Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: Plutarch
Editor: John D. Cox
Not Peer Reviewed

Life of Caesar


LXVIII.But when they had opened Caesar's testament, and found a liberal legacy of money bequeathed unto every citizen of Rome, and that they saw his body (which was brought into the market-place) all bemangled with gashes of swords, then there was no order to keep the multitude and common people quiet, but they plucked up forms, tables, and stools, and laid them all about the body, and setting them afire, burnt the corse Then when the fire was well kindled, they took the fire-brands, and went unto their houses that had slain Caesar, to set them afire. Others also ran up and down the city to see if they could meet with any of them, to cut them in pieces: howbeit they could meet with never a man of them, because they had locked themselves up safely in their houses.

Cinna's dream of Caesar.

There was one of Caesar's friends called Cinna, that had a marvelous strange and terrible dream the night before. He dreamed that Caesar bad him to supper, and that he refused and would not go: then that Caesar took him by the hand, and led him against his will. Now Cinna, hearing at that time that they burnt Caesar's body in the market-place, notwithstanding that he feared his dream, and had an ague on him besides, he went into the market-place to honor his funerals. When he came thither, one of the mean sort asked him what his name was? He was straight called by his name. The first man told it to another, and that other unto another, so that it ran straight through them all, that he was one of them that murthered Caesar: (for indeed one of the traitors to Caesar was also called Cinna as himself) wherefore taking him for Cinna the murtherer,

The murder of Cinna.

they fell upon him with such fury that they presently dispatched him in the market-place. This stir and fury made Brutus and Cassius more afraid than of all that was past, and therefore within few days after they departed out of Rome: and touching their doings afterwards, and what calamity they suffered till their deaths, we have written it at large in the life of Brutus.

Caesar 56 years old at his death.