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Dol. I am loath to tell you what I would you


Cleo. Nay, pray you, sir.

Dol. Though he be honourable,-
Cleo. He'll lead me in triumph?

Dol. Madam, he will; I know it.

Enter CESAR, and Train of ROMANS, and SELEucus.

Oct. Which is the Queen of Egypt?
Dol. It is the emperor, madam.
Oct. Arise, you shall not kneel:

I pray you, rise; rise, Egypt.

Cleo. Sir, the gods

[TO CLEOPATRA, raising her.


Will have it thus; my master and my

I must obey.

Oct. Take to you no hard thoughts:
The record of what injuries you did us,
Though written in our flesh, we shall remember
As things but done by chance.

Cleo. Sole sir o'the world,

I cannot project mine own cause so well
To make it clear; but do confess, I have
Been laden with like frailties, which before
Have often sham'd our sex.

Oct. Cleopatra, know,

We will extenuate rather than enforce:

If you apply yourself to our intents,

(Which towards you are most gentle) you shall find A benefit in this change: but if you seek

To lay on me a cruelty, by taking

Antony's course, you shall bereave yourself
Of my good purposes, and put your children
To that destruction which I'll guard them from,
If thereon you rely. I'll take my leave.

Cleo. And may through all the world: 'tis yours; and we

Your 'scutcheons, and your signs of conquest, shall Hang in what place you please. Here, my good lord. Oct. You shall advise me in all for Cleopatra.

Cleo. This is the brief of money, plate, and jewels, I am possest of: 'tis exactly valu'd;

Not petty things omitted.-Where's Seleucus ?
Sel. Here, madam.

Cleo. This is my treasurer; let him speak, my lord,

Upon his peril, that I have reserv'd

To myself nothing.-Speak the truth, Seleucus.
Sel. Madam,

I had rather seal my lips, than, to my peril,
Speak that which is not.

Cleo. What have I kept back?

Sel. Enough to purchase what you have made known.

Oct. Nay, blush not, Cleopatra; I approve Your wisdom in the deed.

Cleo. See, Cæsar! O, behold,

How pomp is follow'd! mine will now be yours;
And, should we shift estates, yours would be mine.
The ingratitude of this Seleucus does

E'en make me wild :-O slave, of no more trust

Than love that's hir'd! What, go'st thou back? thou


Go back, I warrant thee; but I'll catch thine eyes, Though they had wings: Slave! soulless villain! dog!

O rarely base!

[Flying at him. Oct. Good queen, let us intreat you. [Interposing. Cleo. O Cæsar, what a wounding shame is this; That thou vouchsafing here to visit me,

Doing the honour of thy lordiness

To one so mean, that mine own servant should

Parcel the sum of my disgraces by

Addition of his envy! Say, good Cæsar
That I some lady trifles have reserv'd,

Immoment toys, things of such dignity
As we greet modern friends withal;
and say,
Some nobler token I have kept apart
For Livia, and Octavia, to induce
Their mediation: must I be unfolded

Of one that I have bred? The gods! it smites me
Beneath the fall I have.-Wert thou a man,

Thou wouldst have mercy on me.

Oct. Forbear, Seleucus.


Cleo. Be it known, that we, the greatest, are mis


For things that others dood, when we fall,

We answer others' merits: in our name

Are therefore to be pity'd.

Oct. Cleopatra,

Not what you have reserv'd, nor what acknowledg'd, Put we i' the roll of conquest: still be it yours, Bestow it at your pleasure; and belicas,

Cæsar's no merchant, to make prize with you

Of things that merchants sold. Therefore be cheer'd; Make not your thoughts your prisons:


For we intend so to dispose you, as

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Yourself shall give us counsel. Feed, and sleep:
Our care and pity is so much upon you,

That we remain your

friend; and so,

Cleo. My master, and my lord,

Oct. Not so: Adieu.


[Exeunt CESAR, DOLABELLA, and Train.

Cleo. He words me, girls, he words me, that I should


Be noble to myself: But hark thee, Charmian.
Iras. Finish, good lady, the bright day is done,
And we are for the dark.

Cleo. Hie thee again :

I have spoke already, and it is provided;

Go, put it to the haste.

Char. Madam, I will.



Dol. Where is the queen?

Char. Behold, sir.

Cleo. Dolabella?


Dol. Madam, as thereto sworn by your command, Which my love makes religion to obey,

I tell you this: Cæsar through Syria

Intends his journey; and, within three days,
You with your children will he send before;
Make your best use of this: I have perform'd
Your pleasure, and my pise.

Cleo, Dolabella,

I shall remain your debtor,

Dol. I your servant.

Adieu, good queen; I must attend on Cæsar.
Cleo. Farewell, and thanks. [Exit DOLABELLA.]
Now, I., what think'st thou ?

Thou, an Egyptian puppet, shalt be shown
In Rome, as well as I; mechanic slaves,
With greasy aprons, rules, and hammers, shall
Uplift us to the view; in their thick breaths,
Rank of gross diet, shall we be enclouded,
A orc'd to drink their vapour.

Iras. The gods forbid!

Cleo. Nay, 'tis most certain, Iras; Saucy lictors Will catch at us, like strumpets; and scald rhimers Ballad us out o'tune; the quick comedians

Extemporally will stage us, and present

Our Alexandrian revels.

Iras. O the good gods.

Cleo. Nay, this is certain.

Iras. I'll never see't; for, I am sure, my nails

Are stronger than mine eyes.

Cleo. Why, that's the way

To fool their preparation, and to conquer

Their most assur'd intents.-Now, Charmian?


Show me, my women, like a queen; go fetch
My best attires;-I am again for Cydnus,
To meet Mark Antony:-Iras, go.

Now, noble Charmian, we'll despatch, indeed:
And when thou hast done this chare, I'll give thee

To play till dooms-day.-Bring our crown and all. [Exit IRAS.-CHARMIAN falls to adjusting CLEOPATRA's Dress.-Noise within.

Wherefore's this noise?

Enter some of the GUARD.

1 Guard. Here is a rural fellow,

That will not be deny'd your highness' presence
He brings you figs.

Cleo. Let him come in. [Exeunt GUARD.]

poor an instrument

May do a noble deed! he brings me liberty.
My resolution's plac'd, and I have nothing
Of woman in me. Now from head to foot
I am marble constant: now the fleeting moon.
No planet is of mine.

Enter GUARD, with the CLOWN.

1 Guard. This is the man.

Cleo. Avoid and leave him.


[Exit GUARD.

Hast thou the pretty worm of Nilus there,
That kills and pains not?

Clown. Truly, I have him; but I would not be the party that should desire you to touch him, for his biting is immortal; those that do die of it, do seldom

or never recover.

Cleo. Remember'st thou any that have dy'd on't? Clown. Very many; men and women too. I heard of one of them no longer than yesterday: a very honest woman, but something given to lie; as a woman

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