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Coriolanus: Act V, Scene 4

Coriolanus
Act V, Scene 4

Rome. A public place.

  1. Enter Menenius and Sicinius.

Menenius

1
  1. See you yond coign a’ th’ Capitol, yond cornerstone?

Sicinius Velutus

2
  1. Why, what of that?

Menenius

3 - 6
  1. If it be possible for you to displace it with your little
  2. finger, there is some hope the ladies of Rome, especially
  3. his mother, may prevail with him. But I say there is no hope
  4. in’t; our throats are sentenc’d, and stay upon execution.

Sicinius Velutus

7 - 8
  1. Is’t possible that so short a time can alter the condition
  2. of a man?

Menenius

9 - 11
  1. There is differency between a grub and a butterfly, yet your
  2. butterfly was a grub. This Martius is grown from man to
  3. dragon: he has wings, he’s more than a creeping thing.

Sicinius Velutus

12
  1. He lov’d his mother dearly.

Menenius

13 - 21
  1. So did he me; and he no more remembers his mother now than
  2. an eight-year-old horse. The tartness of his face sours ripe
  3. grapes. When he walks, he moves like an engine, and the
  4. ground shrinks before his treading. He is able to pierce a
  5. corslet with his eye, talks like a knell, and his hum is a
  6. battery. He sits in his state, as a thing made for
  7. Alexander. What he bids be done is finish’d with his
  8. bidding. He wants nothing of a god but eternity and a heaven
  9. to throne in.

Sicinius Velutus

22
  1. Yes, mercy, if you report him truly.

Menenius

23 - 26
  1. I paint him in the character. Mark what mercy his mother
  2. shall bring from him. There is no more mercy in him than
  3. there is milk in a male tiger, that shall our poor city
  4. find. And all this is long of you.

Sicinius Velutus

27
  1. The gods be good unto us!

Menenius

28 - 30
  1. No, in such a case the gods will not be good unto us. When
  2. we banish’d him, we respected not them; and, he returning to
  3. break our necks, they respect not us.
  1. Enter Third Messenger.

Third Messenger

31 - 35
  1. Sir, if you’ld save your life, fly to your house.
  2. The plebeians have got your fellow tribune,
  3. And hale him up and down, all swearing, if
  4. The Roman ladies bring not comfort home,
  5. They’ll give him death by inches.
  1. Enter First Messenger.

Sicinius Velutus

36
  1.                                   What’s the news?

First Messenger

37 - 40
  1. Good news, good news! The ladies have prevail’d,
  2. The Volscians are dislodg’d, and Martius gone.
  3. A merrier day did never yet greet Rome,
  4. No, not th’ expulsion of the Tarquins.

Sicinius Velutus

41 - 42
  1.                                        Friend,
  2. Art thou certain this is true? Is’t most certain?

First Messenger

43 - 49
  1. As certain as I know the sun is fire.
  2. Where have you lurk’d, that you make doubt of it?
  3. Ne’er through an arch so hurried the blown tide,
  4. As the recomforted through th’ gates. Why, hark you!
  5. Trumpets, hoboys, drums beat, all together.
  6. The trumpets, sackbuts, psalteries, and fifes,
  7. Tabors and cymbals, and the shouting Romans,
  8. Make the sun dance. Hark you!
  1. A shout within.

Menenius

50 - 56
  1.                               This is good news.
  2. I will go meet the ladies. This Volumnia
  3. Is worth of consuls, senators, patricians,
  4. A city full; of tribunes such as you,
  5. A sea and land full. You have pray’d well today.
  6. This morning for ten thousand of your throats
  7. I’d not have given a doit. Hark, how they joy!
  1. Sound still with the shouts.

Sicinius Velutus

57 - 58
  1. First, the gods bless you for your tidings; next,
  2. Accept my thankfulness.

First Messenger

59 - 60
  1.                         Sir, we have all
  2. Great cause to give great thanks.

Sicinius Velutus

61
  1.                                   They are near the city?

First Messenger

62
  1. Almost at point to enter.

Sicinius Velutus

63 - 64
  1.                           We’ll meet them
  2. And help the joy.
  1. Exeunt.
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