Document:  All > Shakespeare > Tragedies > Antony and Cleopatra > Act I, scene I



	[Enter DEMETRIUS and PHILO]

PHILO: Nay, but this dotage of our general's
	O'erflows the measure: those his goodly eyes,
	That o'er the files and musters of the war
	Have glow'd like plated Mars, now bend, now turn,
	The office and devotion of their view
	Upon a tawny front: his captain's heart,
	Which in the scuffles of great fights hath burst
	The buckles on his breast, reneges all temper,
	And is become the bellows and the fan
	To cool a gipsy's lust.

	[Flourish. Enter ANTONY, CLEOPATRA, her Ladies,
	the Train, with Eunuchs fanning her]

		  Look, where they come:
	Take but good note, and you shall see in him.
	The triple pillar of the world transform'd
	Into a strumpet's fool: behold and see.

CLEOPATRA: If it be love indeed, tell me how much.

MARK ANTONY: There's beggary in the love that can be reckon'd.

CLEOPATRA: I'll set a bourn how far to be beloved.

MARK ANTONY: Then must thou needs find out new heaven, new earth.

	[Enter an Attendant]

Attendant: News, my good lord, from Rome.

MARK ANTONY: Grates me: the sum.

CLEOPATRA: Nay, hear them, Antony:
	Fulvia perchance is angry; or, who knows
	If the scarce-bearded Caesar have not sent
	His powerful mandate to you, 'Do this, or this;
	Take in that kingdom, and enfranchise that;
	Perform 't, or else we damn thee.'

MARK ANTONY: How, my love!

CLEOPATRA: Perchance! nay, and most like:
	You must not stay here longer, your dismission
	Is come from Caesar; therefore hear it, Antony.
	Where's Fulvia's process? Caesar's I would say? both?
	Call in the messengers. As I am Egypt's queen,
	Thou blushest, Antony; and that blood of thine
	Is Caesar's homager: else so thy cheek pays shame
	When shrill-tongued Fulvia scolds. The messengers!

MARK ANTONY: Let Rome in Tiber melt, and the wide arch
	Of the ranged empire fall! Here is my space.
	Kingdoms are clay: our dungy earth alike
	Feeds beast as man: the nobleness of life
	Is to do thus; when such a mutual pair

	[Embracing]

	And such a twain can do't, in which I bind,
	On pain of punishment, the world to weet
	We stand up peerless.

CLEOPATRA: Excellent falsehood!
	Why did he marry Fulvia, and not love her?
	I'll seem the fool I am not; Antony
	Will be himself.

MARK ANTONY:                   But stirr'd by Cleopatra.
	Now, for the love of Love and her soft hours,
	Let's not confound the time with conference harsh:
	There's not a minute of our lives should stretch
	Without some pleasure now. What sport tonight?

CLEOPATRA: Hear the ambassadors.

MARK ANTONY: Fie, wrangling queen!
	Whom every thing becomes, to chide, to laugh,
	To weep; whose every passion fully strives
	To make itself, in thee, fair and admired!
	No messenger, but thine; and all alone
	To-night we'll wander through the streets and note
	The qualities of people. Come, my queen;
	Last night you did desire it: speak not to us.

	[Exeunt MARK ANTONY and CLEOPATRA with
	their train]

DEMETRIUS: Is Caesar with Antonius prized so slight?

PHILO: Sir, sometimes, when he is not Antony,
	He comes too short of that great property
	Which still should go with Antony.

DEMETRIUS: I am full sorry
	That he approves the common liar, who
	Thus speaks of him at Rome: but I will hope
	Of better deeds to-morrow. Rest you happy!

	[Exeunt]




	ANTONY AND CLEOPATRA






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