Meet us on:
Welcome to Read Print! Sign in with
or
to get started!
 
Entire Site
    Try our fun game

    Dueling book covers…may the best design win!

    Random Quote
    "The best thing to give to your enemy is forgiveness; to an opponent, tolerance; to a friend, your heart; to your child, a good example; to a father, deference; to your mother, conduct that will make her proud of you; to yourself, respect; to all men, charity."
     

    Subscribe to Our Newsletter

    Follow us on Twitter

    Never miss a good book again! Follow Read Print on Twitter

    Act 2. Scene II

    • Rate it:
    • 13 Favorites on Read Print
    Launch Reading Mode Next Chapter
    Chapter 7
    Previous Chapter
    SCENE II. Rome. The house of LEPIDUS.

    Enter DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS and LEPIDUS
    LEPIDUS
    Good Enobarbus, 'tis a worthy deed,
    And shall become you well, to entreat your captain
    To soft and gentle speech.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS
    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 Antonius' beard,
    I would not shave't to-day.

    LEPIDUS
    'Tis not a time
    For private stomaching.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS
    Every time
    Serves for the matter that is then born in't.

    LEPIDUS
    But small to greater matters must give way.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS
    Not if the small come first.

    LEPIDUS
    Your speech is passion:
    But, pray you, stir no embers up. Here comes
    The noble Antony.

    Enter MARK ANTONY and VENTIDIUS

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS
    And yonder, Caesar.

    Enter OCTAVIUS CAESAR, MECAENAS, and AGRIPPA

    MARK ANTONY
    If we compose well here, to Parthia:
    Hark, Ventidius.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR
    I do not know,
    Mecaenas; ask Agrippa.

    LEPIDUS
    Noble friends,
    That which combined 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 the matter.

    MARK ANTONY
    'Tis spoken well.
    Were we before our armies, and to fight.
    I should do thus.

    Flourish

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR
    Welcome to Rome.

    MARK ANTONY
    Thank you.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR
    Sit.

    MARK ANTONY
    Sit, sir.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR
    Nay, then.

    MARK ANTONY
    I learn, you take things ill which are not so,
    Or being, concern you not.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR
    I must be laugh'd at,
    If, or for nothing or a little, I
    Should say myself offended, and with you
    Chiefly i' the world; more laugh'd at, that I should
    Once name you derogately, when to sound your name
    It not concern'd me.

    MARK ANTONY
    My being in Egypt, Caesar,
    What was't to you?

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR
    No more than my residing here at Rome
    Might be to you in Egypt: yet, if you there
    Did practise on my state, your being in Egypt
    Might be my question.

    MARK ANTONY
    How intend you, practised?

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR
    You may be pleased to catch at mine intent
    By what did here befal me. Your wife and brother
    Made wars upon me; and their contestation
    Was theme for you, you were the word of war.

    MARK ANTONY
    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 not to make it with,
    It must not be with this.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR
    You praise yourself
    By laying defects of judgment to me; but
    You patch'd up your excuses.

    MARK ANTONY
    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' the world is yours; which with a snaffle
    You may pace easy, but not such a wife.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS
    Would we had all such wives, that the men might go
    to wars with the women!

    MARK ANTONY
    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.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR
    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 ANTONY
    Sir,
    He fell upon me ere admitted: then
    Three kings I had newly feasted, and did want
    Of what I was i' the 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.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR
    You have broken
    The article of your oath; which you shall never
    Have tongue to charge me with.

    LEPIDUS
    Soft, Caesar!

    MARK ANTONY
    No,
    Lepidus, let him speak:
    The honour is sacred which he talks on now,
    Supposing that I lack'd it. But, on, Caesar;
    The article of my oath.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR
    To lend me arms and aid when I required them;
    The which you both denied.

    MARK ANTONY
    Neglected, rather;
    And then when poison'd 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 honour
    To stoop in such a case.

    LEPIDUS
    'Tis noble spoken.

    MECAENAS
    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.

    LEPIDUS
    Worthily spoken, Mecaenas.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS
    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.

    MARK ANTONY
    Thou art a soldier only: speak no more.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS
    That truth should be silent I had almost forgot.

    MARK ANTONY
    You wrong this presence; therefore speak no more.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS
    Go to, then; your considerate stone.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR
    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 differing in their acts. Yet if I knew
    What hoop should hold us stanch, from edge to edge
    O' the world I would pursue it.

    AGRIPPA
    Give me leave, Caesar,--

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR
    Speak, Agrippa.

    AGRIPPA
    Thou hast a sister by the mother's side,
    Admired Octavia: great Mark Antony
    Is now a widower.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR
    Say not so, Agrippa:
    If Cleopatra heard you, your reproof
    Were well deserved of rashness.

    MARK ANTONY
    I am not married, Caesar: let me hear
    Agrippa further speak.

    AGRIPPA
    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.

    MARK ANTONY
    Will Caesar speak?

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR
    Not till he hears how Antony is touch'd
    With what is spoke already.

    MARK ANTONY
    What power is in Agrippa,
    If I would say, 'Agrippa, be it so,'
    To make this good?

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR
    The power of Caesar, and
    His power unto Octavia.

    MARK 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 our great designs!

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR
    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
    Fly off our loves again!

    LEPIDUS
    Happily, amen!

    MARK ANTONY
    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.

    LEPIDUS
    Time calls upon's:
    Of us must Pompey presently be sought,
    Or else he seeks out us.

    MARK ANTONY
    Where lies he?

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR
    About the mount Misenum.

    MARK ANTONY
    What is his strength by land?

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR
    Great and increasing: but by sea
    He is an absolute master.

    MARK ANTONY
    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.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR
    With most gladness:
    And do invite you to my sister's view,
    Whither straight I'll lead you.

    MARK ANTONY
    Let us, Lepidus,
    Not lack your company.

    LEPIDUS
    Noble Antony,
    Not sickness should detain me.

    Flourish. Exeunt OCTAVIUS CAESAR, MARK ANTONY, and LEPIDUS

    MECAENAS
    Welcome from Egypt, sir.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS
    Half the heart of Caesar, worthy Mecaenas! My
    honourable friend, Agrippa!

    AGRIPPA
    Good Enobarbus!

    MECAENAS
    We have cause to be glad that matters are so well
    digested. You stayed well by 't in Egypt.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS
    Ay, sir; we did sleep day out of countenance, and
    made the night light with drinking.

    MECAENAS
    Eight wild-boars roasted whole at a breakfast, and
    but twelve persons there; is this true?

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS
    This was but as a fly by an eagle: we had much more
    monstrous matter of feast, which worthily deserved noting.

    MECAENAS
    She's a most triumphant lady, if report be square to
    her.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS
    When she first met Mark Antony, she pursed up
    his heart, upon the river of Cydnus.

    AGRIPPA
    There she appeared indeed; or my reporter devised
    well for her.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS
    I will tell you.
    The barge she sat in, like a burnish'd throne,
    Burn'd 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-colour'd fans, whose wind did seem
    To glow the delicate cheeks which they did cool,
    And what they undid did.

    AGRIPPA
    O, rare for Antony!

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS
    Her gentlewomen, like the Nereides,
    So many mermaids, tended her i' the 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,
    Enthroned i' the market-place, did sit alone,
    Whistling to the air; which, but for vacancy,
    Had gone to gaze on Cleopatra too,
    And made a gap in nature.

    AGRIPPA
    Rare Egyptian!

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS
    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.

    AGRIPPA
    Royal wench!
    She made great Caesar lay his sword to bed:
    He plough'd her, and she cropp'd.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS
    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, power breathe forth.

    MECAENAS
    Now Antony must leave her utterly.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS
    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 vilest things
    Become themselves in her: that the holy priests
    Bless her when she is riggish.

    MECAENAS
    If beauty, wisdom, modesty, can settle
    The heart of Antony, Octavia is
    A blessed lottery to him.

    AGRIPPA
    Let us go.
    Good Enobarbus, make yourself my guest
    Whilst you abide here.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS
    Humbly, sir, I thank you.

    Exeunt
    Next Chapter
    Chapter 7
    Previous Chapter
    If you're writing a William Shakespeare essay and need some advice, post your William Shakespeare essay question on our Facebook page where fellow bookworms are always glad to help!

    Top 5 Authors

    Top 5 Books

    Book Status
    Finished
    Want to read
    Abandoned

    Are you sure you want to leave this group?