"Julius Caesar" by William Shakespeare, Act III

Brutus is a trusted confidant of the Roman general Julius Caesar, but when he becomes convinced that Caesar's ambitions are a threat to the republic, he plots his friend's assassination. Read the full text here.

Here are links to our lists for the play: Act I, Act II, Act III, Act IV, Act V

Here are links to our lists for other plays by William Shakespeare: Romeo and Juliet, The Tempest, Hamlet, King Lear, Much Ado About Nothing, Twelfth Night, Measure for Measure, Othello, A Midsummer Night's Dream
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definitions & notes only words
  1. humble
    marked by meekness or modesty; not arrogant or prideful
    Trebonius doth desire you to o’er-read,
    At your best leisure, this his humble suit.
  2. suit
    a petition made to a person of superior status or rank
    Trebonius doth desire you to o’er-read,
    At your best leisure, this his humble suit.
  3. fare
    proceed, get along, or succeed
    Fare you well.
  4. puissant
    powerful
    Most high, most mighty, and most puissant Caesar,
    Metellus Cimber throws before thy seat
    An humble heart.
  5. fawn
    try to gain favor by cringing or flattering
    Thy brother by decree is banished:
    If thou dost bend, and pray, and fawn for him,
    I spurn thee like a cur out of my way.
  6. spurn
    reject with contempt
    Thy brother by decree is banished:
    If thou dost bend, and pray, and fawn for him,
    I spurn thee like a cur out of my way.
  7. cur
    an inferior dog or one of mixed breed
    Thy brother by decree is banished:
    If thou dost bend, and pray, and fawn for him,
    I spurn thee like a cur out of my way.
  8. firmament
    the sphere on which celestial bodies appear to be projected
    I could be well mov’d, if I were as you;
    If I could pray to move, prayers would move me:
    But I am constant as the northern star,
    Of whose true-fix’d and resting quality
    There is no fellow in the firmament.
  9. apprehensive
    in fear or dread of possible evil or harm
    So in the world; ’tis furnish’d well with men,
    And men are flesh and blood, and apprehensive;
    Yet in the number I do know but one
    That unassailable holds on his rank,
    Unshak’d of motion: and that I am he
  10. unassailable
    immune to attack; incapable of being tampered with
    So in the world; ’tis furnish’d well with men,
    And men are flesh and blood, and apprehensive;
    Yet in the number I do know but one
    That unassailable holds on his rank,
    Unshak’d of motion: and that I am he
  11. confounded
    perplexed by many conflicting situations or statements
    Here, quite confounded with this mutiny.
  12. mutiny
    open rebellion against constituted authority
    Here, quite confounded with this mutiny.
  13. lofty
    having or displaying great dignity or nobility
    How many ages hence
    Shall this our lofty scene be acted over
    In States unborn, and accents yet unknown!
  14. prostrate
    stretched out and lying at full length along the ground
    Thus did Mark Antony bid me fall down;
    And, being prostrate, thus he bade me say:
    Brutus is noble, wise, valiant, and honest;
    Caesar was mighty, bold, royal, and loving;
    Say I love Brutus and I honour him;
    Say I fear’d Caesar, honour’d him, and lov’d him.
  15. valiant
    having or showing heroism or courage
    Thus did Mark Antony bid me fall down;
    And, being prostrate, thus he bade me say:
    Brutus is noble, wise, valiant, and honest;
    Caesar was mighty, bold, royal, and loving;
    Say I love Brutus and I honour him;
    Say I fear’d Caesar, honour’d him, and lov’d him.
  16. misgiving
    uneasiness about the fitness of an action
    I wish we may: but yet have I a mind
    That fears him much; and my misgiving still
    Falls shrewdly to the purpose.
  17. apt
    naturally disposed toward
    Live a thousand years,
    I shall not find myself so apt to die.
  18. reverence
    a feeling of profound respect for someone or something
    For your part,
    To you our swords have leaden points, Mark Antony;
    Our arms in strength of malice, and our hearts
    Of brothers’ temper, do receive you in
    With all kind love, good thoughts, and reverence.
  19. render
    bestow
    Let each man render me his bloody hand.
  20. compact
    a signed written agreement between two or more parties
    I blame you not for praising Caesar so;
    But what compact mean you to have with us?
  21. meek
    evidencing little spirit or courage
    O, pardon me, thou bleeding piece of earth,
    That I am meek and gentle with these butchers.
  22. woe
    misery resulting from affliction
    Woe to the hand that shed this costly blood!
  23. strife
    bitter conflict; heated often violent dissension
    A curse shall light upon the limbs of men;
    Domestic fury and fierce civil strife
    Shall cumber all the parts of Italy
  24. havoc
    violent and needless disturbance
    And Caesar’s spirit, ranging for revenge,
    With Ate by his side come hot from Hell,
    Shall in these confines with a monarch’s voice
    Cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war,
    That this foul deed shall smell above the earth
    With carrion men, groaning for burial.
  25. oration
    an instance of formal speaking
    Yet stay awhile;
    Thou shalt not back till I have borne this corse
    Into the market-place: there shall I try,
    In my oration, how the people take
    The cruel issue of these bloody men;
    According to the which thou shalt discourse
    To young Octavius of the state of things.
  26. discourse
    talk at length and formally about a topic
    Yet stay awhile;
    Thou shalt not back till I have borne this corse
    Into the market-place: there shall I try,
    In my oration, how the people take
    The cruel issue of these bloody men;
    According to the which thou shalt discourse
    To young Octavius of the state of things.
  27. severally
    one at a time or in the order given
    I will hear Cassius; and compare their reasons,
    When severally we hear them rendered.
  28. rostrum
    a platform raised above the surrounding level
    Brutus goes into the rostrum.
  29. censure
    rebuke formally
    Censure me in your wisdom, and awake your senses, that you may the better judge.
  30. extenuate
    lessen or to try to lessen the seriousness or degree of
    The question of his death is enroll’d in the Capitol, his glory not extenuated, wherein he was worthy; nor his offences enforc’d, for which he suffered death.
  31. commonwealth
    a political system in which power lies in a body of citizens
    Here comes his body, mourned by Mark Antony, who, though he had no hand in his death, shall receive the benefit of his dying, a place in the commonwealth; as which of you shall not?
  32. inter
    place in a grave or tomb
    The evil that men do lives after them,
    The good is oft interred with their bones;
    So let it be with Caesar.
  33. grievous
    of great gravity or crucial import
    If it were so, it was a grievous fault,
    And grievously hath Caesar answer’d it.
  34. coffer
    a chest especially for storing valuables
    He hath brought many captives home to Rome,
    Whose ransoms did the general coffers fill:
    Did this in Caesar seem ambitious?
  35. brutish
    resembling a beast; showing lack of human sensibility
    O judgment, thou art fled to brutish beasts,
    And men have lost their reason.
  36. testament
    document declaring wishes regarding the disposal of property
    But here’s a parchment with the seal of Caesar,
    I found it in his closet; ’tis his will:
    Let but the commons hear this testament
  37. mantle
    a sleeveless garment like a cloak but shorter
    You all do know this mantle. I remember
    The first time ever Caesar put it on
  38. dint
    force or effort
    O, now you weep; and I perceive you feel
    The dint of pity.
  39. thither
    to or toward that place; away from the speaker
    And thither will I straight to visit him.
    He comes upon a wish. Fortune is merry,
    And in this mood will give us anything.
  40. firebrand
    someone who deliberately foments trouble
    Tear him, tear him! Come; brands, ho! firebrands. To Brutus’, to Cassius’; burn all.

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