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That have but labour'd to attain this hour.


[Alarum. Cry within, "Fly, fly, fly!"

Hence! I will follow.

[Exeunt CLITUS, DARDANIUS, and VOLUMNIUS. I prithee, Strato, stay thou by thy lord. 45 Thou art a fellow of a good respect;

Cli. Fly, my lord, fly.

Thy life hath had some smatch of honour in it:
Hold then my sword, and turn away thy face,
While I do run upon it. Wilt thou, Strato?

Stra. Give me your hand first: fare you well, my lord.
Bru. Farewell, good Strato. [Runs on his sword.]


Alarum. Retreat. Enter OCTAVIUS, ANTONY, MESSALA,
LUCILIUS, and the Army.

Cæsar, now be still:

I kill'd not thee with half so good a will.

Oct. What man is that?

Mes. My master's man. Strato, where is thy master?
Stra. Free from the bondage you are in, Messala:

55 The conquerors can but make a fire of him;

For Brutus only overcame himself,

And no man else hath honour by his death.

Lucil. So Brutus should be found. I thank thee, Brutus, That thou hast prov'd Lucilius' saying true.

60 Oct. All that serv'd Brutus, I will entertain them.
Fellow, wilt thou bestow thy time with me?

Stra. Ay, if Messala will prefer me to you.
Oct. Do so, good Messala.

Mes. How died my master, Strato?

Stra. I held the sword, and he did run on it. Mes. Octavius, then take him to follow thee, That did the latest service to my master.

Ant. This was the noblest Roman of them all: All the conspirators, save only he,

70 Did that they did in envy of great Cæsar;
He only, in a general honest thought

And common good to all, made one of them.
His life was gentle, and the elements


So mix'd in him that Nature might stand up 75 And say to all the world, "This was a man ! Oct. According to his virtue let us use him, With all respect and rites of burial.

Within my tent his bones to-night shall lie,
Most like a soldier, order'd honourably.
80 So call the field to rest, and let's away,
To part the glories of this happy day.



A number of notes and parts of notes which are somewhat difficult have been marked with the asterisk. In the case of younger students it may seem best to omit some of these altogether.


This play is divided into acts in the Folio, but not into scenes. 3 Being mechanical: since you belong to the laboring classes. you ought not walk. This is the only case in which Shakespeare omits the to after ought. Here ought follows the pattern of the auxiliaries shall, will, may, must, etc., as in you shall not go. We still say either I dare go, or I dare to go.


* a labouring day. This word labouring is an adjective; more exactly, it is the verbal noun labouring used as an adjective. The phrase is equivalent to a day for labouring; similar expressions are a walking stick, a riding coat. Originally the English verbal adjective, seen in the phrase a labouring man, had a different form from the verbal noun which we have in a day for labouring; but by a blunder, the present participle, one of the verbal adjectives, took the form which belonged of right to the verbal noun in -ing. Scotchmen kept the two forms apart longer than users of English dwelling farther south. Dunbar (died 1530) wrote, for example:

Full low inclinand [inclining] to their queen full clear
Whom for their noble nourishing they thank.

4-5 without the sign of your profession. Shakespeare is probably thinking of some English custom or law. It is his practice to make the details of his plays conform to the English life of his own day, whatever may be the nominal time and scene of the action. The present play contains very many illustrations of this.

5 What trade art thou? Craik thinks that trade is used as equivalent to tradesman; others think that trade is the object of of understood.

* Thou, in Shakespeare, is used toward a friend or relative to express affectionate intimacy; toward one of lower social standing, a servant, a dog, etc., to express good-humored or even affectionate superiority; toward a stranger or a formal acquaintance to express contempt or insult; and, as now, in the higher poetic style, and in the language of solemn prayer. It seems strange to us that one form should express all these ideas; but a man of to-day, as Prof. C. A. Smith has pointed out, addresses his dog, servant, daughter, and wife by the personal name only; and may address God directly in prayer without the use of any formal expression of honor.

If the respectful sir is used, the form you is commonly associated with it. This explains 1. 9.

10 in respect of: in comparison with.


a cobbler playing upon the two meanings—a mender of shoes, and a bungling workman. Note the cases of word-play in the succeeding lines.

15 naughty is a much stronger word in Shakespeare than with us. It means thoroughly wicked. May it not be that it has become weakened by being used of little children?

The present editor looks upon this speech as constituting one line of verse. Indeed, Flavius and Marullus seem to speak only verse in this scene, and the lines have been numbered accordingly. The Folio gives this speech to Flavius.

24 proper: goodly, handsome.

25 neats-leather: leather made from the skins of oxen, cows, etc. The word neat was formerly used to mean a single animal of the ox kind, and the word was unchanged in the plural, as sheep, deer, and a few others still are. The phrase neat's-foot oil is well known.

31 triumph. Cæsar conquered the sons of "great Pompey" at Munda, Spain, in March, B.C. 45. In honor of this victory, he celebrated his fifth and last triumph in October of the same year. Shakespeare represents this triumph as falling

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