« PreviousContinue »
Than camels in the war, who have their provand
For sinking under them.
This, as you say, suggested
As to set dogs on sheep-will be his fire
To kindle their dry stubble; and their blaze
Enter a Messenger.
What's the matter?
Mess. You are sent for to the Capitol. 'Tis
That Marcius shall be consul:
I have seen the dumb men throng to see him and
Ladies and maids their scarfs and handkerchers,
Upon him as he pass'd: the nobles bended,
As to Jove's statue, and the commons made
A shower and thunder with their caps and shouts :
Let's to the Capitol;
And carry with us ears and eyes for the time,
But hearts for the event.
Have with you. [Exeunt.
Enter two Officers, to lay cushions.
First Off. Come, come, they are almost here. How many stand for consulships?
267. provand, provender.
Sec. Off Three, they say: but 'tis thought of every one Coriolanus will carry it.
First Off. That's a brave fellow; but he's vengeance proud, and loves not the common people.
Sec. Off Faith, there have been many great men that have flattered the people, who ne'er loved them; and there be many that they have 10 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 lets them plainly see 't.
First 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 20 their hate with greater devotion than they can render it 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.
Sec. 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, bonneted, without any 30 further deed to have them at all into their estimation and report: but he hath so planted 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,
19. he waved, he would wave.
30. bonneted, saluted.
giving itself the lie, would pluck reproof and rebuke from every ear that heard it.
First Off. No more of him; he's a worthy man: make way, they are coming.
A sennet. Enter, with Lictors before them,
As the main point of this our after-meeting,
Hath thus stood for his country: therefore, please
Most reverend and grave elders, to desire
The present consul, and last general
By Caius Marcius Coriolanus, whom
We met here both to thank and to remember
Speak, good Cominius:
Leave nothing out for length, and make us think
Than we to stretch it out. [To the Tribunes]
We do request your kindest ears, and after,
To yield what passes here.
We are convented
Upon a pleasing treaty, and have hearts.
Inclinable to honour and advance
The theme of our assembly.
Which the rather
We shall be blest to do, if he remember
That's off, that's off;
I would you rather had been silent.
He loves your people;
But yet my caution was more pertinent
But tie him not to be their bedfellow.
Worthy Cominius, speak. [Coriolanus offers to go away.] Nay, keep your place.
First Sen. Sit, Coriolanus; never shame to hear What you have nobly done.
Your honours' pardon:
I had rather have my wounds to heal again
Than hear say how I got them.
My words disbench'd you not.
Sir, I hope
No, sir: yet oft,
Cor. When blows have made me stay, I fled from words. You soothed not, therefore hurt not: but your
I love them as they weigh.
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.
Your multiplying spawn how can he flatterThat's thousand to one good one-when you now
He had rather venture all his limbs for honour
Than one on 's ears to hear it? Proceed, Cominius.
Com. I shall lack voice: the deeds of Coriolanus
That valour is the chiefest virtue, and
The man I speak of cannot in the world
Be singly counterpoised. At sixteen years,
And in the brunt of seventeen battles since
He lurch'd all swords of the garland. For this last,
I cannot speak him home: he stopp'd the fliers ;
Turn terror into sport: as weeds before
A vessel under sail, so men obey'd
And fell below his stem: his sword, death's stamp,
who entered it alone,-in the thought of those who looked
116. shunless, inevitable,