Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

And of his friends there, it is lots to blanks,
My name hath touch'd your ears: it is Menenius.

i G. Be it so; go back: the virtue of your name
Is not here passable.
Men.

I tell thee, fellow, Thy general is my lover: I have been The book of his good acts, whence men have read His fame unparallel’d, haply, amplified; For I have ever verify'd my friends, (Of whom he's chief,) with all the size that verity Would without lapsing suffer: nay, sometimes, Like to a bowl upon a subtle ground, I have tumbled past the throw; and in his praise Have, almost, stamp'd the leasing: Therefore, fellow, I must have leave to pass.

1 G. 'Faith, sir, if you had told as many lies in his behalf, as you have utter'd words in your own, you should not pass here: no, though it were as virtuous to lie, as to live chastly. Therefore, go back.

Men. Prythee, fellow, remember my name is Menenius, always factionary on the party of your general.

2 G. Howsoever you have been his liar, (as you say, you have,) I am one that, telling true under him, must say, you cannot pass. Therefore, go back.

Men. Has he dined, can’st thou tell? for I would not speak with him till after dinner.

1 G. You are a Roman, are you?
Men. I am as thy general is.
1 G. Then you should hate Rome, as he does.

Can you,

when

you

have push'd out your gates the very defender of them, and, in a violent popular ignorance, given your enemy your shield, think to front his revenges with the easy groans of old women, the virginal palms of your daughters, or with the palsied intercession of such a decay'd dotant as you seem to be? Can you think to blow out the intended fire your city is ready to flame in, with suchi weak breath as this ? No, you are deceiv'd; therefore, back to Rome, and prepare for your execution: you are condemn'd, our general has sworn you out of reprieve and pardon.

Men. Sirrah, if thy captain knew I were here, he would use me with estimation.

2 G. Come, my captain knows you not. Men. I mean, thy general.

i G. My general cares not for you. Back, I say, go, lest I let forth your half pint of blood;- back,that's the utmost of your having :-back.

Men. Nay, but fellow, fellow,

Enter CORIOLANUS and AUFIDIUS,

[ocr errors]

Cor. What's the matter?

Men. Now, you companion, I'll say an errand for you; you shall know now, that I am in estimation; you shall perceive that a Jack guardant cannot office me from my son Coriolanus: guess, but by my entertainment with him, if thou stand'st not i' the state of hanging; or of some death more long in spectatorship, and crueller in suffering; behold

now presently, and swoon for what's to come upon thee.-The glorious gods sit in hourly synod about thy particular prosperity, and love thee no worse than thy old father Menenius does! O, my son ! my son! thou art preparing fire for us; look thee, here's water to quench it. I was hardly moved to come to thee: but being assured, none but myself could move thee, I have been blown out of your gates with sighs; and conjure thee to pardon Rome, and thy petitionary countrymen. The good gods assuage thy wrath, and turn the dregs of it

upon

this varlet here; this, who, like a block, hath denied my access to thee.

Cor. Away!
Men. How! away?

Cor. Wife, mother, child, I know not. My affairs
Are servanted to others: 62 Though I owe
My revenge properly, my remission lies
In Volcian breasts. That we have been familiar,
Ingrate forgetfulness shall poison, rather
Than pity note how much.—Therefore, be gone.
Mine ears against your suits are stronger, than
Your gates against my force. Yet, for I lov'd thee,
Take this along; I writ it for thy sake,

[Gives a letter, And would have sent it. Another word, Menenius, I will not hear thee speak.—This man, Aufidius, Was

my belov'd in Rome: yet thou behold'st-Auf. You keep a constant temper.

(Exeunt Coriolanus and Aufidius.

1 G. Now, sir, is your name Menenius?

2 G. 'Tis a spell, you see, of much power: You know the

way

home again. i G. Do you hear how we are shent for keeping your greatness back?

2 G. What cause, do you think, I have to swoon?

Men. I neither care for the world, nor your general: for such things as you, I can scarce think there's any, you are so slight. He that hath a will to die by himself, fears it not from another. Let your general do his worst. For you, be that you are, long; and your misery increase with your age! I say to you, as I was said to, Away!

[Erit, 1 G. A noble fellow, I warrant him.

2 G. The worthy fellow is our general: He is the rock, the oak not to be wind-shaken. [Exeunt.

SCENE III.

The Tent of Coriolanus.

Enter CORIOLANUS, AUFIDIUS, and Others.

Cor. We will before the walls of Rome to-mor

row

Set down our host.—My partner in this action,
You must report to the Volcian lords, how plainly 63
I have borne this business.
Auf.

Only their ends
You have respected; stopp'd your ears against
The general suit of Rome; never admitted

[ocr errors]

A private whisper, no, not with such friends
That thought them sure of you.
Cor.

This last old man;
Whom with a crack'd heart I have sent to Rome,
Lov'd me above the measure of a father;
Nay, godded me, indeed. Their latest refuge
Was to send him: for whose old love, I have
(Though I show'd sourly to him,) once more offer'd
The first conditions, which they did refuse,
And cannot now accept, to grace him only,
That thought he could do more; a very

little
I have yielded too: Fresh embassies, and suits,
Nor from the state, nor private friends, hereafter
Will I lend ear to.-Ha! what shout is this?

[Shout within. Shall I be tempted to infringe my vow In the same time 'tis made? I will not.

Enter in mourning habits, VIRGILIA, VOLUMNIA,

leading young Marcius, VALERIA, and Attendants. My wife comes foremost; then the honour'd mould Wherein this trunk was fram'd, and in her hand The grandchild to her blood. But, out, affection! All bond and privilege of nature, break! Let it be virtuous, to be obstinate, What is that curt’sy worth? or those doves' eyes, Which can make gods forsworn ?-I melt, and am

not Of stronger earth than others.-My mother bows; As if Olympus to a molehill should

« AnteriorContinuar »