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Than is the coal of fire upon the ice,

Or hailstone in the sun. Your virtue is,
To make him worthy, whose offence subdues him,
And curse that justice did it.' Who deserves greatness,
Deserves your hate; and your affections are
A sick man's appetite, who desires most that
Which would increase his evil. He that depends
Upon your favors, swims with fins of lead,
And hews down oaks with rushes.

Hang ye! Trust

With every minute you do change a mind;
And call him noble that was now your hate;
Him vile, that was your garland. What's the matter,
That in these several places of the city

You cry against the noble senate, who,
Under the gods, keep you in awe, which else
Would feed on one another?-What's their seeking?
Men. For corn at their own rates; whereof, they say,
The city is well stored.

Mar. Hang 'em! They say? They'll sit by the fire, and presume to know What's done i' the capitol; who's like to rise, Who thrives, and who declines; side factions, and give


Conjectural marriages; making parties strong,
And feebling such as stand not in their liking,
Below their cobbled shoes. They say there's grain

Would the nobility lay aside their ruth,2


And let me use my sword, I'd make a quarry3
With thousands of these quartered slaves, as high
As I could pick my lance.

Men. Nay, these are almost thoroughly persuaded; For though abundantly they lack discretion,

1 "Your virtue is to speak well of him whom his own offences have subjected to justice; and to rail at those laws by which he whom you praise was punished."

2 i. e. pity, compassion.

3 Quarry or querre signified slaughtered game, so denominated from being deposited in a square inclosed space in royal hunting.

4 Pick, peck, or picke, i. e. pitch; still in provincial use



Yet are they passing cowardly. But, I beseech you, What says the other troop?

Mar. They are dissolved. Hang 'em! They said, they were an hungry; sighed forth proverbs; That hunger broke stone walls; that dogs must eat; That meat was made for mouths; that the gods sent not Corn for the rich men only.-With these shreds They vented their complainings; which being answered, And a petition granted them, a strange one, (To break the heart of generosity,'

And make bold power look pale,) they threw their caps As they would hang them on the horns o' the moon, Shouting their emulation.2


What is granted them? Mar. Five tribunes to defend their vulgar wisdoms, Of their own choice. One's Junius Brutus, Sicinius Velutus, and I know not-'Sdeath! The rabble should have first unroofed the city, Ere so prevailed with me; it will in time Win upon power, and throw forth greater themes For insurrections arguing.3


This is strange. Mar. Go, get you home, you fragments!

Enter a Messenger.

Mess. Where's Caius Marcius?

Here. What's the matter?
Mess. The news is, sir, the Volces are in arms.
Mar. I am glad on't; then we shall have means to


Our musty superfluity.-See, our best elders.


1 Sen. Marcius, 'tis true, that you have lately told us; The Volces are in arms.

1 Generosity, in the sense of its Latin original, for nobleness, high birth. 2 Emulation is factious contention.

3 For insurgents to debate upon.

Mar. They have a leader,

Tullus Aufidius, that will put you to't.
I sin in envying his nobility;
And were I any thing but what I am,
I would wish me only he.


You have fought together. Mar. Were half to half the world by the ears, and he

Upon my party, I'd revolt to make
Only my wars with him: he is a lion
That I am proud to hunt.

1 Sen.
Then, worthy Marcius,
Attend upon Cominius to these wars.
Com. It is your former promise.

Sir, it is;

And I am constant.'-Titus Lartius, thou
Shalt see me once more strike at Tullus' face:
What, art thou stiff? stand'st out?


No, Caius Marcius; I'll lean upon one crutch, and fight with the other, Ere stay behind this business.


1 Sen. Your company to the Our greatest friends attend us.

O, true bred! capitol; where, I know,

Follow, Cominius; we must follow you;
Right worthy you priority.2

Lead you on:


Noble Lartius! 3

1 Sen. Hence! To your homes, be gone.


[To the Citizens. Nay, let them follow: The Volces have much corn; take these rats thither, To gnaw their garners.-Worshipful mutineers, Your valor puts well forth; pray, follow.

[Exeunt Senators, Coм., MAR., TIT., and MENEN. Citizens steal away.

1 i. e. immovable in my resolution.

2 Of is understood.

3 The old copy has Marcius.

4 That is, You have in this mutiny shown fair blossoms of valor.

Sic. Was ever man so proud as is this Marcius?

Bru. He has no equal.

Sic. When we were chosen tribunes for the


Bru. Marked you his lip, and eyes?


Nay, but his taunts. Bru. Being moved, he will not spare to gird' the gods.

Sic. Bemock the modest moon.

Bru. The present wars devour him; he is Too proud to be so valiant.



Such a nature, Tickled with good success, disdains the shadow Which he treads on at noon. But I do wonder, His insolence can brook to be commanded Under Cominius.

Fame, at the which he aims,-
In whom already he is well graced,-cannot
Better be held, nor more attained, than by
A place below the first; for what miscarries
Shall be the general's fault, though he perform
To the utmost of a man; and giddy censure
Will then cry out of Marcius, O, if he
Had borne the business!


Besides, if things go well, Opinion, that so sticks on Marcius, shall Of his demerits3 rob Cominius.



Half all Cominius' honors are to Marcius,

Though Marcius earned them not; and all his faults
To Marcius shall be honors, though, indeed,
In aught he merit not.

Let's hence, and hear
How the despatch is made; and in what fashion,

1 A gird is a cut, a sarcasm, or stroke of satire.

2 Perhaps the meaning of the latter member of the sentence is, "He is grown too proud of being so valiant to be endured," or "too proud for one so valiant." It is still a common expression to say, "eat up with pride." 3 Demerits and merits had anciently the same meaning.

More than in singularity,' he goes
Upon his present action.

Let's along.

Consider of it.

1 Sen.

SCENE II. Corioli. The Senate House.

Enter TULLUS AUFIDIUS and certain Senators.

1 Sen. So your opinion is, Aufidius, That they of Rome are entered in our counsels, And know how we proceed.

Is it not yours?
What ever hath been thought on in this state,2
That could be brought to bodily act ere Rome
Had circumvention! 'Tis not four days gone,
Since I heard thence; these are the words.
I have the letter here; yes, here it is:
They have prest3 a power; but it is not known
Whether for east or west. The dearth is great ;
The people mutinous: and it is rumored,
Cominius, Marcius, your old enemy,
(Who is of Rome worse hated than of you,)
And Titus Lartius, a most valiant Roman,-
These three lead on this preparation
Whither 'tis bent.

Most likely, 'tis for you;


Our army's in the field;

We never yet made doubt but Rome was ready
To answer us.

1 "What he is to do beside going himself."

2 The old copy reads:

I think


Nor did you think it folly, To keep your great pretences veiled, till when They needs must show themselves; which in the


"What have been ever thought on in this state."

We must either suppose this an ellipsis for "What things have," &c., or read, with Steevens, hath, as in the text.

3 i. e. ready; from the old French prest.

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