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Have patience, gentle friends, I must not read it;
Read the will, we will hear it, Antony; &c.
you be patient? will you stay a while?
I have o'erfhot myself, to tell you of it.
I fear, I wrong the honourable men,
Whofe daggers have ftabb'd Cæfar. I do fear it,
You will compel me then to read the will?
3 PLEBEIA N.
You fhall have leave.
you have tears, prepare to shed them now.
You all do know this mantle; I remember
The first time ever Cæfar put it on,
'Twas on a fummer's evening in his tent,
Look! in this place, ran Caffius' dagger through;
As rufhing out of doors, to be refolv'd,
For Brutus, as you know, was Cæsar's angel,
For when the noble Cæfar faw him ftab,
Ingratitude, more strong than traitor's arms,
Quite vanquifh'd him; then burst his mighty heart;
And, in his mantle muffling up his face,
Even at the bafe of Pompey's ftatue,
Which all the while ran blood, great Cæfar fell.
O what a fall was there, my countrymen !
Kind fouls! what, weep you when you but behold
I PLEBEIA N.
O piteous fpectacle !
Good friends, fweet friends, let me not ftir you up
They, that have done this deed, are honourable.
What private griefs they have, alas! I know not, That made them do it; they are wife and honourable; And will, no doubt, with reasons answer you.
I come not, friends, to fteal away your hearts;
I am no orator, as Brutus is,
But, as you know me all, a plain blunt man,
That love my friend; and that they know full well,
That give me public leave to speak of him
I tell you that which you yourselves do know;
And bid them fpeak for me. But were I Brutus,
Why, friends, you go to do you know not what.
Moft true, the will.-Let's ftay, and hear the wilk.
Here is the will, and under Cæfar's feal.
To ev'ry Roman citizen he gives,
To ev'ry fev'ral man, fev'nty-five drachma's.
2 PLEBEIA N.
Moft noble Cæfar!
Moreover, he hath left you all his walks,
His private arbours, and new-planted orchards,
And to your heirs for ever; common pleasures,
Is there any oration extant in which the topics are more fkilfully felected for the minds and temper of the perfons to whom it is fpoken? Does it not by the most gentle gradations arrive at the point to which it was directed? Antony first fooths his audience by affuring them, that Cæfar loved the poor, and fympathized with their dif treffes by reminding them, that he had rejected the proffered crown, he removes, from their fhallow understandings, all apprehenfion of that ambition in him which the conspirators alledged as the motive of their act: after these managements he proceeds further, and tells them of the will. There is a delicate touch in the obfervation, that Cæfar received the mortal wound in the very mantle he wore the day in which he had gained a victory over the Nervii, the fiercest