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What our contempts do often hurl from us,
We wish it ours again ; the present pleasure, (5)
By revolution lowering, does become
The opposite of itfelf: she's good, being gone,
The hand could pluck (6) her back, that show'd her on.

The Mutability of the People.

Our slippery people
(Whose love is never link'd to the deserver,
Till his deserts are pait) begin to throw
Pompey the Great, and all his dignities,

his son ; who, high in name and power,
Higher than both in blood and life, stands up
For (7) the main soldier.


Scene III. Cleopatra's contemptuous Raillery,

Now, pray you, seek no colour for your going,
But bid farewell, and go : when you sued staying,


(5) The present pleasure, &c.] The allusion is to the sun's diurnal course: which, rising in the east, and by revolution lowering, or setting in the west, becomes the opposite of itself. W.

(6) The band could pluck.] The verb could has a peculiar signification in this place. It does not denote power, but inclination. The sense is, The band which drove ber off, wou'd now willingly pluck ber back again. Revisal.

(7) For, &c.} This topic is finely touched again in the fourth scene : where Casar says,

I should have known no less :
It hath been taught us from the primal state,
That he, which is, was wish’d, until he were ;
And the ebb’d man, ne'er lov’d, till ne'er worth love,
Comes dear'd, by being lack'd. This common body,
Like to a vagabond flag upon the stream,
Goes to, and back, lackying the varying tide,
To rot itfelf with motion.

Sir, you

Then was the time for words: no going then :
Eternity was in our lips, and eyes;
Bliss on our brows' bent ; none our parts so poor,
But was a race of heaven : (8) they are so still,
Or thou, the greatest soldier of the world,
Art turn'd the greatest lyar.

Cleopatra's anxious Tenderness.
Ant. I'll leave you, lady.

Cleo. Courteous lord, one word.
Sir, you and I must part,-but that's not it:

and I have lov’d, but there's not it,That

you know well : something it is I would :-
O, my oblivion (9) is a very Antony,
And I am all-forgotten !
Cleopatra's Wishes for Antony on parting.
Your honour calls you

hence ;
Therefore be deaf to my uripity'd folly,
And all the gods go with you! Upon your sword
Sit laureld victory! and smooth success
Be itrew'd before your

SCENE IV. Antony's Vices and Virtues.
Lep. I must (10) not think
They've evils enough to darken all his goodness;


(8) A race of beaven.) i. e. had a smack or flavour of heaven. The race of the wine is the taste of the soil. W.

and J.

(9) My oblivion, &c.] The plain meaning is, My forgetfulness makes me forget myself. But the expresses it, by calling forgetfulness Antony, because forgetfulness had forgot her, as Antony had done. W. There is great beauty and force in the expression.

(10) I muf, &c.] The judicious reader will be much pleased to

the vices and virtues of Antony fo juftly set 4


His faults in him scem, as the spots of heav'n,
More fiery by night's blackness; hereditary,
Rather than purchas’d; (11) what he cannot change,
Than what he chooses.
Caf. You are too indulgent. Let us grant, it is

Amiss to tumble on the bed of Ptolomy,
To give a kingdom for a mirth, to fit
And keep the turn of tipling with a slave ;
To reel the streets at noon, and Itand the buffet
With knaves that smell of sweat; say this becomes

him ;

(As his composure must be rare indeed,
Whom these things cannot blemish) yet must Antong
No way excuse his foils, when we do bear
So great weight in his lightness. (12) If he fillid
His vacancy with his voluptuousness;
Full surfeits, and the dryness of his bones,
Call on him for 't ; but to confound such time,
That drums him from his fport, and speaks as loud
As his own state and ours ; 'tis to be chid :
As we rate boys, who being mature (13) in know-


forth, fo agreeable to all the accounts we have of his cha. racter in history: doubtless no small knowledge in antiquity was necessary for fo exact a conformity to the characters of the ancients. It is surprising, that the Oxford editor should read the third line in the text,

As the spots of ermine, Or fires by night's blackness ; when the image is so apt and beautiful as it now ftands, and almost incapable of being misunderstood.

(11) Purchas'd.] i. e. Procured by his own fault or endeavour. y.

(12) Weight in his lightness.] i. e. His trifling levity throws fo much burden upon us. F.

(13) Being mature.] The Oxford editor reads, who im. mature in knowledge, to which W. agrees, and admits the


Pawn their experience to their present pleasure,
And fo rebel to judgment.
Leave thy lascivious wassals. When thou once
Wer't beaten from Mutina, where thou slew'st
Hirtius and Pansa, consuls ; at thy heel
Did famine follow, whom thou fought'st against,
(Though daintily brought up) with patience more
Than lavages could suffer. Thou didft drink
The stale of horses, and the gilded puddle
Which beasts would cough at. Thy palate then did

The rougheit berry on the rudest hedge,
Yea, like the stag, when snow the pasture sheets,
The barks of trees thou browsed' ft. On the Alps,

rp ited, thou didst eat strange fesh, Which some did die to look on; and all this, (It wounds thine honour that I speak it now,) Was borne so like a soldier, that thy cheek So much as lank'd not.

SCENE V. Cleopatra on tbe Absence of Antony.

Oh,(14) Charmian! Where think'st thou he is now? stands he? or fits he? Or does he walk? or is he on his horse?

O happy alteration. I.cannot be fatisfied with the criticism, but apa prehend there is much more propriety in the words as they now stand, than as the Oxford editor would read them. For, if the boys were immature in knowledge (or, had not any knowledge) they could not pawn their experience to their present plealure, nor rebel to judgment : whereas, if they were mature in knowledge, all that follows is just. By boys mature in knowledge says J, are meant boys old enough to know their duty.

(14) Ob, &c.] Nothing can be more natural than this folicitude of Cleopatra, fo peculiar to lovers: in Philafter, Act 3. the lady Tays,

I marvel

O happy horse to bear the weight of Antony !
Do bravely, horse, for wot'st thou, whom thou mov'st?
The demy Atlas of this earth, the arm
And burgonet (15) of man. He's speaking now,


I marvel my boy comes not back again;
But that I know my love will question him,
Over and over, how I slept, wak’d, talk'd:
How I remember'd him, when his dear name
Was last spoke, and how; when I sigh’d, wept, sung,

And ten thousand luch: Í 1hould be angry at his stay. (15) Burgonet.] i. e. A steel cap, worn for the defence of the head in battle. The ingenious Mr. Seward remarks, on the next lines,-" That the editors who distinguish Antony's speech either by italics or commas, make him only say, "Where's my jerpent of old Nile? The rest is Cleopatra's own. But sure it is a strange compliment only to call her a serpent of Nile. And why then does she mention it as a wonder, that he thould say such rapturous things of her in her decline of life? No; Antony's speech should be continued, as the metaphor is,

Where's my ferpent of old Nile?

Now I feed myself

With most delicious poison. Both parts belong to him, and then she goes on ;“ Think," says he," that he utters such raptures as these of me, though wrinkled deep in time." But, in my opinion, she seems not to imagine any such raptures : all the dwells upon is, her Antony's thinking and speaking of her, by that fond expression ; which, however uncouth a compliment it may appear to us, we are to suppose, was a common one between them, and used by Antony in the midst of their freedom and rapture : “ He's speaking now," says fhe, “ of me, or murmuring out his usual fond appellation of me, wishing to know, where his serpent of old Nile is--(for fo [apolologizing for the oddness of it] my Antony calls me :)” recollecting herself, she goes on : « Now, indeed, I do feed myself with most delicious poison : think of me, that am thus swarthy and thus wrinkled, to be so kindly remembered by this arm and burgonet of man.". Seward has


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