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Auf. I am glad, thou hast set thy mercy and thy | I will go meet the ladies. This Volumnia
Is worth of consuls, senators, patricians,
A city full; of tribunes, such as you,
At difference in thee: out of that I'll work
Myself a former fortune.
(Aside.) (The Ladies make signs to Coriolanus.) Ay, by and by; (To Volumnia, Virgilia, &c.) Bat we will drink together; and you shall bear A better witness back than words, which we, On like conditions, will have counter-seal'd. Come, enter with us. Ladies, you deserve To have a temple built you: all the swords In Italy, and her confederate arms, Could not have made this peace.
SCENE IV.-Rome. A public Place.
Enter MENENIUS and SICINIUS.
Men. See you yond' coign o' the Capitol; yond'
Sic. Why, what of that?
Men. If it be possible for you to displace it with your little finger, there is some hope the ladies of Rome, especially his mother, may prevail with him. But I say, there is no hope in't; our throats are sentenced, and stay upon execution.
Sic. Is't possible, that so short a time can alter the condition of a man?
Men. There is differency between a grub, and a butterfly; yet your butterfly was a grub. This Marcius is grown from man to dragon: he has wings; he's more than a creeping thing.
Sic. He loved his mother dearly.
Men. So did he me: and he no more remembers his mother now, than an eight year old horse. The tartness of his face sours ripe grapes. When he walks, he moves like an engine, and the ground shrinks before his treading. He is able to pierce a corslet with his eye; talks like a knell, and his hum is a battery. He sits in his state, as a thing made for Alexander. What he bids be done, is finished with his bidding. He wants nothing of a god but eternity, and a heaven to throne in.
Sic. Yes, mercy, if you report him truly. Men. I paint him in the character. Mark what mercy his mother shall bring from him: There is no more mercy in him, than there is milk in a male tiger; that shall our poor city find: and all this is 'long of you.
Sic. The gods be good unto us!
Men. No, in such a case the gods will not be good unto us. When we banished him, we respected not them and he, returning to break our necks, they respect not us.
Mess. Sir, if you'd save your life, fly to your house;
The plebeians have got your fellow-tribune,
And hale him up and down; all swearing, if
The Roman ladies bring not comfort home,
They'll give him death by inches.
Enter another Messenger.
What's the news?
Mess. Good news, good news ;-the ladies have
The Volces are dislodg'd, and Marcias gone:
A merrier day did never yet greet Rome,
No, not the expulsion of the Tarquins.
Art thou certain this is true? is it most certain?
Mess. As certain, as I know the sun is fire:
Where have you lurk'd, that you make doubt of it?
Ne'er through an arch so hurried the blown tide,
As the recomforted through the gates. Why, hark
[Trumpets and hautboys sounded, and drums beaten, all together. Shouting also within.) The trumpets, sackbuts, psalteries, and fifes, Tabors, and cymbals, and the shouting Romans, Make the sun dance. Hark you! (Shouting again.) Men. This is good news:
A sea and land full: You have pray'd well to-day;
This morning, for ten thousand of your throats
I'd not have given a doit. Hark, how they joy!
(Shouting and music.)
Sic. First, the gods bless you for your tidings:
Accept my thankfulness.
Sir, we have all
Great cause to give great thanks.
Mess. Almost at point to enter.
And help the joy.
We will meet them, (Going.)
Enter the Ladies, accompanied by Senators, Patri-
cians, and People. They pass over the Stage.
1 Sen. Behold our patroness, the life of Rome:
Call all your tribes together, praise the gods,
And make triumphant fires; strew flowers before
Unshout the noise that banish'd Marcius:
Repeal him with the welcome of his mother;
Cry, Welcome, ladies, welcome!-
Welcome, ladies! Welcome! (A flourish with drums and trumpets.) [Exeunt.
SCENE V.-Antium. A public place.
Enter TULLUS AUFIDIUS, with Attendants.
Auf. Go tell the lords of the city, I am here:
Deliver them this paper: having read it,
Bid them repair to the market-place; where I,
Even in theirs and in the commons' ears,
Will vouch the truth of it. Him I accuse,
The city ports by this hath enter'd, and
Intends to appear before the people, hoping
To purge himself with words: Despatch.
Enter three or four Conspirators of Aufidius's
1 Con. How is it with our general?
As with a man by his own alms empoison'd,
And with his charity slain.
Most noble sir,
If you do hold the same intent, wherein
You wish'd us parties, we'll deliver you
Of your great danger.
Sir, I cannot tell;
We must proceed, as we do find the people.
3 Con. The people will remain uncertain, whilst
Makes the survivor heir of all.
"Twixt you there's difference; but the fall of either
I know it;
And my pretext to strike at him admits
A good construction. I rais'd him, and I pawn'd
Mine honour for his truth: Who being so heighten'd,
He water'd his new plants with dews of flattery,
Seducing so my friends: and, to this end,
He bow'd his nature, never known before
But to be rough, unswayable, and free.
3 Con. Sir, his stoutness,
When he did stand for consul, which he lost
By lack of stooping,-
That I would have spoke of:
Being banish'd for't, he came unto my hearth;
Presented to my knife his throat: I took him;
Made him joint-servant with me; gave him way
In all his own desires; nay, let him choose
Out of my files, his projects to accomplish,
My best and freshest men; serv'd his designments
In mine own person; holp to reap the fame,
Which he did end all his; and took some pride
To do myself this wrong: till, at the last,
I seem'd his follower, not partner; and
He wag'd me with his countenance, as if
I had been mercenary.
1 Con. So he did, my lord: The army marvell'd at it. And, in the last, When he had carried Rome; and that we look'd For no less spoil, than glory,
For which my sinews shall be stretch'd upon him.
At a few drops of women's rheum, which are
As cheap as lies, he sold the blood and labour
Of our great action: Therefore shall he die,
And I'll renew me in his fall. But, hark!
(Drums and trumpets sound, with great
shouts of the people.)
1 Con. Your native town you enter'd like a post, And had no welcomes home; but he returns, Splitting the air with noise. 2 Con. And patient fools, Whose children he hath slain, their base throats tear, With giving him glory.
3 Con. Therefore, at your vantage, Ere he express himself, or move the people With what he would say, let him feel your sword, Which we will second. When he lies along, After your way his tale pronounc'd shall bury His reasons with his body. Say no more;
And grieve to hear it. What faults he made before the last, I think, Might have found easy fines: but there to end, Where he was to begin; and give away The benefit of our levies, answering us With our own charge; making a treaty, where There was a yielding; This admits no excuse. Auf. He approaches, you shall hear him.
Enter CORIOLANUS, with drums and colours; a crowd of Citizens with him.
Cor. Hail, lords! I am return'd your soldier;
No more infected with my country's love,
Than when I parted hence, but still subsisting
Under your great command. You are to know,
That prosperously I have attempted, and
With bloody passage led your wars, even to
The gates of Rome. Our spoils we have brought
Do more than counterpoise, a full third part,
The charges of the action. We have made peace,
With no less honour to the Antiates,
Than shame to the Romans: And we here deliver,
Subscribed by the consuls and patricians,
Together with the seal o' the senate, what
We have compounded on.
Read it not, noble lords; But tell the traitor, in the highest degree He hath abus'd your powers.
Cor. Traitor!-How now?-
Cor. Measureless liar, thou hast made my heart Too great for what contains it. Boy! O slave!Pardon me, lords, 'tis the first time that ever I was forc'd to scold. Your judgments, my grave lords,
Must give this cur the lie and his own notion
(Who wears my stripes impress'd on him; that
My beating to his grave;) shall join to thrust
The lie unto him.
Peace, both, and hear me speak.
Cor. Cut me to pieces, Volces; men and lads,
Stain all your edges on me.-Boy! False hound!
If you have writ your annals true, 'tis there,
That, like an eagle in a dove-cote, I
Flutter'd your Volces in Corioli:
Alone I did it.-Boy!
Why, noble lords,
Will you be put in mind of his blind fortune,
Which was your shame, by this unholy braggart,
'Fore your own eyes and ears?
Con. Let him die for't. (Several speak at once.) Cit.(Speaking promiscuously.) Tear him to pieces, do it presently. He killed my son;-my daughter; -He killed my cousin Marcus;-he killed my father.
2 Lord. Peace, ho;-no outrage;-peace.
The man is noble, and his fame folds in
This orb o' the earth. His last offence to us
Shall have judicious hearing.-Stand, Aufidius,
And trouble not the peace.
O, that I had him, With six Aufidiuses, or more, his tribe, To use my lawful sword! Auf.
Con. Kill, kill, kill, kill, kill him.
(Aufidius and the Conspirators draw, and
kill Coriolanus, who falls, and Aufidius
stands on him.)
Hold, hold, hold, hold.
Auf. My noble masters, hear me speak.
Auf. My lords, when you shall know (as in this Provok'd by him, you cannot,) the great danger Which this man's life did owe you, you'll rejoice That he is thus cut off. Please it your honours To call me to your senate, I'll deliver Myself your loyal servant, or endure Your heaviest censure.
1 Lord. Bear from hence his body, And mourn you for him: let him be regarded As the most noble corse, that ever herald Did follow to his urn.
2 Lord. His own impatience Takes from Aufidius a great part of blame. Let's make the best of it. Auf. My rage is gone, And I am struck with sorrow.-Take him up :Help, three o' the chiefest soldiers; I'll be one.Beat thou the drum, that it speak mournfully: Trail your steel pikes.-Though in this city he Hath widow'd and unchilded many a one, Which to this hour bewail the injury, Yet he shall have a noble memory.Assist.
[Exeunt, bearing the body of Coriolanus. A dead march sounded.
CALPHURNIA, Wife to Cæsar.
PORTIA, Wife to Brutus.
Senators, Citizens, Guards, Attendants, &c.
SCENE,-During a great part of the Play, at Rome; afterwards at Sardis; and near Philippi.
SCENE I.-Rome. A Street.
Enter FLAVIUS, MARULLUS, and a Rabble of
Flav. Hence; home, you idle creatures, get you
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?
1 Cit. Why, sir, a carpenter.
Mar. Where is thy leather apron, and thy rule?
What dost thou with thy best apparel on?-
You, sir; what trade are you?
2 Cit. Truly, sir, in respect of a fine workman,
I am but, as you would say, a cobbler.
Mar. But what trade art thou? Answer me
2 Cit. A trade, sir, that, I hope, I may use with
a safe conscience; which is, indeed, sir, a mender
Mar. What trade, thou knave? thou naughty knave, what trade?
2 Cit. Nay, I beseech you, sir, be not out with
me: yet, if you be out, sir, I can mend you.
Mar. What meanest thou by that? Mend me,
thou saucy fellow?
2 Cit. Why, sir, cobble you.
Flav. Thou art a cobbler, art thon?
2 Cit. Truly, sir, all that I live by is, with the awl: I meddle with no tradesman's matters, nor women's matters, but with awl. I am, indeed, sir, a surgeon to old shoes; when they are in great danger, I re-cover them. As proper men as ever
trod upon neats-leather, have gone upon my handy
Flav. But wherefore art not in thy shop to-day? Why dost thou lead these men about the streets? myself into more work. But, indeed, sir, we make 2 Cit. Truly, sir, to wear out their shoes, to get holiday, to see Cæsar, and to rejoice in his triumph. Mar. Wherefore rejoice? What conquest brings
What tributaries follow him to Rome,
To grace in captive bonds his chariot-wheels?
You blocks, you stones, you worse than senseless
O, you hard hearts, you cruel men of Rome,
Have you climb'd up to walls and battlements,
Knew you not Pompey? Many a time and oft
To towers and windows, yea, to chimney-tops,
The live-long day, with patient expectation,
Your infants in your arms, and there have sat
To see great Pompey pass the streets of Rome:
Have you not made an universal shout,
And, when you saw his chariot but appear,
To hear the replication of your sounds,
That Tiber trembled underneath her banks,
And do you now put on your best attire?
Made in her concave shores?
And do you now cull out a holiday?
And do you now strew flowers in his way,
That comes in triumph over Pompey's blood?
Pray to the gods to intermit the plague
Run to your houses, fall upon your knees,
That needs must light on this ingratitude. [fault,
Flav. Go, go, good countrymen, and, for this
Assemble all the poor men of your sort;
Draw them to Tyber banks, and weep your tears
Into the channel, till the lowest stream
Do kiss the most exalted shores of all.
See, whe'r their basest metal be not mov'd;
They vanish, tongue-tied in their guiltiness.
Go you down that way towards the Capitol;
This way will I: Disrobe the images,
If you do find them deck'd with ceremonies.
Mar. May we do so?
You know, it is the feast of Lupercal.
Flav. It is no matter; let no images
Be hung with Cæsar's trophies. I'll about,
And drive away the vulgar from the streets :
So do you too, where you perceive them thick.
These growing feathers, pluck'd from Cæsar's wing,
Will make him fly an ordinary pitch;
Who else would soar above the view of men,
And keep us all in servile fearfulness.
SCENE II. The same. A public Place.
Enter, in procession, with music, CESAR; ANTONY,
for the course; CALPHURNIA, PORTIA, DECIUS,
CICERO, BRUTUS, CASSIUS, and CASCA, a great
Crowd following; among them a Soothsayer.
Casca. Peace, bo! Cæsar speaks. (Music ceases.)
Cal. Here, my lord.
Cas. Stand you directly in Antonius' way,
When he doth ran his course.-Antonius.
Ant. Cæsar, my lord.
Cæs. Forget not, in your speed, Antonius,
To touch Calphurnia: for our elders say,
The barren, touched in this holy chase,
Shake off their steril curse.
I shall remember:
When Cæsar says, Do this, it is perform'd.
Cas. Set on, and leave no ceremony out. (Music.)
Casca. Bid every noise be still:-Peace yet again.
Cæs. Who is it in the press, that calls on me?
I hear a tongue, shriller than all the music,
Cry, Cæsar: Speak; Cæsar is turn'd to hear.
Sooth. Beware the ides of March.
What man is that?
Bru. A soothsayer bids you beware the ides of
Cæs. Set him before me, let me see his face.
Cas. Fellow, come from the throng: Look upon
Cas. What say'st thou to me now? Speak once
Sooth. Beware the ides of March.
Cæs. He is a dreamer; let us leave him :-pass.
[Senet. Exeunt all but Bru, and Cas.
Cas. Will you go see the order of the course?
Bru. Not I.
(Among which number, Cassius, be you one;)
Nor construe any further my neglect,
Than that poor Brutus, with himself at war,
Forgets the shews of love to other men.
Cas. Then, Brutus, I have much mistook your
By means whereof, this breast of mine hath buried
Thoughts of great value, worthy cogitations.
Tell me, good Brutus, can you see your face?
Bru. No, Cassius: for the eye sees not itself,
But by reflection, by some other things.
Cas. 'Tis just:
And it is very much lamented, Brutus,
That you have no such mirrors, as will turn
Your hidden worthiness into your eye,
That you might see your shadow. I have heard,
Where many of the best respect in Rome,
(Except immortal Cæsar,) speaking of Brutus,
And groaning underneath this age's yoke,
Have wish'd, that noble Brutus had his eyes.
Bru. Into what dangers would you lead me,
That you would have me seek into myself
For that which is not in me?
Cas. Therefore, good Brutus, be prepar'd to hear:
And, since you know you cannot see yourself
So well as by reflection, I, your glass,
Will modestly discover to yourself
That of yourself which you yet know not of.
And be not jealous of me, gentle Brutus :
Were I a common laugher, or did use
To stale with ordinary oaths my love
To every new protester; if you know,
That I do fawn on men, and hug them hard,
And after scandal them; or if you know,
That I profess myself in banqueting
To all the rout, then hold me dangerous.
(Flourish, and shout.)
Bru. What means this shouting? I do fear, the
Choose Cæsar for their king.
Ay, do you fear it?
Then must I think you would not have it so.
Bru. I would not, Cassius; yet I love him well:—
But wherefore do you hold me here so long?
What is it that you would impart to me?
If it be aught toward the general good,
Set honour in one eye, and death i'the other,
And I will look on both indifferently:
For, let the gods so speed me, as I love
The name of honour more than I fear death.
Cas. I know that virtue to be in you, Brutus,
As well as I do know your outward favour.
Well, honour is the subject of my story.-
I cannot tell, what you and other men
Think of this life; but, for my single self,
I had as lief not be, as live to be
In awe of such a thing as I myself.
I was born free as Cæsar; so were you:
We both have fed as well; and we can both
Endure the winter's cold, as well as he.
For once, upon a raw and gusty day,
Bru. I am not gamesome: I do lack some part The troubled Tyber chafing with her shores,
Of that quick spirit that is in Antony.
Let me not hinder, Cassius, your desires;
I'll leave you.
Cas. Brutus, I do observe you now of late:
I have not from your eyes that gentleness,
And shew of love, as was wont to have:
You bear too stubborn and too strange a hand
Over your friend that loves you.
Be not deceiv'd: If I have veil'd my look,
I turn the trouble of my countenance
Merely upon myself. Vexed I am,
Of late, with passions of some difference,
Conceptions only proper to myself,
Which give some soil, perhaps, to my behaviours:
But let not therefore my good friends be griev'd ;
Cæsar said to me, Dar'st thou, Cassius, now
Leap in with me into this angry flood,
And swim to yonder point?-Upon the word,
Accouter'd as I was, I plunged in,
And bade him follow: so, indeed, he did.
The torrent roar'd; and we did buffet it
With lusty sinews; throwing it aside
And stemming it with hearts of controversy.
But ere we could arrive the point propos'd,
Cæsar cry'd, Help me, Cassius, or I sink.
I, as Æneas, our great ancestor,
Did from the flames of Troy upon his shoulder
The old Anchises bear, so, from the waves of Tyber
Did I the tired Cæsar: And this man
Is now become a god; and Cassius is
A wretched creature, and must bend his body,
If Cæsar carelessly but nod on him.
He had a fever when he was in Spain,
And, when the fit was on him, I did mark
How he did shake: 'tis true, this god did shake:
His coward lips did from their colour fly;
And that same eye, whose bend doth awe the world,
Did lose his lustre: I did hear him groan:
Ay, and that tongue of his, that bade the Romans
Mark him, and write his speeches in their books,
Alas! it cried, Give me some drink, Titinius,
As a sick girl. Ye gods, it doth amaze me,
A man of such a feeble temper should
So get the start of the majestic world,
And bear the palm alone.
Bru. Another general shout!
I do believe, that these applauses are
For some new honours that are heap'd on Cæsar.
Cas. Why, man, he doth bestride the narrow
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 Cæsar: What should be in that Cæsar?
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 them,
Brutus will start a spirit as soon as Cæsar. (Shout.)
Now in the names of all the gods at once,
Upon what meat doth this our Cæsar feed,
That he is grown so great? Age, thou art sham'd:
Rome, thou hast lost the breed of noble bloods!
When went there by an age, since the great flood,
But it was fam'd with more than with one man?
When could they say, till now, that talk'd of Rome,
That her wide walks 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.
Bru. That you do love me, I am nothing jealous;
What you would work me to, I have some aim:
How I have thought of this, and of these times,
I shall recount hereafter; for this present,
I would not, so with love I might entreat you,
Be any further mov'd. What you have said,
I will consider; what you have to say,
I will with patience hear: and find a time
Both meet to hear, and answer, such high things.
Till then, my noble friend, chew upon this;
Brutus had rather be a villager,
Than to repute himself a son of Rome
Under these hard conditions as this time
Is like to lay upon us.
Cas. I am glad, that my weak words
Yond' Cassius has a lean and hungry look ;
He thinks too much such men are dangerous.
Ant. Fear him not, Cæsar, he's not dangerous;
He is a noble Roman, and well given.
Cæs. 'Would he were fatter:-But I fear him
Yet, if my name were liable to fear,
I do not know the man I should avoid
So soon as that spare Cassius. He reads much;
He is a great observer, and he looks
Quite through the deeds of men: he loves no plays,
As thou dost, Antony; he hears no music:
Seldom he smiles; and smiles in such a sort,
As if he mock'd himself, and scorn'd his spirit
That could be mov'd to smile at any thing.
Such men as he be never at heart's ease,
Whiles they behold a greater than themselves;
And therefore are they very dangerous.
I rather tell thee what is to be fear'd,
Than what I fear; for always I am Cæsar.
Come on my right hand, for this ear is deaf,
And tell me truly what thou think'st of him.
[Exeunt Cæsar and his Train. Casca stays
Casca. You pull'd me by the cloak; Would you speak with me?
Bru. Ay, Casca; tell us what hath chanc'd to-day, That Cæsar looks so sad?
Casca. Why, you were with him, were you not? Bru. I should not then ask Casca what hath chanc'd.
Casca. Why, there was a crown offered him; and being offered him, he put it by with the back of his hand, thus; and then the people fell a-shouting. Bru. What was the second noise for? Casca. Why, for that too.
Cas. They shouted thrice; What was the last cry
Casca. Why, for that too.
Bru. Was the crown offer'd him thrice?
Casca. Ay, marry, was't, and he put it by thrice,
every time gentler than other; and at every putting
by, mine honest neighbours shouted.
Cas. Who offered him the crown?
Casca. Why, Antony.
Bru. Tell us the manner of it, gentle Casca.
Casca. I can as well be hanged, as tell the manner of it: it was mere foolery, I did not mark it. I saw Mark Antony offer him a crown;—yet 'twas not a crown neither, 'twas one of these coronets;-and, as I told you, he put it by once: but, for all that, to my thinking, he would fain have had it. Then be offered it to him again; then he put it by again: but, to my thinking, he was very loath to lay his fingers off it. And then he offered it the third time; he put it the third time by: and still as he refused it, the rabblement hooted, and clapped their chapped hands, and threw up their sweaty night-caps, and uttered such a deal of stinking breath because Cæsar refused the crown, that it had almost choked Cæsar; for he swooned, and fell down at it: And for mine own part, I durst not laugh, for fear of
Have struck but thus much shew of fire from opening my lips, and receiving the bad air.
Re-enter CÆSAR, and his Train.
Bru. The games are done, and Cæsar is returning.
Cas. As they pass by, pluck Casca by the sleeve;
And he will, after his sour fashion, tell you
What hath proceeded, worthy note, to-day.
Bru. I will do so:-But, look you, Cassius,
The angry spot doth glow on Cæsar's brow,
And all the rest look like a chidden train:
Calphurnia's cheek is pale; and Cicero
Looks with such ferret and such fiery eyes,
As we have seen him in the Capitol,
Being cross'd in conference by some senators.
Cas. Casca will tell us what the matter is.
Cæs. Let me have men about me that are fat; Sleek-headed men, and such as sleep o'nights;
Cas. But, soft, I pray you: What? Did Cæsar swoon?
Casca. He fell down in the market-place, and foamed at mouth, and was speechless.
Bru. 'Tis very like; he hath the falling-sickness. Cas. No, Cæsar hath it not; but you, and I, And honest Casca, we have the falling-sickness.
Casca. I know not what you mean by that; but, I am sure, Cæsar fell down. If the tag-rag people did not clap him and hiss him, according as he pleased, and displeased them, as they use to do the players in the theatre, I am no true man.
Bru. What said he, when he came unto himself? Casca. Marry, before he fell down, when he perceived the common herd was glad he refused the crown, he plucked me ope his doublet, and offered them his throat to cut.-An I had been a man of any occupation, if I would not have taken him at