Plutarch and Shakespeare Compared

The Life of Marcus Antonius Antony and Cleopatra
Here it is related that a foot captain, one that had fought often under Antony, and had his body all mangled with wounds, exclaimed, "O my general, what have our wounds and swords done to displease you, that you should give your confidence to rotten timbers? Let Egyptians and Phoenicians contend at sea, give us the land, where we know well how to die upon the spot or gain the victory." To which he answered nothing, but, by his look and motion of his hand seeming to bid him be of good courage, passed forwards, having already, it would seem, no very sure hopes[.] [MARK ANTONY]
Enter a Soldier
How now, worthy soldier?
Soldier
O noble emperor, do not fight by sea;
Trust not to rotten planks: do you misdoubt
This sword and these my wounds? Let the Egyptians
And the Phoenicians go a-ducking; we
Have used to conquer, standing on the earth,
And fighting foot to foot.
MARK ANTONY
Well, well: away!

III.vii.60-66


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