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Would the nobility lay aside their ruth,
And let me use my sword, I'd make a quarry
With thousands of these quarter'd slaves, as high
As I could pick? my

lance. Menenius. Nay, these are almost thoroughly per

suaded; For though abundantly they lack discretion, Yet are they passing cowardly. But, I beseech you, What


the other troop? Marcius.

They are dissolved: Hang 'em! They said they were an hungry; sigh'd forth proverbs; That, hunger broke stone walls; that, dogs must eat; That, meat was made for mouths; that, the gods sent

not Corn for the rich men only :-With these shreds They vented their complainings; which, being answer'd, And a petition granted them, a strange one, (To break the heart of generosity, And make bold power look pale,) they threw their caps, As they would hang them on the horns o' the moon, Shouting their emulation.2 Menenius.

What is granted them ? Marcius. Five tribunes to defend their vulgarwisdoms, Of their own choice: One's Junius Brutus, Sicinius Velutus, and I know not—'Sdeath! The rabble should have first unroof'd the city, Ere so prevailid with me: it will in time Win upon power, and throw forth greater themes For insurrection's arguing. Menenius.

This is strange. Marcius. Go, get you home, you fragments!

Enter a MESSENGER. Messenger. Where's Caius Marcius? Marcius.

Here, what's the matter? Messenger. Th news is, sir, the Volces are in arms, 8 Pity, compassion.

9 Heap of dead. I Pitch.

2 Faction.

Marcius. I am glad on't, then we shall have means

to vent Our musty superfluity :—See, our best elders.


JUNIUS BRUTUS, and SICINIUS VELUTUS. 1 Senator. Marcius, 'tis true, that you have lately

told us:
The Volces are in arms.

They have a leader,
Tullus Aufidius, that will put you to't.
I sin in envying his nobility:
And were I any thing but what I am,
I would wish me only he.

You have fought together. Marcius. Were half to half the world by the ears,

and he Upon my party, I'd revolt to make Only my wars with him: he is a lion That I am proud to hunt. 1 Senator.

Then, worthy Marcius,
Attend upon Cominius to these wars.

Cominius. It is your former promise.

Sir, it is;
And I am constant.-—Titus Lartius, thou
Shalt see me once more strike at Tullus' face:
What, art thou stiff? stand’st out?

No, Caius Marcius,
I'll lean upon one crutch, and fight with the other,
Ere stay behind this business.

O, true bred! 1 Senator. Your company to the Capitol; where, I

Our greatest friends attend us.

Follow, Cominius; we must follow you;
Right worthy your priority.

Noble Lartius!

you on:

1 Senator. Hence! To your homes, be gone.

[To the CITIZENS. Marcius

Nay, let them follow: The Volces have much corn; take these rats thither, To gnaw their garners:8_Worshipful mutineers, Your valour puts well forth: pray, follow.


and MENENIUS. CITIZENS steal away. Sicinius. Was ever man so proud as is this Marcius? Brutus. He has no equal. Sicinius. When we were chosen tribunes for the

people, Brutus. Mark'd you his lip, and eyes? Sicinius.

Nay, but his taunts. Brutus. Being mov'd, he will not spare to gird* the

gods. Sicinius. Bemock the modest moon.

Brutus. The present wars devour him: he is grown
Too proud to be so valiant.

Such a nature,
Tickled with good success, disdains the shadow
Which he treads on at noon: But I do wonder,
His insolence can brook to be commanded
Under Cominius.

Fame, at the which he aims,-
In whom already he is well grac'd,-cannot
Better be held, nor more attain'd than by
A place below the first: for what miscarries
Shall be the general's fault, though he perform
To the utmost of a man; and giddy censure
Will then cry out of Marcius, 0, if he
Had borne the business !

Besides, if things go well,
Opinion, that so sticks on Marcius, shall
Of his demerits 5 rob Cominius.

Come: Half all Cominius' honours are to Marcius, 3 Granaries.

4 Sneer. 5 Demerits and merits had anciently the same meaning. VOL. y.

Though Marcius earn’d them not; and all his faults
To Marcius shall be honours, though, indeed,
In aught he merit not.

Let's hence, and hear
How the despatch is made; and in what fashion,
More than in singularity, he goes
Upon his present action.

Let's along


SCENE II.-CORIOLI. The Senate-House.

1 Senator. So, your opinion is, Aufidius,
That they of Rome are enter'd in our counsels,
And know how we proceed.

Is it not yours?
What ever hath been thought on in this state,
That could be brought to bodily act, ere Rome
Had circumvention? 'Tis not four days gone,
Since I heard thence; these are the words: I think,
I have the letter here; yes, here it is: [Reads.
They have press'd a power, but it is not known
Whether for east, or west: The dearth is great;
The people mutinous; and it is rumour'd,
Cominíus, Marcius, your old enemy,
(Who is of Rome worse hated than of you,)
And Titus Lartius, a most valiant Roman,
These three lead on this preparation
Whither 'tis bent; most likely, 'tis for you:
Consider of it.

1 Senator. Our army's in the field: We never yet made doubt but Rome was ready To answer us.

Aufidius. Nor did you think it folly, To keep your great pretences veil’d, till when They needs must show themselves; which, in the hatching, It seem'd, appear'd to Rome. By the discovery, We shall be shorten’d in our aim; which was,

you to

To take in 6 many towns, ere, almost, Rome
Should know we were afoot.
2 Senator.

Noble Aufidius,
commission; hie your

Let us alone to guard Corioli:
If they set down before us, for the remove
Bring up your army; but, I think, you'll find
They have not prepar'd for us.

O, doubt not that;
I speak from certainties. Nay, more,
Some parcels of their powers are forth already,
And only hitherward. I leave your

If we and Caius Marcius chance to meet,
'Tis sworn between us, we shall never strike
Till one can do no more.

The gods assist you! Aufidius. And keep your honours safe! 1 Senator.

Farewell. 2 Senator.

Farewell. All. Farewell.



An Apartment in MARCIUS'

Enter VOLUMNIA and VIRGILIA: They sit down on two

low Stools, and sew. Volumnio. I pray you, daughter, sing; or express yourself in a more comfortable sort: If my son were my husband, I should freelier rejoice in that absence wherein he won honour, than in the embracements where he would show most love. When yet he was but tenderbodied, and was my only son; when youth with comeliness plucked all gaze his way; when for a day of kings' entreaties, a mother should not sell him an hour from her beholding; 1,—considering how honour would become such a person; that it was no better than picturelike to hang by the wall, if renown made it not stir,was pleased to let him seek danger where he was like to

6 To subdue.

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