[1.2]

[1.2]

Caesar's triumph continues on the feast of Lupercalia.
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Enter Caesar, . . . Flavius.

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for the course,

costumed to run.
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Enter Caesar, Antony for the course, Calpurnia, Portia, 85Decius, Cicero, Brutus, Cassius, Casca, a Soothsayer; after them Murellus and Flavius.
Caesar
Calpurnia.
Casca
Peace ho! Caesar speaks.
Caesar
Calpurnia!
90Calpurnia Here, my Lord.
Caesar Stand you directly in Antonio's way

Antonio's

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When he doth run his course. Antonio!

course.

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Antony Caesar, my Lord?
Caesar Forget not in your speed, Antonio,
95To touch Calpurnia, for our elders say,
The barren touchèd in this holy chase,

sterile curse.

curse of sterility.
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Shake off their sterile curse.
Antony
I shall remember.
When Caesar says, "Do this," it is performed.
100Caesar Set on, and leave no ceremony out.

leave no ceremony out.

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[Sennet]

music signaling ceremonial entrance or exit.
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[Sennet]
Soothsayer Caesar!
Caesar Ha? Who calls?
Casca Bid every noise be still! Peace yet again!
Caesar Who is it in the press that calls on me?

press

crowd.
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105I hear a tongue shriller than all the music
Cry "Caesar." Speak! Caesar is turned to hear.

Caesar is turned to hear.

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ides of March.

15 March.
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Soothsayer
Beware the ides of March.
Caesar
What man is that?
Brutus A soothsayer bids you beware the ides of March.
110Caesar Set him before me. Let me see his face.
Cassius Fellow, come from the throng! Look upon Caesar.
Caesar What say'st thou to me now? Speak once again.
Soothsayer Beware the ides of March.
Caesar He is a dreamer. Let us leave him. Pass.

He . . . pass.

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115
Sennet.

Sennet.

See TLN 100n.
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Exeunt [all but Brutus and Cassius].
Cassius Will you go see the order of the course?

the course?

the ceremonial course run by Antony and others.
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Brutus Not I.
Cassius I pray you, do.
Brutus I am not gamesome. I do lack some part

I am not . . . leave you.

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gamesome.

merry, playful, sportive.
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120Of that quick spirit that is in Antony.
Let me not hinder, Cassius, your desires.
I'll leave you.
Cassius Brutus, I do observe you now of late.

I do observe you

Close
I have not from your eyes that gentleness
125And show of love as I was wont to have.
You bear too stubborn and too strange a hand

stubborn

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your friend that loves you.

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Over your friend that loves you.
Brutus
Cassius,
Be not deceived. If I have veiled my look,

Be not deceived.

Close
130I turn the trouble of my countenance
Merely upon myself. Vexed I am
Of late with passions of some difference,

passions of some difference,

conflicting strong feelings.
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Conceptions only proper to myself,
Which give some soil, perhaps, to my behaviors;

soil,

stain or discoloring mark.
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135But let not therefore my good friends be grieved,
Among which number, Cassius, be you one,
Nor construe any further my neglect
Than that poor Brutus with himself at war,

poor

lacking or deficient in a proper or desired quality.
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with himself at war,

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Forgets the shows of love to other men.
140Cassius Then Brutus, I have much mistook your passion,

passion,

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By means whereof, this breast of mine hath buried
Thoughts of great value, worthy cogitations.
Tell me, good Brutus, can you see your face?

Tell me, good Brutus, . . . see your face?

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Brutus No, Cassius, 145for the eye sees not itself

for the eye . . . see your shadow

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But by reflection, by some other things.
Cassius 'Tis just.

just.

true, well said.
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And it is very much lamented, Brutus,
That you have no such mirrors as will turn
150Your hidden worthiness into your eye,
That you might see your shadow. I have heard,

shadow.

reflection.
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Where many of the best respect in Rome,

best respect

highest regard or social rank.
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Except immortal Caesar, speaking of Brutus

immortal Caesar,

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155And groaning underneath this age's yoke,
Have wished that noble Brutus had his eyes.

had his eyes.

could see (what others of best respect can see).
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Brutus Into what dangers, would you lead me, Cassius,

Into what dangers, . . . is not in me?

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That you would have me seek into myself
160For that which is not in me?
Cassius Therefore, good Brutus, be prepared to hear;

Therefore,

for that, as to that.
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And since you know you cannot see yourself

And since you . . . know not of.

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So well as by reflection, I, your glass,
Will modestly discover to yourself
165That of yourself which you yet know not of.
And be not jealous on me, gentle Brutus.
Were I a common laughter, or did use

laughter,

subject or matter for laughter, laughingstock.
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did use / To

were accustomed to.
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To stale with ordinary oaths my love

with ordinary oaths

with commonplace oaths.
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To every new protester; if you know

protester;

one who makes a protestation or solemn affirmation.
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170That I do fawn on men and hug them hard

fawn on

affect a servile fondness toward.
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And after scandal them; or if you know

scandal

spread scandal concerning, defame.
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That I profess myself in banqueting

profess myself

declare (my friendship) openly.
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banqueting

carousing.
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To all the rout, then hold me dangerous.

rout,

rabble.
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Flourish, and shout.

Flourish,

Trumpet fanfare.
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and shout.

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175Brutus What means this shouting? I do fear the people

What means . . . their king.

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Choose Caesar for their king.
Cassius
Ay, do you fear it?
Then must I think you would not have it so.
180Brutus I would not, Cassius, yet I love him well.

I would not, . . . love him well.

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But wherefore do you hold me here so long?

But wherefore . . . fear death.

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What is it that you would impart to me?
If it be ought toward the general good,
Set honor in one eye and death i'th'other,
185And I will look on both indifferently.

And I . . . fear death.

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indifferently.

(1) without concern, impassively; (2) impartially.
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For let the gods so speed me, as I love

speed

prosper.
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The name of honor more than I fear death.
Cassius I know that virtue to be in you, Brutus,
As well as I do know your outward favor.

favor.

countenance, face.
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190Well, honor is the subject of my story.

honor

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I cannot tell what you and other men
Think of this life, but for my single self,
I had as lief not be, as live to be

as lief not be,

just as soon not live.
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In awe of such a thing as I myself.

such a thing as I myself.

an ordinary mortal like me.
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195I was born free as Caesar, so were you;
We both have fed as well; and we can both
Endure the winter's cold, as well as he.
For once, upon a raw and gusty day,
The troubled Tiber, chafing with her shores,

her shores,

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200Caesar said to me, "Dar'st thou, Cassius, now
Leap in with me into this angry flood
And swim to yonder point?" Upon the word,

And swim to yonder point?"

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Accoutrèd as I was, I plungèd in,

Accoutrèd

attired, dressed, equipped.
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And bade him follow. So indeed he did.
205The torrent roared, and we did buffet it

buffet

beat back, contend with.
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With lusty sinews, throwing it aside,

lusty sinews,

vigorous strength.
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And stemming it with hearts of controversy.

stemming

making headway against.
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of controversy.

filled with contention, rivalry.
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But ere we could arrive the point proposed,

arrive the point

arrive at the point.
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Caesar cried, "Help me, Cassius, or I sink."
210I, as Aeneas, our great ancestor,

I, as Aeneas, . . . Anchises bear

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Did from the flames of Troy upon his shoulder
The old Anchises bear, so, from the waves of Tiber
Did I the tirèd Caesar. And this man
Is now become a god, and Cassius is
215A wretched creature and must bend his body

creature

instrument or puppet.
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bend his body

bow.
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If Caesar carelessly but nod on him.
He had a fever when he was in Spain,

fever

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And when the fit was on him, I did mark
How he did shake. 'Tis true, this god did shake.
220His coward lips did from their color fly,

His . . . color fly.

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coward lips

lips like cowards.
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And that same eye, whose bend doth awe the world,

bend

gaze.
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awe

terrify.
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Did lose his luster. I did hear him groan.

his luster.

its luster.
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Ay, and that tongue of his, that bade the Romans
Mark him and write his speeches in their books,
225"Alas," it cried, "Give me some drink, Titinius,"

some drink, Titinius,"

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As a sick girl. Ye gods, it doth amaze me
A man of such a feeble temper should

temper

(1) mental balance or composure; (2) bodily habit, constitution, condition; (3) mental constitution, habitual disposition.
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So get the start of the majestic world

the start of

ahead of.
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majestic

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And bear the palm alone.

bear the palm

of victory (continuing the metaphor from get the start of).
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230
Shout. Flourish.

Flourish.

music signaling ceremonial entrance or exit.
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Brutus Another general shout?
I do believe that these applauses are

applauses

acclamation.
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For some new honors that are heaped on Caesar.
Cassius Why man, he doth bestride the narrow world

bestride

straddle.
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235Like a colossus, and we petty men

colossus,

huge statue.
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Walk under his huge legs, and peep about

peep . . . graves

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To find ourselves dishonorable graves.
Men at some time are masters of their fates.

Men at some time . . . their fates.

at some time: sometimes, occasionally.
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The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars,

stars,

controlling destiny.
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240But in ourselves that we are underlings.
"Brutus" and "Caesar." What should be in that "Caesar"?

"Brutus" and "Caesar."

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Why should that name be sounded more than yours?

be sounded

resound.
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Write them together: yours is as fair a name.
Sound them: it doth become the mouth as well.
245Weigh them: it is as heavy. Conjure with 'em:

Conjure

cast spells.
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"Brutus" will start a spirit as soon as "Caesar."

start

raise.
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Now in the names of all the gods at once,

names of all the gods

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Upon what meat doth this our Caesar feed

Upon what meat

upon what food.
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That he is grown so great? Age, thou art shamed!

grown so great?

grown so (1) stout, corpulent; (2) famous, renowned.
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Age, thou . . . only man.

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250Rome, thou hast lost the breed of noble bloods!

breed

(1) lineage, strain; (2) engendering, creating.
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bloods!

(1) kindred, family; (2) offspring.
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When went there by an age since the great flood,

great flood,

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But it was famed with more than with one man?

famed with

renowned for.
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When could they say, till now, that talked of Rome,
That her wide walks encompassed but one man?

walks

(1) place set apart for walking; (2) tract of land.
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255Now is it Rome indeed, and room enough

Rome indeed, and room

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When there is in it but one only man.
Oh, you and I have heard our fathers say
There was a Brutus once that would have brooked

There was a Brutus once

Lucius Junius Brutus, ancestor of the Brutus in Shakespeare's play.
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Th'eternal devil to keep his state in Rome

eternal

everlasting.
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260As easily as a king.
Brutus That you do love me, I am nothing jealous.

nothing jealous.

not in the least doubtful, mistrustful.
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What you would work me to, I have some aim.

What you . . . some aim.

"I have both a good guess and an intention regarding your purpose in talking to me."
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work me to,

convert or bring me to.
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have some aim.

Aim can mean (1) conjecture, guess; (2) design, intention, purpose.
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How I have thought of this and of these times
I shall recount hereafter. For this present,

this present,

right now.
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265I would not, so with love I might entreat you,

I would not, . . . further moved.

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Be any further moved. What you have said,
I will consider; what you have to say,
I will with patience hear, and find a time

I will with patience hear,

Brutus habitually asserts stoic self-control, trying to regain equanimity in the face of Cassius's eloquent and powerful indignation.
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Both meet to hear and answer such high things.

meet to hear

appropriate to hear.
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high things.

serious matters.
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270Till then, my noble friend, chew upon this:

chew upon

(1) meditate carefully about; (2) devise or plan deliberately concerning.
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Brutus had rather be a villager

Brutus had . . . upon us.

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Than to repute himself a son of Rome
Under these hard conditions as this time
Is like to lay upon us.
275Cassius I am glad that my weak words
Have struck but thus much show of fire from Brutus.

struck . . . fire

The image comes from striking two pieces of flint together to produce a spark and thereby start a fire.
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Enter Caesar and his train.

his train.

those accompanying him.
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Brutus The games are done, and Caesar is returning.
280Cassius As they pass by, pluck Casca by the sleeve,

pluck . . . sleeve

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And he will, after his sour fashion, tell you
What hath proceeded worthy note today.

worthy note

worth noting.
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Brutus I will do so. But look you, Cassius,
285The angry spot doth glow on Caesar's brow,

angry . . . brow

Caesar is flushed with anger.
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And all the rest look like a chidden train:

chidden

scolded (from "chide").
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Calpurnia's cheek is pale, and Cicero
Looks with such ferret and such fiery eyes

ferret . . . fiery eyes

eyes narrowed in angry disapproval.
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As we have seen him in the Capitol,
290Being crossed in conference by some senators.

crossed in conference

opposed in debate.
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Cassius Casca will tell us what the matter is.
Caesar Antonio!
Antony Caesar?
Caesar Let me have men about me that are fat,

Let me have men . . . are dangerous

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295Sleek-headed men, and such as sleep o'nights.

Sleek-headed

well-groomed.
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Yond Cassius has a lean and hungry look.
He thinks too much. Such men are dangerous.
Antony Fear him not Caesar, he's not dangerous,

Fear him . . . well given.

As Brutus later underestimates Antony, so Antony now underestimates Cassius, establishing parallel mistakes in the two camps. Both Antony and Brutus unwittingly misdirect their ally's attention in a manner suggesting that the speaker knows better.
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He is a noble Roman, and well given.

well given.

well disposed.
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300Caesar Would he were fatter! But I fear him not.

But I . . . am Caesar.

Close
Yet if my name were liable to fear,
I do not know the man I should avoid
So soon as that spare Cassius. He reads much,

spare

"carrion lean" (Plutarch, 524).
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He is a great observer, and he looks
305Quite through the deeds of men. He loves no plays,

He loves . . . no music.

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As thou dost, Antony; he hears no music;
Seldom he smiles, and smiles in such a sort
As if he mocked himself and scorned his spirit
That could be moved to smile at anything.
310Such men as he be never at heart's ease
Whiles they behold a greater than themselves,
And therefore are they very dangerous.
I rather tell thee what is to be feared
Than what I fear, for always I am Caesar.
315Come on my right hand, for this ear is deaf,

Come on . . . is deaf,

Caesar earlier described himself as turned to hear, the play's first indication of his vulnerability.
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And tell me truly, what thou think'st of him.

And tell me . . . of him.

Caesar's admonition with the added truly may betray a hint of anxiety.
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Sennet.

Close
Sennet.
Exeunt Caesar and [all] his train [but Casca].
Casca You pulled me by the cloak. Would you speak with me?

You pulled me by the cloak.

Cassius urged Brutus to do this, and Brutus agreed to. The sequence of admonition and action is a revealing indication of Cassius's influence on Brutus.
Close
320Brutus Ay, Casca. Tell us what hath chanced today,
That Caesar looks so sad.

sad.

serious, sober.
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Casca Why, you were with him, were you not?
Brutus I should not then ask Casca what had chanced.
Casca Why, there was a crown offered him; and being 325offered him, he put it by with the back of his hand, thus, and then the people fell a-shouting.

a crown offered him;

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put it by

set it aside.
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Brutus What was the second noise for?
Casca Why, for that too.
Cassius They shouted thrice. What was the last cry for?

thrice.

three times.
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330Casca Why, for that too.
Brutus Was the crown offered him thrice?
Casca Ay, marry, was't, and he put it by thrice, every time gentler than other; and at every putting by, mine honest neighbors shouted.

marry,

indeed (an oath derived from Mary, mother of Jesus).
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gentler

less firmly.
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honest neighbors

worthy fellow citizens (with patronizing or even contemptuous implication).
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335Cassius Who offered him the crown?
Casca Why, Antony.
Brutus Tell us the manner of it, gentle Casca.

manner

the way an action is performed.
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gentle Casca.

(1) well-born, noble (acknowledging Casca's patrician status); (2) generous, polite (with possible irony).
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Casca I can as well be hanged as tell the manner of it. It was mere foolery. I did not mark it. I saw 340Mark Antony offered him a crown; yet 'twas not a crown, neither; 'twas one of these coronets. And as I told you, he put it by once; but for all that, to my thinking, he would fain have had it. Then he offered it to him again; then he put it by again. But to my 345thinking, he was very loath to lay his fingers off it. And then he offered it the third time; he put it the third time by. And still as he refused it, the rabblement hooted, and clapped their chapped hands, and threw up their sweaty nightcaps, and uttered such a deal of stinking breath, 350because Caesar refused the crown, that it had almost choked Caesar, for he swooned, and fell down at it. And for mine own part, I durst not laugh, for fear of opening my lips and receiving the bad air.

the manner of it.

Casca may mean (1) moral conduct; (2) measure, moderation; (3) reason, cause.
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mere

entirely, nothing but.
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foolery.

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not . . . neither

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coronets.

inferior crowns.
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fain

gladly, willingly.
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loath

disinclined, reluctant.
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still as

whenever.
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rabblement

mob.
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hooted, and clapped . . . breath

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nightcaps,

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uttered

(1) vocalized; (2) gave forth, emitted.
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stinking breath,

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had almost

nearly.
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swooned,

fainted.
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durst

dared.
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355Cassius But soft, I pray you: what, did Caesar swoon?

But soft,

Wait a minute!
Close
Casca He fell down in the marketplace and foamed at mouth, and was speechless.
Brutus 'Tis very like. He hath the falling sickness.

'Tis very like.

That's likely.
Close

falling sickness.

epilepsy.
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Cassius No, Caesar hath it not, but you and I,
360And honest Casca: we have the falling sickness.

we have the falling sickness.

we fall down before almighty Caesar.
Close
Casca I know not what you mean by that, but I am sure Caesar fell down. If the tag-rag people did not clap him, and hiss him, according as he pleased, and displeased them, as they use to do the players in the 365theater, I am no true man.

what you mean

what you intend.
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tag-rag people

Another derisory term for plebeians, suggesting patched and mended clothing.
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use to do

customarily do.
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Brutus What said he, when he came unto himself?

What said . . . unto himself?

Close
Casca Marry, before he fell down, when he perceived the common herd was glad he refused the crown, he plucked me ope his doublet, and offered them his throat 370to cut. And I had been a man of any occupation, if I would not have taken him at a word, I would I might go to hell among the rogues, and so he fell. When he came to himself again, he said, if he had done or said anything amiss, he desired their worships to think 375it was his infirmity. Three or four wenches where I stood, cried, "Alas, good soul," and forgave him with all their hearts. But there's no heed to be taken of them. If Caesar had stabbed their mothers, they would have done no less.

plucked me ope

pulled aside (to expose his bare throat).
Close

doublet,

close-fitting garment, worn next to the skin.
Close

And I had been

If I had been.
Close

man of any occupation,

(1) craftsman, laborer; (2) man inclined to unthinking action .
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worships

persons of note (honorific address).
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infirmity.

illness.
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Three or four . . . no less.

Close
380Brutus And after that, he came thus sad away.

sad

morose.
Close
Casca Ay.
Cassius Did Cicero say anything?
Casca Ay, he spoke Greek.

Ay, he spoke Greek.

Close
Cassius To what effect?
385Casca Nay, and I tell you that, I'll ne'er look you i'th'face again. But those that understood him, smiled at one another and shook their heads. But for mine own part, it was Greek to me. I could tell you more news too: Murellus and Flavius, for pulling scarves 390off Caesar's images, are put to silence. Fare you well. There was more foolery yet, if I could remember it.

and I tell you

Close

scarves

decorations.
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put to silence.

Close

foolery

Close
Cassius Will you sup with me tonight, Casca?

sup

eat supper.
Close
Casca No, I am promised forth.
395Cassius Will you dine with me tomorrow?
Casca Ay, if I be alive, and your mind hold, and your dinner worth the eating.
Cassius Good, I will expect you.
Casca Do so. Farewell both.
Exit.
400Brutus What a blunt fellow is this grown to be?

blunt

(1) dull, stupid; (2) rude, unpolished; (3) not sharp (as an edged tool or weapon).
Close
He was quick mettle when he went to school.

quick mettle

of a lively temperament.
Close
Cassius So is he now, in execution

So is he . . . appetite.

Close
Of any bold, or noble enterprise,
However he puts on this tardy form.

However he puts on

Even though he pretends.
Close

tardy form.

appearance of slowness.
Close
405This rudeness is a sauce to his good wit,

rudeness

used in the same senses as blunt (TLN 400n.)
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sauce

something to enhance the taste of food.
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wit,

ideas.
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Which gives men stomach to digest his words

stomach

relish, inclination.
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With better appetite.
Brutus
And so it is.
For this time I will leave you:
410Tomorrow, if you please to speak with me,

Tomorrow, . . . for you.

Close
I will come home to you, or if you will,
Come home to me, and I will wait for you.
Cassius I will do so. Till then, think of the world. Exit Brutus.

think of the world.

Close
415Well, Brutus, thou art noble, yet I see

Well, Brutus, . . . humor me.

Close

noble,

(1) a patrician; (2) morally upright; (3) an Elizabethan gold coin.
Close
Thy honorable mettle may be wrought

mettle

(1) temperament; (2) metallic substance.
Close
From that it is disposed. Therefore it is meet

it is meet . . . likes

Noble minds should keep company with others like themselves; meet, proper, appropriate.
Close
That noble minds keep ever with their likes,

keep

(1) remain, stay; (2) maintain condition; (3) continue, persevere.
Close

likes,

(1) equals; (2) preferences.
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For who so firm that cannot be seduced?

For who . . . seduced?

Close
420Caesar doth bear me hard, but he loves Brutus.

Caesar . . . Brutus.

Close

bear me hard,

bears me ill will, dislikes me.
Close
If I were Brutus now, and he were Cassius,
He should not humor me. I will this night

He should not

Close

humor

soothe or gratify, indulge.
Close
In several hands in at his windows throw,

hands

styles of handwriting.
Close
As if they came from several citizens,
425Writings, all tending to the great opinion
That Rome holds of his name, wherein obscurely

obscurely

indirectly.
Close
Caesar's ambition shall be glancèd at.
And after this, let Caesar seat him sure,

him sure,

himself securely.
Close
For we will shake him, or worse days endure.
430
Exit.