Coriolanus

by: William Shakespeare

  Act 2 Scene 2

page Act 2 Scene 2 Page 7

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SICINIUS

Sir, the people
Must have their voices; neither will they bate
One jot of ceremony.

SICINIUS

Sir, the people must have their say, and they won’t leave out one bit of the ceremony.

MENENIUS

165Put them not to’t:
Pray you, go fit you to the custom and
Take to you, as your predecessors have,
Your honour with your form.

MENENIUS

Don’t fight them on this. Go through with this custom and stand honorably as your predecessors have.

CORIOLANUS

It is apart
170That I shall blush in acting, and might well
Be taken from the people.

CORIOLANUS

I’ll blush as I play this part. The people will be deceived.

BRUTUS

(to Sicinius) Mark you that?

BRUTUS

(to Sicinius) Did you hear that?

CORIOLANUS

To brag unto them, thus I did, and thus;
Show them the unaching scars which I should hide,
175As if I had received them for the hire
Of their breath only!

CORIOLANUS

To brag of the things I’ve done and show them my old scars, which I should hide—as if I’d received them only for the people to gasp at!

MENENIUS

Do not stand upon’t.
We recommend to you, tribunes of the people,
Our purpose to them: and to our noble consul
180Wish we all joy and honour.

MENENIUS

Don’t insist on this. Tribunes of the people, we ask that you recommend our proposal to the people. And to our noble consul wish we all joy and honor.

SENATORS

To Coriolanus come all joy and honour!

SENATORS

May all joy and honor come to Coriolanus!
Flourish of cornets. Exeunt all but SICINIUS and BRUTUS
Sound of trumpets. Everyone exits except SICINIUS and BRUTUS

BRUTUS

You see how he intends to use the people.

BRUTUS

You see how he intends to use the people.

SICINIUS

May they perceive’s intent! He will require them,
As if he did contemn what he requested
185Should be in them to give.

SICINIUS

May they know his intentions! He’ll ask for their support even though he hates that it’s in their power to give it.