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Take heed you fall not.

[Exeunt POMPEY, CESAR, ANTONY, and Attendants.

Menas, I'll not on shore.


No, to my cabin.

These drums!-these trumpets, flutes! what !— Let Neptune hear we bid a loud farewell

To these great fellows: Sound, and be hang'd, sound out.

[A Flourish of Trumpets, with Drums. ENO. Ho, says 'a !-There's my cap.


Ho!-noble captain! come.



A Plain in Syria.

Enter VENTIDIUS, as after Conquest, with SILIUS, and other Romans, Officers, and Soldiers; the dead Body of PACORUS borne before him.

VEN. Now, darting Parthia, art thou struck'; and now

Pleas'd fortune does of Marcus Crassus' death
Make me revenger.-Bear the king's son's body
Before our army :-Thy Pacorus, Orodes 2,
Pays this for Marcus Crassus.

tonio possidebatur." Our author, though he lost the joke, yet seems willing to commemorate the story. WARBURTON.

The joke of which the learned editor seems to lament the loss, could not be found in the old translation of Plutarch, and Shakspeare looked no further. STEEVENS.

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struck;] Alludes to darting. Thou whose darts have so often struck others, art struck now thyself. JOHNSON.

2- Thy Pacorus, Orodes,] Pacorus was the son of Orodes, King of Parthia. STEEVENS.


Noble Ventidius,

Whilst yet with Parthian blood thy sword is warm,
The fugitive Parthians follow; spur through Media,
Mesopotamia, and the shelters whither

The routed fly: so thy grand captain Antony
Shall set thee on triumphant chariots, and
Put garlands on thy head.

O Silius, Silius,

VEN. I have done enough: A lower place, note well, May make too great an act: For learn this, Silius; Better to leave undone 3, than by our deed


Acquire too high a fame, when him we serve's away 4.
Cæsar, and Antony, have ever won

More in their officer, than person: Sossius,
One of my place in Syria, his lieutenant,
For quick accumulation of renown,

Which he achiev'd by the minute, lost his favour.
Who does i' the wars more than his captain can,
Becomes his captain's captain: and ambition,
The soldier's virtue, rather makes choice of loss,
Than gain, which darkens him.

I could do more to do Antonius good,

But 'twould offend him; and in his offence
Should my performance perish.


Thou hast, Ventidius, that

3 Better leave undone, &c.] Old copies, unmetrically (because the players were unacquainted with the most common ellipsis): "Better to leave undone," &c. STEEVENS. The text is that of the old copy. Mr. Steevens reads: "Better leave undone, than by our deed acquire

"Too high a fame, when him we serve's away." BOSWELL. when HIM we serve's away.] Thus the old copy, and such certainly was our author's phraseology. So, in The Winter's Tale:

"I am appointed him to murder you."

So also Coriolanus, Act V. Sc. V.:


Him I accuse

"The city ports by this hath entered

The modern editors, however, all read, more grammatically, when he we serve, &c. MALONE.

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Without the which a soldier, and his sword, Grants scarce distinction o. Thou wilt write to Antony ?

VEN. I'll humbly signify what in his name, That magical word of war, we have effected; How, with his banners, and his well-paid ranks, The ne'er-yet-beaten horse of Parthia

We have jaded out o' the field.

Where is he now?
VEN. He purposeth to Athens: whither with

what haste

The weight we must convey with us will permit, We shall appear before him.-On, there; pass [Exeunt.



Rome. An Ante-Chamber in CÆSAR's House.

Enter AGRIPPA, and ENOBARBUS, meeting. AGR. What, are the brothers parted?

ENO. They have despatch'd with Pompey, he is gone;

5 That without which] Here again, regardless of metre, the old copies read:

"That without the which-." STEEVENS.


In the old copy this speech is printed as prose. By the arrangement in the text, which is the same that I had adopted in my mer edition, the supposed fault of the metre is done away with. MALONE.


6 That without which a soldier, and his sword, GRANTS Scarce distinction.] Grant, for afford. It is badly and obscurely expressed; but the sense is this: Thou hast that, Ventidius, which if thou didst want, there would be no distinction between thee and thy sword. You would be both equally cutting and senseless." This was wisdom or knowledge of the world. Ventidius had told him the reasons why he did not pursue his advantages; and his friend, by this compliment, acknowledges them to be of weight. WARBURTON.

We have somewhat of the same idea in Coriolanus:

"Who, sensible, outdares his senseless sword.”


The other three are sealing. Octavia weeps
To part from Rome: Cæsar is sad; and Lepidus,
Since Pompey's feast, as Menas says, is troubled
With the green sickness.


"Tis a noble Lepidus. ENO. A very fine one: O, how he loves Cæsar ! AGR. Nay, but how dearly he adores Mark Antony !

ENO. Cæsar? Why, he's the Jupiter of men. AGR. What's Antony? The god of Jupiter. ENO. Spake you of Cæsar? How? the nonpareil !

AGR. O Antony! O thou Arabian bird' ! ENO. Would you praise Cæsar, say,-Cæsar ;go no further 8.

AGR. Indeed, he ply'd them both with excellent praises.

ENO. But he loves Cæsar best ;-Yet he loves Antony :

Ho! hearts, tongues, figures, scribes, bards, poets,



Spake you of Cæsar? How? the nonpareil!
Agr. O Antony!" &c. We should read-



Of Antony? O, thou Arabian bird!

Speak you of Cæsar, he is the nonpareil; speak you of Antony, he is the Arabian bird. M. MASON.

7-Arabian bird!] The phoenix. JOHNSON. So, again, in Cymbeline:


"She is alone the Arabian bird, and I

"Have lost my wager." STEEVvens.

Cæsar ;-Go no further.] I suspect that this line was designed to be metrical, and that (omitting the impertinent go) we should read:

"Would you praise Cæsar, say-Cæsar -no further."

STEEVENS. 9-bards, poets,] Not only the tautology of bards and poets, but the want of a correspondent action for the poet, whose business in the next line is only to number, makes me suspect some fault in this passage, which I know not how to mend. JOHNSON.

I suspect no fault. The ancient bard sung his compositions to

Think, speak, cast, write, sing, number, ho, his love To Antony. But as for Cæsar,

Kneel down, kneel down, and wonder.


Both he loves.

ENO. They are his shards, and he their beetle 2.



This is to horse.-Adieu, noble Agrippa.

AGR. Good fortune, worthy soldier; and farewell. Enter CESAR, ANTONY, LEPIDUS, and OCTAVIA. ANT. No further, sir.

the harp; the poet only commits them to paper. Verses are often called numbers, and to number, a verb (in this sense) of Shakspeare's coining, is to make verses.

This puerile arrangement of words was much studied in the age of Shakspeare, even by the first writers.

So, in An Excellent Sonnet of a Nimph, by Sir P. Sidney; printed in England's Helicon, 1600:

"Vertue, beauty, and speach, did strike, wound, charme,

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'My hart, eyes, eares, with wonder, loue, delight:

First, second, last, did binde, enforce, and arme,

"His works, showes, sutes, with wit, grace, and vowes-might:
"Thus honour, liking, trust, much, farre, and deepe,
"Held, pearst, possest, my judgement, sence, and will;
"Till wrongs, contempt, deceite, did grow, steale, creepe,
"Bands, fauour, faith, to breake, defile, and kill.
"Then greefe, unkindnes, proofe, tooke, kindled, taught,
"Well grounded, noble, due, spite, rage, disdaine :
"But ah, alas (in vaine) my minde, sight, thought,
"Dooth him, his face, his words, leaue, shunne, refraine.
"For nothing, time, nor place, can loose, quench, ease,
"Mine owne, embraced, sought, knot, fire, disease."

Again, in Daniel's 11th Sonnet, 1594:

"Yet I will weep, vow, pray to cruell shee;


Flint, frost, disdaine, weares, melts, and yields, we see.”

2 They are his SHARDS, and he their BEETLE.] i. e. They are the wings that raise this heavy lumpish insect from the ground. So, in Macbeth:


the shard-borne beetle."

See vol. xi. p. 155, n. 8.


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