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    Not Peer Reviewed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)

    Enter Cæsar, Agrippa, and Dollabello, with others.
    s. Let him appeare that's come from Anthony.
    Know you him.
    2110Dolla. sar, 'tis his Schoolemaster,
    An argument that he is pluckt, when hither
    He sends so poore a Pinnion of his Wing,
    Which had superfluous Kings for Messengers,
    Not many Moones gone by.
    Enter Ambassador from Anthony.
    sar. Approach, and speake.
    Amb. Such as I am, I come from Anthony:
    I was of late as petty to his ends,
    As is the Morne-dew on the Mertle leafe
    2120To his grand Sea.
    s. Bee't so, declare thine office.
    Amb. Lord of his Fortunes he salutes thee, and
    Requires to liue in Egypt, which not granted
    He Lessons his Requests, and to thee sues
    2125To let him breath betweene the Heauens and Earth
    A priuate man in Athens: this for him.
    Next, Cleopatra does confesse thy Greatnesse,
    Submits her to thy might, and of thee craues
    The Circle of the Ptolomies for her heyres,
    2130Now hazarded to thy Grace.
    s. For Anthony,
    I haue no eares to his request. The Queene,
    Of Audience, nor Desire shall faile, so shee
    From Egypt driue her all-disgraced Friend,
    2135Or take his life there. This if shee performe,
    She shall not sue vnheard. So to them both.
    Amb. Fortune pursue thee.
    s. Bring him through the Bands:
    To try thy Eloquence, now 'tis time, dispatch,
    2140From Anthony winne Cleopatra, promise
    And in our Name, what she requires, adde more
    From thine inuention, offers. Women are not
    In their best Fortunes strong; but want will periure
    The ne're touch'd Vestall. Try thy cunning Thidias,
    2145Make thine owne Edict for thy paines, which we
    Will answer as a Law.
    Thid. sar. I go.
    sar. Obserue how Anthony becomes his flaw,
    And what thou think'st his very action speakes
    2150In euery power that mooues.
    Thid. sar, I shall.