). 143. How near to day.—How near it may be to the day.
143. I would it were my fault.-Compare the use of fault here with its sense in 120.
143. When, Lucius? when ?-This exclamation had not formerly the high tragic or heroic sound which it would now have. It was merely a customary way of calling impatiently to one who had not obeyed a previous summons. So in Richard the Second (i. 2) John of Gaunt calls to his son- -“When, Harry? when ? Obedience bids, I should not bid again."
147. But for the general.-The general was formerly a common expression for what we now call the community or the people. Thus Angelo in Measure for Measure, ii. 4:
"The general, subject to a well-wished king,
Quit their own part, and in obsequious fondness
147. And that craves.-It might be questioned whether that here be the demonstrative (as it is commonly considered) or the relative (to the antecedent "the bright day").
147. Crown him? That.-Here the emphatic that appears to be used exactly as so (etymologically of the same import) often is. Vid. 57. Either, or any equivalent term, thus used, might obviously serve very well for the sign of affirmation; in the present passage we might substitute yes for that with the same effect. It used to be held that the French oui, anciently oyl, was merely the
ill of the classic ill-e, ill-a, ill-ud, and that the old Provençal oc was hoc. It appears however, that oui or oyl is really voul (or je voul), the old present of vouloir. The common word for yes in Italian, again, si (not unknown in the same sense to the French tongue), may be another form of so. The three languages used to be distinguished as the Langue d'Oyl (or Lingua Oytana), the Langue d'Oc (or Lingua Occitana), and the Lingua di Si.-The pointing in the First Folio here is "Crowne him that, And then," etc.
147. Do danger.-Danger, which we have borrowed from the French, is a corruption of the middle age Latin domigerium, formed from damno. It is, in fact, radically the same with damage. A detail of the variations of meaning which the word has undergone in both languages would make a long history. In French also it anciently bore the same sense (that of mischief) which it has here. Sometimes, again, in both languages, it signified power to do mischief or to injure; as when Portia, in The Merchant of Venice (iv. 1), speaking to Antonio of Shylock, says, "You stand within his danger, do you not?"
147. The abuse of greatness is, etc.-The meaning apparently is, "The abuse to which greatness is most subject is when it deadens in its possessor the natural sense of humanity, or of that which binds us to our kind; and this I do not say that it has yet done in the case of Cæsar; I have never known that in him selfish affection, or mere passion, has carried it over reason." Remorse is generally used by Shakespeare in a wider sense than that to which it is now restricted.
147. But 'tis a common proof. - A thing commonly proved or experienced (what commonly, as we should say, proves to be the case).
A frequent word with Shakespeare for to prove is to approve. Thus, in the Two Gentlemen of Verona, v. 4, we have