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[Enobarbus.] If you borrow one another's love for the in

stant, you may, when you hear no more words of Pompey, return it again : you shall have time to wran

gle in, when you have nothing else to do. [Antony.] Enobarbus,

Thou art a soldier only; speak no more.


here of Cæsar, [Octavius.] Nay,

I do not much dislike the matter, but
The manner of his speech : for it cannot be
We shall remain as friends. Yet if I knew
A hoop would hold us staunch, I'd seek it out

Through the wide world.
[Agrippa.] Give me leave, Cæsar?
[Octavius.] Speak, Agrippa.
[Agrippa.] Thou hast a sister by the mother's side,

Admir'd Octavia : great Mark Antony

Is now a widower. [Octarius.] Say not so, Agrippa :

If Cleopatra heard you, your reproof

Were well desery'd. [Antony.] I am not married, Cæsar:

So let me hear Agrippa further speak.
[Agrippa.] To hold you in perpetu'al amity-
To make you brothers, and to knit your

With an unslipping knot-take Antony
Octavia to his wife ; whose beauty claims
No worse a husband than the best of men;
Whose virtue, and whose general graces, speak
That which none else can utter. By this marriage,
All little jealousies, which now seem great,
And all great fears, which now import their dangers,
Would then be nothing: for her love to both,
Would cach to other draw; and loves besides

From all good hearts. Pray, pardon what I speak;
For 'tis a studied, not a present thought,

By duty ruminated. At the conclusion of this speech, there is a momentary silence : at length Antony says : [Antony.] Will Cæsar speak? [Octavius.] Not till he hears how Antony is touch'd With

what is spoken already. [Antony.] What power is in Agrippa,

If I should say, “ Agrippa, be it so,"

To make this good ? [Octavius.] The power of Cæsar, and

His influence on Octavia.

[Antony.) May I never

To this good purpose, that so fairly shows,
Dream of impediment! Let me have thy hand ;
Further this act of grace; and, from this hour,
The heart of brothers govern in our loves,

And sway in our designs. [Octavius.] There is my hand.

A sister I bequeath you, whom no brother
Did ever love so dearly. Let her live
To join our kingdoms and our hearts, and never
May our loves part again! Time calls upon us.
Of us must Poinpey presently be sought,
Ör else he seeks out us. By sea, already
He is an abso'lute master. Haste we to him :
Yet ere we put ourselves in arms, despatch we
The busi'ness talk'd of: with all gladness,
I do invite


presence. And let us, Lepidus, not lack your company. Allow me thus to lead you : pray you, follow.

Mecænas and Enobarbus remain.

to my

[Mecænas.] Welcome from Egypt, sir. [Enobarbus.] Worthy Mecænas,

You who are half the heart of Cæsar,-thanks! [Mecænas.] Cause have we to be glad, that all these matters

Are thus so well digested: but, for Egypt,

You stay'd it well, sir, there. [Enobarbus.] Ay, ay, good sir :

We slept day out of countenance, and made

The night sun-bright with drinking. [Mecænas.] Cleopatra,

If report square with truth, is a triumphant

Lady. [Enobarbus. She purs'd the heart of Antony,

When she first met him on the river Cydnus. [Mecænas.] There she appear'd indeed : or my reporter

Devis'd with skill poetical. [Enobarbus.] I will tell you.

The barge she sat in, like a burnish'd throne,
Burn’d on the water : the poop was beaten goid ;
Purple the sails, and so perfumed, that (silver,
The winds were love-sick with them : the oars were
Which, to the sound of flutes kept stroke, and made
The water, which they beat, to follow faster,
As amo’rous of their strokes. For her own person,
It beggar'd all description : she did lie
In her pavilion, ---cloth of golden tissue,
O'er-picturing that Venus, where we see
The fancy out-work nature: on each side her
Stood pretty dimpled boys, like smiling Cupids,
With diverse-colour'd fans, that seem'd to make
The delicate cheeks which they did cool, to glow;
And did, and undid : while her gentlewomen,
So many mermaids or Neréïdes,
Bending before her gracefully, adorn'd
Her by their tendance : at the vessel's helm
A seeming mermaid steers : thc silken tackle

Swells with the touches of the flower-soft hands,
That, dextrous, do their office. From the barge
A strange, invisible perfume expands
O'er all the adjacent shores.

Thither the city
Had cast her eager multitudes, while Antony,
Enthron’d i' the market-place, did sit alone,
And whistle to the air.
Upon her landing, Antony sent friends
Inviting her to supper : she replied
It would be better he became her guest;
Which she entreated ; and our courteous Antony,
Whom ne'er the word of “No,” woman heard speak,
Adorn'd befittingly, goes to the feast,

And for his entertainment pays his heart. [Mecænas.] Rare Egyptian,--conqueror of hearts! By all

Besides unconquer'd ! she alone did make

Great Cæsar lay his sword to rest. [Enobarbus.] I've seen her

Hop forty paces in the public street,
And having lost her breath, she spoke, and panted,
Making defect perfection, and her weakness

A power irresistible. [Mecenas.] But now

Your Antony must leave her. [Enobarbus.] Never will he:

Age cannot wither her, nor custom stale
Her infinite variety. Other women
By light behaviour cloy; but she makes hungry
Where she most satisfies. For vilest things
Become themselves in her; and holy priests

Bless her, when she is wanton. (Mecænas.] Let me say, sir,

If beauty, wisdom, modesty, can fix
Antony's heart, Octavia is a wife
To be a blessing to him : there we 'll pause.
Sir, I entreat that, while

you do abide here,
You make yourself my guest : I'll show the way.




On Antony's marriage with Octavia, which took place about three years after the victories at Philippi, a new partition was made of the empire, the western part, from the ocean to the British Channel, being assigned to Octavius, and the eastern to Antony, except that Lepidus was suffered to retain his province in Africa ; and that Italy was still left open to the two great triumvirs in common. Antony, on this occasion, returned to Rome, where he abode with his wife for the greater part of two years, restrained by her discretion, and her other amiable qualities, from the excesses to which he was naturally prone. It was during this time that the triumvirs held a conference with Sextus Pompey in the bay of Naples, and concluding a peace (it lasted but for a short time), were entertained by him, and gave entertainments in return. Antony's longer abode in Rome was prevented by the necessity of his presence in the East; and that he might be nearer to Syria, where his lieutenants were contending with the invading Parthians, he removed with Octavia to Athens. Ventidius was successful in the war before Antony reached the army; and Antony therefore continued his abode at Athens during the winter ; resigning himself to domestic pleasures, or the conversation of the learned. The war with Sextus Pompey afterwards broke out anew; and Octavius requiring the assistance of Antony, the latter, though he disliked the war, came to him with a large fleet; Octavia interposing her influence to keep the two triumvirs still on good terms. On Antuny's necessary return to the East, in order to repress the Parthians who were again overrunning his provinces, Octavia, whose condition did not permit the fatigues of travelling, returned to Rome. Octavius continued to press the war against Pompey, and finally with complete success ; Pompey, after seeing his fleet destroyed, being obliged to fly into the East, where he was taken, and soon after killed. Another event which took place during these transactions, was the dispossessing of Lepidus of all share in the empire; by which act, and other stretches of power, Octavius increased the jealousy of Antony. Octavia, meanwhile learning that her busband, in the intervals of his wars, had renewed his connection with Cleopatra, and hearing that he was to leave Alexandria on a new Parthian expedition, determined to place herself in his way as he passed through Syria ; and to enhance the pleasure of their meeting, provided herself with a variety of presents. Arriving in Greece in furtherance of this project, her intention became known in Egypt; and Cleopatra had the address to retain Antony at Alexandria, and prevailed on him to send Octavia a prremptory order not to advance in her intended

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