Internet Shakespeare Editions

About this text

  • Title: Anthony and Cleopatra (Modern)
  • 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    Not Peer Reviewed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 (Modern)

    Enter Antony, Caesar, Octavia between them.
    The world and my great office will965sometimes
    Divide me from your bosom.
    All which time,
    Before the Gods my knee shall bow my prayers
    To them for you.
    Goodnight, sir. My Octavia,
    Read not my blemishes in the world's report.
    970I have not kept my square, but that to come
    Shall all be done by th'rule. Good night, dear lady.
    Good night, sir.
    [Exeunt Caesar and Octavia.]
    Enter Soothsayer.
    Now sirrah, you do wish yourself in Egypt?
    Would I had never come from thence, nor you
    If you can, your reason?
    SoothsayerI see
    It in my motion, have it not in my tongue.
    980But yet hie you to Egypt again.
    Say to me
    Whose fortunes shall rise higher: Caesar's or mine?
    Therefore, O Antony, stay not by his side.
    Thy daemon, that thy spirit which keeps thee, is
    985Noble, courageous, high, unmatchable,
    Where Caesar's is not. But near him thy angel
    Becomes afeared, as being o'er-powered. Therefore
    Make space enough between you.
    Speak this no more.
    To none but thee; no more but when to thee.
    If thou dost play with him at any game,
    Thou art sure to lose. And of that natural luck,
    He beats thee 'gainst the odds. Thy lustre thickens
    When he shines by. I say again, thy spirit
    995Is all afraid to govern thee near him,
    But he away 'tis noble.
    Get thee gone.
    Say to Ventidius I would speak with him.
    He shall to Parthia.
    Exit [Soothsayer].
    Be it art or hap,
    1000He hath spoken true. The very dice obey him,
    And in our sports my better cunning faints
    Under his chance. If we draw lots he speeds;
    His cocks do win the battle still of mine,
    When it is all to naught; and his quails ever
    1005Beat mine, inhooped, at odds. I will to Egypt;
    And though I make this marriage for my peace,
    I'th'East my pleasure lies.
    Enter Ventidius.
    Oh, come Ventidius.
    You must to Parthia. Your commission's ready.
    1010Follow me, and receive't.