Julius Caesar

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[Flourish and shout.]

BRUTUS. What means this shouting? I do fear the people Choose Caesar for their king.

CASSIUS. Ay, do you fear it? Then must I think you would not have it so.

BRUTUS. I would not, Cassius; yet I love him well, But wherefore do you hold me here so long? What is it that you would impart to me? If it be aught toward the general good, Set honor in one eye and death i' the other And I will look on both indifferently; For let the gods so speed me as I love The name of honor more than I fear death.

CASSIUS. I know that virtue to be in you, Brutus, As well as I do know your outward favor. Well, honor is the subject of my story. I cannot tell what you and other men Think of this life; but, for my single self, I had as lief not be as live to be In awe of such a thing as I myself. I was born free as Caesar; so were you: We both have fed as well; and we can both Endure the winter's cold as well as he: For once, upon a raw and gusty day, The troubled Tiber chafing with her shores, Caesar said to me, "Darest thou, Cassius, now Leap in with me into this angry flood And swim to yonder point?" Upon the word, Accoutred as I was, I plunged in, And bade him follow: so indeed he did. The torrent roar'd, and we did buffet it With lusty sinews, throwing it aside And stemming it with hearts of controversy; But ere we could arrive the point proposed, Caesar cried, "Help me, Cassius, or I sink! I, as Aeneas, our great ancestor, Did from the flames of Troy upon his shoulder The old Anchises bear, so from the waves of Tiber Did I the tired Caesar: and this man Is now become a god; and Cassius is A wretched creature, and must bend his body, If Caesar carelessly but nod on him. He had a fever when he was in Spain; And when the fit was on him I did mark How he did shake: 'tis true, this god did shake: His coward lips did from their color fly; And that same eye whose bend doth awe the world Did lose his luster. I did hear him groan: Ay, and that tongue of his that bade the Romans Mark him, and write his speeches in their books, Alas, it cried, "Give me some drink, Titinius," As a sick girl.--Ye gods, it doth amaze me, A man of such a feeble temper should So get the start of the majestic world, And bear the palm alone.

[Shout. Flourish.]

BRUTUS. Another general shout! I do believe that these applauses are For some new honors that are heap'd on Caesar.

CASSIUS. Why, man, he doth bestride the narrow world Like a Colossus; and we petty men Walk under his huge legs and peep about To find ourselves dishonorable graves. Men at some time are masters of their fates: The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, But in ourselves,that we are underlings. "Brutus" and "Caesar": what should be in that "Caesar"? Why should that name be sounded more than yours? Write them together, yours is as fair a name; Sound them, it doth become the mouth as well; Weigh them, it is as heavy; conjure with them, "Brutus" will start a spirit as soon as "Caesar." Now, in the names of all the gods at once, Upon what meat doth this our Caesar feed That he is grown so great? Age, thou art shamed! Rome, thou hast lost the breed of noble bloods! When went there by an age since the great flood, But it was famed with more than with one man? When could they say, till now, that talk'd of Rome, That her wide walls encompass'd but one man? Now is it Rome indeed, and room enough, When there is in it but one only man. O, you and I have heard our fathers say There was a Brutus once that would have brook'd Th' eternal devil to keep his state in Rome, As easily as a king!

BRUTUS. That you do love me, I am nothing jealous; What you would work me to, I have some aim: How I have thought of this, and of these times, I shall recount hereafter; for this present, I would not, so with love I might entreat you, Be any further moved. What you have said, I will consider; what you have to say, I will with patience hear; and find a time Both meet to hear and answer such high things. Till then, my noble friend, chew upon this: Brutus had rather be a villager Than to repute himself a son of Rome Under these hard conditions as this time Is like to lay upon us.

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