Internet Shakespeare Editions

About this text

  • Title: Anthony and Cleopatra (Folio 1, 1623)
  • Editor: Randall Martin
  • ISBN: 978-1-55058-433-2

    Copyright Randall Martin. This text may be freely used for educational, non-profit purposes; for all other uses contact the Editor.
    Author: William Shakespeare
    Editor: Randall Martin
    Not Peer Reviewed

    Anthony and Cleopatra (Folio 1, 1623)

    Anthony and Cleopatra.
    Cleo. Why that's the way to foole their preparation,
    3470And to conquer their most absurd intents.
    Enter Charmian.
    Now Charmian.
    Shew me my Women like a Queene: Go fetch
    My best Attyres. I am againe for Cidrus,
    3475To meete Marke Anthony. Sirra Iras, go
    (Now Noble Charmian, wee'l dispatch indeede,)
    And when thou hast done this chare, Ile giue thee leaue
    To play till Doomesday: bring our Crowne, and all.
    A noise within.
    3480Wherefore's this noise?
    Enter a Guardsman.
    Gards. Heere is a rurall Fellow,
    That will not be deny'de your Highnesse presence,
    He brings you Figges.
    3485Cleo. Let him come in.
    Exit Guardsman.
    What poore an Instrument
    May do a Noble deede: he brings me liberty:
    My Resolution's plac'd, and I haue nothing
    Of woman in me: Now from head to foote
    3490I am Marble constant: now the fleeting Moone
    No Planet is of mine.
    Enter Guardsman, and Clowne.
    Guards. This is the man.
    Cleo. Auoid, and leaue him.
    Exit Guardsman.
    3495Hast thou the pretty worme of Nylus there,
    That killes and paines not?
    Clow. Truly I haue him: but I would not be the par-
    tie that should desire you to touch him, for his byting is
    immortall: those that doe dye of it, doe seldome or ne-
    3500uer recouer.
    Cleo. Remember'st thou any that haue dyed on't?
    Clow. Very many, men and women too. I heard of
    one of them no longer then yesterday, a very honest wo-
    man, but something giuen to lye, as a woman should not
    3505do, but in the way of honesty, how she dyed of the by-
    ting of it, what paine she felt: Truely, she makes a verie
    good report o'th'worme: but he that wil beleeue all that
    they say, shall neuer be saued by halfe that they do: but
    this is most falliable, the Worme's an odde Worme.
    3510Cleo. Get thee hence, farewell.
    Clow. I wish you all ioy of the Worme.
    Cleo. Farewell.
    Clow. You must thinke this (looke you,) that the
    Worme will do his kinde.
    3515Cleo. I, I, farewell.
    Clow. Looke you, the Worme is not to bee trusted,
    but in the keeping of wise people: for indeede, there is
    no goodnesse in the Worme.
    Cleo. Take thou no care, it shall be heeded.
    3520Clow. Very good: giue it nothing I pray you, for it
    is not worth the feeding.
    Cleo. Will it eate me?
    Clow. You must not think I am so simple, but I know
    the diuell himselfe will not eate a woman: I know, that
    3525a woman is a dish for the Gods, if the diuell dresse her
    not. But truly, these same whorson diuels doe the Gods
    great harme in their women: for in euery tenne that they
    make, the diuels marre fiue.
    Cleo. Well, get thee gone, farewell.
    3530Clow. Yes forsooth: I wish you ioy o'th'worm.
    Cleo. Giue me my Robe, put on my Crowne, I haue
    Immortall longings in me. Now no more
    The iuyce of Egypts Grape shall moyst this lip.
    Yare, yare, good Iras; quicke: Me thinkes I heare

    3535Anthony call: I see him rowse himselfe
    To praise my Noble Act. I heare him mock
    The lucke of sar, which the Gods giue men
    To excuse their after wrath. Husband, I come:
    Now to that name, my Courage proue my Title.
    3540I am Fire, and Ayre; my other Elements
    I giue to baser life. So, haue you done?
    Come then, and take the last warmth of my Lippes.
    Farewell kinde Charmian, Iras, long farewell.
    Haue I the Aspicke in my lippes? Dost fall?
    3545If thou, and Nature can so gently part,
    The stroke of death is as a Louers pinch,
    Which hurts, and is desir'd. Dost thou lye still?
    If thus thou vanishest, thou tell'st the world,
    It is not worth leaue-taking.
    3550Char. Dissolue thicke clowd, & Raine, that I may say
    The Gods themselues do weepe.
    Cleo. This proues me base:
    If she first meete the Curled Anthony,
    Hee'l make demand of her, and spend that kisse
    3555Which is my heauen to haue. Come thou mortal wretch,
    With thy sharpe teeth this knot intrinsicate,
    Of life at once vntye: Poore venomous Foole,
    Be angry, and dispatch. Oh could'st thou speake,
    That I might heare thee call great sar Asse, vnpolicied.
    3560Char. Oh Easterne Starre.
    Cleo. Peace, peace:
    Dost thou not see my Baby at my breast,
    That suckes the Nurse asleepe.
    Char. O breake! O breake!
    3565Cleo. As sweet as Balme, as soft as Ayre, as gentle.
    O Anthony! Nay I will take thee too.
    What should I stay-----
    Char. In this wilde World? So fare thee well:
    Now boast thee Death, in thy possession lyes
    3570A Lasse vnparalell'd. Downie Windowes cloze,
    And golden Phœbus, neuer be beheld
    Of eyes againe so Royall: your Crownes away,
    Ile mend it, and then play---
    Enter the Guard rustling in, and Dolabella.
    35751 Guard. Where's the Queene?
    Char. Speake softly, wake her not.
    1 sar hath sent
    Char. Too slow a Messenger.
    Oh come apace, dispatch, I partly feele thee.
    35801 Approach hoa,
    All's not well: sar's beguild.
    2 There's Dolabella sent from sar: call him.
    1 What worke is heere Charmian?
    Is this well done?
    3585Char. It is well done, and fitting for a Princesse
    Descended of so many Royall Kings.
    Ah Souldier.
    Charmian dyes.

    Enter Dolabella.

    Dol. How goes it heere?
    35902. Guard. All dead.
    Dol. sar, thy thoughts
    Touch their effects in this: Thy selfe art comming
    To see perform'd the dreaded Act which thou
    So sought'st to hinder.

    Enter Cæsar and all his Traine, marching.

    All. A way there, a way for sar.
    z z 2