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Antony and Cleopatra

Antony and Cleopatra Translation Act 3, Scene 6

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Enter AGRIPPA, MECAENAS, and CAESAR

CAESAR

Contemning Rome, he has done all this and more In Alexandria. Here’s the manner of ’t: I’ th’ marketplace, on a tribunal silvered, Cleopatra and himself in chairs of gold Were publicly enthroned. At the feet sat Caesarion, whom they call my father’s son, And all the unlawful issue that their lust Since then hath made between them. Unto her He gave the stablishment of Egypt, made her Of lower Syria, Cyprus, Lydia, Absolute Queen.

CAESAR

Anthony condemned Rome, and that's not all. Here's what happened: in the marketplace, on a silver platform, he and Cleopatra were publicly enthroned in chairs of gold. At their feet sat Caesarion, whom they say is my father's son, along with all the illegitimate children that their lust has generated between them. Antony gave her full possession of Egypt and made her absolute ruler of lower Syria, Cyprus, and Lydia. 

MAECENAS

This in the public eye?

MAECENAS

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CAESAR

I’ th’ common showplace, where they exercise. His sons he there proclaimed the kings of kings: Great Media, Parthia, and Armenia He gave to Alexander; to Ptolemy he assigned Syria, Cilicia, and Phoenicia . She In th’ habiliments of the goddess Isis That day appeared, and oft before gave audience, As ’tis reported, so.

CAESAR

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MAECENAS

Let Rome be thus informed.

MAECENAS

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AGRIPPA

Who, queasy with his insolence already,Will their good thoughts call from him.

AGRIPPA

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CAESAR

The people knows it, and have now receivedHis accusations.

CAESAR

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AGRIPPA

Who does he accuse?

AGRIPPA

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CAESAR

Caesar, and that, having in Sicily Sextus Pompeius spoiled, we had not rated him His part o’ th’ isle. Then does he say he lent me Some shipping, unrestored. Lastly, he frets That Lepidus of the triumvirate Should be deposed, and, being, that we detain All his revenue.

CAESAR

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AGRIPPA

Sir, this should be answered.

AGRIPPA

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CAESAR

’Tis done already, and the messenger gone. I have told him, Lepidus was grown too cruel, That he his high authority abused And did deserve his change. For what I have conquered, I grant him part; but then, in his Armenia, And other of his conquered kingdoms, I Demand the like.

CAESAR

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MAECENAS

He’ll never yield to that.

MAECENAS

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CAESAR

Nor must not then be yielded to in this.

CAESAR

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Enter OCTAVIA with her train

OCTAVIA

Hail, Caesar, and my lord! Hail, most dear Caesar!

OCTAVIA

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CAESAR

That ever I should call thee castaway!

CAESAR

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OCTAVIA

You have not called me so, nor have you cause.

OCTAVIA

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CAESAR

Why have you stol’n upon us thus? You come not Like Caesar’s sister. The wife of Antony Should have an army for an usher and The neighs of horse to tell of her approach Long ere she did appear. The trees by th’ way Should have borne men, and expectation fainted, Longing for what it had not. Nay, the dust Should have ascended to the roof of heaven, Raised by your populous troops. But you are come A market-maid to Rome and have prevented The ostentation of our love, which, left unshown, Is often left unloved. We should have met you By sea and land, supplying every stage With an augmented greeting.

CAESAR

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OCTAVIA

Good my lord, To come thus was I not constrained, but did it On my free will. My lord, Mark Antony, Hearing that you prepared for war, acquainted My grievèd ear withal, whereon I begged His pardon for return.

OCTAVIA

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CAESAR

Which soon he granted,Being an obstruct ’tween his lust and him.

CAESAR

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OCTAVIA

Do not say so, my lord.

OCTAVIA

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CAESAR

I have eyes upon him,And his affairs come to me on the wind.Where is he now?

CAESAR

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OCTAVIA

My lord, in Athens.

OCTAVIA

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CAESAR

No, my most wrongèd sister. Cleopatra Hath nodded him to her. He hath given his empire Up to a whore; who now are levying The kings o’ th’ earth for war. He hath assembled Bocchus, the King of Libya; Archelaus, Of Cappadocia; Philadelphos, King Of Paphlagonia; the Thracian king, Adallas; King Manchus of Arabia; King of Pont; Herod of Jewry; Mithridates, King Of Comagen; Polemon and Amyntas, The Kings of Mede and Lycaonia, With a more larger list of scepters.

CAESAR

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OCTAVIA

Ay me, most wretched,That have my heart parted betwixt two friendsThat does afflict each other!

OCTAVIA

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CAESAR

Welcome hither. Your letters did withhold our breaking forth Till we perceived both how you were wrong led And we in negligent danger. Cheer your heart. Be you not troubled with the time, which drives O’er your content these strong necessities, But let determined things to destiny Hold unbewailed their way. Welcome to Rome, Nothing more dear to me. You are abused Beyond the mark of thought, and the high gods, To do you justice, makes his ministers Of us and those that love you. Best of comfort, And ever welcome to us.

CAESAR

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AGRIPPA

Welcome, lady.

AGRIPPA

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MAECENAS

Welcome, dear madam. Each heart in Rome does love and pity you. Only th’ adulterous Antony, most large In his abominations, turns you off And gives his potent regiment to a trull That noises it against us.

MAECENAS

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OCTAVIA

[To CAESAR] Is it so, sir?

OCTAVIA

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CAESAR

Most certain. Sister, welcome. Pray youBe ever known to patience. My dear’st sister!

CAESAR

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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.