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Cor. I muse', my mother
Does not approve me further, who was wont
Enter Menenius, with the Senators.
Vol. O, sir, sir, sir,
Cor. Let go.
Vol. You might have been enough the man you 15
Cor. Let them hang.
Vol. Ay, and burn too.
That now it lies on you to speak to the people:
Cor. Tush, tush!
Men. A good demand.
Vol. If it be honour, in your wars, to seem
Cor. Why force you this?
That are but roated in your tongue, but bastards,
Of no allowance', to your bosom's truth.
Before he should thus stoop to the herd', but that
Cor. What must I do?
Men. Return to the tribunes.
Vol. You are too absolute;
Though therein you can never be too noble.
Your wife, your son, these senators, the nobles;-
I would dissemble with my nature, where
Come, go with us; speak fair: you may salve so, Not what is dangerous present, but the loss 25 Of what is past.
Vol. I pr'ythee now, my son,
Go to them, with this bonnet in thy hand;
And thus far having stretch'd it, (here be with them)
30 Thy knee bussing the stones, (for in such business
That will not hold the handling: Or, say to them,
Men. This but done,
Even as she speaks, why, their hearts were yours: For they have pardons, being ask’d, as free 45 As words to little purpose.
Vol. Pr'ythee now,
[rather Go, and be rul'd: although, I know, thou hadst Follow thine enemy in a fiery gulf,
T'han flatter him in a bower. Here is Cominius.
Com. I have been i' the market-place: and, sir, 'tis fit
You make strong party, or defend yourself
Com. I think, 'twill serve, if he
Vol. He must, and will:
60 Pr'ythee, now, say, you will, and go about it.
3 i. e. the people.
1i. e. I wonder. 2 i, e. my rank. no established rank, or settled authority. i. e. our common clowns. loves. In this place, not seems to signify not only.
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Vol. At thy choice then :
To beg of thee, it is my more dishonour,
Cor. Pray, be content;
Mother, I am going to the market-place;
Tyrannical power: If he evade us there,
Bru. How accompanied?
Ad. With old Menenius, and those senators
Of all the voices that we have procur'd,
Ed. I have; 'tis ready.
Enter Sicinius, and Brutus.
Bru. In this point charge him home, that he affects
Of all the trades in Rome. Look, I am going:
Vol. Do your will.
[Exit l'olumnia. Com. Away; the tribunes do attend you: armo
To answer mildly; for they are prepar❜d
Sic. Have you collected them by tribes?
Sic. Assemble presently the people hither;
And power i' the truth o' the cause.
[to cry, Bru. And when such time they have begun Let them not cease, but with a din confus'd Inforce the present execution
Of what we chance to sentence.
Sic. Make them be strong, and ready for this
When we shall hap to give 't them.
Of contradiction: Being once chaf'd, he cannot
Enter Coriolanus, Menenius, and Cominius,
Mr. Hawkins explains unbarbed by bare, uncovered; and adds, that in the times of chivalry, when a horse was fully armed and accoutered for the encounter, he was said to be barbed; probably from the old word barbe, which Chaucer uses for a veil or covering. Mr. Steevens, however, says, unbarbed sconce is untrimm'd or unshaven head.-To barb a man was to shave him. 2 i. e. piece, portion; applied to a piece of earth, and here elegantly transferred to the body, carcase. i. e. which played in concert with my drum. * To tent is to take up residence. 1i. e. according to Mr. Malone, He has been used to his worth, or (as we should now say) his pennyworth of contradiction; his full quota or proportion. To look is to wait or expect.-The sense, I believe, is, What he has in his heart, is waiting there to help us to break his neck.
Men. Calmly, I do beseech you.
Cor. Ay, as an ostler, that for the poorest piece Will bear the knave by the volume 1.-The honour'd gods
Keep Rome in safety, and the chairs of justice
1 Sen. Amen, amen!
Men. A noble wish.
Re-enter the Adile with the Plebeians.
Sic. Draw near, ye people.
Cor. First, hear me speak.
Sic. I do demand,
If you submit you to the people's voices,
As shall be prov'd upon you?
Cor. I am content.
Both Tri. Well, say.—Peace, ho.
That when he speaks not like a citizen,
Com. Well, well, no more.
Cor. What's the matter,
That being past for consul with full voice,
-Sic. Answer to us.
What you have seen him do, and heard him speak,
Bru. But since he hath
Cor. What do you prate of service?
Cor. Say then: 'tis true, I ought so.
Men. Nay; temperately: Your promise.
Sic. Mark you this, people?
All.To the rock with him! to the rock with him!
We need not lay new matter to his charge;
(As much as in him lies) from time to time Envy'd against the people, seeking means To pluck away their power; as ' now at last
Men. Lo, citizens, he says he is content:
The warlike service he has done, consider; think 25 Given hostile strokes, and that not in the presence
Of dreaded justice, but on the ministers
From off the rock Tarpeïan, never more
All. It shall be so, it shall be so; let him away:
Men. Is this the promise that you made your
Cor. I'll know no further:
Let them pronounce the steep Tarpeïan death,
I have been consul, and can shew from Rome, 40 Her enemies' marks upon me. I do love My country's good, with a respect more tender, More holy, and profound, than mine own life, My dear wife's estimate', her womb's increase, And treasure of my loins: then if I would 45 Speak that
Sic. We know your drift: Speak what?
All. It shall be so, it shall be so.
Cor. You common cry of curs! whose breath I
Let every feeble rumour shake your hearts!
1i. e. would bear being called a knave as often as would fill out a volume. Envy is here taken at large for malignity, or ill intention. i. e. all office established and settled by time. i. e. behaved with signs of hatred to the people. As, in this instance, would seem to have the power of as well Not stands again for not only. dear wife.
i. e. I love my country beyond the rate at which I value
Sic. Go, see him out at gates, and follow him, 5 As he hath follow'd you, with all despight; Give him deserv'd vexation. Let a guard [come:Attend us through the city. All. Come, come, let us see him out at gates; The gods preserve our noble tribunes!-Come. [Exeunt.
[Exeunt Coriolanus, Comin'us, and others. The people shout, and throw up their caps./10
Ad. The people's enemy is gone,
Before the Gates of Rome.
Enter Coriolanus, Volumnia, Virgilia, Menenius,
A noble cunning': you were us'd to load me
With many heads butts me away.-Nay, mother, 25
With cautelous baits and practice.
Vol. My first son,
20 Whither wilt thou go! Take good Cominius
Cor. O the gods!
Com. I'll follow thee a month, devise with thee
Vir. O heavens! O heavens!
Cor. Nay, I pr'ythee, woman,-
Cor. What, what, what!
I shall be lov'd,when I am lack'd. Nay, mother,
Men. That's worthily
As any ear can hear.-Come, let's not weep.-
From these old arms and legs, by the good gods,
Cor. Give me thy hand:-Come.
Enter Sicinius, and Brutus, with an Ædile. Sic. Bid them all home; he's gone, and we'll no further.
The nobility are vex'd, who, we see, have sided 55 In his behalf.
Bru. Now we have shewn our power,
2 The sense is, When fortune strikes her 1 Abated is dejected, subdued, depressed in spirits. 3 i. e. foolish. i. e. by hardest blows, to be wounded, and yet continue calm, requires a generous policy. He calls this • i. e. of calmness cunning, because it is the effect of reflection and philosophy. First, i. e. noblest, and most eminent of men, artful and false tricks, and treason. Sic. true metal unallay'd: a metaphor taken from trying gold on the touchstone.
Sic. Bid them home:
Say, their great enemy is gone, and they
Bru. Dismiss them home.
Enter Volumnia, Virgilia, and Menenius. Here comes his mother.
Sic. Let's not meet her.
Sic. They say she's mad.
Keep on your way.
[o' the gods Vol. O, you're well met: The hoarded plague Requite your love!
Men. Peace, peace; be not so loud. [hear;-
Sic. Are you mankind'?
[fool.Vol. Ay, tool; Is that a shame?-Note but this Was not a man my father? Hadst thou foxship To banish him that struck more blows for Rome, Than thou hast spoken words?
Sic. O blessed heavens!
Vol. More noble blows, than ever thou wise And for Rome's good.-I'll tell thee what ;-Yet
Sic. What then?
Vir. What then?
He'd make an end of thy posterity.
Vol. Bastards, and all.
Good man, the wounds that he does bear for Rome!
Sic. I would he had continu'd to his country,
Bru. I would he had.
Vol. I would he had?-'Twas you incens'd the
But to confirm my curses! Could I meet 'em
Men. You have told them home, [with me? 5And, by my troth, you have cause. You'll sup
Vol, Anger's my meat; I sup upon myself,
Nay, but thou shalt stay too:-I would my son
Bru. Pray, let us go.
Vol. Now, pray, sir, get you gone:
Vol. Take my prayers with you.— I would the gods had nothing else to do, [Exeunt Tribunes.
Enter a Roman, and a Folce.
Rom. I know you well, sir, and you know me: your name, I think, is Adrian.
Vol. It is so, sir: truly, I have forgot you.
Rom. The same, sir.
Vol. You had more beard, when I last saw you; but your favour is well appear'd by your tongue. What's the news in Rome? I have a note from the Volcian state, to find you out there: You have well saved me a day's journey.
Rom. There hath been in Rome strange insurrection: the people against the senators, patricians, and nobles.
Vol. Hath been! Is it ended then? Our state thinks not so; they are in a most warlike preparation, and hope to come upon them in the heat of their division.
Rom. The main blaze of it is past, but a small 35thing would make it flame again. For the nobles receive so to heart the banishment of that worthy Coriolanus, that they are in a ripe aptness, to take all power from the people, and to pluck from them their tribunes for ever. This lies. 40 glowing, I can tell you, and is almost mature for the violent breaking out.
Vol. Coriolanus banish'd?
Rom. Banish'd, sir.
Vol. You will be welcome with this intelli45gence, Nicanor.
Rom. The day serves well for them now. I have heard it said, The fittest time to corrupt a man's wife, is when she's fallen out with her husband. Your noble Tullus Aufidius will appear 50well in these wars, his great opposer Coriolanus being now in no request of his country.
Vol. He cannot choose. I am most fortunate, thus accidentally to encounter you: You have ended my business, and I will merrily accom55pany you home.
Rom. I shall, between this and supper, tell you more strange things from Rome; all tending to the good of their adversaries. Have you an army ready, say you?
' Dr. Johnson here remarks, that the word mankind is used maliciously by the first speaker, and taken perversely by the second. A mankind woman is a woman with the roughness of a man, and, in an aggravated sense, a woman ferocious, violent, and eager to shed blood. In this sense Sicinius asks Volumnia, if she be mankind. She takes mankind for a human creature, and accordingly cries out; "Note but this fool.-Was not a man my father?" i. e. cunning enough.
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