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And had no welcomes home; but he returns,
And patient fools,
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 fines : 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; No more infected with my country's love, Than when I parted hence, but still subsisting
Rewarding us with our own expenses, making the cost of the war its recompense.'
Under your great command. You are to know,
Read it not, noble lords ;
Cor. Traitor!-How now?
Ay, traitor, Marcius.
Marcius! Auf. Ay, Marcius, Caius Marcius; Dost thou think I'll
grace thee with that robbery, thy stoln name
unsel o’the war; but at his nurse's tears
Hear'st thou, Mars?
Ha! Auf. No more 6. 6 This must be considered as continuing the former speech of Aufidius; he means to tell Coriolanus that he was no more than a boy of tears.
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, Volces; men and lads, Stain all your edges on me.—Boy! False hound ! If
you have writ your annals true, 'tis there, That like an eagle in a dovecote, I Flutter'd
Volces in Corioli:
Why, noble lords,
your own eyes and ears? Con. Let him die for't. [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. The man is noble, and his fame folds in This orb o'the earth?. His last offence to us Shall have judicious hearing.–Stand, Aufidius, And trouble not the peace.
7. His fame overspreads the world.'
8. Perhaps judicious, in the present instance, means judicial; such a hearing as is allowed to criminals in courts of justice.'
STEEVENS. Steevens is right, it appears from Bullokar's Expositor that the words were convertible; the same meaning is assigned to both, viz. ‘belonging to judgment.'
0, that I had him,
Insolent villain ! Con. Kill, kill, kill, kill, kill him. [Aufidius and the Conspirators draw, and
kill CORIOLANUS, who falls, and AUFIDIUS
stands on him. Lords.
Hold, bold, hold, hold. Auf. My noble masters, bear me speak. 1 Lord.
O Tullus. 2 Lord. Thou hast done a deed whereat valour
Put up your
3 Lord. Tread not upon him.-Masters all, be quiet;
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
My rage is gone,
9 This allusion is to a custom which was most probably unknown to the ancients, but which was observed in the public funerals of English princes, at the conclusion of which a herald proclaims the style of the deceased.
Help, three o’the chiefest soldiers ; I'll be one.-
A dead March sounded.
10 Memorial. See Act iv. Sc. 5, note 3.
The tragedy of CORIOLANUS is one of the most amusing of our author's performances. The old man's merriment in Menenins; the lofty lady's dignity in Volumnia; the bridal modesty in Virgilia ; the patrician and military haughtiness in Coriolanus; 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. JOHNSON.