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SCENE II.-The same. The Capitol.

Enter Two Officers, to lay cushions. . 1 Off. Come, come, they are almost here: How many stand for consulships ?

2 Of Three, they say: but 't is thought of every one Coriolanus will carry it.

1 Off. That 's a brave fellow; but he 's vengeance proud, and loves not the common people.

2 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 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 it.

i 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 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.

2 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 further deed to have them at all a Bonneted. Othello says

My demerits

May speak, unbonneted." This is clearly without the bonnet. But in the text before us we are told that bonneted also means without the bonnet. Malone

They humbly took off their bonnets without any farther deed." The context appears to us to give exactly the contrary meaning : “ His ascent is not by such easy degrees as those who, having been supple and courteous to the people," put on their bonnets “ without any further deed.”.


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, giving itself the lie, would pluck reproof and rebuke from every ear that heard it.

1 Off. No more of him : he is a worthy man: Make way, they are coming. A Sennet. Enter, with Lictors before them, COMINIUS

the Consul, Menenius, CORIOLANUS, many other Senators, SICINIUS and BRUTUS. The Senators take their places; the Tribunes take theirs also by themselves.

Men. Having determind of the Volces,
And to send for Titus Lartius, it remains,
As the main point of this our after-meeting,
To gratify his noble service, that hath
Thus stood for his country : Therefore, please you,
Most reverend and grave elders, to desire
The present consul, and last general
In our well-found successes, to report
A little of that worthy work perform'd
By Caius Marcius Coriolanus; whom
We meet here, both to thank, and to remember
With honours like himself.
1 Sen.

Speak, good Cominius :
Leave nothing out for length, and make us think,
Rather our state 's defective for requital,
Than we to 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.

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 bless'd to do, if he remember
A kinder value of the people than
He hath hereto priz'd them at.

That 's off, that 's ofl ;*
I would you rather had been silent: Please you
To hear Cominius speak ?

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

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 hear say how I got them.

Sir, I hope
My words dis-bench'd you not.

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

Exit Cor. Men.

Masters o' the people, Your multiplying spawn how can be flatter, (That is thousand to one good one,) when you now see He had rather venture all his limbs for honour, Than one of his ears to hear it ?—Proceed, Cominius.

Com. I shall lack voice : the deeds of Coriolanus Should not be utter'd feebly.-It is held

* That's off-that is nothing to the matter. VOL. X.


That valour is the chiefest virtue,
And most dignifies the haver : 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 he drove
The bristled lips before him : he bestrid
An o’erpress'd Roman, and i' the consul's view
Slew three

opposers : : Tarquin's self he met,
And struck him on his knee :a in that day's feats,
When he might act the woman in the scene,
He prov'd best man i’ the field, and for his meed
Was brow-bound with the oak. His pupil age
Man-enter'd thus, he waxed like a sea;
And, in the brunt of seventeen battles since,
He lurch'd b all swords o' the garland. For this last,
Before and in Corioli, let me say
I cannot speak him home: He stopp'd the fliers ;
And by his rare example made the coward
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),
Where it did nark, it took ; from face to foot
He was a thing of blood, whose every motion
Was tim'd with dying cries : alone he enter'd
The mortal gate o' the city, which he painted
With shunless destiny, aidless came off,
And with a sudden re-enforcement struck
Corioli like a planet: Now all 's his :
When hy and by the din of war 'gan pierce
His ready sense, then straight his doubled spirit
Re-quicken'd what in flesh was fatigate,

a On his knee-down on his knee.

b Lurch'd. The term is, or was, used in some game of cards, in which a complete and easy victory is called a lurch,

And to the battle came he; where he did
Run reeking o'er the lives of men, as if
'T were a perpetual spoil: and, till we call'd
Both field and city ours, he never stood
To ease his breast with panting.

Worthy man!
1 Sen. He cannot but with measure fit the honours
Which we devise him.

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.

He's right noble;
Let him be call'd for.
1 Sen.

Call Coriolanus.
Off. He doth appear.

· Re-enter CORIOLANUS.
Men. The senate, Coriolanus, are well pleas'd
To make thee consul.

I do owe them still
My life and services.

It then remains
That you do speak to the people.

Cor. Let me oʻerleap that.custom ; for I cannot Put on the gown, stand naked, and entreat them, For my wounds sake, to give their suffrage : please

That I may pass this doing.

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

Put them not to 't:-
Pray you, go fit you to the custom;

I do beseech you,

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