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    Not Peer Reviewed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 Pompey, Menecrates, and Menas, in
    615warlike manner.
    Pom. If the great Gods be iust, they shall assist
    The deeds of iustest men.
    Mene. Know worthy Pompey, that what they do de-
    lay, they not deny.
    620Pom. Whiles we are sutors to their Throne, decayes
    the thing we sue for.
    Mene. We ignorant of our selues,
    Begge often our owne harmes, which the wise Powres
    Deny vs for our good: so finde we profit
    625By loosing of our Prayers.
    Pom. I shall do well:
    The people loue me, and the Sea is mine;
    My powers are Cressent, and my Auguring hope
    Sayes it will come to'th'full. Marke Anthony
    630In Egypt sits at dinner, and will make
    No warres without doores. Caesar gets money where
    He looses hearts: Lepidus flatters both,
    Of both is flatter'd: but he neither loues,
    Nor either cares for him.
    635Mene. Caesar and Lepidus are in the field,
    A mighty strength they carry.
    Pom. Where haue you this? 'Tis false.
    Mene. From Siluius, Sir.
    Pom He dreames: I know they are in Rome together
    640Looking for Anthony: but all the charmes of Loue,
    Salt Cleopatra soften thy wand lip,
    Let Witchcraft ioyne with Beauty, Lust with both,
    Tye vp the Libertine in a field of Feasts,
    Keepe his Braine fuming. Epicurean Cookes,
    645Sharpen with cloylesse sawce his Appetite,
    That sleepe and feeding may prorogue his Honour,
    Euen till a Lethied dulnesse---
    Enter Varrius.
    How now Varrius?
    650Var. This is most certaine, that I shall deliuer:
    Marke Anthony is euery houre in Rome
    Expected. Since he went from Egypt, 'tis
    A space for farther Trauaile.
    Pom. I could haue giuen lesse matter
    655A better eare. Menas, I did not thinke
    This amorous Surfetter would haue donn'd his Helme
    For such a petty Warre: His Souldiership
    Is twice the other twaine: But let vs reare
    The higher our Opinion, that our stirring
    660Can from the lap of Egypts Widdow, plucke
    The neere Lust-wearied Anthony.
    Mene. I cannot hope,
    Caesar and Anthony shall well greet together;
    His Wife that's dead, did trespasses to Caesar,
    665His Brother wan'd vpon him, although I thinke
    Not mou'd by Anthony.
    Pom. I know not Menas,
    How lesser Enmities may giue way to greater,
    Were't not that we stand vp against them all:
    670'Twer pregnant they should square between themselues,
    For they haue entertained cause enough
    To draw their swords: but how the feare of vs
    May Ciment their diuisions, and binde vp
    The petty difference, we yet not know:
    675Bee't as our Gods will haue't; it onely stands
    Our liues vpon, to vse our strongest hands
    Come Menas. Exeunt.