« ПретходнаНастави »
while the Long or Historic Time-scheme satisfies the requirements of the analytical reason; but, needless to say, this curious phenomenon is noticeable only in the study, never in the theatre. (Cf. 'Shakespeare's Legerdemain with Time in Julius Cæsar,' Poet Lore, XI, 1899.)
II. i. 250. humour. There were supposed to be four fundamental 'humours' or fluids (from the Latin 'humor,' liquid) in the human body, viz., blood, phlegm, yellow bile, and black bile; and an overproportion of one of these elements in the system made the disposition predominantly sanguine, phlegmatic, choleric, or melancholy, respectively. So, to the medieval and renaissance mind, 'humour' might mean literally 'moisture,' as in line 262; or it might account for mental or physical disorder, as in the present line; or it might refer to the more trivial temperamental eccentricity resulting from the fundamental derangement, as in II. ii. 56.
II. ii. 89. For tinctures, stains, relics, and cognizance. The generally accepted interpretation explains these terms in the very spirit of Calpurnia's dream, i.e., as the appropriate concomitants of martyrdom; but surely nothing could be further from Cæsar's desire or Decius' intention. Consequently, the gloss attempts to give meanings more in keeping with the manifest purpose of Decius as shown in the rest of his speech, and with the obvious requirements of the situation: i.e., Cæsar's blood is to provide metaphorical living blessings, rather than literal physical souvenirs of death.
II. ii. 128. That every 'like' is not 'the same.' The heart of Brutus grieves to realize that specious resemblance is not genuine identity; that appearances (of friendship, as in the amicable ceremony of taking wine together) are deceptive; that the conspirators, who seem like friends' (line 127), are so far from
being truly Cæsar's friends that they are on the very point of putting him to death.
III. i. S. d. Before the Capitol. In the original texts there is no stage direction in this scene before "They stab Cæsar,' at line 76, other than the opening direction: 'Flourish. Enter Cæsar, Brutus,' and the rest. Yet lines 11, 12 show that the action takes place outdoors; while lines 31, 79, 115, 119, etc., as well as the familiar tradition and all pictorial representations, show that the murder takes place indoors. Of course, there was no difficulty here on the Elizabethan stage: the action of the first 12 lines would take place on the fore-stage, and then Cæsar would withdraw and seat himself on the dais or inner stage at the rear, with the Senators grouped about him and the approaching conspirators between him and the audience. Except for the standardization of the text established by the almost unbroken succession of editors who have left this dilemma unamended, there would seem to be no reason why the procedure followed in the precisely similar dilemma in IV. ii and iii should not be adopted here: there the action outside Brutus' tent is assigned to a brief Scene Two, while the action inside the tent is very properly assigned to a long separate scene, Scene Three. It must be remembered that all the Scene-divisions in this play have had to be determined by modern editors, there being nothing but Act-divisions in the Folios after the initial 'Scana Prima.'
Capitol. Shakespeare placed the killing of Cæsar in the Capitol on account of the established popular and literary tradition to that effect; cf., e.g., Chaucer, The Monkes Tale, 713-718, and Hamlet, III. ii. 109112. In reality Cæsar was assassinated in the Curia Pompeiana, a great hall adjoining the portico of Pompey's theatre (cf. note on I. iii. 126). This Curia
was used for meetings of the Senate and was destroyed in the grief and rage over Cæsar's death, but the colossal statue of Pompey which it had contained (cf. line 115) was saved.
III. i. 47, 48. Know, Cæsar doth not wrong. Ben Jonson quoted in his Discoveries, first printed in 1641. an alternative version of this line: 'Cæsar did never wrong but with just cause.' Jonson ridiculed this sentence as an 'Irish bull'-unjustly: for 'wrong' means not only 'error, mistake,' but also 'harm, injury' (as in line 242 in this very scene). Some few editors have incorporated Jonson's version of this line in the text, following it up with 'Nor without cause will he be satisfied,' on the hypothesis that Jonson was quoting either an early Quarto version which has since disappeared, or at least the acting version current in Shakespeare's lifetime which was unwarrantably changed by the editors of the First Folio.
III. i. 59. If I could pray to move, prayers would 'If I were as weak as you are, and in the position of looking up to someone more powerful than myself and entreating him to change his mind, why then I should perhaps be weak enough likewise to change my own mind on account of mere empty entreaties; but happily I am as far above one alternative as the other, for,' etc.
III. i. 174. This line has given the commentators much trouble, and many emendations have been proposed for the puzzling phrase 'in strength of malice'such as 'exempt from malice,' 'in strength of amity,' etc. If the Folio reading is to be preserved unchanged, the word 'malice' must clearly be emptied of all its usual meaning, for Brutus could never have applied such a term to any action by the conspirators after his overwhelming repudiation of 'envy' and similar emotions in II. i. 162-183; and the word
'malice,' free from its usual sinister implications, apparently does occur elsewhere in Shakespeare (e.g., Macbeth, III. ii. 14, 25, and perhaps John, II. i. 251), and is recognized by the Oxford Dictionary, in the sense of 'power, capacity.' Cf. the note, in this edition, on Macbeth, III. ii. 14. But even so, that interpretation gives a very inferior meaning to the phrase now under discussion, little better than tautology and not very appropriate to the spirit of the context. The present editor therefore ventures to suggest as an emendation here ‘instranged' (of the use of which N. E. D. gives an example dated 1586), a variant of 'enstranged' (N. E. D.: Caxton, 1483), meaning 'estranged, far removed, deprived,' etc. This rare word, 'instranged,' unfamiliar to the compositor's eye or ear, would be very naturally sophisticated into 'in strength,' while it supplies exactly the sense needed in the passage; viz., 'Our arms free from malice, and our hearts of brothers' temper, do receive you in,' etc.
III. i. 273. dogs of war. Most editors explain the 'dogs' literally and specifically as 'fire, sword, and famine,' on the strength of Henry V, I. Prologue 8. But why should not the phrase be merely a general poetic metaphor on the analogy of 'dove of peace'designed to suggest all the nameless horrors that result when the destructive energies of ruthless warfare are unpent?
III. ii. 178. That day he overcame the Nervii. It was in the summer of 57 B. C. that this most warlike of Belgic tribes was defeated, in the battle of the Sambre. The Nervii made a successful surprise attack, and only Cæsar's personal bravery saved the day. Cf. De Bello Gallico, II. 15-28. This victory is prominently featured in North's Plutarch (see Appendix A), and was celebrated at Rome with unprecedented thanksgivings and rejoicings.
III. ii. 247. drachmas. These were Greek silver coins, of a value impossible to compute accurately in terms of modern currency. In purchasing power the bequest would perhaps be equivalent to-day to something over $100 per citizen.
III. ii. 254. On this side Tiber. The gardens lay across the Tiber from the Forum in which Antony was speaking, but 'on this side' from the French and English standpoint of Amyot and North-whom Shakespeare too literally follows.
IV. i. 37. one that feeds On objects, arts, and imitations Which, out of use and stal'd by other men, Begin his fashion. The Folio text here is at least as satisfactory as any emendation, if the punctuation makes it evident that the disputed 'objects, arts, and imitations' are immediately defined by the restrictive relative clause that follows. Despite his unbridled passions, Antony is eminently a practical politician, as witness the form of Cassius' bribe offered to him after Brutus' futile expression of idealism (III. i. 177, 178); and witness also his masterly manipulation of the conspirators and the mob, in III. i and III. ii. He scorns Lepidus then for so lacking personality, initiative, shrewdness, and judgment that he takes even the superficial embellishments of life at second hand, unable to distinguish between the true values and the sham. (Staunton's emendation would substitute 'abjects,' meaning 'discarded scraps,' and 'orts,' meaning 'leavings.')
IV. i. 48, 49. we are at the stake, And bay'd about with many enemies. This refers to the very popular but very brutal Elizabethan amusement of bearbaiting, wherein the bear was chained to a stake in the center of the 'bear-garden' or arena (the bestknown one was situated close by the Globe Theatre) and attacked by a number of dogs.