Page images
PDF
EPUB

Leave nothing out for length, and make us think,
Rather our state's defective for requital,
Then we do stretch it out. Masters o'the people,
We do request your kindest ears : and, after,
Your loving motion toward the common body,
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
A kinder value of the people, than
Ile hath hereto priz'd them at.
Men.

That's off, that's off,
I would you rather had been silent: Please you
To hear Coninius speak ?
Bru.

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

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

(Coriolanus rises, and offers to go away, 1 Sen. Sit, Coriolanus: never shame to hear What you have nobly done. Cor.

Your honours' pardon;
I had rather have my wounds to heal again,
Than bear say how I got them.
Bru.

Sir, I hope,
My words disbench'd you not.
Cor.

No, sir: yet oft,
When blows have made me stay, I fled from words.
You sooth'd not, therefore hurt not: But, your peo-

pie, I love them as they weigh. Men.

Pray now, sit down.

• Nothing to the purpose..

Cor. I had rather have one scratch my head i'the

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

[Erit Coriolanus. Men.

Masters o'the people, Your multiplying spawn how can he flatter (That's thousand to one good one), when you new see, He had rather venture all his limbs for honour, Than one of his ears to hear itt-Proceed, Cominius.

Com. I shall lack voice : the deeds of Coriolanus Should not be utter'd feebly.-It is held, That valour is the chiefest virtue, and Most dignifies the havert: 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 fought Beyond the mark of others : our then dictator, Whom with all praise I point at, saw him fight, When with his Amazonian chin f 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 feats, When he might act the woman in the scenell, He prov'd best man i'the field, and for his meedg 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 last, Before and in Corioli, let me say, I cannot speak him home: He stopp'd the fiers; And, by his rare example, made the coward Turn terror into sport: as waves before

# Summons to battle. + Possessor.

Without a beard. Ø Bearded. M Smooth-faced enough to act a woman's parts. Reward,

** Won.

A vessel under sail, so men obey'd,
And fell below his stem: his sword (death's stamp)
Where it did mark, it took ; from face to foot
He was a thing of blood, whose every motion*
Was timed t with dying cries : alone he enter'd
The mortal gate o'the city, which he painted
With shunless destiny, aidless came off,
Aud 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 spirit
Re-quicken’d what in fesh was fatigate f,
And to the battle came he; where he did
Run reeking o'er the lives of mep, as if
'T'were a perpetual spoil: and, till we call'd
Both field aud city ours, he never stood
To ease his breast with pauting.
Men.

Worthy man!
1 Sen. He cannot but with nieasure fit the honours
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 misery ♡ 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. OffHe doth appear.

Re-enter Coriolanus.

Men. The senate, Coriolanus, are well pleas'd
To make thee consul.
Cor.

I do owe them still
My life, and services.

# Stroke.

Wearied. VOL. VI.

+ Followed,

Avarice.
R

Men.

It then remaios,
That you do speak to the people.
Cor.

I do beseech you,
Let me o'erleap that custom; for I cannot
Put on the gown, stand naked, and entreat them,
For my wounds' sake, to give their suffrage : please

you,
That I may pass this doing.
Sic.

Sir, the people
Must have their voices; neither will they bate
One jot of ceremony.
Men.

Put them not to't:
Pray you, go fit you to the custom; and
Take to you, as your predecessors have,
Your honour with your form.
Cor.

It is a part
That I shall blush in acting, and might well
Be taken from the people.
Bru.

Mark you that?
Cor. To brag unto them,—Thus I did, aud thus;
Slow them the unaking scars which I should hide,
As if I had received them for the hire,
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 people. 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 kuow, they do attend us.

(Exeunt.

[blocks in formation]

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 vounds, 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 inoustrous 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 diversiy 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 oue 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 ano. ther man's will, 'tis strongly wedged up in a blockhead: but if it were at liberty, 'twould, sure, southward.

« PreviousContinue »