Antony and Cleopatra Act I, Scene 3: Questions and Answers
by William Shakespeare

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Act I, Scene 3: Questions and Answers

Study Questions
1. What was Cleopatra’s attitude toward Fulvia?

2. Antony says, “I am sorry to give breathing to my purpose.” What was his purpose, and what did he mean by giving “breathing” to it?

3. Why was he sorry to have to do that?

4. Cleopatra asks Charmian to “Cut my lace.” To what was she referring?

5. Why would she want her “lace” cut?

6. Cleopatra, discussing their relationship with Antony, says, “So Fulvia told me.” What did Fulvia tell her, and how?

7. What did Antony mean when he said to Cleopatra, “You’ll heat my blood”?

8. Cleopatra says to Antony, “Upon your sword/Sit laurel victory” To what was she referring?

9. Antony refers to Sextus Pompeius as “rich in his father’s honour” To what was he referring and in what manner?

10. Cleopatra asks Antony, “Where be the sacred vials thou shouldst fill/with sorrowful water?” To what was she referring?

Answers
1. Cleopatra could not have helped being jealous of Fulvia. To hide her jealously, she taunted Mark Antony about his unfaithfulness to his wife Fulvia and suggested that he would also be unfaithful to her. Her feelings of insecurity caused her to worry about Antony’s faithfulness to her.

2. Antony’s purpose was to return immediately to Rome. “Giving breathing” to it meant telling his beloved Cleopatra that he was about to leave Egypt for awhile.

3. He was unsure of how the queen would take the news, because she feigned illness to achieve her purposes.

4. Cleopatra indicated that she was about to faint and asked Charmian to cut her bodice.

5. In ancient times, the bodice acted much like a corset might do today; it restricted to some extent the wearer’s ability to...

(The entire section is 429 words.)