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I will not come to-day: Tell them so, Decius.
Cal. Say, he is sick.
Shall Cæsar send a lie ?
cause, Lest I be laugh'd at, when I tell them so.
Cæs. The cause is in my will, I will not come; That is enough to satisfy the senate. But, for your private satisfaction, Because I love you, I will let you know. Calphurnia here, my wife, stays me at home : She dreamt to-night she saw my statue°; Which like a fountain, with a hundred spouts, Did run pure blood; and many lusty Romans Came smiling, and did bathe their hands in it. And these does she apply for warnings, and por
Dec. This dream is all amiss interpreted;
6-my STATUA,] [Old copy, statue.] See vol. iv. p. 119.
Steevens: warnings, portents,] Old copy, unmetrically—“ warnings, and portents.”
STEEVENS. 8 Ånd evils imminent;] The late Mr. Edwards was of opinion that we should read :
“ Of evils imminent." STEEVENS. The alteration proposed by Mr. Edwards is needless, and tends to weaken the force of the expressions, which foin, as they now stand, a regular climax. Henley.
Reviving blood; and that great men shall press
Cæs. And this way have you well expounded it.
say: And know it now; The senate have concluded To give, this day, a crown to mighty Cæsar. If you shall send them word, you will not come, Their minds may change. Besides, it were a mock Apt to be render'd, for some one to say, Break up the senate till another time, When Cæsar's wife shall meet with better dreams". If Cæsar hide himself, shall they not whisper, Lo, Casar is afraid? Pardon me, Cæsar; for my dear, dear love
9 and that great men shall press
For tinctuRES, STAINS, RELICKS, and cognizance.] This speech, which is intentionally pompous, is somewhat confused. There are two allusions ; one to coats armorial, to which princes make additions, or give new tinctures, and new marks of cognizance; the other to martyrs, whose reliques are preserved with veneration. The Romans, says Decius, all come to you as to a saint, for reliques, as to a prince, for honours. Johnson.
I believe tinctures has no relation to heraldry, but means merely handkerchiefs, or other linen, tinged with blood. Bullokar, in his Expositor, 1616, defines it "a dipping, colouring, or staining of a thing." So, in Act III. Sc. II. :
“ And dip their napkins in his sacred blood.” MALONE. I concur in opinion with Mr. Malone. At the execution of several of our ancient nobility, martyrs, &c. we are told that handkerchiefs were tinctured with their blood, and preserved as affectionate or salutary memorials of the deceased. .Steevens.
** When Cæsar's wife shall meet with better dreams.] So, in Lord Sterline's Julius Cæsar, 1607 :
“How can we satisfy the world's conceit,
“Whose tongues still in all ears your praise proclaims ?
To your proceeding bids me tell you this ;
Enter PUBLIUS, BRUTUS, LIGARIUS, METELLUS,
CASCA, TREBONius, and Cinna.
Pub. Good morrow, Cæsar.
Welcome, Publius. -
Cæsar, 'tis strucken eight. Cæs. I thank you for your pains and courtesy.
Ant. So to most noble Cæsar.
Bid them prepare within :-
[Aside. That your best friends shall wish I had been further.
2 And reason, &c.] “And reason," or propriety of conduct and language, is subordinate to my love.
Cæs. Good friends, go in, and taste some wine
And we, like friends, will straightway go together.
Bru. That every like is not the same, O Cæsar, The heart of Brutus yearns to think upon! [Exeunt.
The Same. A Street near the Capitol.
Enter ARTEMIDORUS, reading a Paper. Art. Cæsar, beware of Brutus ; take heed of Cassius; come not near Casca; have an eye to Cinna; trust not Trebonius.; mark well Metellus Cinber; Decius Brutus loves thee not; thou hastwronged Caius Ligarius. There is but one mind in all these men, and it is bent against Cæsar. If thou be'st not immortal, look about you : Security gives way to conspiracy. The mighty gods defend thee! Thy lover,
Here will I stand, till Cæsar pass along,
4 - emulation,] Here, as on many other occasions, this word is used in an unfavourable sense, somewhat like-factious, envious, or malicious rivalry. So, in Troilus and Cressida :
Whilst emulation in the army crept.” Steevens.
the fates with traitors do contrive.] The fates join with traitors in contriving thy destruction. Johnson.
The Same. Another Part of the same Street, before
the House of BRUTUS.
Enter Portia and Lucius. Por. I prythee, boy, run to the senate-house; Stay not to answer me, but get thee gone: Why dost thou stay? Luc.
To know my errand, madam. Por. I would have had thee there, and here again, Ere I can tell thee what thou should'st do there. O constancy, be strong upon my side ! Set a huge mountain 'tween my heart and tongue ! I have a man's mind, but a woman's might. How hard it is for women to keep counsel ! Art thou here yet ? Luc.
Madam, what should I do?
Luc. I hear none, madam.
Pr’ythee, listen well:
6 Why dost thou stay ? &c.] Shakspeare has expressed the perturbation of King Richard the Third's mind by the same incident :
Dull, unmindful villain !
“ Cat. First, mighty liege, tell me your highness' pleasure, "Whạt from your grace I shall deliver to him."