Page images

He should not humour * mem-l will this night,
In several hands, in at his windows throw,
As if they came from several citizens,
Writings, all tending to the great opinion
That Rome holds of his name; wherein, obscurely,
Cæsar's ambition shall be glaced at.
And, after this, let Cæsar seat him fure ;
For we will shake him, or worse days endure. [Exit.

ş C E NE VI.
Thunder and lightning. Enter Casca, his sword drawn;

and Cicero, meeting him,
Cic. Good even, Casca ; brought you Cæsar home?
Why are you breathless, and why stare you so ?

Casca Are not you mov'd, when all the sway of earth
Shakes like a thing unfirm? 0 Cicero!
I have feen tempelts, when the scolding winds
Have riv'd the knotty oaks; and I have seen
Th’ambitious ocean (well, and rage, and foam,
To be exalted with the threat’ning clouds :
But never till to night, never till now,
Did I go through a tempest dropping fire.
Either there is a civil strife in heav'n;
Or else the world, too saucy with the gods,
Incenses them to send destruction.

Cic. Why, saw you any thing more wonderful ?

Casca. A common llave, you knew him well by fight, Held


his left hand, which did flame and burn,
Like twenty torches join'd; and yet his hand,
Not sensible of fire, remain'd unscorch’d.
Besides, (I ha' not since put up my sword),
Against the Capitol I met a lion,
Who glar'd upon me, and went furly by,
Without annoying me.

And there were drawn
Upon a heap a hundred ghastly women,
Transformed with their fear; who swore they saw
Men all in fire walk up and down the streets,
And yesterday, the bird of night did sit,
Ev'n at noon-day, upon the market-place,

To bumour significs here to turn and wind him, by inflaming his passions,

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

Houting and shrieking. When these prodigies
Do fe conjointly meet, let not men say,
These are their reasons, they are natural :"
For I believe they are portentous things
Unto the climate that they point upon,

Gic. Indeed it is a strange disposed time:
But men may construe things after their fashion,
Clean from the purpose of the things themselves,
Comes Cæfar to the Capitol to-morrow ?

Casca. He doth: for he did bid Antonius
Send word to you, he would be there to-morrow.

Cic. Good night then, Casca; this disturbed lky
Is not to walk in.
Casca. Farewel, Cicero.

[Exit Cicero,
SCENE VII. Enter Callias.
Caf. Who's there?
Casca. A Roman:
Caf, Cafia, by your voice.
Casca. Your ear is good. Caffius, what night is this?
Caf. A very pleasant night to honest men.
Casca, Who ever knew the heaven's menace fo?

Cas. Those that have known the earth so full of faults, Fot my part, I have walk'd about the streets, Submitting me unto the perillous night; And thus unbraced, Casca, as you fee, Have bar'd my bosom to the thunder-tone : And when the cross blue lightning feem'd to open The breast of heaver, I did prefent myself Ev’n in the aim and very Aash of it.

Casca. But wherefore did you so much tempt the It is the part of rhen to fear and tremble, [heany's ? When the most mighty gods, by tokens, fend Such dreadful heralds to altonish us.

Cal You are dull, Casca; and those sparks of life
That should be in a Roman you do want,
Or else you use not.

You look pale, and gaze,
And put on fear, and cast yourself in wonder,
To see the strange impatience of the heav'ns :
But if you would consider the true cause,
Why all these fires, why all these gliding ghosts,
Why birds and beasts, from quality and kind,


Why old men, fools, and children calculate * ;
Why all these things change, from their ordinance,
Their natures and pre-formed faculties
To monstrous quality; why, you shall find,
That heav'n has infus'd them with these spirits,
To make them instruments of fear and warning
Unto some monstrous state,
Now could I, Casca, name to thee a man
Most like this dreadful night;
that thunders, lightens, opens graves, and roars
As doth the lion in the Capitol ;
A man no mightier than thyself, or me,
In personal action; yet prodigious grown,
And fearful, as these ftrange eruptions are.

Casca. 'Tis Cæsar that you mean; is it not, Calous ?

Caf. Let it be who it is: for Romans now
Have thewes and limbs like to their ancestors ;
But, woe the while ! our fathers' minds are dead,
And we are govern'd with our mothers' fpirits :
Our yoke and suff'rance shew us womanilh.

Casca. Indeed they say the senators to-morrow
Mean to establish Cæsar as a King :
And he shall wear his crown by sea and land,
In every place, fave here in Italy.

Caf. I know where I will wear this dagger then.' • Caffius from bondage will deliver Caffius. • 'Therein, ye gods, you make the weak most Atrong; • Therein, ye gods, you tyrants do defeat ; • Nor stony tower, nor walls of beaten brass, • Nor airless dungeon, nor strong links of iron, • Can be retentive to the Itrength of spirit : • But life, being weary of these woridly bars, • Never lacks power to dismiss itself. • If I know this; know all the world besides, « That


that I do bear, • I can shake off at pleasure.

Gafca, So can I : So every

bondman in his own hand bears I he power to cancel his captivity.

Caf. And why thould Cælar be a tyrant then? Poor man! I know he would not be a wolf,

* Calculate here signifies to foretel or prophesyo.



But that he sees the Romans are but Theep;
He were no lion, were not Romans hinds.
Those that with halte will make a mighty fire,
Begin it with weak straws. What trafh is Rome ?
What rubbish, and what offal? when it serves
For the base máttér to illuminate
So vile a thing as Cæsar ? But, oh, grief!
Where haft thou led me? I perhaps speak this
Before a willing bondman: then I know
My answer must be made. But I am arm’d,
And dangers are to me indifferent.

Casca. You speak to Casca, and to such a man,
That is no flearing tell-tale. Hold my hand :
Be factious for redress of all these griefs,
And I will set this foot of mine as far,
As who


Caf. There's a bargain made.
Now know you, Casca, I have mov'd already
Some certain of the noblest-minded Romans,
To undergo, with me, an enterprise
Of honourable dang’rous consequence ;
And I do know by this they stay for me
In Pompey's porch. For now, this fearful night,
There is no stir, or walking in the streets ;
And the complexion of the elements
Is fev'rous, like the work we have in hand ;
Most bloody, fiery, and moft terrible.

Enter Cinna.
Casca. Stand close a while, for here comes one in haite.

Gaj. 'Tis Cinna, I do know him by his gate ;
He is a friend.
Cinna, where halie


1o ? Cin. To find out you: who's thai, Metellus Cimber?

Caf. No, it is Casca, one incorporate
To our attempts. Am I not staid for, Cinna ?

Cin. I'm glad on't. What a fearful night is this? There': two or three of us have seen ftrange fights.

Caf. Am I not staid for? tell me.
Gin. Yes, you are.

O Caffius ! could you win the Noble Brutus
To our party
Caf. Be you content.

Good Cinna, take this paper,

And look you lay it in the Prætor's chair,
Where Brutus may but find it; and throw this.
In at his window ; set this up with wax
Upon old Brutus' itatue : all this done,
Repair to Pompey's porch, where you shall find us.
Is Decius Brutus and Trebonius, there?
Gin. All but Metellus Cimber, and he's

To seek, you at your house. Well, I will hie,
And so bestow these papers as you bad me.
Caf. That done, repair to Pompey's theatre.

[Exit Cinna,
Comę, Casca, you and I will yet, ere day,
See Brutus at his house ; three parts of him
Is ours already, and the man entire
Upon the next encounter yields him ours.

Casca. 0, he sits high in all the people's hearts :
And that which would appear offence in us,
His countenance, like richest alchymy,
Will change to virtue and to worthiness.

Caf. Him, and his worth, and our great need of him,
You have right well conceited; let us go,
For it is after midnight; and ere day
We will awake him, and be sure of him. [Exeunt.

[ocr errors]


Brutus's garden.

Enter Brutus.
Bru. W Hat, Lucius! ho

I cannot by the progress of the stars
Give guess how near to day Lucius, I say !
I would it were my fault to sleep so foundly.
When, Lucius, when? awake, I say! what, Lucius?

Enter Lucius.
Luc. Cali'd you, my Lord ?

Bru. Get me a taper in my study, Lucius :
When it is lighted, come and call me here.
Luc. I will, my Lord.

Bru. It must be by his death : and, for my party,
I know no personal cause to spurn at hiin,

« PreviousContinue »