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William Shakespeare

Mark Antony's Oration at the Funeral of Caesar

Friends, Romans, Countrymen, lend me your ears:

I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him.

The evil that men do lives after them:

The good is oft interréd with their bones.

So let it be with Caesar. The noble Brutus

Hath told you Caesar was ambitious:

If it were so, it was a grievous fault,

And grievously hath Caesar answered it.

Here, under leave of Brutus and the rest—

For Brutus is an honorable man,

So are they all, all honorable men—

Come I to speak in Caesar's funeral.

He was my friend, faithful and just to me;

But Brutus says, he was ambitious,

And Brutus is an honorable man.

He hath brought many captives home to Rome,

Whose ransoms did the general coffers fill:

Did this in Caesar seem ambitious?

When that the poor have cried, Caesar hath wept:

Ambition should be made of sterner stuff.

Yet Brutus says, he was ambitious,

And Brutus is an honorable man.

You all did see, that on the Lupercal,

I thrice presented him a kingly crown,

Which he did thrice refuse. Was this ambition?

Yet Brutus says, he was ambitious,

And sure he is an honorable man.

I speak not to disprove what Brutus spoke,

But here I am, to speak what I do know;

You all did love him once, not without cause,

What cause withholds you, then, to mourn for him?—

O judgment! Thou art fled to brutish beasts,

And men have lost their reason.—Bear with me:

My heart is in the coffin there with Caesar,

And I must pause till it come back to me.