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SCENE I.-The Plains of Philippi.
Enter OCTAVIUS, ANTONY, and their Army.
You said the enemy would not come down,
5 Answering before we do demand of them. Ant. Tut! I am in their bosoms, and I know
Wherefore they do it: they could be content
4. battles] battalions.
ficently stern array.” “Bravery” 5. warn us] summon us to battle. here expresses “outward splendour,” Compare King John, 11. i. 201: "ostentation," as in Hamlei, v. ii. 79: “Who is it that hath warn'd us to " But, sure, the bravery of his grief the walls.” This meaning of “ warn” did put me still survives in Cumberland, where Into a towering passion,” people are “warned” to attend and also “bravado," "defiance," as funerals.
in Othello, 1. i. 100: 6. Answering, etc.) accepting our “Upon malicious bravery dost thou intended summons to battle before come we have delivered it. Compare To start my quiet." Tempest, iv. i. 128: “Answer your compare the use of the verb “ brave" summons.”
in iv. iii. 96. Craik takes “fearful 7. I am in their bosoms] I know bravery" as an oxymoron meaning the secrets of their hearts.
“ bravery in show or appearance 8. they could be content, etc.) which yet is full of real fear or apalthough they would be well pleased prehension,” which is supported by to go elsewhere, they come down to Steevens' quotation from Sidney's meet us with warlike pomp intended Arcadia, “a fearful boldness, daring to inspire fear. “Fearful bravery” is to do that which she knew that she equivalent to "gallant show” in line knew not how to do." 13 and to Byron's "war's magni. 10. face] appearance.
Enter a Messenger.
Prepare you, generals:
15 Ant. Octavius, lead your battle softly on,
Upon the left hand of the even field. Oct. Upon the right hand I; keep thou the left. Ant. Why do you cross me in this exigent? Oct. I do not cross you; but I will do so. [March 20 Drum. Enter BRUTUS, CASSIUS, and their Army;
LUCILIUS, TITINIUS, MESSALA, and Others, Bru. They stand, and would have parley.
17. even] F1, 2, 3; evil F4. 14. bloody] A red flag was the sign Octavius insists on commanding the of battle among the Romans.. “By right wing, but not with any perbreak of day the signal of battle was verse intention of thwarting Antony's set out in Brutus' and Cassius' camp, wishes. Rolfe, however, supposes which was an arming scarlet cloak' that Octavius yields to Antony, and (Plutarch).
does it readily with a play upon 18. Upon the right hand 7] In "cross": "I'do not cross you (in Plutarch Brutus insists upon command- Antony's sense of the word), but I ing the right wing, though the post will cross you (in the sense of crosswas thought more proper for Cassius ing over to the other side of the on account of his experience, but field)”; and with the word he does there is no mention of a similar con cross over. According to Plutarch, troversy between Antony and Octavius. he commanded the left wing, so that The change may simply be an over- this interpretation, as Rolfe points sight or, if we accept the usual inter- out, makes the play agree with the pretation of line 20, it may be due to history. Another way to reconcile the desire to illustrate the inferiority the play with history is to understand of the genius of Antony when op- the whole or part of the line to be an posed to Octavius, which is derived "aside," as suggested in Notes and from Plutarch and is referred to in Queries, 25th July, 1891. The mean. Macbeth, 11t. i. 56, and Antony and ing then will be that Octavius forbears Cleopatra, 11. iii. 19-23.
to cross Antony now, when union is 19. exigent] critical time, emerg. necessary for victory, but with foreency. “Instead of doing anything as sight of the coming struggle intends the exigent required, he began to to do so at some future period. This make circles" (Sidney's Arcadia). seems better than attributing a gay
20. I do not cross you] This is play upon words to such a generally understood to mean that cold blooded Cæsar."
Cas. Stand fast, Titinius; we must out and talk.
Make forth; the generals would have some
25 Oct. Stir not until the signal. Bru. Words before blows: is it so, countrymen ? Oct. Not that we love words better, as you do. Bru. Good words are better than bad strokes, Octavius. Ant. In your bad strokes, Brutus, you give good words:
30 Witness the hole you made in Cæsar's heart,
Crying “Long live ! hail, Cæsar!”
24. answer on their charge) meet lus and Cressida, iv. v. 116: “His them in accordance with their blows are well disposed.” As Ansummons, i.e. we will first accept tony's prowess was well known, we their invitation to a parley, or, "we must understand "unknown” with will wait till they begin to advance” reference to the speakers as meaning (Craik). The latter interpretation is “unknown to us." It has been propreferable, as the former makes line posed to alter“ posture” into “punc25 tautological, unless it is addressed ture" or "nature." to the captains and not to Octavius. 33. are] This is one of the several "Answer" expresses meeting the cases in Shakespeare in which verbs attack of an enemy in Troilus ana wrongly agree in number with the Cressida, 1. iii. 171: “Arming to immediately preceding noun, although answer in a night alarm.” The noun it is not the subject. Compare Win. "answer" expresses the return blow ter's Tale, iv. ii. 26: “Whose loss in fencing in Twelfth Night, 111. iv. of his most precious queen and chil. 305.
dren are even to be afresh 25. Make forth] let us advance. lamented.” See note on 11. i. 28. “Stir not " 34. Hybla) a town of Sicily famous in the next line is in the second per- for its honey. son and is addressed to the soldiers. 34. Hybla bees] See note on v. 19.
33. The posture of your blows] your 35. leave them honeyless] For the manner of dealing blows. Compare comparison of the sweetness of words Henry V. iv. Prologue, 51, and Troic to honey, compare "sweet and honey'd
Not stingless too ? 35 Bru. O! yes, and soundless too;
For you have stol'n their buzzing, Antony,
And very wisely threat before you sting.
Hack'd one another in the sides of Cæsar: 40
Struck Cæsar on the neck. O you flatterers
This tongue had not offended so to-day,
35. too?] too. Ff.
sentences" (Henry V. 1. i. 50), “the 40. Hack'd one another) powerfully bait of honey'd words” (Samson Agon- expresses the savage fury of the istes, 1066), and Iliad, i. 249. Cassius attack and the number of the assasis referring to the persuasive eloquence sins. Plutarch says that "the conby which Antony had roused the spirators thronging one upon another, populace of Rome against the con because every man was desirous to spirators.
have a cut at him, so many swords 35. Not stingless too ?} Do not they and daggers lighting upon one body, also leave the bees stingless? A note one of them hurt another." of interrogation is certainly required. 41. show'd your teeth] which generThe question expects an affirmative ally expresses the way in which dogs answer. Antony means that his show their anger by raising their words, e.g., the taunt in 30-32, are upper lips, here describes the hypostinging words--that, if they have critical smiles of the conspirators. sometimes the sweetness, they have 41. fawn'd like hounds] Compare also the stinging power of bees. III. i. 45.
38. very wisely] This is an insinu 47. If Cassius might have ruid] ation that Antony hopes that his If the advice of Cassius had been threats will frighten the conspirators followed, they would not have met so that they will make terms instead the enemy until a later date, and of fighting, and that he is wise in Antony would have been in such a doing so, as he cannot hope for hopeless position, that his language victory in battle. Antony, however, would have been more humble. See has not uttered any threats.
Iv. iii. 197. Others suppose Cassius 38. sting] here expresses hostile to refer to the overruling of his action, not, as in 35, cutting words. advice in II. i. 162. See also III. i.
Oct. Come, come, the cause: if arguing make us sweat,
The proof of it will turn to redder drops.
Have added slaughter to the sword of traitors. 55 Bru. Cæsar, thou canst not die by traitors' hands,
Unless thou bring'st them with thee. Oct.
So I hope; I was not born to die on Brutus' sword. Bru, O! if thou wert the noblest of thy strain,
Young man, thou could'st not die more honour
able. Cas. A peevish school-boy, worthless of such honour,
53. thirty] Ff, twenty Theobald.
232. If Cassius had had his way on number of Cæsar's wounds in Pluany one of these three occasions, tarch's Life of Cæsar. But exactness Antony's tongue would not have is not to be insisted on in such a offended so on that day.
matter. We are told that Cæsar's 48. Come, come, the cause] Come, wounds were two-and-thirty in Beaulet us attend to the business we have mont and Fletcher's Noble Gentleman, in hand, namely, fighting as opposed v. i. to talking. For this use of "cause,” 55. Have added slaughter) have compare Lucrece, 1295, and Henry V. added another death to the blood II. ii. 60: "Now to our French already shed by the swords of you causes. Who are the late commis. traitors. sioners ?"
57. So I hope] He brings no 49. will turn to redder drops] be. traitors with him. Therefore, if what cause it will be decided by a bloody Brutus says is true, he will live for ever. battle.
60. more honourable] more honour52. goes up again) returns to its ably. Compare Antony and Cleoscabbard. Compare Othello, 1. ii. patra, 11. ii. 98, “'Tis noble spoken." 59: “Keep up your bright swords, This usage still survives as a vulgarfor the dew will rust them."
ism. Compare line 77. 53. three-and-thirty] was altered 61. school-boy] Augustus was in his by Theobald into "three-and-twenty," twenty: first year at the battle of because that is mentioned as the Philippi.