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I'll grace thee with that robbery, thy stol’n name
Coriolanus in Corioli?
You lords and heads of the state, perfidiously
He has betray'd 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 whin'd and roar'd away your victory,
That pages blush'd at him, and men of heart
Look'd wondering each at other.

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

Ha! Auf. No more.

Cor. Measureless har, thou hast made my heart Too great for what contains it. Boy! O slave! Pardon me, lords, 't is the first time that ever I was forc'd to scold. Your judgments, my grave lords, Must give this cur the lie: and his own notion (Who wears my stripes impress’d upon 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, Volsces; men and lads,
Stain all your edges on me.-Boy ! False hound!
If you have writ your annals true, 't is there,
That like an eagle in a dove-cote, I
Flutter'd your Volscians in Corioli:
Alone I did it.—Boy !

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?

All Con. Let him die for it.
All People. 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
This orb o' the earth. His last offences to us
Shall have judicious hearing.–Stand, Aufidius,
And trouble not the peace.


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

Insolent villain ! All Con. Kill, kill, kill, kill, kill him ! [AUFIDIUS and the Conspirators draw, and kill Co

RIOLANUS, who falls : AUFIDIUS stands on him. Lords.

Hold, hold, hold, hold ! Auf. My noble masters, hear me speak. 1 Lord.

O Tullus ! 2 Lord. Thou hast done a deed whereat valour will

weep. 3 Lord. *Tread not upon him.-Masters all, be

quiet.Put up your swords.

Auf. My lords, when you shall know (as in this rage,
Provok'd by him, you cannot) the great danger
Which this man's life did owe you, you 'll rejoice
That he is thus cut off. Please it your honours
To call me to your senate, I'll deliver
Myself your loyal servant, or endure
Your heaviest censure.
1 Lord.

Bear from hence his body,
And mourn you for him. Let him be regarded,
As the most noble corse that ever herald
Did follow to his urn.
2 Lord.

His own impatience
Takes from Aufidius a great part of blame.
Let's make the best of it.

My rage is gone,
And I am struck with sorrow.-Take him up :-
Help, three o' the chiefest soldiers ; I'll be one.-
Beat thou the drum, that it speak mournfully;
Trail your steel spikes.—Though in this city he
Hath widow'd and unchilded many a one,
Which to this hour bewail the injury,
Yet he shall have a noble memory.-
Assist. [Exeunt, bearing the Body of CORIOLANUS.

A dead March, while they pass round the Stage.

1 The rest of this stage direction is not in f. e.


The most lamentable Romaine Tragedie of Titus Andronicus. As it hath sundry times beene playde by the Right Honourable the Earle of Pembrooke, the Earle of Darbie, the Earle of Sussex, and the Lorde Chamberlaine theyr Sernants. At London, Printed by I. R. for Edward White, and are to bee solde a: his shoppe, at the little North doore of Paules, at the signe

the Gun. 1600. 4to. 40 leaves. The most lamentable Tragedie of Titus Andronicus. As it hath sundry times becne plaide by the Kings Maiesties Seruants. London, Printed for Eedward White, and are to be solde at his shoppe, nere the little North dore of Pauls, at the signe of the Gun. 1611. 4to. 40 leaves.

In the folio of 1623, “ The Lamentable Tragedy of Titus Andronicus” occupies twenty-two pages, in the division of “ Tragedies," viz. from p. 31 to p. 52 inclusive. The three later folios, of course, insert it in the same part of the volume.

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WE feel no hesitation in assigning “Titus Andronicus” to Shakespeare. Whether he may lay claim to it as the author of the entire tragedy, or only in a qualified sense, as having made additions to, and improvements in it, is a different and a more difficult question.

We find it given to him by his contemporary, Francis Meres, in his Palludis Tamia, 1598, where he mentions “ Titus Andronicus” in immediate connection with “Richard II.,'' “Richard III.," “Henry IV.," " King John,” and “Romeo and Juliet." It was also inserted in the folio of 1623 by Shakespeare's fellow-actors, Heminge and Condell, and they place it between “ Coriolanus” and “Romeo and Juliet." Had it not been by our great dramatist, Meres, who was well acquainted with the literature of his time, would not have attributed it to him; and the player-editors, who had been Shakespeare's “ fellows and friends," and were men of character and experience, would not have included it in their volume. These two facts are, in our view, sufficienta.

It was, undoubtedly, one of his earliest, if not his very earliest dramatic production. We are not to suppose that at the time he first joined a theatrical company in London, when he might not be more than twenty-two or twenty-three years old, his style was as formed and as matured as it afterwards became : all are aware that there is a most marked distinction between his mode of composition early and late in life; as exhibited, for instance, in “Love's Labour's Lost,” and in “The Winter's Tale ;” and we apprehend that “ Titus Andronicus" belongs to a period even anterior to the former. Supposing • Titus Andronicus” to have been written about 1588, we are to recollect that our dramatic poets were then only beginning to throw off the shackles of rhyme, and their versification partook of the weight and monotony which were the usual accompaniments of couplets. “Titus Andronicus” is to be read under this impression, and many passages will then be found in it which, we think, are remarkable indications of skill and

1 We consider Ravenscroft's testimony, in his alteration of " Titus Andronicus," (acted about 1073, and printed nine years afterwards) of

very little value : in his suppressed Prologue he asserted it to be the unquestionable work of Shakespeare, while in his preface to the printed copy in 1687, he mentions it as a stage-tradition, that Shakespeare only, gavę some master-touches to one or two of the principal characters."

Vol. VI.-18

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