illustration of Antony and Cleopatra facing each other with a snake wrapped around their necks

Antony and Cleopatra

by William Shakespeare

Start Free Trial

Act 1, Scenes 1 and 2 Summary

Download PDF PDF Page Citation Cite Share Link Share

Last Updated on February 3, 2023, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 205

Scene 1 begins with Philo, one of Antony's friends. He laments Antony's current “dotage” and his obsession with Cleopatra. The “love” between the two, which he suggests is lust, has turned Antony into a fool. Cleopatra and Antony enter then, speaking words of love to each other. An attendant enters announcing news from Rome. Cleopatra taunts Antony, saying that perhaps his wife, Fulvia, is angry with him or perhaps Caesar has a chore for him to do. Antony declares that he will remain with Cleopatra, but she tells him he must hear the message. After the couple exits, Demetrius and Philo express their sorrow at what Antony has become.

In scene 2, Charmian, Iras, Alexas, and Domitius Enobarbus are speaking with a soothsayer. They taunt each other and the soothsayer as well, but the latter predicts that Charmian and Iras will outlive Cleopatra. Cleopatra enters, upset that she cannot find Antony. She then leaves. Antony, however, enters shortly after speaking with a messenger, who announces that Fulvia and Antony's brother, Lucius, have made war against Caesar but have lost. Another messenger enters to tell Antony that Fulvia is dead. Antony tells Domitius Enobarbus that he must leave Egypt. Events are taking place in which he must participate.

See eNotes Ad-Free

Start your 48-hour free trial to get access to more than 30,000 additional guides and more than 350,000 Homework Help questions answered by our experts.

Get 48 Hours Free Access

Act 1, Scene 3 Summary