Study Guide

The Tragedy of Antony and Cleopatra Act III, Scene i

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Act III, Scene i

  • Now we’re in Syria, where Ventidius (the soldier Antony sent to fight at Parthia, remember?) has returned victorious from his earlier battle. Ventidius brings with him the body of the King of Parthia's son, Pacorus. He thinks of this as revenge for Marcus Crassus (one of the three in the original Roman triumvirate with Julius Caesar and the elder Pompey), who was killed by the Parthians.
  • Silius, another Roman, urges Ventidius to quickly go to Antony and tell of all the good deeds he’s performed, as surely Antony will reward and praise him.
  • Ventidius is a smart guy and realizes that by showing up Antony at battle, he will lose favor, not gain it.
  • To rise too quickly under powerful men makes you a threat, not an asset. Ventidius agrees he’ll write a letter to Antony, praising him for making their victory possible.
  • They all set off to meet Antony at his house in Athens.

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