Julius Caesar

by: William Shakespeare

Act 2 Scene 2

page Act 2 Scene 2 Page 1

Original Text

Modern Text

Thunder and lightning Enter Julius CAESAR in his nightgown
Thunder and lightning. CAESAR enters in his nightgown.

CAESAR

Nor heaven nor earth have been at peace tonight.
Thrice hath Calphurnia in her sleep cried out,
“Help, ho! They murder Caesar!”—Who’s within?

CAESAR

Neither the sky nor the earth have been quiet tonight. Calphurnia cried out three times in her sleep, “Help, someone! They’re murdering Caesar!” Who’s there?
Enter a SERVANT
A SERVANT enters.

SERVANT

My lord.

SERVANT

My lord?

CAESAR

5Go bid the priests do present sacrifice
And bring me their opinions of success.

CAESAR

Go tell the priests to perform a sacrifice immediately, and bring me their interpretation of the results.

SERVANT

I will, my lord.

SERVANT

I will, my lord.
Exit SERVANT
The SERVANT exits.
Enter CALPHURNIA
CALPHURNIA enters.

CALPHURNIA

What mean you, Caesar? Think you to walk forth?
You shall not stir out of your house today.

CALPHURNIA

What are you doing, Caesar? Are you planning to go out? You’re not leaving the house today.

CAESAR

10Caesar shall forth. The things that threatened me
Ne'er looked but on my back. When they shall see
The face of Caesar, they are vanishèd.

CAESAR

I will go out. The things that threaten me have only seen my back. When they see the face of Caesar, they will vanish.

CALPHURNIA

Caesar, I never stood on ceremonies,
Yet now they fright me. There is one within,
15Besides the things that we have heard and seen,
Recounts most horrid sights seen by the watch.
A lioness hath whelpèd in the streets,
And graves have yawned and yielded up their dead.

CALPHURNIA

Caesar, I never believed in omens, but now they frighten me. A servant told me the night-watchmen saw horrid sights too, but different ones from what we heard and saw. A lioness gave birth in the streets, and graves cracked open and thrust out their dead.