Wednesday, December 31, 2014


The Four and Twenty Elders Casting their Crowns before the Divine Throne

This post is a comment on Man Walks Forth.
It relates to the 14 chapter of Revelation where the sickle brings forth to fire and destruction.

The commentary on this picture by the owner, the Tate Museum suggests that it relates to the 4th, rather then the 14 chapter of Revelation.

Rev 4:2-6:
2] And immediately I was in the spirit: and, behold, a throne was set in heaven, and one sat on the throne.
[3] And he that sat was to look upon like a jasper and a sardine stone: and there was a rainbow round about the throne, in sight like unto an emerald.
[4] And round about the throne were four and twenty seats: and upon the seats I saw four and twenty elders sitting, clothed in white raiment; and they had on their heads crowns of gold.
[5] And out of the throne proceeded lightnings and thunderings and voices: and there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God.
[6] And before the throne there was a sea of glass like unto crystal: and in the midst of the throne, 


Four and Twenty Elders Casting their Crowns before the Divine Throne is a pencil drawing and watercolour on paper by the  English poetpainter and printmaker William Blake. Created circa 1803–1805, the drawing has been held in London's Tate gallery since 1949. It is likely a visionary and hallucinatory summary of scenes from Chapters 4 and 5[1] of the Book of Revelation when the throne of God was presented to the prophet Saint John the Divine.
Saint John described the scene,
before the throne there was a sea of glass like unto crystal... round about... were four beasts full of eyes... The four and twenty elders fall down before him... and worship him that liveth for ever and ever.
Blake's depiction was created as part of a commission of biblical watercolours for his friend and patron[4] Thomas Butts. The artist began to work on Butts's series around 1800. For stylistic reasons—including the use of pencil instead of pen and ink—it is generally believed by scholars that Blake began work on the piece sometime in 1803.[5] Paintings and drawings from the series are typically characterised by intense displays of colour andThe Four and Twenty Elders is generally held as one of the most vivid examples of Blake's output from the period.[6]
In Revelation, Saint John wrote,
And round about the throne were four and twenty seats: and upon the seats I saw four and twenty elders sitting, clothed in white raiment: and they had on their heads crowns of gold.[9]
A row of twelve white-clad bearded figures float on either side of the Deity, although only four figures from each row are visible to the viewer of the panel. Each figure bends towards God, in adoration, to lay a golden crown at his feet.[9] Above the head of God are the Four Beasts, "full of eyes before and behind".[2][11] Above and to the left of God perches the Eagle, opposite of whom is the Lion. Both are portrayed with the pallor of death and both are situated beneath the distorted heads of monstrous birds and animals. The Ox and Angel are positioned behind the throne and peer outwards, according to the Blake collector W. Graham Robertson, "dimly [and] half hidden in the pale crimson and violet rays which emanate from the central figure, and shoot up to meet and be absorbed in the over-arching rainbow."[12]
There are many uses of numerical symbolism in The Four and Twenty Elders, and according to the Blake scholar Martin Myrone, "the way, as with [Blake's] Ezekiel's Wheels, that multiples and unities meld into one another, underpinned Blakes own poetic conceptions."[6]
The painting was first passed to Butts and upon his death was bequeathed to his son. In 1906, it passed to W. Graham Robertson for £6,720. Following Robertson's passing, the panel was sold at auction at Christie's to the Tate in 1949, with financial assistance from the National Art Collections Fund.[13][14]

Tuesday, December 30, 2014


Four Zoas, Night IX, Page 138, (E 406)
"The Sun has left his blackness & has found a fresher morning     
And the mild moon rejoices in the clear & cloudless night  
And Man walks forth from midst of the fires the evil is all consumd
His eyes behold the Angelic spheres arising night & day
The stars consumd like a lamp blown out & in their stead behold
The Expanding Eyes of Man behold the depths of wondrous worlds 
One Earth one sea beneath nor Erring Globes wander but Stars
Of fire rise up nightly from the Ocean & one Sun
Each morning like a New born Man issues with songs & Joy
Calling the Plowman to his Labour & the Shepherd to his rest
He walks upon the Eternal Mountains raising his heavenly voice   
Conversing with the Animal forms of wisdom night & day
That risen from the Sea of fire renewd walk oer the Earth"
Wikimedia Commons
The Four and Twenty Elders

From Page 307 of Fearful Symmetry by Northrop Frye:

"Urizen so far has taken the lead, for the apocalypse is the clearing of the human brain, which is Urizen's rightful place. The imagination sees the physical world as the underground or Platonic cave of the real world, the den of Urthona. Men have just beaten their swords into plowshares, and by the ingenious modulation of the 'harrowing of Hell' symbol Blake  has Urizen plow up the surface of this cemetery of buried seeds. An imaginative spring is approaching, and the seeds begin to push upward into eternal daylight. Man may now recover, in order, the world of Luvah or unfallen Generation, the eternal soil, and the world of Tharmas or Beulah, the eternal garden. As this represents the recovery of innocence, a long and very beautiful interlude in pastoral symbolism deals with it. The last spring has now gone through the last summer and is waiting for the harvest of the last autumn, a season which can no longer be called 'fall.'

As Urizen reaches into the stars for the sickle all creation begins to pour out human life. The sea, the home of the daughters of Oceanus who fell with Prometheus, gives up its dead; slaves and all kinds of crushed and denied life grow into maturity; and animals and plants take on human character. The 'metamorphoses' in Ovid, in which nymphs collapse into vegetable and watery existences, are images of the Fall; and in the resurrection they change back to human forms. Luvah gathers the vintage, Tharmas threshes the corn and Los, now Urthona, grinds the corn. The entire imagination of Man is made into bread and wine, and as the poem dies away a second winter approaches, a winter not of death but of repose and of the storing of food, an untroubled sleep before Man awakens for the eternal feast with the other Gods in the hall of reconquered stars."

Revelation 14
[13]And I heard a voice from heaven saying, "Write this: Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord henceforth." "Blessed indeed," says the Spirit, "that they may rest from their labors, for their deeds follow them!"
[14]Then I looked, and lo, a white cloud, and seated on the cloud one like a son of man, with a golden crown on his head, and a sharp sickle in his hand.
[15] And another angel came out of the temple, calling with a loud voice to him who sat upon the cloud, "Put in your sickle, and reap, for the hour to reap has come, for the harvest of the earth is fully ripe."
[16] So he who sat upon the cloud swung his sickle on the earth, and the earth was reaped.
[17]And another angel came out of the temple in heaven, and he too had a sharp sickle.
[18] Then another angel came out from the altar, the angel who has power over fire, and he called with a loud voice to him who had the sharp sickle, "Put in your sickle, and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth, for its grapes are ripe."
[19] So the angel swung his sickle on the earth and gathered the vintage of the earth, and threw it into the great wine press of the wrath of God;
[20] and the wine press was trodden outside the city, and blood flowed from the wine press, as high as a horse's bridle, for one thousand six hundred stadia.

Sunday, December 28, 2014


A Vision of the Last Judgment
Page 51
Drawings of William Blake: 92 Pencil Studies
By Sir Geoffrey Keynes
This post is a continuation of TRUMPET'S SOUND 2.

The upper part of The Vision of the Last Judgment, surrounding the image of Jesus seated on his throne, represents conditions in the unfallen world. In the Eternal world beyond time and space man is not passing thought the states characterizing fall and return. Man has traversed the states of error which led him downward or brought him upward. Under the Lord's  protection he has embraced Truth. Humanity is shown in the blissful condition of enjoying the Mental Delights of "conversing with Eternal Realities as they Exist in the Human Imagination."

A Vision of the Last Judgment, (E 561)
     "Around the Throne Heaven is opend & the Nature of
Eternal Things Displayd All Springing from the Divine Humanity
All beams from him Because as he himself has said All
dwells in him He is the Bread & the Wine he is the Water of
Life accordingly on Each Side of the opening Heaven appears an
Apostle that on the Right  
Represents Baptism that on the Left Represents the Lords Supper

All Life consists of these Two Throwing off Error & Knaves from
our company continually & recieving Truth or Wise Men into our
Company Continually. he who is out of the Church & opposes it is
no less an Agent of Religion than he who is in it. to be an Error
& to be Cast out is a part of Gods Design    No man can Embrace
True Art till he has Explord & Cast out False Art such is the
Nature of Mortal Things or he will be himself Cast out by those
who have Already Embraced True Art    Thus My Picture is a
History of Art & Science 
Society Which is Humanity itself.  What are all the Gifts of the
Spirit but Mental Gifts whenever any Individual Rejects Error &
Embraces Truth a Last Judgment passes upon that Individual 

     Over the Head of the Saviour & Redeemer The Holy
Spirit like a Dove is surrounded by a blue Heaven in which are
the two Cherubim that bowd over the Ark for here the temple is
opend in Heaven & the Ark of the Covenant is as a Dove of Peace  
The Curtains are drawn apart Christ having rent the Veil The
Candlestick & the Table of Shew bread appear on Each side a
Glorification of Angels with Harps surround the Dove 
     The Temple stands on the Mount of God from it flows on each
side the River of Life on whose banks Grows the tree of Life
among whose branches temples & Pinnacles tents & pavilions
Gardens & Groves Display Paradise with its Inhabitants walking up
& down in Conversations concerning Mental Delights 
     Here they are no longer talking of what is Good &
Evil or of what is Right or Wrong & puzzling themselves in Satans
Labyrinth But are Conversing with Eternal
Realities as they Exist in the Human Imagination   We are in a
World of Generation & death & this world we must cast off if we
would be Painters Such as Rafael Mich Angelo & the
Ancient Sculptors. if we do not cast off this world we shall be
only Venetian Painters who will be cast off & Lost from Art 
     Jesus is surrounded by Beams of Glory in which are
seen all around him Infants emanating from him   these represent
the Eternal Births of Intellect from the divine Humanity   A
Rainbow surrounds the throne & the Glory in which youthful
Nuptials recieve the infants in their hands   In Eternity Woman is
the Emanation of Man she has No Will of her own There is no such
thing in Eternity as a Female Will
     On the Side next Baptism are seen those calld in the Bible
Nursing Fathers & Nursing Mothers  they have Crowns the
Spectator may suppose them to be the good Kings Queens
of England  they represent Education   On the Side
next the Lords Supper.  The Holy Family consisting of Mary Joseph
John the Baptist Zacharias & Elizabeth recieving the Bread & Wine
among other Spirits of the Just
made perfect. beneath these a Cloud of Women & Children are taken
up fleeing from the rolling Cloud which separates the Wicked from
the Seats of Bliss.  These represent those who tho willing were
too weak to Reject Error without the Assistance & Countenance of
those Already in the Truth for a Man Can only Reject Error by the
Advice of a Friend or by the Immediate Inspiration of God it is
for this Reason among many others that I have put the Lords
Supper on the Left hand of the Throne for it appears so
at the Last Judgment for a Protection"

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Shakespeare 0

File:William Blake - William Shakespeare - Manchester City Gallery - Tempera on canvas c 1800.jpg

From Wikimedia Commons, the free media repository

English: Shakespeare by William Blake 1800
Object Name: painting
Artist/Maker: Blake, William Role in production: artist Place of Creation: Europe, United Kingdom, England Date: 1800-1803 (circa)
Medium / Material: tempera
Support: canvas
Technique: tempera on canvas
Description: A head portrait of William Shakespeare. He is depicted here with a faint smile, wearing an Elizabethan collar, surrounded by his own characters. To the right of the figurehead, Macbeth stands beside the three witches and to his left, Hamlet observes a ghostly crowned figure. A wreath of rose leaves frames his head whilst ferns fringe and decorate the top corners, in white on the right and black on the left.
Type: Sight Height: 41 cm Width: 79.5 cm Depth:
Type: Frame Height: 50.8 Width: 88.7 Depth: 7.6

Friday, December 26, 2014


This post is a continuation of TRUMPET'S SOUND. We reached the bottom of the page
A Vision of the Last Judgment
Page 51
Drawings of William Blake: 92 Pencil Studies
By Sir Geoffrey Keynes
by following the Fall on the left side of Jesus. Blake's account continues the circular movement from the bottom on the right of Jesus moving upward. The area surrounding the throne will be included in a later post.

A Vision of the Last Judgment, (E 558)
"while the Wicked contend with each other on the brink of 
perdition.  on tho Right a Youthful couple are awakd by
their Children an Aged patriarch is awakd by his aged wife He is
Albion our Ancestor patriarch of the Atlantic Continent whose
History Preceded that of the Hebrews & in whose Sleep or Chaos
Creation began,  at their head
the Aged Woman is Brittannia  the Wife of Albion   Jerusalem is
their Daughter  little Infants creep out of   
ground       flowery mould into the Green fields of the
blessed who in various joyful companies embrace & ascend to meet
     The Persons who ascend to Meet the Lord coming in the Clouds
with power & great Glory. are representations of those States
described in the Bible under the Names of the Fathers before &
after the Flood Noah is seen in the Midst of these Canopied by a
Rainbow. on his right hand Shem & on his Left Japhet these three
Persons represent Poetry Painting & Music the three Powers in
Man of conversing with Paradise which the flood did not Sweep
     Above Noah is the Church Universal represented by a Woman
Surrounded by Infants There is such a State in Eternity it is
composed of the Innocent civilized Heathen & the Uncivilized
Savage who having not the Law do by Nature the things containd in
the Law.  This State appears like a Female crownd with Stars
driven into the Wilderness She has the Moon under her feet      
     The Aged Figure with Wings having a writing tablet & taking
account of the numbers who arise is That Angel of the Divine
Presence mentiond in Exodus XIVc 19v & in other Places this Angel
is frequently calld by the Name of Jehovah Elohim The I am of the
Oaks of Albion 
     Around Noah & beneath him are various figures Risen into the
Air among these are Three Females representing those who are
not of the dead but of those found Alive at the Last Judgment
they appear to be innocently gay & thoughtless   not among
the Condemnd because ignorant of crime in the midst of a
corrupted Age    the Virgin Mary was of this Class.  A Mother
Meets her numerous Family in the Arms of their Father these are
representations of the Greek Learned & Wise as also of those of
other Nations such as Egypt & Babylon in which were multitudes
who shall meet the Lord coming in the Clouds 
     The Children of Abraham or Hebrew Church are represented as
a Stream of Light   Figures on which are seen Stars
somewhat like the Milky way they ascend from the Earth where
Figures kneel Embracing above the Graves & Represent Religion or
Civilized Life such as it is in the Christian Church who are the
Offspring of the Hebrew  
Just above the graves & above the spot where the
Infants creep out of the Ground Stand two a Man & Woman these are
the Primitive Christians.  The two Figures in  flames
by the side of the Dragons cavern represents the Latter state of
the Church when on the verge of Perdition yet protected by a
Flaming Sword.  Multitudes are seen ascending from the Green
fields of the blessed in which a Gothic Church is representative
of true Art Calld Gothic in All Ages   On
the right hand of Noah a Woman with Children represents the State
Calld Laban the Syrian it is the Remains of Civilization in the
State from whence Abraham was  taken    On the
right hand of Noah A Female descends to meet her Lover or Husband
representative of that Love calld Friendship which Looks for no
other heaven than their Beloved & in him sees all reflected as in
a Glass of Eternal Diamond 
     On the right hand of these rise the Diffident & Humble & on
their left a solitary Woman with her infant these are caught up
by three aged Men who appear as suddenly emerging from the blue
sky for their help.  These three Aged Men represent Divine
Providence as opposd to & distinct from Divine vengeance
represented by three Aged men on the side of the Picture among
the Wicked with scourges of fire 
     If the Spectator could Enter into these Images in his
Imagination approaching them on the Fiery Chariot of his
Contemplative Thought if he could Enter into Noahs Rainbow or
into his bosom or could make a Friend & Companion of one of these
Images of wonder which always intreats him to leave mortal things
as he must know then would he arise from his Grave then would he
meet the Lord in the Air & then he would be happy
    Above the Head of Noah is Seth this State calld Seth is Male
& Female in a higher state of Happiness & wisdom than Noah being
nearer the State of Innocence beneath the feet of Seth two
figures represent the two Seasons of Spring & Autumn. while
beneath the feet of Noah Four Seasons represent [our present
changes of Extremes] the Changed State made by the flood. 
     By the side of Seth is Elijah he comprehends all the
Prophetic Characters he is seen on his fiery Chariot bowing
before the throne of the Saviour. in like manner The figures of
Seth & his wife Comprehends the Fathers before the flood & their
Generations when seen remote they appear as One Man. a little
below Seth on his right are Two Figures a Male & Female with
numerous Children these represent those who were not in the Line
of the Church & yet were Saved from among the Antediluvians who
Perished. between Seth & these a female figure with the back
turnd represents the Solitary State of those who previous
to the Flood walked with God  
     All these arise toward the opening Cloud before the Throne
led onward by triumphant Groupes of Infants. & the Morning Stars
sang together
     Between Seth & Elijah three Female Figures crownd with
Garlands Represent Learning & Science which accompanied Adam out
of Eden  
     The Cloud that opens rolling apart before the throne &
before the New Heaven & the New Earth is Composed of Various
Groupes of Figures particularly the Four Living Creatures
mentiond in Revelations as Surrounding the Throne these I suppose
to have the chief agency in removing the 
old heavens & the old Earth to make way for the New Heaven & the
New Earth to descend from the throne of God & of the Lamb. that
Living Creature on the Left of the Throne Gives to the Seven
Angels the Seven Vials of the wrath of God with which they
hovering over the Deeps beneath pour out upon the wicked their
Plagues   the Other Living Creatures are descending with a Shout &
with the Sound of the Trumpet Directing the Combats in the upper
Elements in the two Corners of the Picture      on the Left hand
Apollyon is foild before the Sword of Michael & on the Right the
Two Witnesses are subduing their Enemies    Around the Throne
Heaven is Opened     On the Cloud are opend the Books of
Remembrance of Life & of Death before that of Life on the Right
some figures bow in humiliation before that of Death on the
left the Pharisees are pleading their own Righteousness the one
Shines with beams of Light the other utters Lightnings & tempests
A Last Judgment is Necessary because Fools flourish" 

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Shakespeare 15

Brutus and Caesar's Ghost, illustration to 'Julius Caesar' IV, iii by William Blake

Act IV, Scene 3
Brutus’s tent.

Julius Caesar

Hamlet and Julius Caesar

Around 1599, Shakespeare took a sudden departure from writing comedies to focus on the darker themes of moral ambiguity and corruption, both of the state and the individual. The result was two of his finest works, Hamlet and Julius Caesar, which share many common elements. Both plays revolve around the grave ramifications of "the cease of majesty." Both Hamlet's father and Caesar return as spirits to demand revenge. Both tragic heroes, Hamlet and Brutus, are philosophical men with high moral ideals who are forced out of their element and into action, but fail to act appropriately; Hamlet due to irresolution and Brutus to self-delusion. One could find many more parallels. Interestingly, Shakespeare alludes to Julius Caesar twice in Hamlet, in 1.1:
In the most high and palmy state of Rome,
A little ere the mightiest Julius fell,
The graves stood tenantless and the sheeted dead
Did squeak and gibber in the Roman streets. (113-116)

  • CassiusThat you have wrong'd me doth appear in this:
    You have condemn'd and noted Lucius Pella 1980
    For taking bribes here of the Sardians;
    Wherein my letters, praying on his side,
    Because I knew the man, were slighted off.
  • BrutusYou wronged yourself to write in such a case.
  • CassiusIn such a time as this it is not meet 1985
    That every nice offence should bear his comment.
  • BrutusLet me tell you, Cassius, you yourself
    Are much condemn'd to have an itching palm;
    To sell and mart your offices for gold
    To undeservers.1990
  • CassiusI an itching palm!
    You know that you are Brutus that speak this,
    Or, by the gods, this speech were else your last.
  • BrutusThe name of Cassius honours this corruption,
    And chastisement doth therefore hide his head.1995
  • BrutusRemember March, the ides of March remember:
    Did not great Julius bleed for justice' sake?
    What villain touch'd his body, that did stab,
    And not for justice? What, shall one of us 2000
    That struck the foremost man of all this world
    But for supporting robbers, shall we now
    Contaminate our fingers with base bribes,
    And sell the mighty space of our large honours
    For so much trash as may be grasped thus? 2005
    I had rather be a dog, and bay the moon,
    Than such a Roman.
  • CassiusBrutus, bay not me;
    I'll not endure it: you forget yourself,
    To hedge me in; I am a soldier, I, 2010
    Older in practise, abler than yourself
    To make conditions.
  • BrutusGo to; you are not, Cassius.
  • BrutusI say you are not.2015
  • CassiusUrge me no more, I shall forget myself;
    Have mind upon your health, tempt me no further.
  • BrutusHear me, for I will speak. 2020
    Must I give way and room to your rash choler?
    Shall I be frighted when a madman stares?
  • CassiusO ye gods, ye gods! must I endure all this?
  • BrutusAll this! ay, more: fret till your proud heart break;
    Go show your slaves how choleric you are, 2025
    And make your bondmen tremble. Must I budge?
    Must I observe you? must I stand and crouch
    Under your testy humour? By the gods
    You shall digest the venom of your spleen,
    Though it do split you; for, from this day forth, 2030
    I'll use you for my mirth, yea, for my laughter,
    When you are waspish.
  • BrutusYou say you are a better soldier:
    Let it appear so; make your vaunting true, 2035
    And it shall please me well: for mine own part,
    I shall be glad to learn of noble men.
  • CassiusYou wrong me every way; you wrong me, Brutus;
    I said, an elder soldier, not a better:
    Did I say 'better'?2040
  • BrutusIf you did, I care not.
  • CassiusWhen Caesar lived, he durst not thus have moved me.
  • BrutusPeace, peace! you durst not so have tempted him.
  • CassiusWhat, durst not tempt him!
  • BrutusFor your life you durst not!
  • CassiusDo not presume too much upon my love;
    I may do that I shall be sorry for.
  • BrutusYou have done that you should be sorry for. 2050
    There is no terror, Cassius, in your threats,
    For I am arm'd so strong in honesty
    That they pass by me as the idle wind,
    Which I respect not. I did send to you
    For certain sums of gold, which you denied me: 2055
    For I can raise no money by vile means:
    By heaven, I had rather coin my heart,
    And drop my blood for drachmas, than to wring
    From the hard hands of peasants their vile trash
    By any indirection: I did send 2060
    To you for gold to pay my legions,
    Which you denied me: was that done like Cassius?
    Should I have answer'd Caius Cassius so?
    When Marcus Brutus grows so covetous,
    To lock such rascal counters from his friends, 2065
    Be ready, gods, with all your thunderbolts;
    Dash him to pieces!
  • CassiusI did not: he was but a fool that brought 2070
    My answer back. Brutus hath rived my heart:
    A friend should bear his friend's infirmities,
    But Brutus makes mine greater than they are.
  • BrutusI do not, till you practise them on me.
  • BrutusI do not like your faults.
  • CassiusA friendly eye could never see such faults.
  • BrutusA flatterer's would not, though they do appear
    As huge as high Olympus.
  • CassiusCome, Antony, and young Octavius, come, 2080
    Revenge yourselves alone on Cassius,
    For Cassius is aweary of the world;
    Hated by one he loves; braved by his brother;
    Cheque'd like a bondman; all his faults observed,
    Set in a note-book, learn'd, and conn'd by rote, 2085
    To cast into my teeth. O, I could weep
    My spirit from mine eyes! There is my dagger,
    And here my naked breast; within, a heart
    Dearer than Plutus' mine, richer than gold:
    If that thou be'st a Roman, take it forth; 2090
    I, that denied thee gold, will give my heart:
    Strike, as thou didst at Caesar; for, I know,
    When thou didst hate him worst, thou lovedst him better
    Than ever thou lovedst Cassius.
  • BrutusSheathe your dagger: 2095
    Be angry when you will, it shall have scope;
    Do what you will, dishonour shall be humour.
    O Cassius, you are yoked with a lamb
    That carries anger as the flint bears fire;
    Who, much enforced, shows a hasty spark, 2100
    And straight is cold again.
  • CassiusHath Cassius lived
    To be but mirth and laughter to his Brutus,
    When grief, and blood ill-temper'd, vexeth him?
  • BrutusWhen I spoke that, I was ill-temper'd too.2105
  • CassiusDo you confess so much? Give me your hand.
  • CassiusHave not you love enough to bear with me, 2110
    When that rash humour which my mother gave me
    Makes me forgetful?
  • BrutusYes, Cassius; and, from henceforth,
    When you are over-earnest with your Brutus,
    He'll think your mother chides, and leave you so.2115
  • Poet[Within] Let me go in to see the generals;
    There is some grudge between 'em, 'tis not meet
    They be alone.
  • Lucilius[Within] You shall not come to them.
  • Poet[Within] Nothing but death shall stay me.2120
Enter Poet, followed by LUCILIUS, Tintinius, and LUCIUS
  • CassiusHow now! what's the matter?
  • PoetFor shame, you generals! what do you mean?
    Love, and be friends, as two such men should be;
    For I have seen more years, I'm sure, than ye.2125
  • CassiusHa, ha! how vilely doth this cynic rhyme!
  • BrutusGet you hence, sirrah; saucy fellow, hence!
  • CassiusBear with him, Brutus; 'tis his fashion.
  • BrutusI'll know his humour, when he knows his time:
    What should the wars do with these jigging fools? 2130
    Companion, hence!
Exit Poet
  • BrutusLucilius and Tintinius, bid the commanders
    Prepare to lodge their companies to-night.2135
  • CassiusAnd come yourselves, and bring Messala with you
    Immediately to us.
Exeunt LUCILIUS and Tintinius
  • BrutusLucius, a bowl of wine!
  • CassiusI did not think you could have been so angry.
  • BrutusO Cassius, I am sick of many griefs.
  • CassiusOf your philosophy you make no use,
    If you give place to accidental evils.
  • BrutusNo man bears sorrow better. Portia is dead.2145
  • CassiusHow 'scaped I killing when I cross'd you so?
    O insupportable and touching loss!
    Upon what sickness?2150
  • BrutusImpatient of my absence,
    And grief that young Octavius with Mark Antony
    Have made themselves so strong:—for with her death
    That tidings came;—with this she fell distract,
    And, her attendants absent, swallow'd fire.2155
Re-enter LUCIUS, with wine and taper
  • BrutusSpeak no more of her. Give me a bowl of wine. 2160
    In this I bury all unkindness, Cassius.
  • CassiusMy heart is thirsty for that noble pledge.
    Fill, Lucius, till the wine o'erswell the cup;
    I cannot drink too much of Brutus' love.
  • BrutusCome in, Tintinius! 2165
    [Exit LUCIUS]
    [Re-enter Tintinius, with MESSALA]
    Welcome, good Messala.
    Now sit we close about this taper here,
    And call in question our necessities.2170
  • BrutusNo more, I pray you.
    Messala, I have here received letters,
    That young Octavius and Mark Antony
    Come down upon us with a mighty power, 2175
    Bending their expedition toward Philippi.
  • MessalaMyself have letters of the selfsame tenor.
  • BrutusWith what addition?
  • MessalaThat by proscription and bills of outlawry,
    Octavius, Antony, and Lepidus, 2180
    Have put to death an hundred senators.
  • BrutusTherein our letters do not well agree;
    Mine speak of seventy senators that died
    By their proscriptions, Cicero being one.
  • MessalaCicero is dead,
    And by that order of proscription.
    Had you your letters from your wife, my lord?
  • MessalaNor nothing in your letters writ of her?2190
  • MessalaThat, methinks, is strange.
  • BrutusWhy ask you? hear you aught of her in yours?
  • BrutusNow, as you are a Roman, tell me true.2195
  • MessalaThen like a Roman bear the truth I tell:
    For certain she is dead, and by strange manner.
  • BrutusWhy, farewell, Portia. We must die, Messala:
    With meditating that she must die once,
    I have the patience to endure it now.2200
  • MessalaEven so great men great losses should endure.
  • CassiusI have as much of this in art as you,
    But yet my nature could not bear it so.
  • BrutusWell, to our work alive. What do you think
    Of marching to Philippi presently?2205
  • CassiusI do not think it good.
  • CassiusThis it is:
    'Tis better that the enemy seek us:
    So shall he waste his means, weary his soldiers, 2210
    Doing himself offence; whilst we, lying still,
    Are full of rest, defense, and nimbleness.
  • BrutusGood reasons must, of force, give place to better.
    The people 'twixt Philippi and this ground
    Do stand but in a forced affection; 2215
    For they have grudged us contribution:
    The enemy, marching along by them,
    By them shall make a fuller number up,
    Come on refresh'd, new-added, and encouraged;
    From which advantage shall we cut him off, 2220
    If at Philippi we do face him there,
    These people at our back.
  • BrutusUnder your pardon. You must note beside,
    That we have tried the utmost of our friends, 2225
    Our legions are brim-full, our cause is ripe:
    The enemy increaseth every day;
    We, at the height, are ready to decline.
    There is a tide in the affairs of men,
    Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune; 2230
    Omitted, all the voyage of their life
    Is bound in shallows and in miseries.
    On such a full sea are we now afloat;
    And we must take the current when it serves,
    Or lose our ventures.2235
  • CassiusThen, with your will, go on;
    We'll along ourselves, and meet them at Philippi.
  • BrutusThe deep of night is crept upon our talk,
    And nature must obey necessity;
    Which we will niggard with a little rest. 2240
    There is no more to say?
  • CassiusNo more. Good night:
    Early to-morrow will we rise, and hence.
  • BrutusLucius!
    [Enter LUCIUS] 2245
    My gown.
    [Exit LUCIUS]
    Farewell, good Messala:
    Good night, Tintinius. Noble, noble Cassius,
    Good night, and good repose.2250
  • CassiusO my dear brother!
    This was an ill beginning of the night:
    Never come such division 'tween our souls!
    Let it not, Brutus.
  • BrutusEvery thing is well.2255
  • BrutusGood night, good brother.
  • Tintinius[with MESSALA] Good night, Lord Brutus.
  • BrutusFarewell, every one.
    [Exeunt all but BRUTUS] 2260
    [Re-enter LUCIUS, with the gown]
    Give me the gown. Where is thy instrument?
  • BrutusWhat, thou speak'st drowsily?
    Poor knave, I blame thee not; thou art o'er-watch'd. 2265
    Call Claudius and some other of my men:
    I'll have them sleep on cushions in my tent.
  • LuciusVarro and Claudius!
  • VarroCalls my lord?2270
  • BrutusI pray you, sirs, lie in my tent and sleep;
    It may be I shall raise you by and by
    On business to my brother Cassius.
  • VarroSo please you, we will stand and watch your pleasure.
  • BrutusI will not have it so: lie down, good sirs; 2275
    It may be I shall otherwise bethink me.
    Look, Lucius, here's the book I sought for so;
    I put it in the pocket of my gown.
VARRO and CLAUDIUS lie down
  • LuciusI was sure your lordship did not give it me.2280
  • BrutusBear with me, good boy, I am much forgetful.
    Canst thou hold up thy heavy eyes awhile,
    And touch thy instrument a strain or two?
  • LuciusAy, my lord, an't please you.
  • BrutusIt does, my boy: 2285
    I trouble thee too much, but thou art willing.
  • LuciusIt is my duty, sir.
  • BrutusI should not urge thy duty past thy might;
    I know young bloods look for a time of rest.
  • LuciusI have slept, my lord, already.2290
  • BrutusIt was well done; and thou shalt sleep again;
    I will not hold thee long: if I do live,
    I will be good to thee.
    [Music, and a song]
    This is a sleepy tune. O murderous slumber, 2295
    Lay'st thou thy leaden mace upon my boy,
    That plays thee music? Gentle knave, good night;
    I will not do thee so much wrong to wake thee:
    If thou dost nod, thou break'st thy instrument;
    I'll take it from thee; and, good boy, good night. 2300
    Let me see, let me see; is not the leaf turn'd down
    Where I left reading? Here it is, I think.
    [Enter the Ghost of CAESAR]
    How ill this taper burns! Ha! who comes here?
    I think it is the weakness of mine eyes 2305
    That shapes this monstrous apparition.
    It comes upon me. Art thou any thing?
    Art thou some god, some angel, or some devil,
    That makest my blood cold and my hair to stare?
    Speak to me what thou art.2310
  • CaesarThy evil spirit, Brutus.
  • CaesarTo tell thee thou shalt see me at Philippi.
  • BrutusWell; then I shall see thee again?
  • CaesarAy, at Philippi.2315
  • BrutusWhy, I will see thee at Philippi, then.
    [Exit Ghost]
    Now I have taken heart thou vanishest:
    Ill spirit, I would hold more talk with thee.
    Boy, Lucius! Varro! Claudius! Sirs, awake! Claudius!2320
  • LuciusThe strings, my lord, are false.
  • BrutusHe thinks he still is at his instrument.
    Lucius, awake!
  • BrutusDidst thou dream, Lucius, that thou so criedst out?2325
  • LuciusMy lord, I do not know that I did cry.
  • BrutusYes, that thou didst: didst thou see any thing?
  • BrutusSleep again, Lucius. Sirrah Claudius!
    [To VARRO] 2330
    Fellow thou, awake!
  • BrutusWhy did you so cry out, sirs, in your sleep?
  • Varro[with Claudius] Did we, my lord?2335
  • BrutusAy: saw you any thing?
  • VarroNo, my lord, I saw nothing.
  • BrutusGo and commend me to my brother Cassius;
    Bid him set on his powers betimes before, 2340
    And we will follow.
  • Varro[with Claudius] It shall be done, my lord.