12 de febrero de 2009

"ANTHONY and CLEOPATRA" (Act II scene 2) , Shakespeare

ENOBARBUS
I will tell you.
The barge she sat in, like a burnish'd throne,
Burn'd on the water: the poop was beaten gold;
Purple the sails, and so perfumed that
The winds were love-sick with them; the oars were silver,
Which to the tune of flutes kept stroke, and made
The water which they beat to follow faster,
As amorous of their strokes. For her own person,
It beggar'd all description: she did lie
In her pavilion--cloth-of-gold of tissue--
O'er-picturing that Venus where we see
The fancy outwork nature: on each side her
Stood pretty dimpled boys, like smiling Cupids,
With divers-colour'd fans, whose wind did seem
To glow the delicate cheeks which they did cool,
And what they undid did.

12 comentarios:

Carmen dijo...

Well, who wouldn´t like to meet her?? particularly if you are powerful and she needs you???!!!!!
Poor Anthony..

++The Byronic Shadow++ dijo...

What is Enobarbus’s opinion of Cleopatra?
How does he regard her beauty and
charms?
Is he fearful of her power over
Antony?

María 5ºB dijo...

Can it be known only by reading this extract? I can´t answer now for not having read the play! I only can feel Cleopatra´s huge beauty, according to Enobarbus´s perception, as she is compared to Venus, being handsomer than the goddess, and as the beautiful scene that is described, full of luxury and nice feelings (wind in love with sails, pretty dimpled boys, like smiling Cupids...). It is pleasant to imagine the image, isn´t it?

Carmen dijo...

Byronic Shadow, hello, who are you??? What do you think yourself of what Enobarbus feels for Cleopatra? It is quite clear that he ADMIRES her. Does he contemplate the possibility of ever getting her??? Of course not!!! She wouldn´t be interested in him, would she? She is after power and that is Anthony.
Marís, of course you can understand what he feels for her? If any of your friends described anyone like this waht would you say?

Paloma dijo...

In my opinion Ahenobarbus is more struck by the way in which Cleopatra makes her appearance than for the woman herself. I tell this because he spent more time describing everything around her than describing her. Of course he compares her with Venus, but he speaks about her dress, the pavilion, the boys on each her sides, etc. But he doesn’t tell us nothing about how does she looks like: her hue, features, etc. I mean he is amazed by her appearing like a goddess. Had she appeared like a normal woman, I mean, beautiful but dressed with simplicity and not surrounded by that oriental pomp and luxury, in all likelihood, he wouldn’t have found her like Venus, he wouldn’t have been so astonished. Enobarbus compares her with a picture of Venus, not with Venus herself. He was a Roman and a soldier, the encounter took place in 41 B.C. when the Roman Republic was alive and life in Rome was still simple and Romans were austere, Enobarbus must have been very impressed by such an entrance. By the way this Gnaeus Domitius Ahenobarbus (or Enobarbus) was Nero’s Great-grandfather, is it not paradoxical?

María dijo...

Well Carmen, it is now that I can understand Enobarbus´ fascination and excitement, but not before... Sometimes Shakespeare gets to create an image of a person without describing it explicitly. By saying not too much, he means everything! I´ve liked the extract very much. Now that we are finishing Jane Eyre, will we analyze extracts like those (Eliot´s, Shakespeare´s, Keat´s...)?? It would be fantastic!

Carmen dijo...

María, I´m afraid some of you want to finish the Gold and have said so on line!!! in our Jane Eyre thread!!!!
What interests me of Cleopatra is her capacity to surrender anything, her body, her mind,, her soul(???), to obtain what she thought could be good for her people and her country. Being a person brought up to restrain myself in many ways, I find it amazing that some people can do anything and take decisions which involve surrendering self,persons, and beliefs! This is often the case with politicians and monarchs, and it is not easy, pleasant perhaps but not easy.

Paloma dijo...

Carmen I’m afraid I’ve missed some comment because I haven’t read anything speaking about the Gold. I thought I had been the only one to speak about it. I suppose if someone is so eager to finish the book it must be for him having fear of the exam. I remember you told us last year, and reminded us yesterday, that the most important thing is the rephrasing. So I’ve done all the rephrasing in the book very carefully and the rest I‘m doing it when I have time. I agree with you Maria, we have learnt really very much throughout these two years with Carmen. However I’m not sure I’m should have learnt as much as you, mainly as far as poetry is concerned. I still experience difficulties understanding it.

María dijo...

The important thing is to know both what we want and what to do to get it. Besides, to act according to the legality and even better, thinking of people around you, should be a must. It is also important to know who you are and what it is expected you to do. That´s integrity, and being so ALWAYS is so difficult.
Carmen, in some way you are like Cleopatra, because the capacity you see in her I also see in you. You only have to change the Egyptian people for your students.
Paloma, I also find many difficulties!! I agree with Carmen that there is no understanding Eliot´s poetry, which doesn´t depend on words, but on the meaning itself. However, as you as me, we are now able to read Shakespeare!!! Is it not unbelievable?? I recall my second year, reading "Alissa goes to New Yourk" (10 pages) and writing summaries of 100 words, which took me hours! And now, I´m writing almost every day on the blogs, if not perfectly (at all), fluently at least!

Paloma dijo...

You are quite right, Maria. I’m also reminding mi first and second years in That’s English. I didn’t know anything and I was very frightened. I used to study more than 8 hours a day, every day, and my teacher and mates used to laugh at me. It was a difficult time; I didn’t understand anything I listened to. My husband was doing module 7 and I used to watch the TV program with him, for me, being able to get to understand that one day was a dream. Today mu husband asks me to do things in English for him and when we travel it’s me who speak. Now I live in a different world, I’ve got my dream and, even more, I’ve gone beyond. I’m very happy. Not only am I able to read Shakespeare in English, although, I must recognice, with some difficulties, I also can read 19th century novels without any problem, and that is a great success. Thank you Carmen -Cleopatra, you have done it possible.

María dijo...

You must be happy!
Wouldn´t we have to read some "Measure for measure" before going to the theatre??? Gold can wait, can´t it?

Anónimo dijo...

Your blog keeps getting better and better! Your older articles are not as good as newer ones you have a lot more creativity and originality now keep it up!

Wilkie Collins

Wilkie Collins