Antony and Cleopatra

Shakespeare: the funny bits

Antony and Cleopatra is a great play, and it also has the best Spear Carrier line of all Shakespeare. It must be nearly impossible to play the Guardsman with a straight face.

Act 5, Scene 2. Cleopatra’s Monument.

Antony having committed suicide in Act 4, Cleopatra chews the scenery for about 200 lines.

Cleo. …To play till doomsday. Bring our crown and all.
[A noise within.
Wherefore’s this noise?

Enter a Guardsman.

Guard. Here is a rural fellow
That will not be denied your Highness’ presence.
He brings you figs.

[The audience applaud wildly and throw flowers. Cleopatra, furious at being thus upstaged, commits suicide with several asps.]

At least three, to judge by the stage directions.


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