Pagina-afbeeldingen
PDF
ePub

Which did incorporate and make us one,
That

you unfold to me, yourself, your half,
Why you are heavy; and what men to-night
Have had resort to you : for here have been
Some six or seven, who did hide their faces
Even from darkness.

Bru. Kneel not, gentle Portia.

Por. I should not need, if you were gentle Brutus. Within the bond of marriage, tell me, Brutus, Is it excepted, I should know no secrets That appertain to you? Am I yourself, But, as it were, in sort, or limitation ; To keep with you at meals, comfort your bed, And talk to you sometimes? Dwell I but in the suburbs Of your good pleasure ? If it be no more, Portia is Brutus' harlot, not his wife.

Bru. You are my true and honourable wife;
As dear to me, as e'er the ruddy drops
That visit my sad heart.
Por. If this were true, then should I know this se-

cret.
I grant, I am a woman; but, withal,
A woman that lord Brutus took to wife:
I grant, I am a woman; but, withal,
A woman well-reputed ; Cato's daughter.
Think you, I am no stronger than

my sex,
Being so father'd, and so husbanded ?
Tell me your counsels, I will not disclose them :
I have made strong proof of my constancy,
Giving myself a voluntary wound
Here, in the thigh : Can I bear that with patience,
And not my husband's secrets ?

Bru. O ye gods,
Render me worthy of this noble wife !

[Knocking within.
Hark, hark! one knocks : Portia, go in a while;
And by and by thy bosom shall partake
The secrets of my heart.
All my engagements I will construe to thee,
All the charactery of my sad brows :-
Leave me with haste.

[Exit Portia.

Enter LUCIUS and LIGARIUS. Lucius, who is that, knocks? Luc. Here is a sick man, that would speak with

you. Bru. Caius Ligarius, that Metellus spake of.Boy, stand aside.-Caius Ligarius ! how?

Lig. Vouchsafe good morrow from a feeble tongue.
Bru. O what a time you have chose out, brave

Caius,
To wear a kerchief? 'Would you were not sick!

Lig. I am not sick, if Brutus have in hand
Any exploit worthy the name of honour.

Bru. Such an exploit have I in hand, Ligarius,
Had you a healthful ear to hear of it.

Lig. By all the gods that Romans bow before,
I here discard my sickness. Soul of Rome !
Brave son, deriv'd from honourable loins !
Thou, like an exorcist, hast conjur'd up
My mortified spirit. Now bid me run;
And I will strive with things impossible,
Yea, get the better of them. What's to do?

Bru. A piece of work, that will make sick men

whole. Lig. But are not some whole, that we must make

sick ?
Bru. That must we also. What it is,

What it is, my Caius,
I shall unfold to thee, as we are going
To whom it must be done.

Lig. Set on your foot;
And, with a heart new-fir’d, I follow you,
To do I know not what : but it sufficeth,
That Brutus leads me on.

Bru. Follow me then.

SCENE II.-The same.

A Room in CÆSAR's Palace.

Thunder and Lightning. Enter CÆSAR, in his Night

gown. Cas. Nor heaven, nor earth, have been at peace to

night : Thrice hath Calphurnia in her sleep cried out, Help, ho! They murder Cæsar! Who's within ?

Enter a Servant. Serv. My lord ?

Cas. Go bid the priests do present sacrifice, And bring me their opinions of success.

Serv. I will, my lord.

[Exit.

Enter CALPHURNIA. Cal. What mean you, Cæsar? Think you to walk You shall not stir out of your house to-day.

forth?

Cæs. Cæsar shall forth : The things that threaten'd

me,

Ne'er look'd but on my back; when they shall see
The face of Cæsar, they are vanished.

Cal. Cæsar, I never stood on ceremonies,
Yet now they fright me.

There is one within,
Besides the things that we have heard and seen,
Recounts most horrid sights seen by the watch.
A lioness hath whelped in the streets;
And graves have yawn’d, and yielded up their dead :
Fierce fiery warriors fight upon the clouds,
In ranks, and squadrons, and right form of war,
Which drizzled blood upon the Capitol :
The noise of battle hurtled in the air,
Horses did neigh, and dying men did groan;
And ghosts did shriek, and squeal about the streets.
O Cæsar! these things are beyond all use,
And I do fear them.

Cæs. What can be avoided,
Whose end is purpos’d by the mighty gods ?
Yet Cæsar shall go forth : for these predictions
Are to the world in general, as to Cæsar.

Cal. When beggars die, there are no comets seen; The heavens themselves blaze forth the death of prin

ces.

Cæs. Cowards die many times before their deaths; The valiant never taste of death but once. Of all the wonders that I yet have heard, It seems to me most strange that men should fear; Seeing that death, a necessary end, Will come, when it will come.

Re-enter a Servant. What say the augurers ? Serv. They would not have you to stir forth to

day.
Plucking the entrails of an offering forth,
They could not find a heart within the beast.

Cæs. The gods do this in shame of cowardice;
Cæsar should be a beast without a heart,
If he should stay at home to-day for fear.
No, Cæsar shall not: Danger knows full well,
That Cæsar is more dangerous than he.
We were two lions litter'd in one day,
And I the elder and more terrible;
And Cæsar shall go forth.

Cal. Alas, my lord,
Your wisdom is consum'd in confidence.
Do not go forth to-day: Call it my fear,
That keeps you in the house, and not your own.
We'll send Mark Antony to the senate-house ;
An.' he shall say, you are not well to-day:
Let me, upon my knee, prevail in this.

Cas. Mark Antony shall say, I am not well ;
And, for thy humour, I will stay at home.

Enter Decius.
Here's Decius Brutus, he shall tell them so.

Dec. Cæsar, all hail! Good morrow, worthy Cæsar: I come to fetch you to the senate-house.

Cas. And you are come in very happy time,
To bear my greeting to the senators,
And tell them, that I will not come to-day :

« VorigeDoorgaan »