A line-by-line translation

Antony and Cleopatra

Antony and Cleopatra Translation Act 3, Scene 11

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Enter ANTONY with attendants

ANTONY

Hark. The land bids me tread no more upon ’t. It is ashamed to bear me. Friends, come hither. I am so lated in the world that I Have lost my way forever. I have a ship Laden with gold. Take that, divide it. Fly And make your peace with Caesar.

ANTONY

See how the earth itself tells me not to walk on it any more. It is ashamed to hold me. Friends, come here. I am so overtaken by night that I have lost my way forever in this world. I have a ship full of gold. Take the gold and divide it amongst yourselves. Abandon me and make peace with Caesar.

ALL

Fly? Not we.

ALL

Abandon you? Not us.

ANTONY

I have fled myself, and have instructed cowards To run and show their shoulders. Friends, begone. I have myself resolved upon a course Which has no need of you. Begone. My treasure’s in the harbor. Take it. Oh, I followed that I blush to look upon! My very hairs do mutiny, for the white Reprove the brown for rashness, and they them For fear and doting. Friends, begone. You shall Have letters from me to some friends that will Sweep your way for you. Pray you, look not sad, Nor make replies of loathness. Take the hint Which my despair proclaims. Let that be left Which leaves itself. To the seaside straightway! I will possess you of that ship and treasure. Leave me, I pray, a little. Pray you now, Nay, do so, for indeed I have lost command. Therefore I pray you. I’ll see you by and by.

ANTONY

I have abandoned myself, and by retreating, I have set an example for other cowards to run away and turn their backs on their enemies. Friends, be gone. I have resolved to follow a course of action that does not require your assistance. Be gone. My treasure is in the harbor. Take it. Oh, I followed the very thing that now makes me ashamed to look at it! Even my hairs rebel. The white hairs condemn the brown ones for being rash, and the brown ones condemn the white for being fearful and too affectionate. Friends, be gone. I'll write letters for you to some friends of mine that will clear your path. Please, do not be sad or say that you don't want to do this. Take your cue from my despair. You should abandon someone who abandons himself. Go the seaside immediately! I'll give you the ship and the treasure. Leave me alone, please, for a little while. I ask you, don't protest, leave me—please. I have lost the right to command you, so I can only ask you. I'll see you shortly. 

Exeunt attendants. ANTONY sits down

Enter CLEOPATRA, led by CHARMIAN, IRAS, and EROS

EROS

Nay, gentle madam, to him, comfort him.

EROS

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IRAS

Do, most dear Queen.

IRAS

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CHARMIAN

Do. Why, what else?

CHARMIAN

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CLEOPATRA

Let me sit down. O Juno!

CLEOPATRA

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She sits

ANTONY

[seeing CLEOPATRA] No, no, no, no, no.

ANTONY

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EROS

See you here, sir?

EROS

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ANTONY

Oh, fie, fie, fie!

ANTONY

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CHARMIAN

Madam!

CHARMIAN

Lorem

IRAS

Madam, O good Empress!

IRAS

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EROS

Sir, sir—

EROS

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ANTONY

[aside] Yes, my lord, yes. He at Philippi kept His sword e’en like a dancer, while I struck The lean and wrinkled Cassius, and ’twas I That the mad Brutus ended. He alone Dealt on lieutenantry, and no practice had In the brave squares of war, yet now—no matter.

ANTONY

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CLEOPATRA

Ah, stand by.

CLEOPATRA

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EROS

The Queen, my lord, the Queen.

EROS

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IRAS

Go to him, madam, speak to him.He is unqualitied with very shame.

IRAS

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CLEOPATRA

Well then, sustain me. Oh!

CLEOPATRA

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She rises

EROS

Most noble sir, arise. The Queen approaches.Her head’s declined, and death will seize her butYour comfort makes the rescue.

EROS

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ANTONY

I have offended reputation,A most unnoble swerving.

ANTONY

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EROS

Sir, the Queen.

EROS

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ANTONY

Oh, whither hast thou led me, Egypt? See How I convey my shame out of thine eyes By looking back what I have left behind ’Stroyed in dishonor.

ANTONY

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CLEOPATRA

O my lord, my lord,Forgive my fearful sails! I little thoughtYou would have followed.

CLEOPATRA

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ANTONY

Egypt, thou knew’st too well My heart was to thy rudder tied by th’ strings, And thou shouldst tow me after. O’er my spirit Thy full supremacy thou knew’st, and that Thy beck might from the bidding of the gods Command me.

ANTONY

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CLEOPATRA

Oh, my pardon!

CLEOPATRA

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ANTONY

Now I must To the young man send humble treaties, dodge And palter in the shifts of lowness, who With half the bulk o’ th’ world played as I pleased, Making and marring fortunes. You did know How much you were my conqueror, and that My sword, made weak by my affection, would Obey it on all cause.

ANTONY

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CLEOPATRA

Pardon, pardon!

CLEOPATRA

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ANTONY

Fall not a tear, I say. One of them ratesAll that is won and lost. Give me a kiss.

ANTONY

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They kiss

Even this repays me.— We sent our schoolmaster. Is he come back?— Love, I am full of lead.— [calling] Some wine, Within there, and our viands! Fortune knows We scorn her most when most she offers blows.

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Exeunt

Antony and cleopatra
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Maria devlin
About the Translator: Maria Devlin

Maria Devlin received her Ph.D. in English Literature from Harvard University, where she specialized in Renaissance drama. She has worked as a bibliographical and editorial assistant for The Norton Anthology of English Literature and for The Norton Shakespeare. She is currently working with Stephen Greenblatt to design online courses on Shakespeare, including the modules "Hamlet's Ghost" and "Shylock's Bond" offered through HarvardX. She is writing a book on Renaissance comedy.

Maria Devlin wishes to credit the following sources, which she consulted extensively in composing her translations and annotations:

William Shakespeare. The New Oxford Shakespeare: Modern Critical Edition. Eds. Gary Taylor et al. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016.

William Shakespeare. The Norton Shakespeare, 3rd ed. Eds. Stephen Greenblatt et al. New York: W.W. Norton& Company, Inc., 2016.