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The evil that men do lives after them,
The good is oft interred with their bones;
So let it be with Cæsar. The noble Brutus
Hath told you, Cæsar was ambitious:
If it were so, it was a grievous fault,
And grievously hath Cæsar answer'd it.
Here, under leave of Brutus and the rest ,
(For Brutus is an honourable man,
So are they all, all honourable men)
Come I to speak in Cæsar's funeral.
He was my friend, faithful and just to me:
But Brutus says, he was ambitious;
And Brutus is an honourable man.
He hath brought many captives home to Rome,
Whose ransoms did the general coffers fill:
Did this in Cæsar seem ambitious ?
When that the poor have cried, Cæsar hath wept;
Ambition should be made of sterner stuff:
Yet Brutus says he was ambitious;
And Brutus is an honourable man.
You all did see, that on the Lupercal
I thrice presented him a kingly crown,
Which he did thrice refuse. Was this ambition?
Yet Brutus says, he was ambitious;
And, sure, he is an honourable man.
I speak not to disprove what Brutus spoke,
But here I am to speak what I do know.
You all did love him once, not without cause:
What cause withholds you, then, to mourn for him?
O judgment! thou art fled to brutish beasts,
And men have lost their reason. Bear with me;
My heart is in the coffin there with Cæsar,
And I must pause till it come back to me.
1 Cit. Methinks, there is much reason in his sayings.
2 Cit. If thou consider rightly of the matter, Cæsar has had great wrong.
Has he, masters? I fear, there will a worse come in his place.
4 Cit. Mark'd ye his words? He would not take the crown : Therefore, 't is certain, he was not ambitious.
1 Cit. If it be found so, some will dear abide it.
2 Cit. Poor soul! his eyes are red as fire with weeping.
3 Cit. There's not a nobler man in Rome than Antony.
4.Cit. Now mark him; he begins again to speak.
Ant. But yesterday, the word of Cæsar might
Have stood against the world: now, lies be there,
And none so poor to do him reverence.
O masters! if I were dispos'd to stir
Your hearts and minds to mutiny and rage,
I should do Brutus wrong, and Cassius wrong,
Who, you all know, are honourable men.
I will not do them wrong: I rather choose
To wrong the dead, to wrong myself, and you,
Than I will wrong such honourable men.
But here's a parchment with the seal of Cæsar;
I found it in his closet, 't is his will:
Let but the commons hear this testament,
(Which, pardon me, I do not mean to read)
And they would go and kiss dead Cæsar's wounds,
And dip their napkins in his sacred blood;
Yea, beg a hair of him for memory,
And, dying, mention it within their wills,
Bequeathing it, as a rich legacy,
Unto their issue.
4 Cit. We'll hear the will. Read it, Mark Antony.
All. The will, the will! we will hear Cæsar's will.
Ant. Have patience, gentle friends; I must not read it:
It is not meet you know how Cæsar lov'd you.
You are not wood, you are not stones, but men,
And, being men, hearing the will of Cæsar,
It will inflame you, it will make you mad.
'T is good you know not that you are his heirs;
For if you should, 0! what would come of it?
4 Cit. Read the will! we'll hear it, Antony; You shall read us the will: Cæsar's will!
Ant. Will you be patient? Will you stay a while?
I have o'ershot myself to tell you of it.
I fear, I wrong the honourable men,
Whose daggers have stabb’d Cæsar: I do fear it.
4 Cit. They were traitors: honourable men!
All. The will! the testament!
2 Cit. They were villains, murderers. The will! read the will.
Ant. You will compel me, then, to read the will?
Then, make a ring about the corpse of Cæsar,
And let me show you him that made the will.
Shall I descend? and will you give me leave?
All. Come down.
2 Cit. Descend.
(He comes down. 3 Cit. You shall have leave. 4 Cit. A ring: stand round. 1 Cit. Stand from the hearse; stand from the body. 2 Cit. Room for Antony; most noble Antony! Ant. Nay, press not so upon me; stand far off. All. Stand back! room! bear back!
Ant. If you have tears, prepare to shed them now.
You all do know this mantle: I remember
The first time ever Cæsar put it on;
'T was on a summer's evening, in his tent,
That day he overcame the Nervii.
Look! in this place, ran Cassius' dagger through:
See, what a rent the envious Casca made:
Through this the well-beloved Brutus stabb’d;
And, as he pluck'd his cursed steel away,
Mark how the blood of Cæsar follow'd it,
As rushing out of doors, to be resolv'd
If Brutus so unkindly knock'd, or no;
For Brutus, as you know, was Cæsar's angel:
Judge, O you gods, how dearly Cæsar lov'd him!
This was the most unkindest cut of all;
For when the noble Cæsar saw him stab,
Ingratitude, more strong than traitors' arms,
Quite vanquish'd him: then burst his mighty heart;
And in his mantle muffling up his face,
Even at the base of Pompey's statue,
Which all the while ran blood, great Cæsar fell.
0, what a fall was there, my countrymen!
Then I, and you, and all of us fell down,
Whilst bloody treason flourish'd over us.
0! now you weep; and, I perceive, you feel
The dint of pity: these are gracious drops.
Kind souls! what! weep you,
but behold Our Cæsar's vesture wounded? Look
Here is himself, marr'd, as you see, with traitors.
1 Cit. O piteous spectacle!
2 Cit. O noble Cæsar!
3 Cit. O woful day!
4 Cit. O traitors! villains!
1 Cit. O most bloody sight!
2 Cit. We will be revenged: revenge! about,
slay! let not a traitor live.
Ant. Stay, countrymen.
1 Cit. Peace there! hear the noble Antony.
2 Cit. We 'll hear him, we 'll follow him, we'll die with him.
Ant. Good friends, sweet friends, let me not stir you up
To such a sudden flood of mutiny.
They that have done this deed are honourable:
What private griefs they have, alas ! I know not,
That made them do it; they are wise and honourable,
And will, no doubt, with reasons answer you.
I come not, friends, to steal away your hearts;
I am no orator, as Brutus is;
But, as you know me all, a plain blunt man,
That love my friend; and that they know full well
That gave me public leave to speak of him.
For I have neither writ, nor words, nor worth,
Action, nor utterance, nor the power of speech,
To stir men's blood: I only speak right on;
I tell you that, which you yourselves do know,
Show you sweet Cæsar's wounds, poor, poor dumb mouths,
And bid them speak for me : but were I Brutus,
And Brutus Antony, there were an Antony
Would ruffle up your spirits, and put a tongue
In every wound of Cæsar, that should move
The stones of Rome to rise and mutiny.
All. We'll mutiny.
1 Cit. We'll burn the house of Brutus.
3 Cit. Away then! come, seek the conspirators.
Ant. Yet hear me, countrymen; yet hear me speak.
All. Peace, ho! Hear Antony; most noble Antony.
Ant. Why, friends, you go to do you know not what.
Wherein hath Cæsar thus desery'd your loves ?
Alas! you know not: I must tell you, then.
You have forgot the will I told you of.
All. Most true;
the will : let 's stay, and hear the
will. Ant. Here is the will, and under Cæsar's seal. To every Roman citizen he gives, To every several man, seventy-five drachmas. 2 Cit. Most noble Cæsar!
we 'll revenge his death.
3 Cit. O royal Cæsar!
Ant. Hear me with patience.
All. Peace, ho!
Ant. Moreover, he hath left you all his walks,
His private arbours, and new- y-planted orchards,
On this side Tyber: he hath left them you ,
And to your heirs for ever; common pleasures,
To walk abroad, and recreate yourselves.
Here was a Cæsar: when comes such another?
1 Cit. Never, never! Come, away, away!
We 'll burn his body in the holy place,
And with the brands fire the traitors' houses.
Take up the body.
2 Cit. Go, fetch fire.
3 Cit. Pluck down benches.