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It's past the size of dreaming; nature wants stuff To vie strange forms with fancy; yet to imagine An Antony were nature's piece 'gainst fancy, Condemning shadows quite.

Dol. Hear me, good madam. 100 Your loss is as yourself, great; and you bear it As answering to the weight: would I might never O'ertake pursu'd success, but I do feel, By the rebound of yours, a grief that smites My very heart at root.

I thank you, sir.
Know you what Cæsar means to do with me?
Dol. I am loath to tell you what I would you

Cleo. Nay, pray you, sir,-

Though he be honourable,-
Cleo. He'll lead me then in triumph?
Dol. Madam, he will; I know 't.
Cry within.

Make way there!-Cæsar! 110

NAS, SELEUCUS, and Attendants.

Caes. Which is the Queen of Egypt?
Dol. It is the emperor, madam.

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The ingratitude of this Seleucus does
Even make me wild. O slave! of no more trust
Than love that's hir'd. What! goest thou
back thou shalt

Go back, I warrant thee; but I'll catch thine eyes Though they had wings: slave, soulless villain, dog!

O rarely base!
Good queen, let us entreat you.
Cleo. O Cæsar! what a wounding shame is this,
That thou, vouchsafing here to visit me,
Doing the honour of thy lordliness


To one so meek, that mine own servant should Parcel the sum of my disgraces by Addition of his envy. Say, good Cæsar, That I some lady trifles have reserv'd, Immoment toys, things of such dignity As we greet modern friends withal; and say, CLEOPATRA kneels. Some nobler token I have kept apart For Livia and Octavia, to induce Their mediation; must I be unfolded With one that I have bred? The gods! it

Caes. Arise, you shall not kneel: I pray you, rise; rise, Egypt. Cleo. Sir, the gods Will have it thus; my master and my lord I must obey.


Take to you no hard thoughts; The record of what injuries you did us, Though written in our flesh, we shall remember As things but done by chance.


Cleo. Sole sir o' the world, I cannot project mine own cause so well To make it clear; but do confess I have Been laden with like frailties which before Have often sham'd our sex.

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We will extenuate rather than enforce :
If you apply yourself to our intents,
Which towards you are most gentle, you shall

A benefit in this change; but if you seek
To lay on me a cruelty, by taking
Antony's course, you shall bereave yourself
Of my good purposes, and put your children 130
To that destruction which I'll guard them from,
If thereon you rely. I'll take my leave.

Cleo. And may through all the world: 'tis yours; and we,

Your scutcheons and your signs of conquest, shall Hang in what place you please. Here, my good lord.

Cæs. You shall advise me in all for Cleopatra. Cleo. This is the brief of money, plate, and jewels, I am possess'd of: 'tis exactly valued; Not petty things admitted. Where's Seleucus? Sel. Here, madam.


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smites me


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For things that others do; and, when we fall,
We answer others' merits in our name,
Are therefore to be pitied.

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Not what you have reserv'd, nor what acknowledg'd,

Put we i' the roll of conquest: still be 't yours, Bestow it at your pleasure; and believe, 181 Cæsar's no merchant, to make prize with you Of things that merchants sold. Therefore be cheer'd;

Make not your thoughts your prisons: no, dear queen;

For we intend so to dispose you as
Yourself shall give us counsel. Feed, and sleep:
Our care and pity is so much upon you,
That we remain your friend; and so, adieu.
Cleo. My master, and my lord!
Not so.
Flourish. Exeunt CESAR and his Train.
Cleo. He words me, girls, he words me, that
I should not


Be noble to myself: but hark thee, Charmian. Whispers CHARMIAN. Iras. Finish, good lady; the bright day is


And we are for the dark.


I have spoke already, and Go, put it to the haste.


Hie thee again : it is provided;

Madam. I will.

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I shall remain your debtor.
I your servant.
Adieu, good queen; I must attend on Cæsar.
Cleo. Farewell, and thanks. Exit DOLABELLA.
Now, Iras, what think'st thou?

Thou, an Egyptian puppet, shalt be shown
In Rome, as well as I; mechanic slaves
With greasy aprons, rules, and hammers, shall
Uplift us to the view; in their thick breaths, 210
Rank of gross diet, shall we be enclouded,
And forc'd to drink their vapour.
The gods forbid!
Cleo. Nay, 'tis most certain, Iras. Saucy

Will catch at us, like strumpets, and scald rimers
Ballad us out o' tune; the quick comedians
Extemporally will stage us, and present
Our Alexandrian revels. Antony

Shall be brought drunken forth, and I shall see
Some squeaking Cleopatra boy my greatness
I' the posture of a whore.

O the good gods! 220

Cleo. Nay, that's certain. Iras. I'll never see 't; for I am sure my nails Are stronger than mine eyes. Cleo. Why, that's the way To fool their preparation, and to conquer Their most absurd intents.

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Clown. Very many, men and women too. I heard of one of them no longer than yesterday; a very honest woman, but something given to lie, as a woman should not do but in the way of honesty; how she died of the biting of it, what pain she felt. Truly, she makes a very good report o' the worm, but he that will believe all that they say shall never be saved by half that they do. But this is most fallible, the worm's an odd worm.

Cleo. Get thee hence; farewell.
Clown. I wish you all joy of the worm.
Sets down the basket.

Cleo. Farewell. Clown. You must think this, look you, that the worm will do his kind.

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Re-enter IRAS with a robe, crown, etc. Cleo. Give me my robe, put on my crown; I have

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Immortal longings in me; now no more
The juice of Egypt's grape shall moist this lip.
Yare, yare, good Iras; quick. Methinks I hear
Antony call; I see him rouse himself
To praise my noble act; I hear him mock
The luck of Cæsar, which the gods give men
To excuse their after wrath: husband, I come:
Now to that name my courage prove my title!
I am fire and air; my other elements
I give to baser life. So; have you done?
Come then, and take the last warmth of my lips.
Farewell, kind Charmian; Iras, long farewell.
Kisses them. IRAS falls and dies
Have I the aspic in my lips? Dost fall?
If thou and nature can so gently part,
The stroke of death is as a lover's pinch,
Which hurts, and is desir'd. Dost thou lie still!
If thus thou vanishest, thou tell'st the world
It is not worth leave-taking.

Char. Dissolve, thick cloud, and rain; that I may say,

The gods themselves do weep.

Cleo. This proves me base: If she first meet the curled Antony,

He'll make demand of her, and spend that kiss | To see perform'd the dreaded act which thou
Which is my heaven to have. Come, thou So sought'st to hinder.
mortal wretch,

To the asp, which she applies to her breast.
With thy sharp teeth this knot intrinsicate
Of life at once untie; poor venomous fool,
Be angry, and dispatch. O! could'st thou speak,
That I might hear thee call great Cæsar ass 310

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Cleo. As sweet as balm, as soft as air, as gentle,

O Antony!-Nay, I will take thee too.

Applying another asp to her arm.
What should I stay-

Char. In this wide world? So, fare thee well.
Now boast thee, death, in thy possession lies
A lass unparallel'd. Downy windows, close;
And golden Phoebus never be beheld

Of eyes again so royal! Your crown's awry ;
I'll mend it, and then play.

Enter the Guard, rushing in.

First Guard. Where is the queen?


A way there!-A way for Cæsar!
Re-enter CESAR and all his Train.
Dol. O sir, you are too sure an augurer;
That you did fear is done.

Bravest at the last,
She levell'd at our purposes, and, being royal,
Took her own way. The manner of their deaths?
I do not see them bleed.

Who was last with them? First Guard. A simple countryman that brought her figs :

This was his basket.


First Guard.


Poison'd then.

O Cæsar!

This Charmian liv'd but now; she stood and
spake :

I found her trimming up the diadem
On her dead mistress; tremblingly she stood,
And on the sudden dropp'd.

O noble weakness!
If they had swallow'd poison 'twould appear
By external swelling; but she looks like sleep,
As she would catch another Antony

In her strong toil of grace.

Here, on her breast,

Speak softly; wake her not. There is a vent of blood, and something blown; First Guard. Cæsar hath sentThe like is on her arm. Char.

Too slow a messenger.

Applies an asp.
O! come apace, dispatch; I partly feel thee.
First Guard. Approach, ho! All's not well;
Cæsar's beguil'd.

Second Guard. There's Dolabella sent from
Cæsar; call him.

First Guard. What work is here! Charmian,
is this well done?

Char. It is well done, and fitting for a princess
Descended of so many royal kings.
Ah! soldier.

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Cæsar, thy thoughts Touch their effects in this; thyself art coming


First Guard. This is an aspic's trail; and these

Have slime upon them, such as the aspic leaves
Upon the caves of Nile.


Most probable


That so she died; for her physician tells me
She hath pursu'd conclusions infinite
Of easy ways to die. Take up her bed;
And bear her women from the monument.
She shall be buried by her Antony:
No grave upon the earth shall clip in it
A pair so famous. High events as these
Strike those that make them; and their story is
No less in pity than his glory which
Brought them to be lamented. Our army shall
In solemn show attend this funeral,
And then to Rome. Come, Dolabella, see
High order in this great solemnity.


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Lords, Ladies, Roman Senators, Tribunes, a Soothsayer, a Dutch Gentleman, a Spanish Gentleman, Musicians, Officers, Captains, Soldiers, Messengers, and other Attendants.


SCENE.-Sometimes in Britain, sometimes in Italy.


And therefore banish'd, is a creature such
As, to seek through the regions of the earth >>

SCENE I.—Britain. The Garden of CYMBELINE'S For one his like, there would be something fail


Enter two Gentlemen.


In him that should compare. I do not think
So fair an outward and such stuff within

First Gent. You do not meet a man but frowns; Endows a man but he.
our bloods

No more obey the heavens than our courtiers
Still seem as does the king.
Second Gent.
But what's the matter?
First Gent. His daughter, and the heir of's
kingdom, whom

He purpos'd to his wife's sole son, a widow
That late he married, hath referr'd herself
Unto a poor but worthy gentleman.



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Second Gent.
You speak him far.
First Gent. I do extend him, sir, within himself,
Crush him together rather than unfold
His measure duly.
Second Gent.

What's his name and birth! First Gent. I cannot delve him to the root: his father

Was call'd Sicilius, who did join his honour
Against the Romans with Cassibelan,
But had his titles by Tenantius whom
He serv'd with glory and admir'd success,
So gain'd the sur-addition Leonatus ;
And had, besides this gentleman in question,
Two other sons, who in the wars o' the time
Died with their swords in hand; for which their

Then old and fond of issue, took such sorrow
That he quit being, and his gentle lady,
Big of this gentleman, our theme, deceas'd
As he was born. The king, he takes the babe
To his protection; calls him Posthumus Leo-

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Breeds him and makes him of his bedchamber.
Puts to him all the learnings that his time
Could make him the receiver of; which he took.

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Alack the king!
Cym. Thou basest thing, avoid hence from
my sight!

If after this command thou fraught the court
With thy unworthiness, thou diest. Away!
Thou 'rt poison to my blood.
The gods protect you,
And bless the good remainders of the court!
I am gone.
Imo. There cannot be a pinch in death
More sharp than this is.

O disloyal thing,
That should'st repair my youth, thou heap'st
A year's age on me.
I beseech you, sir,
Harm not yourself with your vexation;


I am senseless of your wrath; a touch more rare Subdues all pangs, all fears.


Past grace? obedience? Imo. Past hope, and in despair; that way, past grace.

Cym. That might'st have had the sole son of my queen!

Imo. O bless'd, that I might not! I chose an eagle

And did avoid a puttock.


Cym. Thou took'st a beggar; would'st have made my throne

A seat for baseness.

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