Antony and Cleopatra

William Shakespeare
No Fear Act 2 Scene 1
No Fear Act 2 Scene 1 Page 2

Original Text

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MENAS

                                                              From Silvius, sir.

MENAS

From Silvius, sir.

POMPEY

He dreams. I know they are in Rome together
20Looking for Antony. But all the charms of love,
Salt Cleopatra, soften thy wanned lip!
Let witchcraft join with beauty, lust with both.
Tie up the libertine in a field of feasts,
Keep his brain fuming. Epicurean cooks,
25Sharpen with cloyless sauce his appetite,
That sleep and feeding may prorogue his honor
Even till a Lethe’d dulness—

POMPEY

He’s dreaming. I know they’re in Rome together, hoping for Antony to return. Lecherous Cleopatra, may all the charms of love soften those withered lips! Join your witchcraft with your beauty, and let Antony’s lust combine with both. Keep this libertine occupied with endless debauchery. Keep his brain drunk and his appetite unsatisfied, so that sleeping and eating make him drowsy and forgetful of his duties, like the

Lethe

mythical river of the underworld; to drink from it brought forgetfulness

Lethe
does.
Enter VARRIUS
VARRIUS enters.
                                                         How now, Varrius?
What’s the news, Varrius?

VARRIUS

This is most certain that I shall deliver:
Mark Antony is every hour in Rome
30Expected. Since he went from Egypt ’tis
A space for farther travel.

VARRIUS

This news is absolutely true: Mark Antony is expected to arrive in Rome at any hour now. In the time since he left Egypt, he could have traveled an even longer distance.

POMPEY

I could have given less matter
A better ear.—Menas, I did not think
This amorous surfeiter would have donned his helm
35For such a petty war. His soldiership
Is twice the other twain. But let us rear
The higher our opinion, that our stirring
Can from the lap of Egypt’s widow pluck
The ne’er lust-wearied Antony.

POMPEY

I would have listened to less important news with greater enthusiasm. Menas, I had no idea this amorous glutton would have put on his helmet for such an insignificant war. His military ability is double that of the other two. We must form a better opinion of ourselves if our uprising can pull the insatiable Antony’s attention away from that Egyptian widow.