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We must suggest the people, in what hatred He still hath held them; that, to his power, he would [and Have made them mules, silenced their pleaders, Dispropertied their freedoms: holding them, In hunian action and capacity,

Of no more soul, nor fitness for the world, Than camels in their war; who have their provandt

Only for bearing burdens, and sore blows
For sinking under them.

Sic. This, as you say, suggested

At some time when his soaring insolence Shall teach the people, (which time shall not want,

If he be put upon't; and that's as easy,
As to set dogs on sheep,) will be his fire
To kindle their dry stubble; and their blaze
Shall darken him for ever.

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And carry with us ears and eyes for the time,

But hearts for the event.
Sic. Have with you.


SCENE II.-The same.-The Capitol.
Enter two OFFICERS, to lay Cushions.

1 Of. Come, come, they are almost here: How many stand for consulships?

2 Off. Three, they say: but 'tis thought of every one, Coriolanus will carry it.

his honours in their eyes, and his actions in their hearts, that for their tongues to be silent, and not confess so much, were a kind of ingrateful injury; to report otherwise were a malice, that, giving itself the lie, would pluck reproof and rebuke from every ear that heard it.

1 Of. No more of him; he is a worthy man: Make way, they are coming.

A Sennet. Enter, with LICTORS before them, CoMINIUS, the Consul, MENENIUS, CORIOLANUS, many other SENATORS, SICINIUS, and BRUTUS. The SENATORS take their places; the TRIBUNES take theirs also by themselves.

Men. Having determin'd of the Volces, and
To send for Titus Lartius, it remains,
As the main point of this our after-meeting,
To gratify his noble service, that
Hath thus stood for his country: Therefore,
please you,

The present consul, and last general
Most reverend and grave elders, to desire
In our well-found successes, to report
A little of that worthy work perform'd
By Caius Marcius Coriolanus; whom
We meet here, both to thank, and to remember
With honours like himself.

1 Sen. Speak, good Cominius: Leave nothing out for length, and make us think,

Than we to stretch it out.
Rather our state's defective for requital,
Masters o'the


Your loving motion toward the common body, We do request your kindest ears: and, after, To yield what passes here.

Sic. We are convented

Upon a pleasing treaty; and have hearts
Inclinable to honour and advance
The theme of our assembly.

Bru. Which the rather

We shall be bless'd to do, if he remember
He hath hereto priz'd them at.
A kinder value of the people, than

Men. That's off, that's off,*

1 Off. That's a brave fellow; but he's vengeance proud, and loves not the common peo-To hear Cominius speak?

I would you rather had been silent: Please you


2 Off. 'Faith, there have been many great men that have flatter'd the people, who ne'er loved them; and there be many that they have loved, they know not wherefore: so that, if they love they know not why, they hate upon no better a ground: Therefore, for Coriolanus neither to care whether they love or hate him, manifests the true knowledge he has in their disposition; and, out of his noble carelessness, let's them plainly see't.

1 Off. If he did not care whether he had their love, or no, he waved indifferently 'twixt doing them neither good, nor harm; but he seeks their hate with greater devotion than they can renderit him; and leaves nothing undone, that may fully discover him their opposite. Now, to seem to affect the malice and displeasure of the people, is as bad as that which he dislikes, to flatter them for their love.

2 Off. He hath deserved worthily of his country: And his ascent is not by such easy degrees as those, who, having been supple and courteous to the people, bonnetted, without any further deed to heave them at all into their estimation and report: but he hath so planted

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But yet my caution was more pertinent,
Bru. Most willingly:
Than the rebuke you give it.

But tie him not to be their bedfellow.-
Men. He loves your people;
Worthy Cominius, speak.-Nay, keep your

[CORIOLANUS rises, and offers to go away.

What you have nobly done.
1 Sen. Sit, Coriolanus; never shame to hear

I had rather have my wounds to heal again,
Cor. Your honours' pardon;
Than hear say how I got them.
My words disbench'd you not.
Bru. Sir, I hope,


When blows have made me stay, I filed from
Cor. No, Sir: yet oft,
You sooth'd not, therefore hurt not: But, your
I love them as they weigh.

Men. Pray now, sit down.
Cor. I had rather have one scratch my head
i'the sun,

When the alarum were struck, than idly sit To hear my nothings monster'd.


Men. Masters o'the people, Your multiplying spawn how can he flatter, *Nothing to the purpose. + Summons to battle.

(That's thousand to one good one,) when you

now see,

He had rather venture all his limbs for honour, Than one of his ears to hear it?-Proceed, Cominius.

Com. I shall lack voice: the deeds of Corio-

Should not be utter'd feebly.-It is held,
That valour is the chiefest virtue, and
Most dignifies the haver:* if it be,
The man I speak of cannot in the world
Be singly counterpois'd. At sixteen years,
When Tarquin made a head for Rome, he

Beyond the mark of others: our then dictator,
Whom with all praise I point at, saw him fight,
When with his Amazonian chint he drove
The bristled lips before him: he bestrid
An o'er press'd Roman, and i'the consul's view
Slew three opposers: Tarquin's self he met,
And struck him on his knee: in that day's

When he might act the woman in the scene,
He prov'd best man i'the field, and for his

Was brow-bound with the oak. His pupil age
Man-entered thus, he waxed like a sea;
And, in the brunt of seventeen battles since,
He lurch'd all swords o'the garland. For this
Before and in Corioli, let me say,


I cannot speak him home: He stopp'd the

And, by his rare example, made the coward
Turn terror into sport: as waves before
A vessel under sail, so men obey'd, [stamp,)
And fell below his stem: his sword (death's
Where it did mark, it took; from face to foot
He was a thing of blood, whose every motion**
Was timed with dying cries: alone he en-

The mortal gate o'the city, which he painted
With shunless destiny, aidless came off,
And with a sudden re-enforcement struck
Corioli, like a planet: now all's his :
When by and by the din of war 'gan pierce
His ready sense: then straight his doubled

Re-quicken'd what in flesh was fatigate,‡‡
And to the battle came he; where he did
Run reeking o'er the lives of men, as if
Twere a perpetual spoil: and, till we call'd
Both field and city ours, he never stood
To ease his breast with panting.

Men. Worthy man!

1 Sen. He cannot but with measure fit the
Which we devise him.

Com. Our spoils he kick'd at;
And look'd upon things precious, as they were
The common muck o'the world: he covets less
Than miserys itself would give; rewards
His deeds with doing them; and is content
To spend the time, to end it.

Men. He's right noble ;

Let him be call'd for.

1 Sen. Call for Coriolanus.

Of. He doth appear.


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Bru. Mark you that!

Cor. To brag unto them,-Thus I did, and

Show them the unaking scars which I should
As if I had received them for the hire [hide,
Of their breath only:-

Men. Do not stand upon't.

We recommend to you, tribunes of the people.
Our purpose to them;-and to our noble consul
Wish we all joy and honour.

Sen. To Coriolanus come all joy and honour!
[Flourish. Then exeunt SENATORS.
Bru. You see how he intends to use the peo-

Sic. May they perceive his intent! He that
will require them,

As if he did contemn what he requested
Should be in them to give.

Bru. Come, we'll inform them
Of our proceedings here: on the market-place,
I know, they do attend us.

SCENE 111.-The same.-The Forum.

Enter several CITIZENS.

1 Cit. Once, if he do require our voices, we ought not to deny him.

2 Cit. We may, Sir, if we will.

3 Cit. We have power in ourselves to do it, but it is a power that we have no power to do: for if he show us his wounds, and tell us his deeds, we are to put our tongues into those wounds, and speak for them; so, if he tell us his noble deeds, we must also tell him our noble acceptance of them. Ingratitude is monstrous: and for the multitude to be ingrateful, were to make a monster of the multitude; of the which, we, being members, should bring ourselves to be monstrous members.

1 Cit. And to make us no better thought of, a little help will serve: for once, when we stood up about the corn, he himself stuck not to call us the many-headed multitude.

3 Cit. We have been called so of many; not that our heads are some brown, some black, some auburn, some bald, but that our wits are so diversly coloured: and truly I think, if all our 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

Men. The senate, Coriolanus, are well pleas'd to all the points o'the compass.

To make thee consul.

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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, southward.

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.

2 Cit. You are never without your tricks :You may, you may.

3 Cit. Are you all resolved to give your voices? But that's no matter, the greater part carries it. I say, if he would incline to the people, there was never a worthier man.


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?

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

Cor. You should account me the more virtuous, that I have not been common in my love. Here he comes, and in the gown of humility; I will, Sir, flatter my sworn brother the peomark his behaviour. We are not to stay alto-ple, to earn a dearer estimation of them; 'tis gether, but to come by him where he stands, a condition they account gentle: and since 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.

[Exeunt. Men. O, Sir, you are not right: have you not known

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.

Men. O me, the gods!


You must not speak of that; you must desire
To think upon you.

Cor. Think upon me? Hang 'em!

the wisdom of their choice is rather to have my hat than my heart, I will practise the insinuating nod, and 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.

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

Both Cit. The gods give you joy, Sir,

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

I would they would forget me, like the virtues To beg of Hob and Dick, that do appear,
Which our divines lose by them.

Men. You'll mar all;

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

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There is in all two worthy voices begg'd:

I have your alms; adieu.

1 Cit. But this is something odd.

2 Cit. An 'twere to give again,-But 'tis no
[Exeunt two CITIZENS-I


Their needless vouches: Custom calls me

What custom wills, in all things should we
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
Let the high office and the honour go
To one that would do thus.-I am half through;
The one part suffer'd, the other will I do.
Enter three other CITIZENS.

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 have heard of; for your voices,
Done many things, some less, some more:
your voices:
Indeed, I would be consul.

5 Cit. He has done nobly, and cannot go without 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!


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Cor. Is this done?

Sic. The custom of request you have charg'd:

Either his gracious promise, which you might, dis-As cause had call'd you up, have held him to; Or else it would have gall'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 And pass'd him unelected. [choler,

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 self again,

Repair to the senate-house.

Bru. Did you perceive, He did solicit you in free contempt, [think, my-When he did need your loves; and do you That his contempt shall not be bruising to you, When he hath power to crush? Why, had your

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?

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2 Cit. Not one amongst us save yourself, but says, [us He us'd us scornfully: he should have show'd His marks of merit, wounds receiv'd for his country.

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 you,[voices, Your most sweet voices:-now you have left your 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 foe 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 touch'd his spirit,

And tried his inclination; from him pluck'd

* Picbeians, common people.


No heart among you? Or had you tongues, to Against the rectorship of judgement? [cry Sic. Have you,

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 yet.

2 Cit. And will deny him:

I'll have five hundred voices of that sound. 1 Cit. I twice five hundred, and their friends to piece 'em.

Bru. Get you hence instantly; and tell those


[take They have chose a consul, that will from them Their liberties; make them of no more voice Than dogs, that are as often beat for barking, As therefore kept to do so.

Sic. Let them assemble;

And, on a safer judgement, all revoke
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

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


Pre-occupied with what you rather must do Than what you should, made you against the grain

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
The noble house o'the Marcians; from whence
springs of,
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 done't, (Harp on that still,) but by our putting on:

* Object. 4 Carriage. ↑ Weighing


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The people cry, you mock'd them; and, of late, When corn was given them gratis, you repin'd;

call'd them

Scandal'd the suppliants for the people;
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 clouds,

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

Sic. You show too much of that,

To where you are bound, you must inquire For which the people stir: If you will pass

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