Julius Caesar :   Act 1, Scene 1


      
      Enter FLAVIUS, MARULLUS, and certain     
      Commoners over the stage.   over the stage from opposite sides of the
      stage >>>
      FLAVIUS   
      Hence! home, you idle creatures get you home:   
      Is this a holiday? what! know you not,   
      Being mechanical, you ought not walk   mechanical of the class of skilled workers,
      Upon a labouring day without the sign   such as carpenters and cobblers
1.1.5      Of your profession? Speak, what trade art thou?   the sign emblems, such as the carpenter's
      ruler and leather apron
      First Commoner   
      Why, sir, a carpenter.   
      
      MARULLUS   
      Where is thy leather apron and thy rule?   rule ruler
      What dost thou with thy best apparel on?   
      You, sir, what trade are you?   
      
      Second Commoner   
1.1.10      Truly, sir, in respect of a fine workman, I am but,   in respect of a fine workman compared to a
      as you would say, a cobbler.   skillful workman | cobbler clumsy bungler
      (But Second Commoner is making a joke; he
      MARULLUS   really is a cobbler, a repairer of shoes.)
      But what trade art thou? Answer me directly.   directly immediately, plainly
      
      Second Commoner   
      A trade, sir, that, I hope, I may use with a safe con-   
      science; which is, indeed, sir, a mender of bad soles.   soles (With a pun on "souls." Marullus doesn't
      get the joke; he only hears "souls.")
      MARULLUS   
1.1.15      What trade, thou knave? thou naughty knave, what trade?   naughty good-for-nothing
      
      Second Commoner   
      Nay, I beseech you, sir, be not out with me: yet,   out with me angry with me
      if you be out, sir, I can mend you.   be out i.e., be coming out of your shoes,
      because they have holes
      MARULLUS   
      What meanest thou by that? Mend me, thou saucy fellow?   
      
      Second Commoner   
      Why, sir, cobble you.   cobble you mend your shoes (But he may be
      implying that Marullus's soul is in such bad
      FLAVIUS   shape that it can only be cobbled, not mended.)
1.1.20      Thou art a cobbler, art thou?   
      
      Second Commoner   
      Truly, sir, all that I live by is with the awl: I   the awl a cobbler's tool >>>
      meddle with no tradesman's matters, nor women's   
      matters, but withal I am, indeed, sir, a surgeon   withal nevertheless (With a pun on "with awl.")
      to old shoes; when they are in great danger, I   
1.1.25      recover them. As proper men as ever trod upon   recover cure, re-cover (He's still punning.)
      neat's leather have gone upon my handiwork.   proper handsome, admired
      neat's leather cowhide
      FLAVIUS   
      But wherefore art not in thy shop today?   
      Why dost thou lead these men about the streets?   
      
      Second Commoner   
      Truly, sir, to wear out their shoes, to get myself   
1.1.30      into more work. But, indeed, sir, we make holiday,   
      to see Caesar and to rejoice in his triumph.   triumph triumphal procession >>>
      
      MARULLUS   
      Wherefore rejoice? What conquest brings he home?   
      What tributaries follow him to Rome,   tributaries foreign princes who will pay
      To grace in captive bonds his chariot-wheels?   ransom to Rome
1.1.35      You blocks, you stones, you worse than senseless things!   
      O you hard hearts, you cruel men of Rome,   
      Knew you not Pompey? Many a time and oft   Pompey former partner in power with Caesar >>>
      Have you climb'd up to walls and battlements,   chimney-tops Shakespeare's Rome looks like
      To towers and windows, yea, to chimney-tops,   Shakespeare's London. The Romans had no
1.1.40      Your infants in your arms, and there have sat   chimneys.
      The livelong day, with patient expectation,   
      To see great Pompey pass the streets of Rome:   
      And when you saw his chariot but appear,   
      Have you not made an universal shout,   
1.1.45      That Tiber trembled underneath her banks,   Tiber The great river that flows through Rome.
      To hear the replication of your sounds   replication echo
      Made in her concave shores?   
      And do you now put on your best attire?   
      And do you now cull out a holiday?   cull out choose (the most worthless)
1.1.50      And do you now strew flowers in his way   his i.e., Caesar's
      That comes in triumph over Pompey's blood?   Pompey's blood Pompey's kin (specifically
      Be gone!   his sons, defeated by Caesar)
      Run to your houses, fall upon your knees,   
      Pray to the gods to intermit the plague   intermit withhold | the plague a terrible
1.1.55      That needs must light on this ingratitude.   disease, thought of as divine punishment
      light on come down upon
      FLAVIUS   
      Go, go, good countrymen, and, for this fault,   
      Assemble all the poor men of your sort;   
      Draw them to Tiber banks, and weep your tears   
      Into the channel, till the lowest stream   
1.1.60      Do kiss the most exalted shores of all.   the most exalted shores of all the highest
      banks of the Tiber
      Exeunt all the Commoners.     
      
      See whe'er their basest metal be not moved;   whe'er whether | metal nature
      They vanish tongue-tied in their guiltiness.   
      Go you down that way towards the Capitol;   Capitol i.e., the Capitoline hill >>>
      This way will I. Disrobe the images,   images statues (of Caesar)
1.1.65      If you do find them deck'd with ceremonies.   ceremonies Crowns and other royal regalia.
      (As a propaganda ploy, Caesar's supporters had
      MARULLUS    set up statues of him in royal regalia.)
      May we do so?   
      You know it is the feast of Lupercal.   feast of Lupercal an ancient feast of
      purification and fertility >>>
      FLAVIUS   
      It is no matter; let no images   
      Be hung with Caesar's trophies. I'll about,   Caesar's trophies decorations put up in honor
1.1.70      And drive away the vulgar from the streets:   of Caesar | the vulgar commoners
      So do you too, where you perceive them thick.   
      These growing feathers pluck'd from Caesar's wing   
      Will make him fly an ordinary pitch,   pitch height (A falcon's pitch is the high point
      Who else would soar above the view of men   in its flight; from its pitch the falcon swoops
1.1.75      And keep us all in servile fearfulness.   down on its prey.)
      
      Exeunt     
      






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