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Not hew him as a carcase fit for hounds:
their servants to an act of rage,
purpose necessary, and not envious:
Yet I do fear him:
Bru. Alas, good Cassius, do not think of him:
Treb. There is no fear in him; let him not die;
The clock hath stricken three.
But it is doubtful yet,
may be, these apparent prodigies, The unaccustom'd terror of this night,
take thought,] That is, turn melancholy.
-company. ] Company is here used in a disreputable sense. Quite from the main opinion he held once
Of fantasy, of dreams, and ceremonies:] Main opinion, is nothing more than leading, fired, predominant opinion. Fantasy was in our author's time commonly used for imagination. Ceremonies means omens or signs deduced from sacrifices, or other ceremonial
And the persuasion of his augurers,
Dec. Never fear that: If he be so resoly'd,
Cas. Nay, we will all of us be there to fetch him.
Met. Caius Ligarius doth bear Cæsar hard,
Bru. Now, good Metellus, go along by him;: He loves me well, and I have given him reasons; Send him but hither, and I'll fashion him. Cas. The morning comes upon us: We'll leave
you, Brutus: And, friends, disperse yourselves: but all remember What
you have said, and show yourselves true Ro
Bru. Good gentlemen, look fresh and merrily;
* That unicorns may be betray'd with trees,
And bears with glasses, elephants with holes.] Unicorns are said to have been taken by one who, running behind a tree, eluded the violent push the animal was making at him, so that his horn spent its force on the trunk, and stuck fast, detaining the beast till he was despatched by the hunter. Bears are reported to have been surprised by means of a mirror, which they would gaze on, affording their pursuers an opportunity of taking the surer aim. Elephants were seduced into pitfalls, lightly covered with hurdles and turf, on which a proper bait to tempt them, was exposed.
by him :] That is, by his house.
Let not our looks* put on our purposes;
Exeunt all but BRUTUS.
Brutus, my lord! Bru. Portia, what mean you? Wherefore rise It is not for your health, thus to commit Your weak condition to the raw-cold morning. Por. Nor for yours neither. You have ungently,
Brutus, Stole from my bed: And yesternight, at supper, You suddenly arose, and walk'd about, Musing, and sighing, with your arms across: And when I ask'd you what the matter was, You star'd upon me with ungentle looks: I urg'd you further; then you scratch'd your head, And too impatiently stamp'd with your foot: Yet I insisted, yet you answer'd not; But, with an angry wafture of your hand, Gave sign for me to leave you: So I did; Fearing to strengthen that impatience, Which seem'd too much enkindled; and, withal, Hoping it was but an effect of humour, Which sometime hath his hour with every man. It will not let you eat, nor talk, nor sleep;
• Let not our looks-) Let not our faces put on, that is, wear of show our designs. VOL. VIII.
And, could it work so much upon your shape,
Bru. I am not well in health, and that is all.
Por. Brutus is wise, and, were he not in health, He would embrace the means to come by it.
Bru. Why, so I do:-Good Portia, go to bed.
Por. Is Brutus sick ? and is it physical
Kneel not, gentle Portia.
5 — on your condition,] On your temper; the disposition of
Bru. You are my true and honourable wife;
secret. 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.
Oye 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.
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 have you chose out, brave Caius,