William Shakespeare: Julius Caesar, Act V, Scene V
Enter Brutus, Dardanius, Clitus, Strato, and Volumnius
Why, this, Volumnius: The ghost of Caesar hath appear'd to me Two several times by night; at Sardis once, And, this last night, here in Philippi fields: I know my hour is come.
Nay, I am sure it is, Volumnius. Thou seest the world, Volumnius, how it goes; Our enemies have beat us to the pit:
It is more worthy to leap in ourselves, Than tarry till they push us. Good Volumnius, Thou know'st that we two went to school together: Even for that our love of old, I prithee, Hold thou my sword-hilts, whilst I run on it.
Farewell to you; and you; and you, Volumnius. Strato, thou hast been all this while asleep; Farewell to thee too, Strato. Countrymen, My heart doth joy that yet in all my life I found no man but he was true to me. I shall have glory by this losing day More than Octavius and Mark Antony By this vile conquest shall attain unto. So fare you well at once; for Brutus' tongue Hath almost ended his life's history: Night hangs upon mine eyes; my bones would rest, That have but labour'd to attain this hour.
Alarum. Cry within, 'Fly, fly, fly!'
Hence! I will follow.
Exeunt Clitus, Dardanius, and Volumnius
I prithee, Strato, stay thou by thy lord: Thou art a fellow of a good respect; Thy life hath had some smatch of honour in it: Hold then my sword, and turn away thy face, While I do run upon it. Wilt thou, Strato?
Farewell, good Strato.
Runs on his sword
Caesar, now be still: I kill'd not thee with half so good a will. [Dies]
Alarum. Retreat. Enter Octavius, Antony, Messala, Lucilius, and the army
Free from the bondage you are in, Messala: The conquerors can but make a fire of him; For Brutus only overcame himself, And no man else hath honour by his death.
So Brutus should be found. I thank thee, Brutus, That thou hast proved Lucilius' saying true.
This was the noblest Roman of them all: All the conspirators save only he Did that they did in envy of great Caesar; He only, in a general honest thought And common good to all, made one of them. His life was gentle, and the elements So mix'd in him that Nature might stand up And say to all the world 'This was a man!'
According to his virtue let us use him, With all respect and rites of burial. Within my tent his bones to-night shall lie, Most like a soldier, order'd honourably. So call the field to rest; and let's away, To part the glories of this happy day.