gates by the ears: He will mow down all before him, and leave his passage polled.?

2 Serv. And he's as like to do't, as any man I can imagine.

3 Serv. Do't? he will do't: For, look you, sir, he has as many friends as enemies: which friends, sir, (as it were,) durst not (look you, sir,) show themselves (as we term it,) his friends, whilst he's in directitude.

1 Serv. Directitude! what's that?

3 Serv. But when they shall see, sir, his crest up again, and the man in blood, they will out of their burrows, like conies after rain, and revel all with him.

1 Serv. But when goes this forward?

3 Serv. To-morrow; to-day; presently. You shall have the drum struck up this afternoon: 'tis, as it were, a parcel of their feast, and to be executed ere they wipe their lips.

2 Serv. Why, then we shall have a stirring world again. This peace is nothing, but to rust iron, increase tailors, and breed ballad-makers.

1 Serv. Let me have war, say I; it exceeds peace, as far as day does night; it's spritely, waking, audible, and full of vent. Peace is a very apoplexy, lethargy; mulled, deaf, sleepy, insensible; a getter of more bastard children, than wars a destroyer of men.

2 Serv. 'Tis so: and as wars, in some sort, may be said to be a ravisher; so it cannot be denied, but peace is a great maker of cuckolds.

9 He'll sowle the-] Skinner says this word is derived from sow, i. e. to take hold of a person by the ears, as a dog seizes one of these animals.

his passage polled.] That is, bared, cleared.

-full of vent.) Full of rumour, full of materials for discourse.

i-mulled,] i. e, softened and dispirited, as wine is when burnt and sweetened.

1 Serv. Ay, and it makes men hate one another.

3 Serv. Reason; because they then less need one another. The wars, for my money. I hope to see Romans as cheap as Volscians. They are rising, they are rising. All. In, in, in, in.



Rome. A publick Place.

Enter SICINIUS and BRUTUS. Sic. We hear not of him, neither need we fear him; His remedies are tame i' the present peace * And quietness o'the people, which before Were in wild hurry. Here do we make his friends Blush, that the world goes well; who rather had, Though they themselves did suffer by't, behold Dissentious numbers pestering streets, than see Our tradesmen singing in their shops, and going About their functions friendly.


Bru. We stood to't in good time. Is this Me

nenius? Sic. 'Tis he, 'tis he: 0, he is grown most kind Of late.—Hail, sir ! Men.

Hail to you both! ! Sic. Your Coriolanus, sir, is not much miss'd, But with his friends; the common-wealth doth stand; And so would do, were he more angry at it. Men. All's well; and might have been much

better, if

* His remedies are tame i the present peace] i, e. ineffectual in times of peace like these,

He could have temporiz’d.

Where is he, hear you? Men. Nay, I hear nothing; his mother and his

wife Hear nothing from him.

Enter Three or Four Citizens.

Cit. The gods preserve you both!

Good-e'en, our neighbours. Bru. Good e'en to you all, good e'en to you all. i Cit. Ourselves, our wives, and children; on

our knees, Are bound to



both. Sic.

Live, and thrive! Bru. Farewell, kind neighbours: We wish'd

Coriolanus Had lov'd


as we did. Cit.

Now the gods keep you! Both Tri. Farewell, farewell. [Exeunt Citizens.

Sic. This is a happier and more comely time,
T'han when these fellows ran about the streets,
Crying, Confusion.

Caius Marcius was
A worthy officer i’ the war; but insolent,
O'ercome with pride, ambitious past all thinking,

And affecting one sole throne,
Without assistance.5

I think not so.
Sic. We should by this, to all our lamentation,
If he had gone forth consul, found it so.

Bru. The gods have well prevented it, and Rome Sits safe and still without him.

affecting one sole throne, Without assistance.] That is, without assessors; without any other suffrage.

Enter Ædile.


Worthy tribunes, There is a slave, whom we have put in prison, Reports,—the Volces with two several powers Are enter'd in the Roman territories; And with the deepest malice of the war Destroy what lies before them. Men.

'Tis Aufidius,
Who, hearing of our Marcius' banishment,
Thrusts forth his horns again into the world;
Which were inshelld, when Marcius stood for

And durst not once peep out.

Come, what talk

you Of Marcius?

Bru. Go see this rumourer whipp'd.--It cannot be,
The Volces dare break with us.

Cannot be!
We have record, that very well it can;
And three examples of the like have been
Within my age. But reason with the fellow,?
Before you punish him, where he heard this:
Lest you shall chance to whip your information,
And beat the messenger who bids beware
Of what is to be dreaded.

Tell not me:
I know, this cannot be.

Not possible.

Enter a Messenger. Mess. The nobles, in great earnestness, are going All to the senate house: some news is come,



stood for Rome,] i. e. stood up in its defence.

reason with the fellow,] That is, have some talk with bim. In this sense Shakspeare often uses the word, VOL, VIT.


That turns their countenances.:

'Tis this slave;
Go whip him 'fore the people's eyes:-his raising!
Nothing but his report!

Yes, worthy sir,
The slave's report is seconded; and more,
More fearful, is deliver'd.

What more fearful?
Mess. It is spoke freely out of many mouths,
(How probable, I do not know,) that Marcius,
Join'd with Aufidius, leads a power 'gainst Rome;
And vows revenge as spacious, as between
The young'st and oldest thing.

This is most likely! Bru. Rais'd only, that the weaker sort may

wish Good Marcius home again. Sic.


trick on't.
Men. This is unlikely:
He and Aufidius can no more atone.
Than violentest contrariety.

Enter another Messenger.
Mess. You are sent for to the senate:
A fearful arıny, led by Caius Marcius,
Associated with Aufidius, rages
Upon our territories; and have already,
O'erborne their way, consum'd with fire, and took
What lay before them.

[ocr errors]

- some news is come, That turns their countenances.] i. e. that renders their aspect



can no more atone,] To atone, in the active sense, is to reconcile, and is so used by our author. To atone here, is in the neutral sense, to come to reconciliation. To atone is to unite.

« ElőzőTovább »