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Navigate this workJulius Caesar
Act 4, scene 3
Brutus and Cassius exchange accusations in Brutus’s tent. They grow angry with each other but are quickly reconciled, and Brutus tells Cassius of Portia’s death. With Titinius and Messala they plot their military strategy. Brutus overrides Cassius’s objections and insists that they march to Philippi to challenge Mark Antony and Octavius. As Brutus reads in his tent after the meeting, he is visited by the Ghost of Caesar, who threatens to visit Brutus again at Philippi.CASSIUS
1918 That you have wronged me doth appear in this:
1919 You have condemned and noted Lucius Pella
1920 For taking bribes here of the Sardians,
1921 Wherein my letters, praying on his side
1922 5 Because I knew the man, was slighted off.
1923 You wronged yourself to write in such a case.
1924 In such a time as this it is not meet
1925 That every nice offense should bear his comment.
1926 Let me tell you, Cassius, you yourself
1927 10 Are much condemned to have an itching palm,
1928 To sell and mart your offices for gold
1929 To undeservers.
CASSIUS 1930 I an itching palm?
1931 You know that you are Brutus that speaks this,
1932 15 Or, by the gods, this speech were else your last.
1933 The name of Cassius honors this corruption,
1934 And chastisement doth therefore hide his head.
p. 151CASSIUS 1935 Chastisement?
1936 Remember March; the ides of March remember.
1937 20 Did not great Julius bleed for justice’ sake?
1938 What villain touched his body that did stab
1939 And not for justice? What, shall one of us
1940 That struck the foremost man of all this world
1941 But for supporting robbers, shall we now
1942 25 Contaminate our fingers with base bribes
1943 And sell the mighty space of our large honors
1944 For so much trash as may be graspèd thus?
1945 I had rather be a dog and bay the moon
1946 Than such a Roman.
CASSIUS 1947 30 Brutus, bait not me.
1948 I’ll not endure it. You forget yourself
1949 To hedge me in. I am a soldier, I,
1950 Older in practice, abler than yourself
1951 To make conditions.
BRUTUS 1952 35 Go to! You are not, Cassius.
CASSIUS 1953 I am.
BRUTUS 1954 I say you are not.
1955 Urge me no more. I shall forget myself.
1956 Have mind upon your health. Tempt me no farther.
BRUTUS 1957 40Away, slight man!
1958 Is ’t possible?
BRUTUS 1959 Hear me, for I will speak.
1960 Must I give way and room to your rash choler?
1961 Shall I be frighted when a madman stares?
1962 45 O you gods, you gods, must I endure all this?
1963 All this? Ay, more. Fret till your proud heart break.
1964 Go show your slaves how choleric you are
1965 And make your bondmen tremble. Must I budge?
p. 1531966 Must I observe you? Must I stand and crouch
1967 50 Under your testy humor? By the gods,
1968 You shall digest the venom of your spleen
1969 Though it do split you. For, from this day forth,
1970 I’ll use you for my mirth, yea, for my laughter,
1971 When you are waspish.
CASSIUS 1972 55 Is it come to this?
1973 You say you are a better soldier.
1974 Let it appear so, make your vaunting true,
1975 And it shall please me well. For mine own part,
1976 I shall be glad to learn of noble men.
1977 60 You wrong me every way, you wrong me, Brutus.
1978 I said an elder soldier, not a better.
1979 Did I say “better”?
BRUTUS 1980 If you did, I care not.
1981 When Caesar lived he durst not thus have moved
1982 65 me.
1983 Peace, peace! You durst not so have tempted him.
CASSIUS 1984 I durst not?
BRUTUS 1985 No.
1986 What? Durst not tempt him?
BRUTUS 1987 70 For your life you durst
1989 Do not presume too much upon my love.
1990 I may do that I shall be sorry for.
1991 You have done that you should be sorry for.
1992 75 There is no terror, Cassius, in your threats,
1993 For I am armed so strong in honesty
1994 That they pass by me as the idle wind,
p. 1551995 Which I respect not. I did send to you
1996 For certain sums of gold, which you denied me,
1997 80 For I can raise no money by vile means.
1998 By heaven, I had rather coin my heart
1999 And drop my blood for drachmas than to wring
2000 From the hard hands of peasants their vile trash
2001 By any indirection. I did send
2002 85 To you for gold to pay my legions,
2003 Which you denied me. Was that done like Cassius?
2004 Should I have answered Caius Cassius so?
2005 When Marcus Brutus grows so covetous
2006 To lock such rascal counters from his friends,
2007 90 Be ready, gods, with all your thunderbolts;
2008 Dash him to pieces!
CASSIUS 2009 I denied you not.
BRUTUS 2010 You did.
2011 I did not. He was but a fool that brought
2012 95 My answer back. Brutus hath rived my heart.
2013 A friend should bear his friend’s infirmities,
2014 But Brutus makes mine greater than they are.
2015 I do not, till you practice them on me.
2016 You love me not.
BRUTUS 2017 100 I do not like your faults.
2018 A friendly eye could never see such faults.
2019 A flatterer’s would not, though they do appear
2020 As huge as high Olympus.
2021 Come, Antony, and young Octavius, come!
2022 105 Revenge yourselves alone on Cassius,
2023 For Cassius is aweary of the world—
2024 Hated by one he loves, braved by his brother,
p. 1572025 Checked like a bondman, all his faults observed,
2026 Set in a notebook, learned and conned by rote
2027 110 To cast into my teeth. O, I could weep
2028 My spirit from mine eyes! There is my dagger,
⌜Offering his dagger to Brutus.⌝
2029 And here my naked breast; within, a heart
2030 Dearer than Pluto’s mine, richer than gold.
2031 If that thou be’st a Roman, take it forth.
2032 115 I that denied thee gold will give my heart.
2033 Strike as thou didst at Caesar, for I know
2034 When thou didst hate him worst, thou lovedst him
2036 Than ever thou lovedst Cassius.
BRUTUS 2037 120 Sheathe your
2039 Be angry when you will, it shall have scope.
2040 Do what you will, dishonor shall be humor.
2041 O Cassius, you are yokèd with a lamb
2042 125 That carries anger as the flint bears fire,
2043 Who, much enforcèd, shows a hasty spark
2044 And straight is cold again.
CASSIUS 2045 Hath Cassius lived
2046 To be but mirth and laughter to his Brutus
2047 130 When grief and blood ill-tempered vexeth him?
2048 When I spoke that, I was ill-tempered too.
2049 Do you confess so much? Give me your hand.
2050 And my heart too.⌜They clasp hands.⌝
CASSIUS 2051 O Brutus!
BRUTUS 2052 135 What’s the matter?
2053 Have not you love enough to bear with me
2054 When that rash humor which my mother gave me
2055 Makes me forgetful?
p. 159BRUTUS 2056 Yes, Cassius, and from
2057 140 henceforth
2058 When you are over-earnest with your Brutus,
2059 He’ll think your mother chides, and leave you so.
Enter a Poet ⌜followed by Lucilius, Titinius, and Lucius.⌝
2060 Let me go in to see the Generals.
2061 There is some grudge between ’em; ’tis not meet
2062 145 They be alone.
LUCILIUS 2063 You shall not come to them.
POET 2064 Nothing but death shall stay me.
CASSIUS 2065 How now, what’s the matter?
2066 For shame, you generals, what do you mean?
2067 150 Love and be friends as two such men should be,
2068 For I have seen more years, I’m sure, than ye.
2069 Ha, ha, how vilely doth this cynic rhyme!
2070 Get you hence, sirrah! Saucy fellow, hence!
2071 Bear with him, Brutus. ’Tis his fashion.
2072 155 I’ll know his humor when he knows his time.
2073 What should the wars do with these jigging fools?—
2074 Companion, hence!
CASSIUS 2075 Away, away, be gone!Poet exits.
2076 Lucilius and Titinius, bid the commanders
2077 160 Prepare to lodge their companies tonight.
2078 And come yourselves, and bring Messala with you
2079 Immediately to us.⌜Lucilius and Titinius exit.⌝
BRUTUS 2080 Lucius, a bowl of wine.⌜Lucius exits.⌝
2081 I did not think you could have been so angry.
2082 165 O Cassius, I am sick of many griefs.
2083 Of your philosophy you make no use
2084 If you give place to accidental evils.
2085 No man bears sorrow better. Portia is dead.
CASSIUS 2086 Ha? Portia?
BRUTUS 2087 170She is dead.
2088 How ’scaped I killing when I crossed you so?
2089 O insupportable and touching loss!
2090 Upon what sickness?
BRUTUS 2091 Impatient of my absence,
2092 175 And grief that young Octavius with Mark Antony
2093 Have made themselves so strong—for with her
2095 That tidings came—with this she fell distract
2096 And, her attendants absent, swallowed fire.
CASSIUS 2097 180And died so?
BRUTUS 2098 Even so.
CASSIUS 2099 O you immortal gods!
Enter ⌜Lucius⌝ with wine and tapers.
2100 Speak no more of her.—Give me a bowl of wine.—
2101 In this I bury all unkindness, Cassius.⌜He⌝ drinks.
2102 185 My heart is thirsty for that noble pledge.—
2103 Fill, Lucius, till the wine o’erswell the cup;
2104 I cannot drink too much of Brutus’ love.⌜He drinks.⌝
Enter Titinius and Messala.
2105 Come in, Titinius. Welcome, good Messala.
2106 Now sit we close about this taper here,
2107 190 And call in question our necessities.⌜They sit.⌝
2108 Portia, art thou gone?
BRUTUS 2109 No more, I pray you.—
2110 Messala, I have here receivèd letters
2111 That young Octavius and Mark Antony
2112 195 Come down upon us with a mighty power,
2113 Bending their expedition toward Philippi.
2114 Myself have letters of the selfsame tenor.
BRUTUS 2115 With what addition?
2116 That by proscription and bills of outlawry,
2117 200 Octavius, Antony, and Lepidus
2118 Have put to death an hundred senators.
2119 Therein our letters do not well agree.
2120 Mine speak of seventy senators that died
2121 By their proscriptions, Cicero being one.
2122 205 Cicero one?
MESSALA 2123 Cicero is dead,
2124 And by that order of proscription.
2125 Had you your letters from your wife, my lord?
BRUTUS 2126 No, Messala.
2127 210 Nor nothing in your letters writ of her?
BRUTUS 2128 Nothing, Messala.
MESSALA 2129 That methinks is strange.
2130 Why ask you? Hear you aught of her in yours?
MESSALA 2131 No, my lord.
2132 215 Now, as you are a Roman, tell me true.
2133 Then like a Roman bear the truth I tell,
2134 For certain she is dead, and by strange manner.
2135 Why, farewell, Portia. We must die, Messala.
2136 With meditating that she must die once,
2137 220 I have the patience to endure it now.
2138 Even so great men great losses should endure.
2139 I have as much of this in art as you,
2140 But yet my nature could not bear it so.
2141 Well, to our work alive. What do you think
2142 225 Of marching to Philippi presently?
CASSIUS 2143 I do not think it good.
BRUTUS 2144 Your reason?
CASSIUS 2145 This it is:
2146 ’Tis better that the enemy seek us;
2147 230 So shall he waste his means, weary his soldiers,
2148 Doing himself offense, whilst we, lying still,
2149 Are full of rest, defense, and nimbleness.
2150 Good reasons must of force give place to better.
2151 The people ’twixt Philippi and this ground
2152 235 Do stand but in a forced affection,
2153 For they have grudged us contribution.
2154 The enemy, marching along by them,
2155 By them shall make a fuller number up,
2156 Come on refreshed, new-added, and encouraged,
2157 240 From which advantage shall we cut him off
2158 If at Philippi we do face him there,
2159 These people at our back.
CASSIUS 2160 Hear me, good brother—
2161 Under your pardon. You must note besides
2162 245 That we have tried the utmost of our friends,
2163 Our legions are brim full, our cause is ripe.
2164 The enemy increaseth every day;
2165 We, at the height, are ready to decline.
2166 There is a tide in the affairs of men
2167 250 Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune;
2168 Omitted, all the voyage of their life
2169 Is bound in shallows and in miseries.
2170 On such a full sea are we now afloat,
2171 And we must take the current when it serves
2172 255 Or lose our ventures.
CASSIUS 2173 Then, with your will, go on;
2174 We’ll along ourselves and meet them at Philippi.
2175 The deep of night is crept upon our talk,
2176 And nature must obey necessity,
2177 260 Which we will niggard with a little rest.
2178 There is no more to say.
CASSIUS 2179 No more. Good night.
2180 Early tomorrow will we rise and hence.
2182 265 My gown.⌜Lucius exits.⌝
2183 Farewell, good Messala.—
2184 Good night, Titinius.—Noble, noble Cassius,
2185 Good night and good repose.
CASSIUS 2186 O my dear brother,
2187 270 This was an ill beginning of the night.
2188 Never come such division ’tween our souls!
2189 Let it not, Brutus.
Enter Lucius with the gown.
p. 169BRUTUS 2190 Everything is well.
CASSIUS 2191 Good night, my lord.
BRUTUS 2192 275Good night, good brother.
2193 Good night, Lord Brutus.
BRUTUS 2194 Farewell, everyone.
⌜All but Brutus and Lucius⌝ exit.
2195 Give me the gown. Where is thy instrument?
2196 Here in the tent.
BRUTUS 2197 280 What, thou speak’st drowsily?
2198 Poor knave, I blame thee not; thou art o’erwatched.
2199 Call Claudius and some other of my men;
2200 I’ll have them sleep on cushions in my tent.
LUCIUS 2201 Varro and Claudius.
Enter Varro and Claudius.
VARRO 2202 285Calls my lord?
2203 I pray you, sirs, lie in my tent and sleep.
2204 It may be I shall raise you by and by
2205 On business to my brother Cassius.
2206 So please you, we will stand and watch your
2207 290 pleasure.
2208 I will not have it so. Lie down, good sirs.
2209 It may be I shall otherwise bethink me.
⌜They lie down.⌝
2210 Look, Lucius, here’s the book I sought for so.
2211 I put it in the pocket of my gown.
2212 295 I was sure your Lordship did not give it me.
2213 Bear with me, good boy, I am much forgetful.
p. 1712214 Canst thou hold up thy heavy eyes awhile
2215 And touch thy instrument a strain or two?
2216 Ay, my lord, an ’t please you.
BRUTUS 2217 300 It does, my boy.
2218 I trouble thee too much, but thou art willing.
LUCIUS 2219 It is my duty, sir.
2220 I should not urge thy duty past thy might.
2221 I know young bloods look for a time of rest.
LUCIUS 2222 305I have slept, my lord, already.
2223 It was well done, and thou shalt sleep again.
2224 I will not hold thee long. If I do live,
2225 I will be good to thee.
Music and a song. ⌜Lucius then falls asleep.⌝
2226 This is a sleepy tune. O murd’rous ⌜slumber,⌝
2227 310 Layest thou thy leaden mace upon my boy,
2228 That plays thee music?—Gentle knave, good night.
2229 I will not do thee so much wrong to wake thee.
2230 If thou dost nod, thou break’st thy instrument.
2231 I’ll take it from thee and, good boy, good night.
⌜He moves the instrument.⌝
2232 315 Let me see, let me see; is not the leaf turned down
2233 Where I left reading? Here it is, I think.
2234 How ill this taper burns.
Enter the Ghost of Caesar.
2235 Ha, who comes here?—
2236 I think it is the weakness of mine eyes
2237 320 That shapes this monstrous apparition.
2238 It comes upon me.—Art thou any thing?
2239 Art thou some god, some angel, or some devil,
2240 That mak’st my blood cold and my hair to stare?
2241 Speak to me what thou art.
2242 325 Thy evil spirit, Brutus.
BRUTUS 2243 Why com’st thou?
2244 To tell thee thou shalt see me at Philippi.
BRUTUS 2245 Well, then I shall see thee again?
GHOST 2246 Ay, at Philippi.
2247 330 Why, I will see thee at Philippi, then.⌜Ghost exits.⌝
2248 Now I have taken heart, thou vanishest.
2249 Ill spirit, I would hold more talk with thee.—
2250 Boy, Lucius!—Varro, Claudius, sirs, awake!
LUCIUS 2252 335 The strings, my lord, are false.
2253 He thinks he still is at his instrument.
2254 Lucius, awake!
LUCIUS 2255 My lord?
2256 Didst thou dream, Lucius, that thou so criedst out?
2257 340 My lord, I do not know that I did cry.
2258 Yes, that thou didst. Didst thou see anything?
LUCIUS 2259 Nothing, my lord.
2260 Sleep again, Lucius.—Sirrah Claudius!
2261 ⌜To Varro.⌝ Fellow thou, awake!⌜They rise up.⌝
VARRO 2262 345My lord?
CLAUDIUS 2263 My lord?
2264 Why did you so cry out, sirs, in your sleep?
2265 Did we, my lord?
BRUTUS 2266 Ay. Saw you anything?
VARRO 2267 350No, my lord, I saw nothing.
p. 175CLAUDIUS 2268 Nor I, my lord.
2269 Go and commend me to my brother Cassius.
2270 Bid him set on his powers betimes before,
2271 And we will follow.
BOTH 2272 355 It shall be done, my lord.