Coriolanus

by: William Shakespeare

Original Text

Modern Text

MENENIUS

285Go, get you to your house; be gone, away!
All will be naught else.

MENENIUS

(to Coriolanus) Go home, be gone, go away! All will be lost otherwise.

SECOND SENATOR

Get you gone.

SECOND SENATOR

(to Coriolanus) Get out of here.

COMINIUS

Stand fast;
We have as many friends as enemies.

COMINIUS

Stay where you are. We have as many allies as enemies.

MENENIUS

290Sham it be put to that?

MENENIUS

Will it come to that?

FIRST SENATOR

The gods forbid!
I prithee, noble friend, home to thy house;
Leave us to cure this cause.

FIRST SENATOR

(to Coriolanus) The gods forbid! I beg you, noble friend, go home. Leave us to handle this situation.

MENENIUS

For ’tis a sore upon us,
295You cannot tent yourself: be gone, beseech you.

MENENIUS

It’s dangerous for all of us now, and you can’t fix it yourself. Go now, I beg you.

COMINIUS

Come, sir, along with us.

COMINIUS

Please, sir, come with us.

CORIOLANUS

I would they were barbarians—as they are,
Though in Rome litter’d—not Romans—as they are not,
Though calved i’ the porch o’ the Capitol—

CORIOLANUS

I wish they were barbarians—which they are, even though they were born in Rome—and not Romans—which they aren’t even though they born on the steps of the capitol—

MENENIUS

300Be gone;
Put not your worthy rage into your tongue;
One time will owe another.

MENENIUS

Go away. You’re understandably angry, but stop speaking your anger. There will be time for that in the future.

CORIOLANUS

On fair ground
I could beat forty of them.

CORIOLANUS

I could easily beat a large number of them.

COMINIUS

305I could myself
Take up a brace o’ the best of them; yea, the
two tribunes:
But now ’tis odds beyond arithmetic;
And manhood is call’d foolery, when it stands
310Against a falling fabric. Will you hence,
Before the tag return? whose rage doth rend
Like interrupted waters and o’erbear
What they are used to bear.

COMINIUS

I myself could fight a pair of the best of them—indeed, the two tribunes! But now the odds are beyond calculation, and courage becomes foolishness when it stands beneath a falling building. (to Coriolanus) Will you go now, before the mob returns? Their rage is like dammed up water that will overflow its banks.