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For we intend so to dispose you, as
Yourself shall give us counsel. Feed, and sleep:
Our care and pity is so much upon you,
That we remain your friend ; And so adieu.

Cleo. My master, and my lord !

Not so: Adieu.

[Exeunt CÆSAR, and his Train. Cleo. He words me, girls, he words me, that I

should not Be noble to myself: but hark thee, Charmian.

[Whispers CHARMIAN.
Iras. Finish, good lady; the bright day is done,
And we are for the dark.

Hie thee again :
I have spoke already, and it is provided ;
Go, put it to the haste.

Madam, I will

Dol. Where is the queen ?

Behold, sir. [Exit CHARMIAN. Cleo.

Dol. Madam, as thereto sworn by your cor

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 promise.

Dolabella, I shall remain your debtor.


I your servant.
Adieu, good queen; I must attend on Cæsar.
Cleo. Farewell, and thanks. [Exit Dol.] Now,

Iras, what think'st thou ?
Thou, an Egyptian puppet, shall be shown
In Rome, as well as I: mechanick 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,
And forc'd to drink their vapour.

The gods forbid !
Cleo. Nay, 'tis most certain, Iras: Saucy lictorss
Will catch at us, like strumpets; and scald rhymers
Ballad us out o'tune : the quick comedians
Extemporally will stage us, and present
Our Alexandrian revels ; Antony
Shall be brought drunken forth, and I shall see
Some squeaking Cleopatra boy? my greatness
I’ the posture of a whore.

O the good gods !
Cleo. Nay, that is certain.

Iras. I'll never see it; for, I am sure, my nails
Are stronger than mine eyes.

Why that's the way
To fool their preparation, and to conquer
Their most absurd intents.-Now, Charmian?

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

s Beadles. 6 Lively, 7 Female characters were played by boys.

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

leave To play till dooms-day.-Bring our crown and all. Wherefore's this noise ?

[Exit Iras. A Noise within.

Enter one of the Guard. Guard.

Here is a rural fellow, That will not be denied your highness' presence ; He brings you figs. Cleo. Let him come in. How poor an instrument

[Exit Guard, 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. Re-enter Guard, with a Clown bringing a Basket. Guard.

This is the man. Cleo. Avoid, and leave him. [Erit 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. Remembers't thou any that have died on't?

Clown. Very many, men and women too. I heard of one of them no longer than yesterday: a very ho

8 Job of work. 9 Inconstant. * Serpent.

nest woman, but something given to lie; as a woman should not do, but in the way of honesty : how she died of the biting of it, what pain she felt,-Truly, she makes a very good report o'the worm : Bụt he that will believe all that they say, shall never be saved by half that they do : But this is most fallible, the worm's an odd worm.

Cleo. Get thee hence; farewell.
Clown. I wish you all joy of the worm.
Cleo. Farewell. [Clown sets down the Basket.

Clown. You must think this, look you, that the worm will do his kind.2

Cleo. Ay, ay; farewell.

Clown. Look you, the worm is not to be trusted, but in the keeping of wise people; for, indeed, there is no goodness in the worm. Cleo. Take thou no care; it shall be heeded.

Clown. Very good: give it nothing, I pray you, for it is not worth the feeding.

Cleo. Will it eat me?

Clown. You must not think I am so simple, but I know the devil himself will not eat woman: I know, that a woman is a dish for the gods, if the devil dress her not. But, truly, these same whoreson devils do the gods great harm in their women ;

for in

every ten that they make, the devils mar five. Cleo. Well, get thee

gone ;

farewell. Clown. Yes, forsooth; I wish you joy of the worm.

[Exit, Re-enter IRAS, with a Robe, Crown, &c. Cleo. Give me my robe, put on my crown; I have Immortal longings in me: Now no more The juice of Egypt's grape shall moist this lip: Yare, yare, good Iras ; quick.-Methinks, I hear Antony call; I see him rouse himself To praise my noble act; I hear him mock The luck of Cæsar, which the gods give men To excuse their after wrath : Husband, I come : Now to that name my courage prove my title ! I am fire, and air ; my other elements I give to baser life.-So,-have

2 Act according to his nature.


done? Come then, and take the last warmth of my lips. Farewell, kind Charmian ;-Iras, long farewell.

[Kisses them. IRAs falls and dies. Have I the aspick in my lips ? Dost fall ? If thou and nature can so gently part, The stroke of death is as a lover's pinch, Which hurts, and is desir’d. Dost thou lie still ? If thus thou vanishest, thou tell'st the world It is not worth leave-taking. Char. Dissolve, thick cloud, and rain that I may

say, The gods themselves do weep! Cleo.


proves me base : If she first meet the curled Antony, He'll make demand of her; and spend that kiss, Which is my heaven to have. Come, mortal wretch,

[To the Asp, which she applies to her Breast. With thy sharp teeth this knot intrinsicate

& Make haste.

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