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  • 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    Not Peer Reviewed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 Cleopatra, Charmian, Iras, and Mardian.
    Cleo. My desolation does begin to make
    A better life: Tis paltry to be sar:
    Not being Fortune, hee's but Fortunes knaue,
    A minister of her will: and it is great
    3205To do that thing that ends all other deeds,
    Which shackles accedents, and bolts vp change;
    Which sleepes, and neuer pallates more the dung,
    The beggers Nurse, and sars.
    Enter Proculeius.
    3210Pro. sar sends greeting to the Queene of Egypt,
    And bids thee study on what faire demands
    Thou mean'st to haue him grant thee.
    Cleo. What's thy name?
    Pro. My name is Proculeius.
    3215Cleo. Anthony
    Did tell me of you, bad me trust you, but
    I do not greatly care to be deceiu'd
    That haue no vse for trusting. If your Master
    Would haue a Queece his begger, you must tell him,
    3220That Maiesty to keepe decorum, must
    No lesse begge then a Kingdome: If he please
    To giue me conquer'd Egypt for my Sonne,
    He giues me so much of mine owne, as I
    Will kneele to him with thankes.
    3225Pro. Be of good cheere:
    Y'are falne into a Princely hand, feare nothing,
    Make your full reference freely to my Lord,
    Who is so full of Grace, that it flowes ouer
    On all that neede. Let me report to him
    3230Your sweet dependacie, and you shall finde
    A Conqueror that will pray in ayde for kindnesse,
    Where he for grace is kneel'd too.
    Cleo. Pray you tell him,
    I am his Fortunes Vassall, and I send him
    3235The Greatnesse he has got. I hourely learne
    A Doctrine of Obedience, and would gladly
    Looke him i'th'Face.
    Pro. This Ile report (deere Lady)
    Haue comfort, for I know your plight is pittied
    3240Of him that caus'd it.
    Pro. You see how easily she may be surpriz'd:
    Guard her till sar come.
    Iras. Royall Queene.
    Char. Oh Cleopatra, thou art taken Queene.
    3245Cleo. Quicke, quicke, good hands.
    Pro. Hold worthy Lady, hold:
    Doe not your selfe such wrong, who are in this
    Releeu'd, but not betraid.
    Cleo. What of death too that rids our dogs of languish
    3250Pro. Cleopatra, do not abuse my Masters bounty, by
    Th'vndoing of your selfe: Let the World see
    His Noblenesse well acted, which your death
    Will neuer let come forth.
    Cleo. Where art thou Death?
    3255Come hither come; Come, come, and take a Queene
    Worth many Babes and Beggers.
    Pro. Oh temperance Lady.
    Cleo. Sir, I will eate no meate, Ile not drinke sir,
    If idle talke will once be necessary
    3260Ile not sleepe neither. This mortall house Ile ruine,
    Do sar what he can. Know sir, that I
    Will not waite pinnion'd at your Masters Court,
    Nor once be chastic'd with the sober eye
    Of dull Octauia. Shall they hoyst me vp,
    3265And shew me to the showting Varlotarie
    Of censuring Rome? Rather a ditch in Egypt.
    Be gentle graue vnto me, rather on Nylus mudde
    Lay me starke-nak'd, and let the water-Flies
    Blow me into abhorring; rather make
    3270My Countries high pyramides my Gibbet,
    And hang me vp in Chaines.
    Pro. You do extend
    These thoughts of horror further then you shall
    Finde cause in sar.
    Enter Dolabella.
    Dol. Proculeius,
    What thou hast done, thy Master sar knowes,
    And he hath sent for thee: for the Queene,
    Ile take her to my Guard.
    3280Pro. So Dolabella,
    It shall content me best: Be gentle to her,
    To sar I will speake, what you shall please,
    If you'l imploy me to him.
    Exit Proculeius
    Cleo. Say, I would dye.
    3285Dol. Most Noble Empresse, you haue heard of me.
    Cleo. I cannot tell.
    Dol. Assuredly you know me.
    Cleo. No matter sir, what I haue heard or knowne:
    You laugh when Boyes or Women tell their Dreames,
    3290Is't not your tricke?
    Dol. I vnderstand not, Madam.
    Cleo. I dreampt there was an Emperor Anthony.
    Oh such another sleepe, that I might see
    But such another man.
    3295Dol. If it might please ye.
    Cleo. His face was as the Heau'ns, and therein stucke
    A Sunne and Moone, which kept their course, & lighted
    The little o'th'earth.
    Dol. Most Soueraigne Creature.
    3300Cleo. His legges bestrid the Ocean, his rear'd arme
    Crested the world: His voyce was propertied
    As all the tuned Spheres, and that to Friends:
    But when he meant to quaile, and shake the Orbe,
    He was as ratling Thunder. For his Bounty,
    3305There was no winter in't. An Anthony it was,
    That grew the more by reaping: His delights
    Were Dolphin-like, they shew'd his backe aboue
    The Element they liu'd in: In his Liuery
    Walk'd Crownes and Crownets: Realms & Islands were
    3310As plates dropt from his pocket.
    Dol. Cleopatra.
    Cleo. Thinke you there was, or might be such a man
    As this I dreampt of?
    Dol. Gentle Madam, no.
    3315Cleo. You Lye vp to the hearing of the Gods:
    But if there be, nor euer were one such
    It's past the size of dreaming: Nature wants stuffe
    To vie strange formes with fancie, yet t'imagine
    An Anthony were Natures peece, 'gainst Fancie,
    3320Condemning shadowes quite.
    Dol. Heare me, good Madam:
    Your losse is as your selfe, great; and you beare it
    As answering to the waight, would I might neuer
    Ore-take pursu'de successe: But I do feele
    3325By the rebound of yours, a greefe that suites
    My very heart at roote.
    Cleo. I thanke you sir:
    Know you what sar meanes to do with me?
    Dol. I am loath to tell you what, I would you knew.
    3330Cleo. Nay pray you sir.
    Dol. Though he be Honourable.
    Cleo. Hee'l leade me then in Triumph.
    Dol. Madam he will, I know't.
    Enter Proculeius, Cæsar, Gallus, Mecenas,
    3335and others of his Traine.
    All. Make way there sar.
    s. Which is the Queene of Egypt.
    Dol. It is the Emperor Madam.
    Cleo. kneeles.
    sar. Arise, you shall not kneele:
    3340I pray you rise, rise Egypt.
    Cleo. Sir, the Gods will haue it thus,
    My Master and my Lord I must obey,
    sar. Take to you no hard thoughts,
    The Record of what iniuries you did vs,
    3345Though written in our flesh, we shall remember
    As things but done by chance.
    Cleo. Sole Sir o'th'World,
    I cannot proiect mine owne cause so well
    To make it cleare, but do confesse I haue
    3350Bene laden with like frailties, which before
    Haue often sham'd our Sex.
    sar. Cleopatra know,
    We will extenuate rather then inforce:
    If you apply your selfe to our intents,
    3355Which towards you are most gentle, you shall finde
    A benefit in this change: but if you seeke
    To lay on me a Cruelty, by taking
    Anthonies course, you shall bereaue your selfe
    Of my good purposes, and put your children
    3360To that destruction which Ile guard them from,
    If thereon you relye. Ile take my leaue.
    Cleo. And may through all the world: tis yours, & we
    your Scutcheons, and your signes of Conquest shall
    Hang in what place you please. Here my good Lord.
    3365sar. You shall aduise me in all for Cleopatra.
    Cleo. This is the breefe: of Money, Plate, & Iewels
    I am possest of, 'tis exactly valewed,
    Not petty things admitted. Where's Seleucus?
    Seleu. Heere Madam.
    3370Cleo. This is my Treasurer, let him speake (my Lord)
    Vpon his perill, that I haue reseru'd
    To my selfe nothing. Speake the truth Seleucus.
    Seleu. Madam, I had rather seele my lippes,
    Then to my perill speake that which is not.
    3375Cleo. What haue I kept backe.
    Sel. Enough to purchase what you haue made known
    sar. Nay blush not Cleopatra, I approue
    Your Wisedome in the deede.
    Cleo. See sar: Oh behold,
    3380How pompe is followed: Mine will now be yours,
    And should we shift estates, yours would be mine.
    The ingratitude of this Seleucus, does
    Euen make me wilde. Oh Slaue, of no more trust
    Then loue that's hyr'd? What goest thou backe, yu shalt
    3385Go backe I warrant thee: but Ile catch thine eyes
    Though they had wings. Slaue, Soule-lesse, Villain, Dog.
    O rarely base!
    sar. Good Queene, let vs intreat you.
    Cleo. O sar, what a wounding shame is this,
    3390That thou vouchsafing heere to visit me,
    Doing the Honour of thy Lordlinesse
    To one so meeke, that mine owne Seruant should
    Parcell the summe of my disgraces, by
    Addition of his Enuy. Say (good sar)
    3395That I some Lady trifles haue reseru'd,
    Immoment toyes, things of such Dignitie
    As we greet moderne Friends withall, and say
    Some Nobler token I haue kept apart
    For Liuia and Octauia, to induce
    3400Their mediation, must I be vnfolded
    With one that I haue bred: The Gods! it smites me
    Beneath the fall I haue. Prythee go hence,
    Or I shall shew the Cynders of my spirits
    Through th'Ashes of my chance: Wer't thou a man,
    3405Thou would'st haue mercy on me.
    sar. Forbeare Seleucus.
    Cleo. Be it known, that we the greatest are mis-thoght
    For things that others do: and when we fall,
    We answer others merits, in our name
    3410Are therefore to be pittied.
    sar. Cleopatra,
    Not what you haue reseru'd, nor what acknowledg'd
    Put we i'th' Roll of Conquest: still bee't yours,
    Bestow it at your pleasure, and beleeue
    3415sars no Merchant, to make prize with you
    Of things that Merchants sold. Therefore be cheer'd,
    Make not your thoughts your prisons: No deere Queen,
    For we intend so to dispose you, as
    Your selfe shall giue vs counsell: Feede, and sleepe:
    3420Our care and pitty is so much vpon you,
    That we remaine your Friend, and so adieu.
    Cleo. My Master, and my Lord.
    sar. Not so: Adieu.
    Exeunt Cæsar, and his Traine.
    3425Cleo. He words me Gyrles, he words me,
    That I should not be Noble to my selfe.
    But hearke thee Charmian.
    Iras. Finish good Lady, the bright day is done,
    And we are for the darke.
    3430Cleo. Hye thee againe,
    I haue spoke already, and it is prouided,
    Go put it to the haste.
    Char. Madam, I will.
    Enter Dolabella.
    3435Dol. Where's the Queene?
    Char. Behold sir.
    Cleo. Dolabella.
    Dol. Madam, as thereto sworne, by your command
    (Which my loue makes Religion to obey)
    3440I tell you this: sar through Syria
    Intends his iourney, and within three dayes,
    You with your Children will he send before,
    Make your best vse of this. I haue perform'd
    Your pleasure, and my promise.
    3445Cleo. Dolabella, I shall remaine your debter.
    Dol. I your Seruant:
    Adieu good Queene, I must attend on sar.
    Cleo. Farewell, and thankes.
    Now Iras, what think'st thou?
    3450Thou, an Egyptian Puppet shall be shewne
    In Rome as well as I: Mechanicke Slaues
    With greazie Aprons, Rules, and Hammers shall
    Vplift vs to the view. In their thicke breathes,
    Ranke of grosse dyet, shall we be enclowded,
    3455And forc'd to drinke their vapour.
    Iras. The Gods forbid.
    Cleo. Nay, 'tis most certaine Iras: sawcie Lictors
    Will catch at vs like Strumpets, and scald Rimers
    Ballads vs out a Tune. The quicke Comedians
    3460Extemporally will stage vs, and present
    Our Alexandrian Reuels: Anthony
    Shall be brought drunken forth, and I shall see
    Some squeaking Cleopatra Boy my greatnesse
    I'th'posture of a Whore.
    3465Iras. O the good Gods!
    Cleo. Nay that's certaine.
    Iras. Ile neuer see't? for I am sure mine Nailes
    Are stronger then mine eyes.
    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.
    Dol. Oh sir, you are too sure an Augurer:
    That you did feare, is done.
    sar. Brauest at the last,
    3600She leuell'd at our purposes, and being Royall
    Tooke her owne way: the manner of their deaths,
    I do not see them bleede.
    Dol. Who was last with them?
    1. Guard. A simple Countryman, that broght hir Figs:
    3605This was his Basket.
    sar. Poyson'd then.
    1. Guard. Oh sar:
    This Charmian liu'd but now, she stood and spake:
    I found her trimming vp the Diadem;
    3610On her dead Mistris tremblingly she stood,
    And on the sodaine dropt.
    sar. Oh Noble weakenesse:
    If they had swallow'd poyson, 'twould appeare
    By externall swelling: but she lookes like sleepe,
    3615As she would catch another Anthony
    In her strong toyle of Grace.
    Dol. Heere on her brest,
    There is a vent of Bloud, and something blowne,
    The like is on her Arme.
    36201. Guard. This is an Aspickes traile,
    And these Figge-leaues haue slime vpon them, such
    As th'Aspicke leaues vpon the Caues of Nyle.
    sar. Most probable
    That so she dyed: for her Physitian tels mee
    3625She hath pursu'de Conclusions infinite
    Of easie wayes to dye. Take vp her bed,
    And beare her Women from the Monument,
    She shall be buried by her Anthony.
    No Graue vpon the earth shall clip in it
    3630A payre so famous: high euents as these
    Strike those that make them: and their Story is
    No lesse in pitty, then his Glory which
    Brought them to be lamented. Our Army shall
    In solemne shew, attend this Funerall,
    3635And then to Rome. Come Dolabella, see
    High Order, in this great Solmemnity.
    Exeunt omnes