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DRAMATIS PERSONÆ. CAIUS MARCIUS, afterwards TULLUS AUFIDIUS, general of
CAIUS MARCIUS CORIOLANUS, the Volscians. a noble Roman.
Lieutenant to Aufidius. TITUS LARTIUS, generals against Conspirators with Aufidius. COMINIUS, the Volscians. A Citizen of Antium. MENENIUS AGRIPPA, friend to Two Volscian Guards.
Coriolanus. SICINIUS VELUTUS, tribunes of VOLUMNIA, mother to Coriolanus. JUNIUS BRUTUS, the people. VIRGILIA, wife to Coriolanus. Young MARCIUS, son to Corio- VALERIA, friend to Virgilia. lanus.
Gentlewoman attending on VirA Roman Herald.
gilia. Roman and Volscian Senators, Patricians, Ædiles, Lictors, Soldiers, Citizens, Messengers, Servants to Aufidius, and other Attendants. SCENE - Partly Rome and its neighbourhood; partly Corioli and
its neighbourhood; and partly Antium.
Enter a company of mutinous Citizens, with staves, clubs, and
other weapons. First Cit. Before we proceed any further, hear me speak. Citizens. Speak, speak. First Cit. You are all resolved rather to die than to famish? Citizens. Resolved, resolved. First Cit. First, you know Caius Marcius is chief
enemy to the people.
1 Shakespeare, T,
Citizens. We know't, we know't.
First Cit. Let us kill him, and we'll have corn at our own price. Is't a verdict?
Citizens. No more talking on't; let it be done: away, away!
Sec. Cit. One word, good citizens.
First Cit. We are accounted poor citizens; the patricians, good. What authority surfeits on would relieve us: if they would yield us but the superfluity, while it were wholesome, we might guess they relieved us humanely; but they think we are too dear: the leanness that afflicts us, the object of our misery, is as an inventory to particularize their abundance; our sufferance is a gain to them.
Let us revenge this with our pikes, ere we become rakes: for the gods know I speak this in hunger for bread, not in thirst for revenge. Sec. Cit
. Would you proceed especially against Caius Marcius?
Citizens. Against him first: he's a very dog to the commonalty.
Sec. Cit. Consider you what services he has done for his country?
First Cit. Very well; and could be content to give him good report for't, but that he pays himself with being proud.
Sec. Cit. Nay, but speak not maliciously.
First Cit. I say unto you, what he hath done famously, he did it to that end: though soft-conscienced men can be content to say it was for his country, he did it to please his mother, and to be partly proud; which he is, even to the altitude of his virtue.
Sec. Cit. What he cannot help in his nature, you account a vice in him. You must in no way say he is covetous.
First Cit. If I must not, I need not be barren of accusations; he hath faults, with surplus, to tire in repetition. [Shouts within.] What shouts are these? The other side o' the city is risen: why stay we prating here? to the Capitol!