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So vile a thing as Cæfar? But, oh grief!
Casca. You speak to Casca, and to such a man,
Caf. There's a bargain made.
Cin. To find out you : who's that, Metellus Cimber?
Caf. No, it is Casca, one incorporate
Cin. I'm glad on't. What a fearful night is this ?
Caf. Am I not staid for? tell me.
Cin. Yes, you are.
To our party
Hold, my Hand.] This Comma must certainly be remov’d. Casca bids Casius take his Hand, as it were to bind their League and Amity. So afterwards, in this Play; Give me thy Hand, Meffala.
Cas. Be you content. Good Cinna, take this paper; And look you lay it in the Prætor's chair, Where Brutus may but find it; and throw this In at his window ; fet this Upon old Brutus* Statue : all this done, Repair to Pompey's porch, where you shall find us. Is Decius Brutus, and Trebonius there?
Cin. All, but Metellus Cimber, and he's gone To seek you at your house. Well, I will hie, And so bestow these
you Caf. That done, repair to Pompey's Theatre.
Casca. O, he fits high in all the people's hearts
Caf, Him, and his worth, and our great need of him,
I cannot by the progress of the stars,
Will bear no colour, for the thing he is,
Enter Lucius. :
Luc. The taper burneth in your closet, Sir :
[Gives him the letter. Bru. Get you to bed again, it is not day: Is not to-morrow, boy, the Ides of March? (6)
Luc. I know not, Sir.
(6) Is not to-morrow, boy, the first of March ?) I dare pronounce a palpable Blunder here, which none of the Editors have ever been aware of. Brutus enquires whether the firft of March be come, and the Boy brings him word 'tis wasted 15 Days. Allowing Brutus to be a most contemplative Man, and his Thoughts taken up with high Matters, yet I can never agree, that he so little knew how Time went, as to be mistaken a whole Fortnight in the Reckoning. I'make no Scruple to affert, the Poet wrote Ides. But how could Ides, may it not be objected, be corrupted into first? 'What Similitude in the Traces of the Letters ? This Difficulty may very easily be solv'd, by only suppofing that the Word Ides in the Manuscript Copy happen'd to be wrote contractedly thus, js: The Players knew the Word well enough in the Contraction ; but when the MSS came to the Press, the Compositors were not so well informed in it: They knew, that jít frequently stood for forf; and bluna deringly thought that.js was meant to do fo too: and thence was deriv'd the Corruption of the Text. But that the Poet wrote Ides, we have this in Confirmation. Brutus makes the Enquiry on the Dawn of the very Day, in which Cæfar was kill'd in the Capitol." Now 'tis very well known, that this was on the 15th Day, which is the Ides, of Marcb. I ought to acknowledge, that my Friend Mr. Warburton likewise started this very Emendation, and commuaicated it to me by Letter.
Bru. Look in the kalendar, and bring me word.
(Exit. Bru. The exhalations, whizzing in the air, Give so much light, that I may read by them.
[Opens the letter, and reads. Brutus, thou sleepA; awake, and see thyself.: Shall Rome, speak, ftrike, redress. Brutus, thou sleep'Ä : awake. Such inftigations have been often dropt, Where I have took them up : Shall Rome thus must I piece it out, • Shall Rome stand under one man's awe? what! Rome ? “ My ancestors did from the streets of Rome « The Tarquin drive, when he was call'd a King." Speak, strike, redress, am I entreated then To speak, and strike ? O Rome! I make thee promise, If the redress will follow, thou receiv'it Thy full petition at the hand of Brutus !
[knocks within. Bru. 'Tis good. Go to the gate; fome body knocks:
[Exit Lucius. Since Cafus first did whet me against Cæfar, I have not slept Between the acting of a dreadful thing, And the first motion, all the interim is Like a phantasma, or a hideous dream: The Genius, and the mortal instruments Are then in council; and the state of man, Like to a little Kingdom, suffers then The nature of an insurrection, :
Luc. Sir, 'tis your brother Caffius at the door, . (7) Sir, March is wasted fifteen days.] The Editors are fightly miltaken: It was wasted but 14 Days; this was the Dawn of the 15th, when the Boy makes his Report. 3