The Tragedy of Julius Caesar

by William Shakespeare

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Act II - Scene IV Another Part of the Same Street, Before the House of Brutus

Enter Portia and Lucius.

  PORTIA. I prithee, boy, run to the Senate House;
    Stay not to answer me, but get thee gone.
    Why dost thou stay?
  LUCIUS. To know my errand, madam.
  PORTIA. I would have had thee there, and here again,
    Ere I can tell thee what thou shouldst do there.
    O constancy, be strong upon my side!
    Set a huge mountain 'tween my heart and tongue!
    I have a man's mind, but a woman's might.
    How hard it is for women to keep counsel!
    Art thou here yet?
  LUCIUS. Madam, what should I do?
    Run to the Capitol, and nothing else?
    And so return to you, and nothing else?
  PORTIA. Yes, bring me word, boy, if thy lord look well,
    For he went sickly forth; and take good note
    What Caesar doth, what suitors press to him.
    Hark, boy, what noise is that?
  LUCIUS. I hear none, madam.
  PORTIA. Prithee, listen well.
    I heard a bustling rumor like a fray,
    And the wind brings it from the Capitol.
  LUCIUS. Sooth, madam, I hear nothing.
Enter the Soothsayer.

  PORTIA. Come hither, fellow;
    Which way hast thou been?
  SOOTHSAYER. At mine own house, good lady.
  PORTIA. What is't o'clock?
  SOOTHSAYER. About the ninth hour, lady.
  PORTIA. Is Caesar yet gone to the Capitol?
  SOOTHSAYER. Madam, not yet. I go to take my stand
    To see him pass on to the Capitol.
  PORTIA. Thou hast some suit to Caesar, hast thou not?
  SOOTHSAYER. That I have, lady. If it will please Caesar
    To be so good to Caesar as to hear me,
    I shall beseech him to befriend himself.
  PORTIA. Why, know'st thou any harm's intended towards him?
  SOOTHSAYER. None that I know will be, much that I fear may chance.
    Good morrow to you. Here the street is narrow,
    The throng that follows Caesar at the heels,
    Of senators, of praetors, common suitors,
    Will crowd a feeble man almost to death.
    I'll get me to a place more void and there
    Speak to great Caesar as he comes along. Exit.
  PORTIA. I must go in. Ay me, how weak a thing
    The heart of woman is! O Brutus,
    The heavens speed thee in thine enterprise!
    Sure, the boy heard me. Brutus hath a suit
    That Caesar will not grant. O, I grow faint.
    Run, Lucius, and commend me to my lord;
    Say I am merry. Come to me again,
    And bring me word what he doth say to thee.
Exeunt severally.

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