Antony and Cleopatra
Act II, Scene 2
Rome. The house of Lepidus.
- Enter Enobarbus and Lepidus.
Lepidus1 - 3
- Good Enobarbus, ’tis a worthy deed,
- And shall become you well, to entreat your captain
- To soft and gentle speech.
Domitius Enobarbus4 - 9
- I shall entreat him
- To answer like himself. If Caesar move him,
- Let Antony look over Caesar’s head
- And speak as loud as Mars. By Jupiter,
- Were I the wearer of Antonio’s beard,
- I would not shave’t today.
Lepidus10 - 11
- ’Tis not a time
- For private stomaching.
Domitius Enobarbus12 - 13
- Every time
- Serves for the matter that is then born in’t.
- But small to greater matters must give way.
- Not if the small come first.
Lepidus16 - 18
- Your speech is passion;
- But pray you stir no embers up. Here comes
- The noble Antony.
- Enter Antony and Ventidius.
- And yonder, Caesar.
- Enter Caesar, Maecenas, and Agrippa.
Mark Antony20 - 21
- If we compose well here, to Parthia.
- Hark, Ventidius.
Caesar22 - 23
- I do not know,
- Maecenas; ask Agrippa.
Lepidus24 - 32
- Noble friends,
- That which combin’d us was most great, and let not
- A leaner action rend us. What’s amiss,
- May it be gently heard. When we debate
- Our trivial difference loud, we do commit
- Murder in healing wounds. Then, noble partners,
- The rather for I earnestly beseech,
- Touch you the sourest points with sweetest terms,
- Nor curstness grow to th’ matter.
Mark Antony33 - 35
- ’Tis spoken well.
- Were we before our armies, and to fight,
- I should do thus.
- Welcome to Rome.
- Thank you.
- Sit, sir.
- Nay then.
Mark Antony41 - 42
- I learn you take things ill which are not so—
- Or being, concern you not.
Caesar43 - 48
- I must be laugh’d at
- If, or for nothing or a little, I
- Should say myself offended, and with you
- Chiefly i’ th’ world; more laugh’d at, that I should
- Once name you derogately, when to sound your name
- It not concern’d me.
Mark Antony49 - 50
- My being in Egypt, Caesar,
- What was’t to you?
Caesar51 - 54
- No more than my residing here at Rome
- Might be to you in Egypt; yet if you there
- Did practice on my state, your being in Egypt
- Might be my question.
- How intend you, practic’d?
Caesar56 - 59
- You may be pleas’d to catch at mine intent
- By what did here befall me. Your wife and brother
- Made wars upon me, and their contestation
- Was theme for you—you were the word of war.
Mark Antony60 - 69
- You do mistake your business, my brother never
- Did urge me in his act. I did inquire it,
- And have my learning from some true reports
- That drew their swords with you. Did he not rather
- Discredit my authority with yours,
- And make the wars alike against my stomach,
- Having alike your cause? Of this my letters
- Before did satisfy you. If you’ll patch a quarrel,
- As matter whole you have to make it with,
- It must not be with this.
Caesar70 - 72
- You praise yourself
- By laying defects of judgment to me; but
- You patch’d up your excuses.
Mark Antony73 - 81
- Not so, not so:
- I know you could not lack, I am certain on’t,
- Very necessity of this thought, that I,
- Your partner in the cause ’gainst which he fought,
- Could not with graceful eyes attend those wars
- Which fronted mine own peace. As for my wife,
- I would you had her spirit in such another;
- The third o’ th’ world is yours, which with a snaffle
- You may pace easy, but not such a wife.
Domitius Enobarbus82 - 83
- Would we had all such wives, that the men might go to wars
- with the women!
Mark Antony84 - 88
- So much uncurbable, her garboils, Caesar,
- Made out of her impatience—which not wanted
- Shrewdness of policy too—I grieving grant
- Did you too much disquiet. For that you must
- But say I could not help it.
Caesar89 - 92
- I wrote to you,
- When rioting in Alexandria you
- Did pocket up my letters; and with taunts
- Did gibe my missive out of audience.
Mark Antony93 - 100
- He fell upon me, ere admitted, then;
- Three kings I had newly feasted, and did want
- Of what I was i’ th’ morning; but next day
- I told him of myself, which was as much
- As to have ask’d him pardon. Let this fellow
- Be nothing of our strife; if we contend,
- Out of our question wipe him.
Caesar101 - 103
- You have broken
- The article of your oath, which you shall never
- Have tongue to charge me with.
- Soft, Caesar!
Mark Antony105 - 108
- No, Lepidus, let him speak.
- The honor is sacred which he talks on now,
- Supposing that I lack’d it. But on, Caesar,
- The article of my oath.
Caesar109 - 110
- To lend me arms and aid when I requir’d them,
- The which you both denied.
Mark Antony111 - 120
- Neglected, rather;
- And then when poisoned hours had bound me up
- From mine own knowledge. As nearly as I may,
- I’ll play the penitent to you; but mine honesty
- Shall not make poor my greatness, nor my power
- Work without it. Truth is, that Fulvia,
- To have me out of Egypt, made wars here;
- For which myself, the ignorant motive, do
- So far ask pardon as befits mine honor
- To stoop in such a case.
- ’Tis noble spoken.
Maecenas122 - 125
- If it might please you, to enforce no further
- The griefs between ye: to forget them quite
- Were to remember that the present need
- Speaks to atone you.
- Worthily spoken, Maecenas.
Domitius Enobarbus127 - 130
- Or, if you borrow one another’s love for the instant, you
- may, when you hear no more words of Pompey, return it again.
- You shall have time to wrangle in when you have nothing else
- to do.
- Thou art a soldier only, speak no more.
- That truth should be silent I had almost forgot.
- You wrong this presence, therefore speak no more.
- Go to then—your considerate stone.
Caesar135 - 140
- I do not much dislike the matter, but
- The manner of his speech; for’t cannot be
- We shall remain in friendship, our conditions
- So diff’ring in their acts. Yet if I knew
- What hoop should hold us staunch from edge to edge
- A’ th’ world, I would pursue it.
- Give me leave, Caesar—
- Speak, Agrippa.
Agrippa143 - 145
- Thou hast a sister by the mother’s side,
- Admir’d Octavia. Great Mark Antony
- Is now a widower.
Caesar146 - 148
- Say not so, Agrippa;
- If Cleopatra heard you, your reproof
- Were well deserv’d of rashness.
Mark Antony149 - 150
- I am not married, Caesar;
- Let me hear Agrippa further speak.
Agrippa151 - 165
- To hold you in perpetual amity,
- To make you brothers, and to knit your hearts
- 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. Truths would be tales,
- Where now half tales be truths. Her love to both
- Would each to other and all loves to both
- Draw after her. Pardon what I have spoke,
- For ’tis a studied, not a present thought,
- By duty ruminated.
- Will Caesar speak?
Caesar167 - 168
- Not till he hears how Antony is touch’d
- With what is spoke already.
Mark Antony169 - 171
- What power is in Agrippa,
- If I would say, “Agrippa, be it so,”
- To make this good?
Caesar172 - 173
- The power of Caesar, and
- His power unto Octavia.
Mark Antony174 - 179
- 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 our great designs!
Caesar180 - 184
- There’s 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
- Fly off our loves again!
- Happily, amen!
Mark Antony186 - 190
- I did not think to draw my sword ’gainst Pompey,
- For he hath laid strange courtesies and great
- Of late upon me. I must thank him only,
- Lest my remembrance suffer ill report;
- At heel of that, defy him.
Lepidus191 - 193
- Time calls upon ’s.
- Of us must Pompey presently be sought,
- Or else he seeks out us.
- Where lies he?
- About the Mount Misena.
- What is his strength by land?
Caesar197 - 198
- Great, and increasing; but by sea
- He is an absolute master.
Mark Antony199 - 202
- So is the fame.
- Would we had spoke together! Haste we for it,
- Yet ere we put ourselves in arms, dispatch we
- The business we have talk’d of.
Caesar203 - 205
- With most gladness,
- And do invite you to my sister’s view,
- Whither straight I’ll lead you.
Mark Antony206 - 207
- Let us, Lepidus,
- Not lack your company.
Lepidus208 - 209
- Noble Antony,
- Not sickness should detain me.
- Flourish. Exeunt omnes. Manent Enobarbus, Agrippa, Maecenas.
- Welcome from Egypt, sir.
Domitius Enobarbus211 - 212
- Half the heart of Caesar, worthy Maecenas! My honorable
- friend, Agrippa!
- Good Enobarbus!
Maecenas214 - 215
- We have cause to be glad that matters are so well digested.
- You stay’d well by’t in Egypt.
Domitius Enobarbus216 - 217
- Ay, sir, we did sleep day out of countenance, and made the
- night light with drinking.
Maecenas218 - 219
- Eight wild-boars roasted whole at a breakfast, and but
- twelve persons there; is this true?
Domitius Enobarbus220 - 221
- This was but as a fly by an eagle; we had much more
- monstrous matter of feast, which worthily deserv’d noting.
- She’s a most triumphant lady, if report be square to her.
Domitius Enobarbus223 - 224
- When she first met Mark Antony, she purs’d up his heart upon
- the river of Cydnus.
Agrippa225 - 226
- There she appear’d indeed; or my reporter devis’d well for
Domitius Enobarbus227 - 242
- I will tell you.
- The barge she sat in, like a burnish’d throne,
- Burnt on the water. The poop was beaten gold,
- Purple the sails, and so perfumed that
- The winds were love-sick with them; the oars were silver,
- Which to the tune of flutes kept stroke, and made
- The water which they beat to follow faster,
- As amorous of their strokes. For her own person,
- It beggar’d all description: she did lie
- In her pavilion—cloth of gold, of tissue—
- O’er-picturing that Venus where we see
- The fancy outwork nature. On each side her
- Stood pretty dimpled boys, like smiling Cupids,
- With divers-color’d fans, whose wind did seem
- To glow the delicate cheeks which they did cool,
- And what they undid did.
- O, rare for Antony!
Domitius Enobarbus244 - 256
- Her gentlewomen, like the Nereides,
- So many mermaids, tended her i’ th’ eyes,
- And made their bends adornings. At the helm
- A seeming mermaid steers; the silken tackle
- Swell with the touches of those flower-soft hands,
- That yarely frame the office. From the barge
- A strange invisible perfume hits the sense
- Of the adjacent wharfs. The city cast
- Her people out upon her; and Antony
- Enthron’d i’ th’ market-place, did sit alone,
- Whistling to th’ air, which, but for vacancy,
- Had gone to gaze on Cleopatra too,
- And made a gap in nature.
- Rare Egyptian!
Domitius Enobarbus258 - 265
- Upon her landing, Antony sent to her,
- Invited her to supper. She replied,
- It should be better he became her guest;
- Which she entreated. Our courteous Antony,
- Whom ne’er the word of “No” woman heard speak,
- Being barber’d ten times o’er, goes to the feast;
- And for his ordinary pays his heart
- For what his eyes eat only.
Agrippa266 - 268
- Royal wench!
- She made great Caesar lay his sword to bed;
- He ploughed her, and she cropp’d.
Domitius Enobarbus269 - 273
- I saw her once
- Hop forty paces through the public street;
- And having lost her breath, she spoke, and panted,
- That she did make defect perfection,
- And breathless, pow’r breathe forth.
Maecenas274 - 275
- Now Antony
- Must leave her utterly.
Domitius Enobarbus276 - 282
- Never, he will not:
- Age cannot wither her, nor custom stale
- Her infinite variety. Other women cloy
- The appetites they feed, but she makes hungry
- Where most she satisfies; for vildest things
- Become themselves in her, that the holy priests
- Bless her when she is riggish.
Maecenas283 - 285
- If beauty, wisdom, modesty, can settle
- The heart of Antony, Octavia is
- A blessed lottery to him.
Agrippa286 - 288
- Let us go.
- Good Enobarbus, make yourself my guest
- Whilst you abide here.
- Humbly, sir, I thank you.