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They have chose a consul that will from them take
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,
Which most 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 Sic.

election on him.

Say, you chose him

More after our commandment than as guided
By your own true affections; and that your minds,
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 springs of: The noble house o' the Marcians, from whence

came

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;

227. enforce, lay stress upon. 239. affections, inclinations.

230

240

250

And nobly named, so twice being Censor,
Was his great ancestor.

One thus descended,

Sic.
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:

And presently, when you have drawn your number, 260

Repair to the Capitol.

All.

Repent in their election.

Bru.

We will so almost all

[Exeunt Citizens.

Let them go on;

This mutiny were better put in hazard,
Than stay, past doubt, for greater :

If, as his nature is, he fall in rage

With their refusal, both observe and answer
The vantage of his anger.

To the Capitol, come:

Sic.
We will be there before the stream o' the people;
And this shall seem, as partly 'tis, their own,
Which we have goaded onward.

251. Many emendations have been suggested, and the Camb. edd. reconstruct the sentence, making two lines of it. Prof. Littledale proposes a comma at

[Exeunt. 270

'being,' which gives a harsh, but possible, sense. His ancestor was a Censorinus.

256. Scaling, weighing. 259. putting on, instigation.

Cornets.

ACT III.

SCENE I. Rome. A street.

Enter CORIOLANUS, MENENIUS, all the Gentry, COMINIUS, TITUS LARTIUS, and other Senators.

Cor. Tullus Aufidius then had made new head? Lart. He had, my lord; and that it was which caused

Our swifter composition.

Cor. So then the Volsces stand but as at first, Ready, when time shall prompt them, to make road Upon's again.

Com.

That we shall hardly in our ages see

They are worn, lord consul, so,

Saw you Aufidius ?

Their banners wave again.

Cor.

Lart. On safe-guard he came to me; and did

curse

Against the Volsces, for they had so vilely
Yielded the town: he is retired to Antium.
Cor. Spoke he of me?

Lart.

Cor.

He did, my lord.

How? what?

Lart. How often he had met you, sword to

sword;

That of all things upon the earth he hated

Your person most; that he would pawn his fortunes To hopeless restitution, so he might

Be call'd your vanquisher.

6. worn, worn out.

ΤΟ

Cor.

Lart. At Antium.

At Antium lives he?

Cor. I wish I had a cause to seek him there, To oppose his hatred fully. Welcome home.

Enter SICINIUS and BRUTUS.

Behold, these are the tribunes of the people,
The tongues o' the common mouth: I do despise
them;

For they do prank them in authority,

Against all noble sufferance.

Sic.

Cor. Ha! what is that?

Pass no further.

Bru. It will be dangerous to go on: no further.
Cor. What makes this change?

Men. The matter?

Com. Hath he not pass'd the noble and the

common?

Bru. Cominius, no.

Cor.

20

[blocks in formation]

First Sen. Tribunes, give way; he shall to the

market-place.

Bru. The people are incensed against him.
Sic.

Or all will fall in broil.

Cor.

Stop,

Are these your herd?

Must these have voices, that can yield them now And straight disclaim their tongues? What are

your offices?

You being their mouths, why rule you not their

teeth?

Have you not set them on?

Men.

Be calm, be calm.

Cor. It is a purposed thing, and grows by plot,

To curb the will of the nobility:

Suffer 't, and live with such as cannot rule

Nor ever will be ruled.

Bru.

Call 't not a plot :

The people cry you mock'd them; and of late,
When corn was given them gratis, you repined;
Scandal'd the suppliants for the people, call'd
them

Time-pleasers, flatterers, foes to nobleness.
Cor. Why, this was known before.
Bru.

Not to them all.

Cor. Have you inform'd them sithence?
Bru.

How! I inform them!

Not unlike,

Com. You are like to do such business.
Bru.

Each way, to better yours.

Cor. Why then should I be consul? By yond clouds,

Let me deserve so ill as you, and make me

Your fellow tribune.

Sic.

You show too much of that

For which the people stir: if you will pass

To where you are bound, you must inquire your

way,

Which you are out of, with a gentler spirit,

Or never be so noble as a consul,

Nor yoke with him for tribune.

Men.

Let's be calm.

This

Com. The people are abused; set on.

paltering

Becomes not Rome, nor has Coriolanus

Deserved this so dishonour'd rub, laid falsely

I' the plain way of his merit.

Cor.

Tell me of corn!

This was my speech, and I will speak 't again

Men. Not now, not now.

58. abused, deceived.

60. rub, check (properly, at

50

6a

bowls, an impediment which de flected the bowl from its course).

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