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Coriolanus: Act V, Scene 1

Coriolanus
Act V, Scene 1

Scene 1

Rome. A public place.

  1. Enter Menenius, Cominius, Sicinius and Brutus, with others.

Menenius

1 - 7
  1. No, I’ll not go. You hear what he hath said
  2. Which was sometime his general, who loved him
  3. In a most dear particular. He call’d me father;
  4. But what o’ that? Go you that banish’d him
  5. A mile before his tent, fall down, and knee
  6. The way into his mercy. Nay, if he coy’d
  7. To hear Cominius speak, I’ll keep at home.

Cominius

8
  1. He would not seem to know me.

Menenius

9
  1.                               Do you hear?

Cominius

10 - 16
  1. Yet one time he did call me by my name.
  2. I urg’d our old acquaintance, and the drops
  3. That we have bled together. Coriolanus
  4. He would not answer to; forbade all names;
  5. He was a kind of nothing, titleless,
  6. Till he had forg’d himself a name a’ th’ fire
  7. Of burning Rome.

Menenius

17 - 19
  1.                  Why, so; you have made good work!
  2. A pair of tribunes that have wrack’d for Rome
  3. To make coals cheap! A noble memory!

Cominius

20 - 23
  1. I minded him how royal ’twas to pardon
  2. When it was less expected. He replied,
  3. It was a bare petition of a state
  4. To one whom they had punish’d.

Menenius

24 - 25
  1.                                Very well.
  2. Could he say less?

Cominius

26 - 31
  1. I offered to awaken his regard
  2. For ’s private friends. His answer to me was,
  3. He could not stay to pick them in a pile
  4. Of noisome musty chaff. He said ’twas folly,
  5. For one poor grain or two, to leave unburnt
  6. And still to nose th’ offense.

Menenius

32 - 36
  1.                                For one poor grain or two?
  2. I am one of those; his mother, wife, his child,
  3. And this brave fellow too: we are the grains,
  4. You are the musty chaff, and you are smelt
  5. Above the moon. We must be burnt for you.

Sicinius Velutus

37 - 42
  1. Nay, pray be patient. If you refuse your aid
  2. In this so never-needed help, yet do not
  3. Upbraid ’s with our distress. But sure if you
  4. Would be your country’s pleader, your good tongue,
  5. More than the instant army we can make,
  6. Might stop our countryman.

Menenius

43
  1.                            No; I’ll not meddle.

Sicinius Velutus

44
  1. Pray you go to him.

Menenius

45
  1.                     What should I do?

Brutus

46 - 47
  1. Only make trial what your love can do
  2. For Rome, towards Martius.

Menenius

48 - 52
  1.                            Well, and say that Martius
  2. Return me, as Cominius is return’d,
  3. Unheardwhat then?
  4. But as a discontented friend, grief-shot
  5. With his unkindness? Say’t be so?

Sicinius Velutus

53 - 55
  1.                                   Yet your good will
  2. Must have that thanks from Rome, after the measure
  3. As you intended well.

Menenius

56 - 67
  1.                       I’ll undertake’t.
  2. I think he’ll hear me. Yet, to bite his lip
  3. And hum at good Cominius much unhearts me.
  4. He was not taken well, he had not din’d:
  5. The veins unfill’d, our blood is cold, and then
  6. We pout upon the morning, are unapt
  7. To give or to forgive; but when we have stuff’d
  8. These pipes and these conveyances of our blood
  9. With wine and feeding, we have suppler souls
  10. Than in our priest-like fasts: therefore I’ll watch him
  11. Till he be dieted to my request,
  12. And then I’ll set upon him.

Brutus

68 - 69
  1. You know the very road into his kindness,
  2. And cannot lose your way.

Menenius

70 - 72
  1.                           Good faith, I’ll prove him,
  2. Speed how it will. I shall ere long have knowledge
  3. Of my success.
  1. Exit.

Cominius

73
  1.                He’ll never hear him.

Sicinius Velutus

74
  1.                       Not?

Cominius

75 - 86
  1. I tell you, he does sit in gold, his eye
  2. Red as ’twould burn Rome; and his injury
  3. The jailer to his pity. I kneel’d before him;
  4. ’Twas very faintly he said, Rise”; dismiss’d me
  5. Thus, with his speechless hand. What he would do
  6. He sent in writing after me; what he would not,
  7. Bound with an oath to yield to his conditions;
  8. So that all hope is vain,
  9. Unless his noble mother and his wife,
  10. Who, as I hear, mean to solicit him
  11. For mercy to his country. Therefore let’s hence,
  12. And with our fair entreaties haste them on.
  1. Exeunt.
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