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The Tragedy of Antony and Cleopatra

The Tragedy of Antony and Cleopatra

  

by William Shakespeare

 Table of Contents

The Tragedy of Antony and Cleopatra Love Quotes

How we cite our quotes: Citations follow this format: (Act.Scene.Line). Line numbers correspond to the Riverside edition.

Quote #1

CLEOPATRA
If it be love indeed, tell me how much.
ANTONY
There's beggary in the love that can be reckoned.
CLEOPATRA
I'll set a born how far to be beloved.
ANTONY
Then must thou needs find out new heaven, new
Earth. (1.1.15-19)

Our introduction to Antony and Cleopatra sets the stage for the theme of love in the play: he is earnest in trying to prove his love for her; she is slightly cruel and flippant with him. Their positions will flip often, but likely one will be in love while the other is feeling murderous, and vice versa. They constantly need each other’s affirmation (to be sure they love) and scorn (to be sure no one gets too comfortable).

Quote #2

CHARMIAN
Madam, methinks, if you did love him dearly,
You do not hold the method to enforce
The like from him.
CLEOPATRA
What should I do I do not?
CHARMIAN
In each thing give him way; cross him in nothing.
CLEOPATRA
Thou teachest like a fool: the way to lose him. (1.3.7-12)

Charmian advises Cleopatra not to play hard-to-get. Cleopatra sees that in her version of love, the most important thing is to never seem willing to give in. Playing powerful and hard-to-get is the best way to ensure Antony will still love herit seems it’s her power and tempestuousness that keep him interested in her.

Quote #3

CLEOPATRA
Courteous lord, one word.
Sir, you and I must part, but that's not it;
Sir, you and I have loved, but there's not it;
That you know well. Something it is I would—
O, my oblivion is a very Antony,
And I am all forgotten. (1.3.105-110)

Sometimes love steals our words from us. It seems the nature of being in love is to be driven to distraction, even for the best of us.

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