Imagens da página
PDF
ePub

He should not humour me. I 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 anibition shall be glanced at:
And, after this, let Cæsar feat him sure ;
For we will shake him, or worse days endure. [Exit.

you fo?

SC EN E III. 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
Casca. Are you not mov’d, when all the ofway of

earth
Shakes, like a thing unfirm ? (Cicero,
I have seen tempefts, when the scolding winds
Have riv'd the knotty oaks; and I have seen
The ambitious ocean swell, and rage, and foam,
To be exalted with the threatening clouds :
But never till to-night, never till now,
Did I go through a tempest dropping fire.
Either there is a civil strife in heaven;

WARB.

encomium on his own better conditions. If I were Brutus (says he) and Brutus, Cassius, he foould not cajole me as I do bim. To bumour signifies here to turn and wind him, by inflaming his passions. The Oxford Editor alters the last line to

Cafar should not love me.
What he means by it, is not worth inquiring.

The meaning, I think, is this, Casar loves Bru'us, but if Brutus and I were to change places, his love hould not humour me, should not take hold of my affection, so as to make me forget my principles.

JOHNSON. s-Brought you Cajar home?] Did you attend Cæfar home i

JOHNSON. 6-fway of eartb] The whole weight or momentum of this globe.

JOHNSON.

Or

Or else the world, too faucy with the Gods,
Incenses them to send destruction.

Cic. Why, saw you any thing more wonderful?

Casca. A common Nave(you know him well by light) Held up his left hand, which did fame and burn, Like twenty torches join’d; and yet his hand, Not sensible of fire, remain'd unicorch’d. Besides (I have not since put up my sword) Against the Capitol I met a lion, Who glar'd upon me, and went surly 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,
Even at noon-day, upon the market-place,
Hooting and shrieking. When these prodigies
Do lo conjointly ineet, let not men say,
These are ibeir reasonsThey are natural;
For, I believe, they are porcentous things
Unto the climate that they point upon.

Cic. Indeed, it is a strange-disposed time:
But men may construe things after their fashion,
Clean from the purpose of the things themselves.
Comes Cæsar 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. Farewell, Cicero.

[Exit Cicero.

Wbo glar'd upon me,-) The first edition reads,

W bo glaz'd upon me, Perhaps, Who gaz'd upon 11.c.

JOHNSON. Glard is certainly right. To gaze is only to look fedtaflly, or with admiration. Glar'd has a fingular propriety, as it is highly cxpreflive of the furious scintillation of a lion's eyes. STEBVENS.

[blocks in formation]

Enter Cafius. Caf. Who's there? Casca. A Roman. Caf. Casca, by your voice. Casca. Your ear is good. Callius, what night is this? Caf. A very pleasing night to honeft men. Casca. Whoever knew the heavens menace fo? Caf. Those, that have known the earth so full of

faults.
For my part, I have walk'd about the streets,
Submitting me unto the perilous night;
And, thus unbraced, Casca, as you see,
Have bar'd my bosom to the thunder-stone:
And when the cross blue lightning seem'd to open
The breast of heaven, I did present myself
Even in the aim and very flash of it.
Casca. But wherefore did you so much tempt the

heavens ?
It is the part of men to fear and tremble,
When the most mighty Gods; by tokens, send
Such dreadful heralds to astonish us.

Caf. You are dull, Casca; and those sparks of life
That fhould 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 heavens :
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

* Why birds, and beasts, from quality and kind ;] That is, Why they deviate from quality and nature. This line might perhaps be more properly placed after the next line.

W by birds, and beasts, from quality and kind;

Why all these things change from their ordinance. Johnson, 9 -and children calculate ;] Calculare here fignifies to 'foretel

or

1

Why all these things change, from their ordinance,
Their natures, and pre-formed faculties,
To monstrous quality ; why, you shall find,
That heaven has infus'd them with these spirits,
To make them inftruinents 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 strange eruptions are.

Casca. 'Tis Cæsar that you mean: is it not, Callius?

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

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

Caf. I know where I will wear this dagger then:
Caffius from bondage will deliver Calsius.
Therein, ye Gods, you make the weak most strong;
Therein, ye Gods, you tyrants do defeat :
or prophesy: for the custom of foretelling fortunes by judicial
astrology (which was at that time much in vogue) being performed
by a long tedious calculation, Shakespeare, with his usual liberty,
employs the species (calculate for the genus (foretel]. WARB.

Shakespeare found the liberty established. To calculate a nari. vity, is the technical term.

JOHNSON
* Have thewes and li:nbs—] Thewes is an old obsolete word im:
plying nerves or muscular frength. The word is uted by Falf
in the Second Part of Hen. IV. and in Hamlet,

- For nature, crescent, does not grow alone
“ In the wes and bulk."

STEEVEIS

Nor

C 3

Upon old Brutus' ftatue : all this done,
Repair to Pompey's porch, where you shall find us.
Is Decius Brutus, and Trebonius, there?

Cin. All, but Merellus Cimber; and he's gone
To seek you at your house. · Well, I will hie,
And so bestow these papers, as you bade me.
Caf. That done, repair to Pompey's theatre.

[Exit Cinna.
Come, 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. O, 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.

ACT II.

SCENE I.

Brutus's Garden.

Enter Brutus.

BRUT US

WHAT, Lucius ! ho!

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 deep so foundly.

When,

« AnteriorContinuar »