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As cheap as lies, he sold the blood and labour
[Drums and trumpets sound, with great
shouts of the people. 1 Con. Your native town you enter'd like a post, And had no welcomes home; but he returns, Splitting the air with noise. 2 Con.
And patient fools, Whose children he hath slain, their base throats
tear, With giving him glory., 3 Con.
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 pronounc'd shall bury His
reasons with his body. Auf
Say no more; Here come the lords.
Enter the Lords of the city. Lords. You are most welcome home. Auf
I have not desery'd it. But, worthy lords, have you with heed perus'd What I have written to you? Lords.
We have. 1 Lord.
And grieve to hear it. What faults he made before the last, I think, Might have found easy finés : but there to end, Where he was to begin ; and give away The benefit of our levies, answering us With our own charge;' making a treaty, where There was a yielding; This admits no excuse.
Auf. He approaches, you shall hear him. Enter Coriolanus, with drums and colours; a
crowd of Citizens with him. Cor. Hail, lords! I am returned your soldier; (1) Rewarding us with our own expenses
No more infected with my country's love,
We have made peace, With no less honour to the Antiates, Than shame to the Romans : And we here deliver, Subscrib'd by the consuls and patricians, Together with the seal o’the senate, what We have compounded on. Auf
Read it not, noble lords ;
Cor. Traitor-How now?
Ay, traitor, Marcius. Cor.
Marcius! Auf. Ay, Marcius, Caius Marcius ; Dost thou
think 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,2 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. Cor.
Hear'st thou, Mars? Auf Name not the god, thou boy of tears, -Cor.
(1) People of Antium.
(2) Drops of tears.
Auf. No more.
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 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 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, Voices; men and fads, Stain all your edges on me.--Boy! False hound!
you have writ your annals true, 'tis there,
Why, noble lords,
[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.
O, that I had him,
Insolent villain !
(1) No more than a boy of tears. (2) His fame overspreads the world. (3) Judicial.
Con. Kill, kill, kill, kill, kill him.
(Aufidius and the Conspirators draw, and
kill Coriolanus, who falls, and 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
3 Lord. Tread not upon him.-Masters all, be
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,
His own impatience
gone, And I am struck with sorrow.-- Take him up: Help, three of the chiefest soldiers ; I'll be one. Beat thou the drum, that it speak mournfully: Trail your steel pikes.--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 sounded.
The tragedy of Coriolanus is one of the most amusing of our author's performances. The old man's merriment in Menenius; the lofty lady's dig. nity in Volumnia ; the bridal modesty in Virgilia; the patrician and military haughtiness in Coriola. nus; the plebeian malignity and tribunitian insolence in Brutus and Sicinius, make a very pleasing and interesting variety; and the various revolutions of the hero's fortune, fill the mind with anxious curiosity. There is, perhaps, too much bustle in the first act, and too little in the last.