Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: John D. Cox
Peer Reviewed

Julius Caesar (Folio 1, 1623)



116
The Tragedie of Julius Cæsar

Which busie care drawes, in the braines of men;
Therefore thou sleep'st so sound.
Enter Portia.
Por. Brutus, my Lord.
875Bru.Portia: What meane you? wherfore rise you now?
It is not for your health, thus to commit
Your weake condition, to the raw cold morning.
Por. Nor for yours neither. Y'haue vngently Brutus
Stole from my bed: and yesternight at Supper
880You sodainly arose, and walk'd about,
Musing, and sighing, with your armes a-crosse:
And when I ask'd you what the matter was,
You star'd vpon me, with vngentle lookes.
I vrg'd you further, then you scratch'd your head,
885And too impatiently stampt with your foote:
Yet I insisted, yet you answer'd not,
But with an angry wafter of your hand
Gaue signe for me to leaue you: So I did,
Fearing to strengthen that impatience
890Which seem'd too much inkindled; and withall,
Hoping it was but an effect of Humor,
Which sometime hath his houre with euery man.
It will not let you eate, nor talke, nor sleepe;
And could it worke so much vpon your shape,
895As it hath much preuayl'd on your Condltion,
I should not know you Brutus. Deare my Lord,
Make me acquainted with your cause of greefe.
Bru. I am not well in health, and that is all.
Por. Brutus is wise, and were he not in health,
900He would embrace the meanes to come by it.
Bru. Why so I do: good Portia go to bed.
Por. Is Brutus sicke? And is it Physicall
To walke vnbraced, and sucke vp the humours
Of the danke Morning? What, is Brutus sicke?
905And will he steale out of his wholsome bed
To dare the vile contagion of the Night?
And tempt the Rhewmy, and vnpurged Ayre,
To adde vnto hit sicknesse? No my Brutus,
You haue some sicke Offence within your minde,
910Which by the Right and Vertue of my place
I ought to know of: And vpon my knees,
I charme you, by my once commended Beauty,
By all your vowes of Loue, and that great Vow
Which did incorporate and make vs one,
915That you vnfold to me, your selfe; your halfe
Why you are heauy: and what men to night
Haue had resort to you: for heere haue beene
Some sixe or seuen, who did hide their faces
Euen from darknesse.
920Bru. Kneele not gentle Portia.
Por. I should not neede, if you were gentle Brutus.
Within the Bond of Marriage, tell me Brutus,
Is it excepted, I should know no Secrets
That appertaine to you? Am I your Selfe,
925But as it were in sort, or limitation?
To keepe with you at Meales, comfort your Bed,
And talke to you sometimes? Dwell I but in the Suburbs
Of your good pleasure? If it be no more,
Portia is Brutus Harlot, not his Wife.
930Bru. You are my true and honourable Wife,
As deere to me, as are the ruddy droppes
That visit my sad heart.
Por. If this were true, then should I know this secret.
I graunt I am a Woman; but withall,
935A Woman that Lord Brutus tooke to Wife:
I graunt I am a Woman; but withall,
A Woman well reputed: Cato's Daughter.
Thinke you, I am no stronger then my Sex
Being so Father'd, and so Husbanded?
940Tell me your Counsels, I will not disclose 'em:
I haue made strong proofe of my Constancie,
Giuing my selfe a voluntary wound
Heere, in the Thigh: Can I beare that with patience,
And not my Husbands Secrets?
945Bru. O ye Gods!
Render me worthy of this Noble Wife.
Knocke.
Harke, harke, one knockes: Portia go in a while,
And by and by thy bosome shall partake
The secrets of my Heart.
950All my engagements, I will construe to thee,
All the Charractery of my sad browes:
Leaue me with hast.
Exit Portia.

Enter Lucius and Ligarius.
Lucius, who's that knockes.
955Luc. Heere is a sicke man that would speak with you.
Bru. Caius Ligarius, that Metellus spake of.
Boy, stand aside. Caius Ligarius, how?
Cai. Vouchsafe good morrow from a feeble tongue.
Bru. O what a time haue you chose out braue Caius
960To weare a Kerchiefe? Would you were not sicke.
Cai. I am not sicke, if Brutus haue in hand
Any exploit worthy the name of Honor.
Bru. Such an exploit haue I in hand Ligarius,
Had you a healthfull eare to heare of it.
965Cai. By all the Gods that Romans bow before,
I heere discard my sicknesse. Soule of Rome,
Braue Sonne, deriu'd from Honourable Loines,
Thou like an Exorcist, hast coniur'd vp
My mortified Spirit. Now bid me runne,
970And I will striue with things impossible,
Yea get the better of them. What's to do?
Bru. A peece of worke,
That will make sicke men whole.
Cai. But are not some whole, that we must make sicke?
975Bru. That must we also. What it is my Caius,
I shall vnfold to thee, as we are going,
To whom it must be done.
Cai. Set on your foote,
And with a heart new-fir'd, I follow you,
980To do I know not what: but it sufficeth
That Brutus leads me on.
Thunder
Bru. Follow me then.
Exeunt

Thunder & Lightning.
Enter Iulius Cæsar in his Night-gowne.

985sar. Nor Heauen, nor Earth,
Haue beene at peace to night:
Thrice hath Calphurnia, in her sleepe cryed out,
Helpe, ho: They murther sar. Who's within?
Enter a Seruant.
990Ser. My Lord.
Cæs. Go bid the Priests do present Sacrifice,
And bring me their opinions of Successe.
Ser. I will my Lord.
Exit
Enter Calphurnia.
995Cal. What mean you sar? Think you to walk forth?
You shall not stirre out of your house to day.
Cæs. Caesar shall forth; the things that threaten'd me,
Ne're look'd but on my backe: When they shall see
The face of sar, they are vanished.
Calp.