Weekly Interlinear Poem




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Robert Jackson

This is the poem for the week of December 8.
A new interlinear poem is available each Monday.


The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars

-Shakespeare's Julius Caesar


(Cassius speaks to Brutus about Caesar.)

Why, man, he doth bestride the narrow world
Like a Colossus, and we petty men
Colossus=the gigantic statue of Rhodes
petty=small
Walk under his huge legs and peep about
To find ourselves dishonourable graves.
dishonorable=undistinguished
Men at some time are masters of their fates:
The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars
stars=astrological charts
But in ourselves that we are underlings.
Brutus and Caesar: what should be in that 'Caesar'?
Why should that name be sounded more than yours?
Write them together, yours is as fair a name;
Sound them, it doth become the mouth as well;
Weigh them, it is as heavy; conjure with 'em,
Brutus will start a spirit as soon as Caesar.
Brutus=the name of Brutus
start a spirit=bring forth a ghost
Caesar=the name of Caesar
Now, in the names of all the gods at once,
Upon what meat doth this our Caesar feed
That he is grown so great? Age, thou art shamed!
age=era/epoch
Rome, thou hast lost the breed of noble bloods!
noble bloods=nobility in their blood
When went there by an age, since the great flood,
great flood=a flood in Greek mythology when everyone died except Deucalion and his wife
But it was famed with more than with one man?
famed with=famous because of
When could they say till now, that talk'd of Rome,
That her wide walls encompass'd but one man?
Now is it Rome indeed and room enough
is it Rome=it is Rome that is talked about
and room=that has room (room is a play on the word Rome)
When there is in it but one only man.
When there is in it but one only man=with only one man in it.
O, you and I have heard our fathers say,
There was a Brutus once that would have brook'd
brook'd=challenged
The eternal devil to keep his state in Rome
to keep=in order to keep
state=status
As easily as a king.
as easily as a king=with the aplomb of a king





(Cassius speaks to Brutus about Caesar.)

Why, man, he doth bestride the narrow world
Like a Colossus, and we petty men
Walk under his huge legs and peep about
To find ourselves dishonourable graves.
Men at some time are masters of their fates:
The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars
But in ourselves, that we are underlings.
Brutus and Caesar: what should be in that 'Caesar'?
Why should that name be sounded more than yours?
Write them together, yours is as fair a name;
Sound them, it doth become the mouth as well;
Weigh them, it is as heavy; conjure with 'em,
Brutus will start a spirit as soon as Caesar.
Now, in the names of all the gods at once,
Upon what meat doth this our Caesar feed
That he is grown so great? Age, thou art shamed!
Rome, thou hast lost the breed of noble bloods!
When went there by an age, since the great flood,
But it was famed with more than with one man?
When could they say till now, that talk'd of Rome,
That her wide walls encompass'd but one man?
Now is it Rome indeed and room enough,
When there is in it but one only man.
O, you and I have heard our fathers say,
There was a Brutus once that would have brook'd
The eternal devil to keep his state in Rome
As easily as a king.