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2 Cit. An 'twere to give again,-Rut 'tis no
[Exeunt two CITIZENS.
Enter two other CITIZENS.

Cor. Pray you now, if it may stand with the tune of your voices, that I may be consul, I have here the customary gown.

3 Cit. You have deserved nobly of your country, and you have not deserved nobly. Cor. Your enigma?

2 Cit. Why that way?


3 Cit. To lose itself in a fog; where, being three parts melted away with rotten dews, the fourth would return for conscience' sake, to help to get thee a wife.

3 Cit. You have been a scourge to her ene mies, you have been a rod to her friends; you have not, indeed, loved the common people.

Cor. You should account me the more vir tuous, that I have not been common in my love.

2 Cit. You are never without your tricks :-I will, Sir, flatter my sworn brother the people, You may, you may. to earn a dearer estimation of them; 'tis a con3 Cit. Are you all resolved to give your voices?dition they account gentle : and since the wisdom But that's no matter, the greater part carries it. of their choice is rather to have my hat than my I say, if he would incline to the people, there heart, I will practise the insinuating nod, and was never a worthier man. be off to them most counterfeitly: that is, Sir, I will counterfeit the bewitchment of some popular man, and give it bountifully to the desirers. Therefore, beseech you, I may be consul.

4 Cit. We hope to find you our friend; and therefore give you our voices heartily.

3 Cit. You have received many wounds for your country.

wits were to issue out of one scull, they would { fly east, west, north, south; and their consent of one direct way should be at once to all the points o'the compass.

2 Cit. Think you so? Which way, do you judge my wit would fly ?

3 Cit. Nay, your wit will not so soon out as another man's will; 'tis strongly wedged up in a block-head: but if it were at liberty, 'twould, sure south ward.


Here he comes, and in the gown of humility; mark his behaviour. We are not to stay altogether, but to come by him where he stands, by ones, by twos, and by threes. He's to make his requests by particulars: wherein every one of us has a single honour, in giving him our own voices with our own tongues: therefore follow me, and I'll direct you how you shall go by him.

All. Content, content.


Men. O Sir, you are not right: have you not


The worthiest men have done it?

Cor. What must I say?—

I pray, Sir,-Plague upon't! I cannot bring My tongue to such a pace:--Look, Sir ;my wounds;


I got them in my country's service, when
Some certain of your brethren roar'd, and ran
From the noise of our own drums.

Cor. Most sweet voices !—
Better it is to die, better to starve,
Than crave the hire which first we do deserve.
Why in this woolvish gown should I stand here,
To beg of Hob and Dick, that do appear,
Their needless vouches: Custom calls me to't :-
What custom wills, in all things should we do't;
The dust on antique time would lie unswept,
And mountainous error be too highly heap'd
For truth to over-peer.-Rather than fool it so,
Let the high office and the honour go.

Men. O me, the gods!

You must not speak of that: you must desire them To one that would do thus.-I am half through;
To think upon you.
The one part suffer'd, the other will I do.

Cor. Think upon me? Hang 'em!

Enter three other CITIZENS.

I would they would forget me, like the virtues

Which our divines lose by them.

Men. You'll mar all;

I'll leave you: Pray you, speak to them, I pray

you, In wholesome manner.


Enter two CITIZENS. Cor. Bid them wash their faces,

And keep their teeth clean.-So, here comes a brace:

You know the cause, Sir, of my standing here. Cit. We do, Sir; tell us what hath brought you to't.

Cor. Mine own desert.

2 Cit. Your own desert!

Cor. Ay, not

Mine own desire.

1 Cit. How! not your own desire ?
Cor. No, Sir:

'Twas never my desire yet,
To trouble the poor with begging.

1 Cit. You must think, if we give you any We hope to gain by you.


Cor. Well then, I pray, your price o'the consulship?

1 Cit. The price is, Sir, to ask it kindly. Cor. Kindly?

Sir, I pray let me ha't I have wounds to show

Cor. I will not seal your knowledge with show. ing them. I will make much of your voices, and so trouble you no further.

Both Cit. The gods give you joy, Sir, heartily! [Exeunt.


Which shall be yours in private.-Your good
voice, Sir;
What say you?

2 Cit. You shall have it, worthy Sir.
Cor. A match, Sir :-

There is in all two worthy voices begg'd-
I have your alms; adieu.

1 Cit. But this is something odd.

Here come more voices.-
Your voices; for your voices I have fought;
Watch'd for your voices; for your voices, bear
Of wounds two dozen odd; battles thrice six,
I have seen and heard of; for your voices, have
Done many things, some less, some more: your
voices :

Indeed, I would be consul.

5 Cit. He has done nobly, and cannot go with. out any honest man's voice,

6 Cit. Therefore let him be consul: The gods give him joy, and make him good friend to the people!

All. Amen, Amen,

God save thee, noble consul!


Cor. Worthy voices !

Re-enter MENENIUS, with BRUTUS and


Men. You have stood your limitation; and the

Endue you with the people's voice: Remains,
That, in the official marks invested, you
Anon do meet the senate.
Cor. Is this done?

Sic. The custom of request you have dis-

The people do admit you; and are summon'd
To meet anon, upon your approbation.
Cor. Where? at the senate-house ?

Sic. There, Coriolanus.

Cor. May I then change these garments?

Sic. You may, Sir.

Cor. That I'll straight do; and, knowing my self again, Repair to the senate-house.

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Men. I'll keep you company.-Will you along?)
Bru. We stay here for the people.
Sic. Fare you well.

[Exeunt CORIOL. and MENEN.
He has it now; and by his looks, methinks,
'Tis warm at his heart.

Bru. With a proud heart he wore

His humble weeds: Will you dismiss the people? As therefore kept to do so.
Sic. Let them assemble;

Re-enter CITIZENS.

And, on a safer judgment, all revoke

this man?

Sic. How now, my masters? have you chose Your ignorant election: Enforce his pride,
And his old hate unto you: besides, forget not
With what contempt he wore the humble weed;
How in his suit he scorn'd you: but your loves,
Thinking upon his services, took from you
The apprehension of his present portance, t
Which, gibingly, ungravely he did fashion
After the inveterate hate he bears you.
Bru. Lay

1 Cit. He has our voices, Sir.
Bru. We pray the gods, he may deserve your

2 Cit. Amen, Sir: To my poor unworthy uoHe mock'd us, when he begg'd our voices. [tice, 3 Cit. Certainly,

He flouted us downright.

1 Cit. No, 'tis his kind of speech, he did not

mock us.

2 Cit. Not one amongst us save yourself, but


He us'd as scornfully: he should have show'd us
His marks of merit, wounds receiv'd for his

Sic. Why, so he did, I am sure.
Cit. No; no man saw 'em.

[Several speak.
3 Cit. He said he had wounds, which he could
show in private;

And with his hat, thus waving it in scorn,
I would be consul, says he aged custom,
But by your voices, will not so permit me;
Your voices therefore: When we granted that,
Here was,-I thank you for your voices,-thank
[your voices,
Your most sweet voices:-now you have left
I have no further with you:Was not this


Sic. Why, either you were ignorant to see't?
Or, seeing it, of such childish friendliness
To yield your voices?

Bru. Could you not have told him,

As you were lesson'd,-When he had no power,
But was a petty servant to the state,
He was your enemy; ever spake against
Your liberties, and the charters that you bear
I'the body of the weal: and now, arriving
A place of potency, and sway o'the state,
If he should still malignantly remain
Fast for to the plebeii, your voices might
Be curses to yourselves? You should have said,
That, as his worthy deeds did claim no less
Than what he stood for, so his gracious nature
Would think upon you for your voices, and
Translate his malice towards you into love,
Standing your friendly lord.

Sic. Thus to have said,

As you were fore-advis'd, had tonch'd his spirit,
And tried his inclination; from him pluck'd
Either his gracious promise, which you might,
As cause bad call'd you up, have held him to;
Or else it would have gali'd his surly nature,
Which easily endures not article

Tying him to aught: so, putting him to rage,
You should have ta'en the advantage of his choler,
And pass'd him unelected.

Bru. Did you perceive,

He did solicit you in free contempt,

When he did need your loves; and do you think,
That his contempt shall not be bruising to you,
When he hath power to crush? Why, had your


No heart among you? Or had you tongues to cry
Against the rectorship of judgement ?

Sic. Have you,

1 Cit. I twice five hundred and their friends to piece 'em.

Bru. Get you hence instantly; and tell those

They have chose a consul, that will from them take
Their liberties; make them of no more voice
Than dogs, that are as often beat for barking,

Ere now, denied the asker ? and, now again,
On him, that did not ask, but mock, bestow
Your su'd-for tongues ?

3 Cit. He's not confirm'd, we may deny him


2 Cit. And will deny him:

I'll have five hundred voices of that sound.

• Plebeians.

A fault on us, your tribunes; that we labour'd (No impediment between) but that you must Cast your election on him.

Sic. Say, you chose him

More after our commandment, than as guided
By your own true affections: and that, your minds
Pre-occupied with what you rather must do
Than what you should, made you against the
To voice him consul: Lay the fault on us.
Bru. Ay, spare us not. Say, we read lectures
to you,
How youngly he began to serve his country,
How long continued: and what stock he
springs of,
The noble house o'the Marcians; from whence
That Ancus Marcius, Numa's daughter's son,
Who, after great Hostilius, here was king:
Of the same house Publius and Quintus were,
That our best water brought by conduits hither;
And Censorinus, darling of the people,⚫
And nobly nam'd so, being Censor twice,
Was his great ancestor.

Sic. One thus descended,

That hath beside well in his person wrought
To be set high in place, we did commend
To your remembrances: but you have found,
Scaling his present bearing with his past,
That he's your fixed enemy, and revoke
Your sudden approbation.

Bru. Say, you ne'er had don't,

(Harp on that still,) but by our putting on : § And presently, when you have drawn your numRepair to the Capitol.


Cit. We will so almost all [Several speak. Repent in their election. [Exeunt CITIZENS.

Bru. Let them go on:

This mutiny were better put in hazard,
Than stay, past doubt, for greater :
If, as his nature is, he fall in rage
With their refusal, both observe and answer
The vantage of his anger.

Sic. To the Capitol:

Eple; Come; we'll be there before the stream o'the peoAnd this shall seem, as partly 'tis, their own Which we have goaded ¶ onward. [Exeunt.




Cor. Tullus Aufidius then had made new

Lart. He had, my lord; and that it was,
Our swifter composition.

Cor. So then the Volsces stand but as at first
Ready, when time shall prompt them, to make
Upon us again.


* Object.

t Carriage. I Advantage.

t Weighing. Incitation. Driven,

Com. They are worn, lord consul, so, That we shall hardly in our ages see Their banners wave again.

Cor. Saw you Aufidius?

Lart. On safe-guard he came to me; and I'the plain way of his merit. did curse

Against the Volsces, for they had so vilely Yielded the town: he is retir'd to Antium. Cor. Spoke he of me?

Lart. He did, my lord.

Cor. How? what?

That, of all things upon the earth, he hated Your person most: that he would pawn his for


To hopeless restitution, so he might Be call'd your vanquisher.

Mar. At Antium lives he?

Lart. How often he had met you, sword to For the mutable, rank-scented many, ‡ let them
Regard me as I do not flatter, and
Therein behold themselves: I say again,

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Bru. Call't not a plot:

The people cry, you mock'd them; and, of late,
When corn was given them gratis, you repin'd;
Scandal'd the suppliants for the people; call'd
Time-pleasers, flatterers, foes to nobleness.
Cor. Why, this was known before.
Bru. Not to them all.

Cor. Have you inform'd them since?
Bru. How! I inform them!

Cor. You are like to do such business.
Bru. Not unlike,

Each way to better yours.

Cor. Why then should I be consul? By yon


Let me deserve so ill as you, and make me Your fellow-tribme.

Com. The people are abus'd:-Set on.-This palt'ring

Becomes not Rome; nor has Coriolanus Deserv'd this so dishonour'd rub, laid falsely ↑

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Cor. Tell me of corn!

This was my speech, and I will speak't again ;— Men. Not now, not now.

1 Sen. Not in this heat, Sir, now.

Cor. Now, as I live, I will.-My noble friends, I crave their pardons :

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To say, he'll turn your current in a ditch,
And make your channel his? If he have power,
Then veil your ignorance: if none, awake
Your dangerous lenity. If you are learned,
Be not as common fools; if you are not,
Let them have cushions by you. You are ple-


If they be senators: and they are no less,
When both your voices blended, the greatest
Most palates theirs. They choose their magis-
And such a one as he, who puts his shall,
His popular shall, against a graver bench
Than ever frown'd in Greece ! By Jove himself,
It makes the consuls base: and my soul akes
To know, when two authorities are up,
Neither supreme, how soon confusion
May enter 'twixt the gap of both, and take
The one by the other.

Com. Well-on to the market-, lace.

Cor. Whoever gave that couusel, to give forth The corn o'the storehouse gratis, as 'twas us'd Sometime in Greece,

Men. Well, well, no more of that.

Cor. (Though there the people had more absolate power,)

I say, they nourish'd disobedience, fed The ruin of the state.


• Shuffling. + Treacherously. Cockle is a weed which grows up with corn. 1 Lepers. Scab The smallest fish. fi According to law. 1: Thoughtless.

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Nothing is done to purpose: Therefore, beseech

answer A tractors do.

Out of thy garments.
Sic. Help, ve citizens.



You that will be less fearful than discreet;
That love the fundamental part of state,
More than you doubt the change oft; that
A noble hie before a long, and wish
To amp a body with a dangerous physic
That's sure of death without it, at once pluck


The meatitudinous tongue, let them not lick
The sweet which is their poison: your dishonour
M. true judgment, and bereaves the state
Of that integrity which should become it;
$4 baving the power to do the good it would,
Fe the ill which doth control it.

Bru. He bas said enough.

Sr. He bas spoken like a traitor, and shall

Then were they chosen: in a better hour,
Let west is neet, be said it must be meet,
And throw their power i'the dust.

Men. On both sides more respect.
Sic. Here's he, that would
Take from you all your power.
Bru. Seize him, Ediles.

Cit. Down with him, down with him!
[Several speak.

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Sen. & Pat. We'll surety him.
Com. Aged Sir, hands off.

Cor. Hence, rotten thing, or I shall shake thy

2 Sen. Weapons, weapons, weapons!

[They all bustle about CORIOLANUS. Tribunes, patricians, citizens !--what ho! Sicinius, Brutus, Coriolanus, citizens !

Cit. Peace, peace, peace; stay, hold, peace!
Men. What is about to be ?-I am out of
Confusion's near: I cannot speak :-You, tri-
To the people,-Coriolanus, patience :-
Speak, good Sicinius.

Sic. Hear me, people ;-Peace.
Cit. Let's hear our tribune :-Peace.
speak, speak.

Re-enter BRUTUS, with the EDILES, und a
Rabble of CITIZENS.

Thon wretch! despite o'erwhelm thee What sheaid the people do with these bald tribunes?


Sic. You are at point to lose your liberties; Marcius would have all from you; Marcius, Whom late you have nam'd for consul.

tach thee, as a traitorous innovator, Afe to the public weal: Obey, I charge thee, And follow to thine answer.

ter. Hence, old goat!

Men. Fie, fie, fie!

This is the way to kindle, not to quench.

1 Sen. To unbuild the city, and to lay all flat.
Sic. What is the city, but the people ?
Cit. True,

Os who depending, their obedience fails
The greater bench: In a rebellion,

Was what's not meet, but what must be, was

The people are the city.

Bru. By the consent of all, we were establish'd
The people's magistrates.
Cit. You so remain.

Men. And so are like to do.

Cor. That is the way to lay the city flat;
To bring the roof to the foundation;
And bury all, which yet distinctly ranges,,
In heaps and piles of ruins.

Sic. This deserves death.

'Beseech you, tribunes, hear me but a word. Edi. Peace, peace.

Men. Be that you seem, truly your country's friend,

And temperately proceed to what you would 1-Thus violently redress.

Aru. Manifest treason.

Ae. This a consal? no.

Bra. The Ediles, ho!-Let him be appre

Bru. Or let us stand to our authority,
Or let us. lose it :-We do here pronounce,
Upon the part o'the people, in whose power
We were elected theirs, Marcius is worthy
Of present death.


Se. Go, call the people; [Exit BRUTUS.] ir whose name, myself

Sic. Therefore, lay hold of him;

Bear him to the rock Tarpeian, and from thence
Into destruction cast him.

Bru. Ediles, seize him.

Cit. Yield, Marcius, yield.
Men. Hear me one word.

The natural pareut, or, the cause.
To violently agitate.

Bru. Sir, those cold ways,

That seem like prudent helps, are very poisonons
Where the disease is violent :-Lay hands upon
And bear him to the rock.


Cor. No: I'll die here. [Drawing his Sword. There's some among you have beheld me fight[me. ing; Come, try upon yourselves what you have seen Men. Down with that sword,-Tribunes, withdraw a while.

Bru. Lay hands upon him.
Men. Help, Marcius! help,

You that be noble; help him, young and old!
Cit. Down with him, down with him!
[In this Mutiny, the TRIBUNES, the EDILES,
and the People are all beat in.
Men. Go, get you to your house; be gone,
All will be naught else.


2 Sen. Get you gone.

From whence criminals were thrown, and dashed to


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Men. For 'tis a sore upon us,
You cannot tent yourself: Be gone, 'beseech
Com. Come, Sir, along with us.
Cor. I would they were barbarians, (as they


Though in Rome litter'd,) not Romans, (as they

are not,

Though calv'd i'the porch o'the Capitol,)—

Men. Be gone;

Put not your worthy rage into your tongue :
One time will owe another.

The which shall turn you to no further harna,
Than so much loss of time.

Com. But now 'tis odds beyond arithmetic ;
And manhood is call'd foolery, when it stands
Against a falling fabric.-Will you hence,
Before the tag return? whose rage doth rend
Like interrupted waters, and o'erbear
What they are used to bear.

Cor. On fair ground,

I could beat forty of them.
Men. I could myself

Take up a brace of the best of them; yea, the

two tribunes.

Sic. Speak briefly then;

For we are peremptory to despatch

This viperous traitor: to eject him hence,
Were but one danger; and, to keep him here,
Our certain death; therefore it is decreed,
He dies to-night.

Men. Now the good gods forbid

Men. Pray you, be gone:

I'll try whether my old wit be in request
With those that have but little: this must be
With cloth of any colour.

Com. Nay, come away.
[Exeunt COR. Cox, and others.
1 Pat. This inan bas marr'd his fortune.
Men. His nature is too noble for the world:
He would not flatter Neptune for his trident,
Or Jove for his power to thunder. His heart's
his mouth:
What his breast forges, that his tongue must
And being angry, does forget that ever
He heard the name of death. [A noise within.
Here's goodly work!

2 Pat. I would they were a-bed?

Towards her deserved children is enroll'd
That our renowned Rome, whose gratitude
In Jove's own book, like an unnatural dain
Should now eat up her own!

Sic. He's a disease, that must be cut away.
Men. Oh! he's a limb, that has but a disease;
Mortal, to cut it off; to cure it, easy.
What has he done to Rome, that's worthy death?
Killing our enemies? The blood he hath lost,
(Which, I dare vouch, is more than that he hath,
By many an ounce,) he dropp'd it for his
And, what is left, to lose it by his country, [try :
Were to us all, that do't, and suffer it,


A brand to the end o'the world.

Sic. This is clean kam. +

Bru. Merelyt awry: when he did love his country,

It honour'd him.

Have holp to make this rescue ?

Men. Hear me speak :

As I do know the consul's worthiness,

So can I name his faults :

1 Cit. He shall well know,

The noble tribunes are the people's mouths,
And we their hands.

Cit. He shall sure on't.

Sic. Consul!-what consul?
Men. The consul Coriolanus.
Bru. He a consul!

Men. The service of the foot,

Being once gangren'd, is not then respected
For what before it was?

Sic. What do ye talk?

Have we not had a taste of his obedience ?

Men. I would they were in Tyber I-What, the Our Ediles smote ? ourselves resisted?-Come :-
Men. Consider this:-He has been bred i'the

Could he not speak them fair?

Re-enter BRUTUS and SICINIUS, with the

Bru. We'll hear no more :

Pursue him to his house, and pluck him thence;
Lest his infection, being of catching nature,
Spread further.

Men. One word more, one word.
This tiger-footed rage, when it shall find
The harm of unscann'd swiftness, wili, too late,
Tie leaden pounds to his heels. Proceed by pro-


Since he could draw a sword, and is ill school'd
In boulted language; meal and bran together
He throws without distinction. Give me leave,
I'll go to him, and undertake to bring him
Where he shall answer, by a lawful form,
(In peace) to his utmost peril.

1 Sen. Noble tribunes,

It is the humane way: the other course
Will prove too bloody; and the end of it
Unknown to the beginning.

Sic. Noble Menenius,

Be you then as the people's officer:
Masters, lay down your weapons.

Bru. Go not home.

Sic. Meet on the market-place :-We'll attend
you there :
Where, if you bring not Marcius, we'll proceed

[Several speak together. In our first way.
Men. I'll bring him to you :-
Let me desire your company. [To the SENATORS.

Sic. Where's this viper,

That would depopulate the city, and
Be every man himself?

Men. You worthy tribunes,

Sic. He shall be thrown down the Tarpelan

With rigorous hands; he hath resisted law,
And therefore law shall scorn him further trial
Than the severity of the public power,
Which he so sets at nought.


Lest parties (as he is belov'd) break out,
And sack great Rome with Romans.
Bru. If it were so,-

Men. Sir,-
Sic. Peace.

Men. Do not cry, havoc, where you should He must come,
but hunt
With modest warrant.

Sic. Sir, how comes it, that you

Cit. No, no, no, no, no.
Men. If, by the tribunes' leave, and yours,
good people,

I may be heard, I'd crave a word or two;

• The lowest of the

populace, tag, rag, and bobtail. ↑ Be sure on't. The signal for slaughter,

Or what is worst will follow.

1 Sen. Pray you, let's to him.

[Exeunt. SCENE II-A Room in CORIOLANUS'S House.

Cor. Let them pull all about mine ears; pre-
sent me

Death on the wheel, or at wild horses' heels ;
Or pile ten hills on the Tarpeian rock,
That the precipitation might down stretch,
Below the beam of sight, yet will I still
Be thus to them.

• Deserving.

+ Quite awry. Inconsiderate haste.

? Absolutely. Finely sued.

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