Imatges de pàgina

you refuse

He could not stay to pick them, in a pile
Of noisome musty chaff. He said, 'twas folly,
For one poor graip or two, to leave unburnt
And still to nose th' offence.

Men, For one poor grain
Or two ? I'm one of those : his mother, wife,
His child, and this brave fellow, 'we're the grains ;
You are the musty chaff, and you are smelt
Above the moon. We must be burnt for you.
Sic. Nay, pray be patient : if


In this so-never-needed help, yet do not
Upbraid's with our distress. But sure if you
Would be your country's pleader, your good tongue,
More than the instant army we can make,
Might stop our country-man.

Men. No: I'll not meddle.
Sit. Pray you go to him.
Men. Why ?, what should I do?

Bru. Only make tryal what your love can do
For Rome, tow'rds Martius,

Men. Well, and say that Martius
Return me, as Cominius is return'd,
Unheard, but as a discontented friend
Grief-thot with his unkindness : and what then ?

Sic. Say it be fo ; yet your good will, Menenius,
Must have the thanks of Rome after the measure
As you intended well.

Men, I'll undertake it :
I think he'll hear me. Yet to bite his lip,
And hum at good Cominius, much unhearts me.
He was not taken well, he had not din'd.
The veins unfilld, our blood is cold, and then
We powt upon the morning, are unapt
To give or to forgive ; but when we've ftuff 'd
These pipes, and these conveyances of blood.
With wine and feeding, we have fuppler souls

Than in our priest-like fasts : therefore I'll watch him
'Till he be dieted to my request,
And then I'll set upon him.

Bru. You know the very road into bis kindness, And cannot lose your way.


Men. Good faith, I'll prove him,
Speed how it will. : You shall ere long have knowledge
Of my success.

Cem. He'll never hear him.
Sic. Not?

Com. I tell you, he does fit in gold, his eye
Red as 'twould burn Rome ; and his injury
The goaler to his pity. I kneel'd before him,
'Twas very faintly he said, Rise : dismiss'd me
Thus with his speechless hand. What he would do,
He sent in writing after ; what he would not,
Bound with an oath, not yield to new conditions :
So that all hope is vain, unless from's mother
And wife, who (as I hear) mean to follicit bim
For mercy to his country : therefore let's hence,
And with our fair intreaties haste them on. Exeunt:

SCENE II. The Volscian Camp.

Enter Menenius to the Watch or Guard,
I Watch. Stay: whence are you?
2 Watcb. Stand, and go back.

Men. You guard like men, 'tis well. But by your leave
I am an officer of state, and come
To speak with Coriolanus.

1 Watch. Whence ?
Men. From Rome.

í Watch. You may not país, you must return : our Ge. Will no more hear from thence.

[neral 2 Watch. You'll see your Rome embrac'd with fire, before You'll speak with Coriolanus.

Men. Good
If you have heard your General talk of Rome,
And of his friends there, it is lots to blanks,
My name hath touch'd your ears ; it is Menenius,

1 Watch. Be it so, go back; the virtue of your name Is not here passable.

Men. I tell thee, fellow,
Thy General is my lover : I have been
. The book of his good acts, whence men have read

His fame unparallel'd haply amplified :
For I have ever magnified my friends,


my friends,

(Of whom he's chief) to all the fize that verity
Would without laphing fuffer : nay, sometimes,
Like to a bowl upon a subtle ground
I've tumbled past the throw ; and in his praise
Have, almoft, stamp'd the leasing. Therefore, fellow,
I must have leave to pass.

Watcb. 'Faith, Sir, if you had told as many lies in his behalf, as you have utter'd words in your own, you kould not pass here: no, though it were as virtuous to lie, as to live chaftly. Therefore go back.

Men. Prythee, fellow, remember my name is Menenius, always factionary of the party of your General.

2 Watcb. Howsoever you have been his liar, as you fay you have ; I am one that telling true under bim, must say you cannot pafs. Therefore go back.

Men. I am as thy General is.

Men. Has he din'd, canst thou tell for I would not spe.k with him 'till after dinner.

I Witcb. You are a Roman, are you?

I Watch. Then you should hate Rome, as he does. Can you, when you have push'd out of your gates the very defender of them, and in a violent popular ignorance, given your enemy your shield, think to front his revenges with the easie groans of old women, the virginal palms of your daughters, with the palfied intercession of such a decay'd dotard as you seem to be ? can you think to blow out the intended fire your city is ready to Aame in, with such weak breath as this? no, you are deceiv'd, therefore back to Rome, and prepare for your execution : you are condemnd, our General has sworn you out of reprieve and pardon.

Men. Sirrah, if thy Captain knew I were here, he would ufe me with estimation.

i Warcb. Come, my Captain knows you aot. Men. I mean thy General.

I Watch. My General cares not for you. Back, I say, go ; left I let forth your balf pint of blood, that's the use moft of your having ; back, back. Men. Nay, bit fellow, fellow,

Enter Ci riolanus with Aufidias, Cor. What's the matter ?


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Meń. Now, you companion, t'll fay an errand for you you shall know now that I am in estimation ; you preceive, that a jack-gardant camot office me from my son Coriolanus ; guess by my entertainment with him, if thoi ftand'At not i'th'state of hanging, or of some death more long in (peétatorship, and crueller in suffering ; behold now presently, and fwoon for what's to come upon thee.The glorious Gods fit in hourly fynod about thy particular prosperity, and love thee no worse than thy old father Men nenius does ! O my fon, my son! thou art preparing fire for us ; look thee, here's water to quench it. I was hardly mov'd to come to thee ; but being assured none but my self could move thee; I have been blown out of our gatti with fighs, and conjure thee to pardon Rome, and thy petitionary countrymen. The good Gods afswage thy wrach, and turn the dregs of it upon this varlet here ; this, who like a block hath denied my access to thee,

Cor. Away !
Men, How, away?

Cor. Wife, mother, child, I know not. My affaire
Are servanted to others : though I owe
My revenge properly, remiffion lyes
In Volscian breasts. That we have been familiar,
Ingrate forgetfulness shall prison, rather
Than pity note how much. Therefore be gone ;
Mine ears against your suits are stronger than
Your gates again{t my force. Yer for I loved thee,
Take this along; I writ it for thy fake, [Gives bim a letter,
And would have sent it. Another word, Menenius,
I will not hear thee speak. This man, Aufidius,
Was my belov'd in Rome ; yet thou beholdt
Auf. You keep a constant temper.

[Exeunt. Manent the Guard and Mencnius. i Watch. Now, Sir, is your name Menenius? 2 Watch. "Tis a spell you see of much power : you

know the way home again.

1 Watcb. Do you hear how we are fhent for keeping your Greatness back ?

2 Watch. What cause do you think I have to swoon? Men. I neither care for th' world, nor your General : Vol. VII.


for such things as you, I can scarce think there's any, y'are so Night. He that hath a will to die by himself, fears it not from another : let your General do his worst. For you, be what you are, long ! and your misery encrease with your age! I say to you, as I was said to, Away! (Exit, 1 Watch. A noble fellow, I warrant him.

2 Watch. The worthy fellow is our General. He's the rock, the oak not to be wind-shaken. [Ex. Watcb.


Re-enter Coriolanus and Aufidius.
. Cor. We will before the walls of Rome to-morrow
Set down our host. My partner in this action,
You must report to thi Volscian Lords how plainly
I've born this business.

Auf. Only their ends you have respected; stopt
Your ears againt the general suit of Rome :
Never admitted private whisper, no
Not with such friends that thought them sure of you.

Cor. This last old man,
Whom with a crack'd heart I have sent to Rome,
Lov'd me above the measure of a father :
Nay, Godded me indeed. Their latest refuge,
Was to send him:: for whose old love, I have
(Tho' I shew'd sow'rly to him) once more offer'd
The first conditions, which they did refuse,
And cannot now accept, to grace him only,
That thought he could do more : a very little
I'ye yielded to. Fresh emballie, and suits,
Nor for the state, nor private friends hereafter
Will I lend ear to.- Ha ! what fight is this?
Shall I be tempted to infringe my vow
In the same time 'tis made ? I will not
Enter Virgilia, Volumnia, Valeria, young Martius, witb

Attendants, all in Mourning.
My wife comes foremost, then the honour'd mould
Wherein this trunk was fram’d, and in her hand
The grand-child to her blood. But out, affection,
All bond and privilege of Nature break!
Let it be virtuous to be obstinate.
What is that surt'ne worth? or those dove's eyes,


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