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Men. Nay, I hear nothing; his mother and his wife Hear nothing from him.

Enter Three or Four Citizens.
Cit. The gods preserve you both!

Good e'en, our neighbours. Bru. Good e’en to you all, good e'en to you

all. 1 Cit. Ourselves, our wives, and children, on our

knees, Are bound to

for you

both. Sic,

Live, and thrive! Bru. Farewell, kind neighbours; we wish'd Co

riolanus Had lov'd you as we did. Cit.

Now the gods keep you! Both Tri. Farewell, farewell. (Exeunt Citizens.

Sic. This is a happier and more comely time,
Than when these fellows ran about the streets,
Crying, Confusion.

Caius Marcius was
A worthy officer i'the war; but insolent,
O'ercome with pride, ambitious past all thinking,

And affecting one sole throne, Without assistance?. Men.

I think not so. Sic. We should by this, to all our lamentation, If he had gone forth consul, found it so?.

Bru. The gods have well prevented it, and Rome Sits safe and still without him.

Enter Ædile. Æd.

Worthy tribunes, There is a slave, whom we have put in prison,

Ti.e. he aimed at absolute power, he wanted to sway the state alone without the participation of the tribunes.

? We should surely read, . have found it so :' without this word the construction of the sentence is imperfect.

Reports,—the Volces with two several powers
Are entered in the Roman territories;
And with the deepest malice of the war
Destroy what lies before them.

'Tis Aufidius,
Who, hearing of our Marcius' banishment,
Thrusts forth bis horns again into the world:
Which were inshelld, when Marcius stood for

And durst not once peep out.

Come, what talk you Of Marcius ?

Bru. Go see this rumourer whipp’d.—It cannot be, The Volces dare break with us. Men.

Cannot be! We have record, that


well it can; And three examples of the like have been Within my age. But reason with the fellow, Before you punish him, where he heard this : Lest you should chance to whip your

And beat the messenger who bids beware
Of what is to be dreaded.

Tell not me:
I know, this cannot be.

Not possible.

Enter a Messenger. Mess. The nobles, in great earnestness, are going All to the senate-house: some news is come, That turns 5 their countenances.

3 i.e. stood up in its defence. Had the expression in the text (says Steevens) been met with in a learned author, it might have passed for a Latinism :Summis stantem pro turribus Idam.'

Æneid ix. 575. 4 To reason with is to talk with. See vol. iii. p. 42, vol. ii.

5 Changes.

p. 372.


'Tis this slave;-
Go whip him 'fore the people's eyes :—his raising !
Nothing but his report!

Yes, worthy sir,
The slave's report is seconded; and more,
More fearful is deliver’d.

What more fearful?
Mess. It is spoke freely out of many mouths
(How probable, I do not know), that Marcius,
Join'd with Aufidius, leads a power 'gainst Rome;
And vows revenge as spacious, as between
The young'st and oldest thing.

This is most likely! Bru. Rais'd only, that the weaker sort may wish Good Marcius home again. Sic.

The very

trick on't. Men. This is unlikely: He and Aufidius can no more atone 6, Than violentest contrariety.

Enter another Messenger.
Mess. You are sent for to the senate :
A fearful army, led by Caius Marcius,
Associated with Aufidius, rages
Upon our territories; and have already,
O’erborne their way, consum'd with fire, and took
What lay before them.

Com. O, you have made good work!

What news? what news? Com. You have holp to ravish your own daugh

ters, and

6 i. e. atone, accord, agree. Atone and atonement are many times used by Shakspeare in this sense.

To melt the city leads upon your pates;
To see your wives dishonour'd to your noses;

Men. What's the news? what's the news?

Com. Your temples burned in their cement; and Your franchises, whereon you stood, confin'd Into an augre's bore?. Men.

Pray now, your news ?You have made fair work, I fear me:—Pray, your

news? If Marcius should be join'd with Volcians, Com.

If! He is their god; he leads them like a thing Made by some other deity than nature, That shapes man better: and they follow him, Against us brats, with no less confidence, Than boys pursuing summer butterflies, Or butchers killing flies. Men.

You have made good work, and

your apron men; you that stood so much
Upon the voice of occupation, and
The breath of garlick-eaters !

He will shake
Your Rome about your ears.

As Hercules
Did shake down mellow fruit9: You have made

fair work! Bru. But is this true, sir ? Com.

Ay; and you'll look pale


7 So in Macbeth :

our fate hid in an augre-hole.' 8 i. e. mechanics. See Julius Cæsar, Act i. Sc. 2, note 20. Horace uses artes for artifices. In a future passage he calls them crafts. To smell of garlick was a brand of vulgarity; as to smell of leeks was no less so among the Roman people:-

quis tecum sectile porrum Sutor, et elixi vervecis labra comedit?' 9 A ludicrous allusion to the apples of the Hesperides.

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Before you find it other. All the regions
Do smilingly revolt 10, and, who resist,
Are mock'd for valiant ignorance,
And perish constant fools. Who is't can blame him?
Your enemies, and his, find something in him.

Men. We are all undone, unless
The noble man have mercy.

Who shall ask it?
The tribunes cannot do't for shame; the people
Deserve such pity of him, as the wolf
Does of the shepherds: for his best friends, if they
Should say, Be good to Rome, they charg'd him even
As those should do that had desery'd his hate,
And therein show'd like enemies.

'Tis true : If he were putting to my house the brand That should consume it, I have not the face To say,

'Beseech you, cease.—You have made fair hands, and your crafts ! you

have crafted fair! Com.

You have brought
A trembling upon Rome, such as was never
So incapable of help.

Say not, we brought it.
Men. How! Was it we? We lov'd him; but,

like beasts,
And cowardly nobles, gave way to your clusters,
Who did hoot him out o'the city.

But, I fear They'll roar him in again 12. Tullus Aufidius, The second name of men, obeys his points

10 Revolt with pleasure. 11 They charg'd, and therein show'd,' has here the force of they would charge, and therein show.'

12 * As they hooted at his departure, they will roar at his return; as he went out with scoff's, he will come back with lamentations.


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