Plutarch and Shakespeare Compared

The Life of Marcus Antonius Antony and Cleopatra
Only a few had known of Antony's flight; and those who were told of it could not at first give any belief to so incredible a thing as that a general who had nineteen entire legions and twelve thousand horse upon the seashore, could abandon all and fly away; and he, above all, who had so often experienced both good and evil fortune, and had in a thousand wars and battles been inured to changes. [MARK ANTONY]
Our nineteen legions thou shalt hold by land,
And our twelve thousand horse. We'll to our ship



Plutarch tells us of Antony's strength after the sea battle has been lost, and Cleopatra fled. Shakespeare includes this information in the passage where Antony discusses the possiblity of a battle at sea.
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