Julius Caesar (1599)

First official record: Thomas Platter the Younger's Diary, 21 September 1599

First published: First Folio (1623) as The Tragedie of Julius Caesar

First recorded performance: 21 September 1599 at the newly opened Globe Theatre

Evidence: Obviously, the play was completed by September 1599, and may have been composed specifically as the opening play for the new theatre. In addition, because the play is not mentioned in Meres' Palladis Tamia, registered in September 1598, it was unlikely to have been performed prior to then. This places the date of composition as somewhere between September 1598 and September 1599. Additionally, textual analysis has connected the play to Henry V, which was almost certainly written in 1599, suggesting so too was Julius Caesar.

 

ACT I

SCENE I. ROME. A STREET.

 

 Enter FLAVIUS, MARULLUS, and certain Commoners

FLAVIUS

 Hence! home, you idle creatures get you home:
Is this a holiday? what! know you not,
Being mechanical, you ought not walk
Upon a labouring day without the sign
Of your profession? Speak, what trade art thou?

First Commoner

 Why, sir, a carpenter.

MARULLUS

 Where is thy leather apron and thy rule?
What dost thou with thy best apparel on?
You, sir, what trade are you?

Second Commoner

 Truly, sir, in respect of a fine workman, I am but,
as you would say, a cobbler.

MARULLUS

 But what trade art thou? answer me directly.

Second Commoner

 A trade, sir, that, I hope, I may use with a safe
conscience; which is, indeed, sir, a mender of bad soles.

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