Original Text

Modern Text

CLEOPATRA

                                       That head, my lord?

CLEOPATRA

Your head, my lord?

ANTONY

20 (to the AMBASSADOR ) To him again. Tell him he wears the rose
Of youth upon him, from which the world should note
Something particular. His coin, ships, legions,
May be a coward’s, whose ministers would prevail
Under the service of a child as soon
25As i’ th’ command of Caesar. I dare him therefore
To lay his gay caparisons apart
And answer me declined, sword against sword,
Ourselves alone. I’ll write it. Follow me.

ANTONY

(to the AMBASSADOR ) Go back to him. Tell him that his cheeks still bear the pink flush of youth, and that the world expects to see something remarkable from him. His treasure, his navy, and his armies might belong to a coward, and his ministers might be able to succeed just as well on behalf of a child as under the command of Caesar. Therefore, I dare him to lay aside his fancy trappings and meet this old man in single combat, sword against sword, just the two of us. I’ll write the challenge. Follow me.
Exeunt ANTONY and AMBASSADOR
ANTONY and the AMBASSADOR exit.

ENOBARBUS

(aside) Yes, like enough, high-battled Caesar will
30Unstate his happiness and be staged to th’ show
Against a sworder! I see men’s judgments are
A parcel of their fortunes, and things outward
Do draw the inward quality after them
To suffer all alike. That he should dream,
35Knowing all measures, the full Caesar will
Answer his emptiness! Caesar, thou hast subdued
His judgment too.

ENOBARBUS

(aside) Oh, that’s likely! Caesar, the great commander of troops, will surely risk all he has gained in order to fight this gladiator in the public square! I see that men’s judgments are tied to their fortunes, and that external factors influence a man’s internal qualities, making everything suffer. How could Antony, knowing how luck stood on either side, still imagine that Caesar would respond to his nonsense! Caesar, you’ve conquered his judgment too.
Enter a SERVANT
A SERVANT enters.

SERVANT

                                      A messenger from Caesar.

SERVANT

A messenger has arrived from Caesar.

CLEOPATRA

What, no more ceremony? See, my women,
Against the blown rose may they stop their nose,
40That kneeled unto the buds.—Admit him, sir.

CLEOPATRA

With no more ceremony than that? See, ladies, how they scorn me now. They pinch their noses to avoid smelling the dying rose whose scent, as a bud, they happily inhaled. Show him in, sir.