Antony and Cleopatra

Antony and Cleopatra


William Shakespeare

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Antony and Cleopatra: Act 4, Scene 3 Summary & Analysis

Read our modern English translation of this scene.
Several soldiers talk in Cleopatra’s palace, anxiously awaiting tomorrow’s battle. One of the soldiers says he thinks they will be victorious on land, “if to-morrow / Our navy thrive.” The soldiers hear a strange music that they think is coming from “under the earth,” and one of them interprets this as a sign that Hercules (Antony’s patron deity) is deserting him. The soldiers leave to see if they can find out more about the strange noise.
Caught in a turbulent time of civil war, the anxious soldiers try to predict what will happen the next day. The negative omen of the strange music contributes to a sense of the tragic inevitability of Antony’s defeat.
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