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Ca.s.si. 'Tis Cinna, I doe know him by his Gate, He is a friend. Cinna, where haste you so?
Cinna. To finde out you: Who's that, Metellus Cymber?
Ca.s.si. No, it is Caska, one incorporate To our Attempts. Am I not stay'd for, Cinna?
Cinna. I am glad on't.
What a fearefull Night is this?
There's two or three of vs haue seene strange sights
Ca.s.si. Am I not stay'd for? tell me
Cinna. Yes, you are. O Ca.s.sius, If you could but winne the n.o.ble Brutus To our party- Ca.s.si. Be you content. Good Cinna, take this Paper, And looke you lay it in the Pretors Chayre, Where Brutus may but finde it: and throw this In at his Window; set this vp with Waxe Vpon old Brutus Statue: all this done, Repaire to Pompeyes Porch, where you shall finde vs.
Is Decius Brutus and Trebonius there?
Cinna. All, but Metellus Cymber, and hee's gone To seeke you at your house. Well, I will hie, And so bestow these Papers as you bad me
Ca.s.si. That done, repayre to Pompeyes Theater.
Come Caska, you and I will yet, ere day, See Brutus at his house: three parts of him Is ours alreadie, and the man entire Vpon the next encounter, yeelds him ours
Cask. O, he sits high in all the Peoples hearts: And that which would appeare Offence in vs, His Countenance, like richest Alchymie, Will change to Vertue, and to Worthinesse
Ca.s.si. Him, and his worth, and our great need of him, You haue right well conceited: let vs goe, For it is after Mid-night, and ere day, We will awake him, and be sure of him.
Enter Brutus in his Orchard.
Brut. What Lucius, hoe?
I cannot, by the progresse of the Starres, Giue guesse how neere to day- Lucius, I say?
I would it were my fault to sleepe so soundly.
When Lucius, when? awake, I say: what Lucius?
Luc. Call'd you, my Lord?
Brut. Get me a Tapor in my Study, Lucius: When it is lighted, come and call me here
Luc. I will, my Lord.
Brut. It must be by his death: and for my part, I know no personall cause, to spurne at him, But for the generall. He would be crown'd: How that might change his nature, there's the question?
It is the bright day, that brings forth the Adder, And that craues warie walking: Crowne him that, And then I graunt we put a Sting in him, That at his will he may doe danger with.
Th' abuse of Greatnesse, is, when it dis-ioynes Remorse from Power: And to speake truth of Caesar, I haue not knowne, when his Affections sway'd More then his Reason. But 'tis a common proofe, That Lowlynesse is young Ambitions Ladder, Whereto the Climber vpward turnes his Face: But when he once attaines the vpmost Round, He then vnto the Ladder turnes his Backe, Lookes in the Clouds, scorning the base degrees By which he did ascend: so Caesar may; Then least he may, preuent. And since the Quarrell Will beare no colour, for the thing he is, Fashion it thus; that what he is, augmented, Would runne to these, and these extremities: And therefore thinke him as a Serpents egge, Which hatch'd, would as his kinde grow mischieuous; And kill him in the sh.e.l.l.
Luc. The Taper burneth in your Closet, Sir: Searching the Window for a Flint, I found This Paper, thus seal'd vp, and I am sure It did not lye there when I went to Bed.
Giues him the Letter.
Brut. Get you to Bed againe, it is not day: Is not to morrow (Boy) the first of March?
Luc. I know not, Sir
Brut. Looke in the Calender, and bring me word
Luc. I will, Sir.
Brut. The exhalations, whizzing in the ayre, Giue so much light, that I may reade by them.
Opens the Letter, and reades.
Brutus thou sleep'st; awake, and see thy selfe: Shall Rome, &c. speake, strike, redresse.
Brutus, thou sleep'st: awake.
Such instigations haue beene often dropt, Where I haue tooke them vp: Shall Rome, &c. Thus must I piece it out: Shall Rome stand vnder one mans awe? What Rome?
My Ancestors did from the streetes of Rome The Tarquin driue, when he was call'd a King.
Speake, strike, redresse. Am I entreated To speake, and strike? O Rome, I make thee promise, If the redresse will follow, thou receiuest Thy full Pet.i.tion at the hand of Brutus.
Luc. Sir, March is wasted fifteene dayes.
Brut. 'Tis good. Go to the Gate, some body knocks: Since Ca.s.sius first did whet me against Caesar, I haue not slept.
Betweene the acting of a dreadfull thing, And the first motion, all the Interim is Like a Phantasma, or a hideous Dreame: The Genius, and the mortall Instruments Are then in councell; and the state of a man, Like to a little Kingdome, suffers then The nature of an Insurrection.
Luc. Sir, 'tis your Brother Ca.s.sius at the Doore, Who doth desire to see you
Brut. Is he alone?
Luc. No, Sir, there are moe with him
Brut. Doe you know them?
Luc. No, Sir, their Hats are pluckt about their Eares, And halfe their Faces buried in their Cloakes, That by no meanes I may discouer them, By any marke of fauour
Brut. Let 'em enter: They are the Faction. O Conspiracie, Sham'st thou to shew thy dang'rous Brow by Night, When euills are most free? O then, by day Where wilt thou finde a Cauerne darke enough, To maske thy monstrous Visage? Seek none Conspiracie, Hide it in Smiles, and Affabilitie: For if thou path thy natiue semblance on, Not Erebus it selfe were dimme enough, To hide thee from preuention.
Enter the Conspirators, Ca.s.sius, Caska, Decius, Cinna, Metellus, and Trebonius.
Ca.s.s. I thinke we are too bold vpon your Rest: Good morrow Brutus, doe we trouble you?
Brut. I haue beene vp this howre, awake all Night: Know I these men, that come along with you?
Ca.s.s. Yes, euery man of them; and no man here But honors you: and euery one doth wish, You had but that opinion of your selfe, Which euery n.o.ble Roman beares of you.
This is Trebonius
Brut. He is welcome hither
Ca.s.s. This, Decius Brutus
Brut. He is welcome too