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Julius Caesar: Act 1, Scene 3

Julius Caesar
Act 1, Scene 3

Rome. A street.

  1. Thunder and lightning.
  1. Enter from opposite sides Casca with his sword drawn and
  2. Cicero.

Cicero

4 - 5
  1. Good even, Casca; brought you Caesar home?
  2. Why are you breathless, and why stare you so?

Casca

6 - 16
  1. Are not you mov’d, when all the sway of earth
  2. Shakes like a thing unfirm? O Cicero,
  3. I have seen tempests when the scolding winds
  4. Have riv’d the knotty oaks, and I have seen
  5. Th’ ambitious ocean swell, and rage, and foam,
  6. To be exalted with the threat’ning clouds;
  7. But never till tonight, never till now,
  8. Did I go through a tempest dropping fire.
  9. Either there is a civil strife in heaven,
  10. Or else the world, too saucy with the gods,
  11. Incenses them to send destruction.

Cicero

17
  1. Why, saw you any thing more wonderful?

Casca

18 - 35
  1. A common slaveyou know him well by sight
  2. Held up his left hand, which did flame and burn
  3. Like twenty torches join’d; and yet his hand,
  4. Not sensible of fire, remain’d unscorch’d.
  5. BesidesI ha’ not since put up my sword
  6. Against the Capitol I met a lion,
  7. Who glaz’d upon me, and went surly by,
  8. Without annoying me. And there were drawn
  9. Upon a heap a hundred ghastly women,
  10. Transformed with their fear, who swore they saw
  11. Men, all in fire, walk up and down the streets.
  12. And yesterday the bird of night did sit
  13. Even at noon-day upon the market-place,
  14. Howting and shrieking. When these prodigies
  15. Do so conjointly meet, let not men say,
  16. These are their reasons, they are natural”;
  17. For I believe they are portentous things
  18. Unto the climate that they point upon.

Cicero

36 - 39
  1. Indeed, it is a strange-disposed time;
  2. But men may construe things after their fashion,
  3. Clean from the purpose of the things themselves.
  4. Comes Caesar to the Capitol tomorrow?

Casca

40 - 41
  1. He doth; for he did bid Antonio
  2. Send word to you he would be there tomorrow.

Cicero

42 - 43
  1. Good night then, Casca; this disturbed sky
  2. Is not to walk in.

Casca

44
  1.                    Farewell, Cicero.
  1. Exit Cicero.
  1. Enter Cassius.

Cassius

47
  1. Who’s there?

Casca

48
  1.              A Roman.

Cassius

49
  1.          Casca, by your voice.

Casca

50
  1. Your ear is good. Cassius, what night is this!

Cassius

51
  1. A very pleasing night to honest men.

Casca

52
  1. Who ever knew the heavens menace so?

Cassius

53 - 60
  1. Those that have known the earth so full of faults.
  2. For my part, I have walk’d about the streets,
  3. Submitting me unto the perilous night;
  4. And thus unbraced, Casca, as you see,
  5. Have bar’d my bosom to the thunder-stone;
  6. And when the cross blue lightning seem’d to open
  7. The breast of heaven, I did present myself
  8. Even in the aim and very flash of it.

Casca

61 - 64
  1. But wherefore did you so much tempt the heavens?
  2. It is the part of men to fear and tremble
  3. When the most mighty gods by tokens send
  4. Such dreadful heralds to astonish us.

Cassius

65 - 86
  1. You are dull, Casca; and those sparks of life
  2. That should be in a Roman you do want,
  3. Or else you use not. You look pale, and gaze,
  4. And put on fear, and cast yourself in wonder,
  5. To see the strange impatience of the heavens;
  6. But if you would consider the true cause
  7. Why all these fires, why all these gliding ghosts,
  8. Why birds and beasts from quality and kind,
  9. Why old men, fools, and children calculate,
  10. Why all these things change from their ordinance,
  11. Their natures, and preformed faculties,
  12. To monstrous qualitywhy, you shall find
  13. That heaven hath infus’d them with these spirits,
  14. To make them instruments of fear and warning
  15. Unto some monstrous state.
  16. Now could I, Casca, name to thee a man
  17. Most like this dreadful night,
  18. That thunders, lightens, opens graves, and roars
  19. As doth the lion in the Capitol
  20. A man no mightier than thyself, or me,
  21. In personal action, yet prodigious grown,
  22. And fearful, as these strange eruptions are.

Casca

87
  1. ’Tis Caesar that you mean; is it not, Cassius?

Cassius

88 - 92
  1. Let it be who it is; for Romans now
  2. Have thews and limbs like to their ancestors;
  3. But woe the while, our fathers’ minds are dead,
  4. And we are govern’d with our mothers’ spirits;
  5. Our yoke and sufferance show us womanish.

Casca

93 - 96
  1. Indeed, they say, the senators tomorrow
  2. Mean to establish Caesar as a king;
  3. And he shall wear his crown by sea and land,
  4. In every place, save here in Italy.

Cassius

97 - 108
  1. I know where I will wear this dagger then;
  2. Cassius from bondage will deliver Cassius.
  3. Therein, ye gods, you make the weak most strong;
  4. Therein, ye gods, you tyrants do defeat;
  5. Nor stony tower, nor walls of beaten brass,
  6. Nor airless dungeon, nor strong links of iron,
  7. Can be retentive to the strength of spirit;
  8. But life, being weary of these worldly bars,
  9. Never lacks power to dismiss itself.
  10. If I know this, know all the world besides,
  11. That part of tyranny that I do bear
  12. I can shake off at pleasure.
  1. Thunder still.

Casca

110 - 112
  1.                              So can I;
  2. So every bondman in his own hand bears
  3. The power to cancel his captivity.

Cassius

113 - 125
  1. And why should Caesar be a tyrant then?
  2. Poor man, I know he would not be a wolf,
  3. But that he sees the Romans are but sheep;
  4. He were no lion, were not Romans hinds.
  5. Those that with haste will make a mighty fire
  6. Begin it with weak straws. What trash is Rome?
  7. What rubbish and what offal? When it serves
  8. For the base matter to illuminate
  9. So vile a thing as Caesar! But, O grief,
  10. Where hast thou led me? I, perhaps, speak this
  11. Before a willing bondman; then I know
  12. My answer must be made. But I am arm’d,
  13. And dangers are to me indifferent.

Casca

126 - 130
  1. You speak to Casca, and to such a man
  2. That is no fleering tell-tale. Hold, my hand.
  3. Be factious for redress of all these griefs,
  4. And I will set this foot of mine as far
  5. As who goes farthest.

Cassius

131 - 141
  1.                       There’s a bargain made.
  2. Now know you, Casca, I have mov’d already
  3. Some certain of the noblest-minded Romans
  4. To undergo with me an enterprise
  5. Of honorable-dangerous consequence;
  6. And I do know, by this they stay for me
  7. In Pompey’s Porch; for now, this fearful night,
  8. There is no stir or walking in the streets;
  9. And the complexion of the element
  10. In favor’s like the work we have in hand,
  11. Most bloody, fiery, and most terrible.
  1. Enter Cinna.

Casca

143
  1. Stand close a while, for here comes one in haste.

Cassius

144 - 145
  1. ’Tis Cinna, I do know him by his gait,
  2. He is a friend. Cinna, where haste you so?

Cinna

146
  1. To find out you. Who’s that? Metellus Cimber?

Cassius

147 - 148
  1. No, it is Casca, one incorporate
  2. To our attempts. Am I not stay’d for, Cinna?

Cinna

149 - 150
  1. I am glad on’t. What a fearful night is this!
  2. There’s two or three of us have seen strange sights.

Cassius

151
  1. Am I not stay’d for? Tell me.

Cinna

152 - 154
  1.                               Yes, you are.
  2. O Cassius, if you could
  3. But win the noble Brutus to our party

Cassius

155 - 161
  1. Be you content. Good Cinna, take this paper,
  2. And look you lay it in the praetor’s chair,
  3. Where Brutus may but find it; and throw this
  4. In at his window; set this up with wax
  5. Upon old Brutus’ statue. All this done,
  6. Repair to Pompey’s Porch, where you shall find us.
  7. Is Decius Brutus and Trebonius there?

Cinna

162 - 164
  1. All but Metellus Cimber, and he’s gone
  2. To seek you at your house. Well, I will hie,
  3. And so bestow these papers as you bade me.

Cassius

165 - 170
  1. That done, repair to Pompey’s theatre.
  2. Exit Cinna.
  3. Come, Casca, you and I will yet, ere day,
  4. See Brutus at his house. Three parts of him
  5. Is ours already, and the man entire
  6. Upon the next encounter yields him ours.

Casca

171 - 174
  1. O, he sits high in all the people’s hearts;
  2. And that which would appear offense in us,
  3. His countenance, like richest alchymy,
  4. Will change to virtue and to worthiness.

Cassius

175 - 178
  1. Him and his worth, and our great need of him,
  2. You have right well conceited. Let us go,
  3. For it is after midnight, and ere day
  4. We will awake him and be sure of him.
  1. Exeunt.
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