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And the wind brings it from the Capitol. Luc. Sooth, madam, I hear nothing.


Enter the Soothsayer,
Por. Come hither, fellow : which way hast thou been?
Sooth. At mine own house, good lady.
Por. What is 't a clock?

About the ninth hour, lady.
Por. Is Cæsar yet gone to the Capitol ?
Sooth. Madam, not yet: I go to take my stand, 25

To see him pass on to the Capitol.
Por. Thou hast some suit to Cæsar, hast thou not?
Sooth. That I have, lady, if it will please Cæsar

To be so good to Cæsar as to hear me:
I shall beseech him to befriend himself.

30 Por. Why, know'st thou any harm's intended towards

him? Sooth. None that I know will be, much that I fear may

chance. 23. a clock] Ff, o'clock Theobald and later editors. 28, 29. lady, if ... me :] Ff, lady. If... me, Johnson and later editors. rumour” or “bustling rumour," what plausibility to Tyrwhitt's substitution Portia means to express is the noise of Artemidorus for the soothsayer in of an excited multitude heard indis- this scene. On the other hand, Artetinctly in the distance as “the noise midorus, who wished to warn Cæsar and rumour of the field," King John, expressly against Brutus, would not v. iv. 45. In both passages the poet be likely to reveal so plainly to the has chosen words the sound of which wife of Brutus his intention of warnis echo to the sense.

ing Cæsar. 20. nothing] there was really 28-30.] Most editors alter the puncnothing to hear, as Cæsar had not yet tuation, so that there may be a true gone to the Capitol.

consequent to the conditional clause. 23. a clock] See note on ii. 114. The reading of the Folio may, how

28. That I have] Nevertheless in ever, be retained, as the irregularity he next scene he makes no attempt it involves is common in Shakespeare to present or pretend to present a (see note on i. 318, 319) and in orsuit to Cæsar. It is Artemidorus who dinary conversation. does so, in accordance with his resolve 31. harm's intended] harm that is expressed in iii, 12, This gives some intended, Compare ii. 16,


Good morrow to you.

Here the street is narrow :
The throng that follows Cæsar at the heels,
Of senators, of prætors, common suitors,

Will crowd a feeble man almost to death:
I'll get me to a place more void, and there

Speak to great Cæsar as he comes along. Por. I must go in. Ay me! how weak a thing The heart of woman is. O Brutus!

40 The heavens speed thee in thine enterprise. [Aside.] Sure, the boy heard me. Brutus hath a suit That Cæsar will not grant. [Aside.] O! I grow faint. Run, Lucius, and commend me to my lord; Say I am merry: come to me again,

45 And bring me word what he doth say to thee.

[Exeunt severally, 37. more void) less crowded. mind may not be distracted by anxiety

42. Sure, the boy heard me] She on her account. Similarly Mrs. fears that Lucius may have overheard D'Israeli, when her finger her remark and guessed her secret, crushed in the door of her carriage, and therefore makes mention of bore the pain in silence, lest her Brutus's suit to Cæsar to explain her husband should be disturbed in mind anxiety.

and speak less effectively in the House 45. 'Say I am merry] She sends this of Commons, to which they were message in order that her husband's driving.



SCENE I.-Rome. Before the Capitol; the Senate

sitting above.

A crowd of People ; among them ARTEMIDORUS and the

Soothsayer. Flourish. Enter CÆSAR, BRUTUS,
and Others.

Cæs. [To the Soothsayer.] The ides of March are come.
Sooth. Ay, Cæsar; but not gone.
Art. Hail, Cæsar! Read this schedule.
Dec. Trebonius doth desire you to o'er-read,
At your best leisure, this his humble suit.

5 Art. O Cæsar! read mine first; for mine's a suit

That touches Cæsar nearer. Read it, great Cæsar. Cæs. What touches us ourself, shall be last serv'd. Art. Delay not, Cæsar; read it instantly. Ces. What! is the fellow mad ? Pub.

Sirrah, give place. 10 Cas. What! urge you your petitions in the street ?

Come to the Capitol. 1. The ides of March] a reference 8. serv'd) attended to. As the to the soothsayer's warning in 1. verb "serve" in this sense properly ii. 18.

governs persons, Craik adopts here 8. ourself] A king in Shakespeare the correction of Collier's MS. : speaking of himself in the plural "That touches us ? Ourself shall be number employs the singular "self” last served,” which is supported by --..., Richard II. 1. iv. 42: “We its similarity to Timon, 1. ii. 183: will ourself in person to this war.” " Flav. Vouchsafe me a word; it But Tennyson in the Princess makes

doth concern you near. a king say, “We remember love our Tim. Near? Why then another selves in our sweet youth."

time I'll hear thee."

CÆSAR goes up to the Senate-House, the rest following.

All the Senators rise.
Pop. I wish your enterprise to-day may thrive.
Cas. What enterprise, Popilius ?

Fare you well.

[Advances to Cæsar. Bru. What said Popilius Lena?

15 Cas. He wish'd to-day our enterprise might thrive.

I fear our purpose is discovered.
Bru. Look, how he makes to Cæsar: mark him.
Cas. Casca, be sudden, for we fear prevention.

Brutus, what shall be done? If this be known, 20
Cassius or Cæsar never shall turn back,

For I will slay myself.

Cassius, be constant:
Popilius Lena speaks not of our purposes;

For, look, he smiles, and Cæsar doth not change. Cas. Trebonius knows his time; for, look you, Brutus, 25 He draws Mark Antony out of the way.

[Exeunt Antony and Trebonius. Cesar

and the Senators take their seats. Dec. Where is Metellus Cimber?

Let him go, And presently prefer his suit to Cæsar. 20. done? If ... known,) Ff, done, if ... known ? Theobald.

15. Lena] He is called Læna by ance, i.e. he shows that he is not Plutarch. His real name was Lænas. deeply affected by what he has just

18. makes to] goes towards. Com- heard from Popilius Lena. pare v. i. 25 and the quotation from 26. He draws, etc.] This is in Tennyson on 1. ii. 15.

accordance with Plutarch's Life of 21. turn back] return from the Brutus. In the Life of Casar it is Capitol.

Decius Brutus who keeps Antony out 22. constant) See note on 11. i. 227. of the way. 24. doth not change] sc. his counten. 28. presently) immediately.

Bru. He is address'd; press near and second him.
Cin. Casca, you are the first that rears your hand. 30
Cæs. Are we all ready? What is now amiss

That Cæsar and his senate must redress?
Met. Most high, most mighty, and most puissant Cæsar,

Metellus Cimber throws before thy seat
An humble heart,

[Kneeling Cæs.

I must prevent thee, Cimber. 35
These couchings and these lowly courtesies,
Might fire the blood of ordinary men,
And turn pre-ordinance and first decree

Into the law of children. Be not fond, 39. law] Johnson, lane Ff, play Mason.

29. address'd) ready, prepared, as tion seems unnecessary, as couchin Love's Labour's Lost, ii. i. 82: ing" expresses the attitude of humble “ And he and his competitors in supplication as well as "crouching” oath

does. Murray quotes from Royster Were all address'd to meet you, Doyster, “ Couch on your marrowgentle lady.”

bones," and from Campion, “A lady 30. rears) We should expect" that of such part, that all estates of the rear youror “that rears his.” realm couched unto her.” Even if For the confusion of numbers and “couch" necessarily implied “ lying persons in relative clauses, compare on the ground," it would be no Titus Andronicus, iv. ii. 176: "For stronger than Homer's T POT POKUA.vdoit is you that puts us to our shifts," HEVOS (Iliad, xxii. 221). and other passages quoted by Abbott 38. pre-ordinance] and

" first in sec. 247, which justify him in say. decree” are equivalent terms, exing that 'the relative was often pressing a decree already made. See regarded like a noun by nature third line 44. This is, however, a curious person singular, and therefore unin use of " first." Craik plausibly sug. Auenced by the antecedent."


“ fixed decree." 31. Are we all ready?] can we now 39. the law of children] such vari. proceed to business?" Collier's MS. able and capricious laws as children annotator gives this question to Casca, would make, or perhaps, the whom it apparently suits better. variability which is the law of the There is, however, dramatic irony in nature of children, their natural the remark if uttered by Cæsar, as the characteristic. If the latter interpretconspirators and the audience would ation is right, there is a play on the apply his words to the preparations two meanings of "law" and "ordinfor his assassination.

ance," "ordinance" being used in 34. Metellus Cimber] See note on line 38 in the sense of human law, 1. iii. 134.

while in line 39 “law" means “natural 36. couchings] altered in Collier's quality prescribed by the law of MŠ. into "crouchings." The altera. nature" as "ordinance" does in i.

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