Imatges de pÓgina
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All. Welcome!

CORIOLANUS.

1 Recall.

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Unshout the noise that banished Marcius,
Repeal1 him with the welcome of his mother:
Cry,-Welcome, ladies, welcome!-

We will meet them,

Enter the Ladies, accompanied by Senators, Patricians, and People. They pass over the stage.

1 Sen. Behold our patroness, the life of Rome. Call all your tribes together, praise the gods, And make triumphant fires; strew flowers before them;

[ACT V.

[Going.

Welcome, ladies! [A flourish with drums and trumpets. [Exeunt.

SCENE V. Antium. A public Place.

Enter TULLUS AUFIDIUS, with Attendants.

Auf. Go tell the lords of the city, I am here.
Deliver them this paper: having read it,
Bid them repair to the market-place; where I,
Even in theirs and in the commons' ears,
Will vouch the truth of it. Him I accuse,2
The city ports by this hath entered, and
Intends to appear before the people, hoping
To purge himself with words. Despatch.

3

[Exeunt Attendants Enter three or four Conspirators of Aufidius' faction. Most welcome!

1 Con. How is it with our general ?
Auf.

As with a man by his own alms empoisoned,
And with his charity slain.

2 Con.
If you do hold the same intent wherein

2 i. e. he whom I accuse.

Most noble sir,

Even so,

3 Ports are gates.

SC. V.]

You wished us parties, we'll deliver
Of your great danger.

CORIOLANUS.

you

Sir, I cannot tell;

Auf. We must proceed as we do find the people. 3 Con. The people will remain uncertain, whilst 'Twixt you there's difference; but the fall of either Makes the survivor heir of all.

Auf.

I know it:
And my pretext to strike at him admits
A good construction. I raised him, and I pawned
Mine honor for his truth; who being so heightened,
He watered his new plants with dews of flattery,
Seducing so my friends; and, to this end,
He bowed his nature, never known before
But to be rough, unswayable, and free.

3 Con. Sir, his stoutness,

When he did stand for consul, which he lost
By lack of stooping,

Auf.

That I would have spoke of.
Being banished for't, he came unto my hearth;
Presented to my knife his throat. I took him;
Made him joint servant with me; gave him way
In all his own desires; nay, let him choose
Out of my files, his projects to accomplish,
My best and freshest men; served his designments
In mine own person; holp to reap the fame,
Which he did end all his; and took some pride
To do myself this wrong: till, at the last,
I seemed his follower, not partner; and
He waged me with his countenance,' as if
I had been mercenary.

567

1 Con.

The army marvelled at it.
When he had carried Rome; and that we looked
For no less spoil, than glory,

Auf.

There was it;

So he did, my lord;
And, in the last,

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1 The verb to wage was formerly in general use for to stipend, to reward. The meaning is, "The countenance he gave me was a kind of wages."

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568

[ACT V.

For which my sinews shall be stretched upon him.1
At a few drops of women's rheum, which are
As cheap as lies, he sold the blood and labor
Of our great action; therefore shall he die,
And I'll renew me in his fall. But, hark!

CORIOLANUS.

[Drums and trumpets sound, with great shouts of the people.

1 Con. Your native town you entered like a post, And had no welcomes home; but he returns, Splitting the air with noise.

2 Con.

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And patient fools, Whose children he hath slain, their base throats tear, With giving him glory.

3 Con.

Auf.

Here come the lords.

Therefore, at your vantage, Ere he express himself, or move the people With what he would say, let him feel your sword, Which we will second. When he lies along, After your way his tale pronounced, shall bury His reasons with his body.

Say no more;

Enter the Lords of the city.

Lords. You are most welcome home.
Auf.

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But, worthy lords, have you with heed perused
What I have written to you?

Lords.

I have not deserved it.

We have.

1 Lord. And grieve to hear it. What faults he made before the last, I think, Might have found easy fines; but there to end Where he was to begin; and give away The benefit of our levies, answering us With our own charge; 2 making a treaty, where There was a yielding; this admits no excuse. Auf. He approaches; you shall hear him.

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1 "This is the point on which I will attack him with all my energy.' 2 "Rewarding us with our own expenses, making the cost of the war its recompense.'

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Enter CORIOLANUS, with drums and colors; a crowd of Citizens with him.

Cor. Traitor!-How now?

Auf.

Cor.

Cor. Hail, lords! I am returned your soldier;
No more infected with my country's love,
Than when I parted hence, but still subsisting
Under your great command. You are to know,
That prosperously I have attempted, and
With bloody passage, led your wars, even to
The gates of Rome. Our spoils we have brought home,
Do more than counterpoise, a full third part,
The charges of the action. We have made peace
With no less honor to the Antiates,

Than shame to the Romans. And we here deliver,
Subscribed by the consuls and patricians,
Together with the seal o'the senate, what
We have compounded on.

72

569

Auf.

Read it not, noble lords;
But tell the traitor, in the highest degree
He hath abused your powers.

Ay, traitor, Marcius.

Marcius!

I'll

Auf. Ay, Marcius, Caius Marcius. Dost thou think grace thee with that robbery, thy stolen name Coriolanus in Corioli ?—

You lords and heads of the state, perfidiously
He has betrayed your business, and given up,
For certain drops of salt, your city Rome,
(I say, your city,) to his wife and mother;
Breaking his oath and resolution, like
A twist of rotten silk; never admitting
Counsel o' the war; but at his nurse's tears
He whined and roared away your victory;
That pages blushed at him, and men of heart
Looked wondering each at other.

Cor.

Hear'st thou, Mars?
Auf Name not the god, thou boy of tears,-
Cor.

Ha!

VOL. V.

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Auf. No more.1

Cor. Measureless liar, thou hast made my heart. Too great for what contains it. Boy! O slave!Pardon me, lords, 'tis the first time that ever I was forced to scold. Your judgments, my grave lords, Must give this cur the lie; and his own notion (Who wears my stripes impressed on him; that must bear

My beating to his grave) shall join to thrust
The lie unto him.

1 Lord.

Peace, both, and hear me speak.
Cor. Cut me to pieces, Volces; men and lads,
Stain all your edges on me.-Boy! False hound!
If you have writ your annals true, 'tis there,
That, like an eagle in a dovecote, I
Fluttered your Volces in Corioli:
Alone I did it.—Boy!

[ACT V.

Auf.

Why, noble lords,
Will you be put in mind of his blind fortune,
Which was your shame, by this unholy braggart,
'Fore your own eyes and ears?

Con. Let him die for't.

[Several speak at once. Cit. [Speaking promiscuously.] Tear him to pieces; do it presently. He killed my son ;-my daughter; He killed my cousin Marcus;-He killed my father!2 Lord. Peace, ho;-no outrage;-peace. The man is noble, and his fame folds in

2

3

This orb o'the earth. His last offence to us
Shall have judicious hearing.-Stand, Aufidius,
And trouble not the peace.

Cor.
O that I had him,
With six Aufidiuses, or more, his tribe,
To use my lawful sword!

Auf.

Insolent villain!

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1 This must be considered as continuing the former speech of Aufidius; he means to tell Coriolanus that he was "no more than a boy of tears."

2 "His fame overspreads the world.”

3 "Judicious, in the present instance, means judicial; it appears from Bullokar's Expositor that the words were convertible."

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