Imatges de pÓgina

XXII.—Antony's Oration over Cesar's Body.
FRIENDS, Romans, Countrymen! Lend me your ears.

I come to bury Cesar, not to praise him.
The evil that men do lives after them;
The good is oft interred with their bones :
So let it be with Cesar! Noble Brutus
Hath told you, Cesar was ambitious.
If it were so, it was a grievous fault;
And grievously hath Cesar 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 Cesar'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 Cesar seem ambitious?

When that the poor have cried, Cesar 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 Cesar;
And I must pause till it come back to me.
But yesterday the word Cesar might

Have stood against the world! Now lies he 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 lionourable 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 Cesar;
I found it in his closet: 'tis 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 Cesar's wounds,

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If you have tears, prepare to shed them now.
You all do know this mantle: I remember
The first time ever Cesar put it on ;

'Twas on a summer's evening in his tent,

That day he overcome 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 Cesar follow'd it!
This, this was the unkindest cut of all!
For when the noble Cesar saw him stab,
Ingratitude, more strong than traitor's arms,
Quite vanquished him! Then burst his mighty heart,
And in his mantle muffling up his face,

E'en at the base of Pompey's statue,

(Which all the while ran blood) great Cesar fell.
O what a fall was there, my countrymen!
Then I, and you, and all of us, fell down;
Whilst bloody treason flourish'd over us.
O, now you weep; and I perceive you feel
The dint of pity! These are gracious drops.
Kind souls! What, weep you when you behold
Our Cesar's vesture wounded? Look ye here !—
Here is himself-marr'd as you see by traitors.

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 reason 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 wit, nor words, nor worth,
Action, nor utterance, nor 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 Cesar'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 Cesar, that should move
The stones of Rome to rise and mutiny.

XXIII. Falstaff's Soliloquay on Honour. OWE heaven a death! 'Tis not due yet; and I would be loth to pay him before his day. What need I be so for

ward with him that calls not on me? Well, 'tis no matterhonour pricks me on. But how, if honour pricks me off when I come on? How then? Can honour set a leg? No; or an arm? No; or take away the grief of a wound? No. Honour hath no skill in surgery, then? No. What is honour? A word. What is that word honour? Air; a trim reckoning.Who hath it? He that died a Wednesday. Doth he feel it? No. Doth he hear it? No. Is it insensible then? Yea, to the dead. But will it not live with the living? No. Why? Detraction will not suffer it. Therefore, I'll none of it. Honour is a mere 'scutcheon-and so ends my catechism. XXIV. Part of Richard III's Soliloquy, the night preceding the Battle of Bosworth.

"TIS now the dead of night, and half the world
Is with a lonely solemn darkness hung;
Yet I (so coy a dame is sleep to me)

With all the weary courtship of

My care tir'd thoughts, can't win her to my bed,

Though e'en the stars do wink, as 'twere, with overwatching

I'll forth, and walk awhile. The air's refreshing,

And the ripe harvest of the new mown hay

Gives it a sweet and wholesome odour.

How awful is this gloom! And hark! from camp to camp
The hum of either army stilly sounds,

That the fix'd centinels almost receive

The secret whisper of each other's watch!

Steed threatens steed in high and boasting neighings,

Piercing the night's dull ear. Hark! From the tents,
The armorers, accomplishing the knights,

With clink of hammers closing rivets up,

Give dreadful note of preparation: while some,
Like sacrifices by their fires of watch,

With patience sit, and inly ruminate

The morning's danger. By yon heaven, my stern
Impatience chides this tardy gaited night,
Who, like a foul and ugly witch, does limp
So tediously away. I'll to my couch,

And once more try to sleep her into morning.

XXV. The World compared to a Stage.
ALL the world is a stage ;

And all the men and women, merely players.
They have their exits and their entrances;
And one man, in his time, plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages. At first, the Infant,

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Mewling and puking in the nurse's arms.

And then the whining Schoolboy; with his satchel,
And shining morning face, creeping like a snail,
Unwillingly to school. And then the Lover,
Sighing like furnace; with a woeful ballad
Made to his Mistress' eyebrow. Then a Soldier;
Full of strange oaths, and bearded like the pard;
Jealous in honour; sudden and quick in quarrel;
Seeking the bubble reputation,

Even in the cannon's mouth. And then the Justice;
In fair round belly, with good capon lin'd;
With eyes severe, and beard of formal cut;
Full of wise saws and modern instances:

And so he plays his part. The sixth age shifts
Into the lean and slipper'd pantaloon;
With spectacles on nose, and pouch on side;
His youthful hose well sav'd, a world too wide
For his shrunk shank; and his big manly voice,
Turning again toward childish treble, pipes
And whistles in his sound. Last scene of all,
That ends this strange eventful history,

Is second Childishness, and mere Oblivion;
Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans every thing.



I.-Examples of ANTITHESIS; or the Opposition of Words or Sentiments.

1. THE manner of speaking is as important as the matter.-Chesterfield.

2. Cowards die many times; the valiant never taste of death but once.-Shakespeare.

3. Temperance, by fortifying the mind and body, leads to happiness; intemperance, by enervating the mind and body, ends generally in misery.-Art of Thinking.

4. Title and ancestry render a good man more illustrious; but an ill one more contemptible. Vice is infamous, though in a prince; and virtue honourable, though in a peasant.-Spectator.

5. Almost every object that attracts our notice, has its bright and its dark side. He who habituates himself to look at the displeasing side, will sour his disposition, and consequently, impair his happiness; while he who constantly beholds it on the bright side, insensibly ameliorates his temper, and, in consequence of it, improves his own happiness, and the happiness of all around him.-World.

6. A wise man endeavours to shine in himself; a fool to outshine others. The former is humbled by the sense of his own infirmities; the latter is lifted up by the discovery of those which he observes in others. The wise man considers what he wants; and the fool what he abounds in. The wise man is happy when he gains his own approbation; and the fool, when he recommends himself to the applause of those about him.-Spectator.

7. Where opportunities of exercise are wanting, temperance may in a great measure supply its place. If exercise throws off all superfluities, temperance prevents them; if exercise clears the vessels, temperance neither satiates nor

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