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Men. Sir, I shall tell you.--With a kind of smile, Which ne'er came from the lungs, but even thus, (For, look



make the belly smile, As well as speak,) it tauntingly reply'd To the discontented members, the mutinous parts That envy'd his receipt; even so most fitly As you malign our senators, for that They are not such as you. 1 Cit.

Your belly's answer: What! The kingly-crowned head, the vigilant eye, The counsellor heart, the arm our soldier, Our steed the leg, the tongue our trumpeter, With other muniments and petty helps In this our fabrick, if that theyMen.

What then? Fore me, this fellow speaks!—what then? what

then? i Cit. Should by the cormorant belly be re

strain'd, Who is the sink o' the body,Men.

Well, what then? i Cit. The former agents, if they did complain, What could the belly answer?

Men. If you'll bestow a small (of what you have little,) Patience, a-while, you'll hear the belly's answer.

i Cit. You are long about it. Men.

Note me this, good friend; Your most grave belly was deliberate, Not rash like his accusers, and thus answer'd. True is it, my incorporate friends, quoth he, That I receive the general

food at first,

I will tell you;

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Which you do live upon: and fit it is;
Because I am the store-house, and the shop
Of the whole body: But if you do remember,
I send it through the rivers of your blood,
Even to the court, the heart, -to the seat o' the brain;
And, through the cranks and offices of man,
The strongest nerves, and small inferior veins,
From me receive that natural competency
Whereby they live: And though that all at once,
You, my good friends, (this says the belly,) mark

me, -
i Cit. Ay, sir; well, well.

Though all at once cannot See what I do deliver out to each; Yet I can make my audit up, that all From me do back receive the flower of all, And leave me but the bran. What

What say you to't? i Cit. It was an answer: How apply you this?

Men. The senators of Rome are this good belly, And you

the mutinous members: For examine Their counsels, and their cares; digest things

rightly, Touching the weal o' the common; you shall find, No publick benefit, which

you receive, But it proceeds, or comes, from them to you, And no way from yourselves.-What do

you think? You, the great toe of this assembly

?. 1 Cit. I the great toe? Why the great toe? Men. For that being one o' the lowest, basest,

poorest, Of this most wise rebellion, thou go'st foremost : Thou rascal, that art worst in blood, to run

Lead'st first, to win some vantage.
But make you ready your stiff bats and clubs;
Rome and her rats are at the point of battle,
The one side must have bale.- Hail, noble Mar-


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Enter Caius Marcius. Mar. Thanks.----What's the matter, you dissen

tious rogues,

That rubbing the poor itch of your opinion,
Make yourselves scabs?
1 Cit.

We have ever your good word. Mar. He that will give good words to thee, will

flatter Beneath abhorring.–What would you have, you

curs, That like nor peace, nor war? the one affrights you, The other makes you proud. He that trusts to you, Where he should find you lions, finds

you hares; Where foxes, geese: You are no surer, no, Than is the coal of fire upon the ice, Or hailstone in the sun. Your virtue is, To make him worthy, whose offence subdues him, And curse that justice did it. Who deserves great

ness, Deserves your hate: and

hate: and your affections are A sick man's appetite, who desires most that Which would increase his evil. He that depends Upon your favours, swims with fins of lead, And hews down oaks with rushes. Hang ye! Trust

ye: With every minute you do change a mind;


And call him noble, that was now your hate,
Him vile, that was your garland.

What's the
That in these several places of the city
You cry against the noble senate, who,
Under the gods, keep you in awe, which else
Would feed on one another? - What's their seek-

ing? Men. For corn at their own rates; whereof, they

say, The city is well stor’d. Mar.

Hang 'em! They say? They'll sit by the fire, and presume to know What's done i' the Capitol: who's like to rise, Who thrives, and who declines: side factions, and

give out Conjectural marriages; making parties strong, And feebling such as stand not in their liking, Below their cobbled shoes. They say, there's grain

enough? Would the nobility lay aside their ruth, And let me use my sword, I'd make a quarry With thousands of these quarter'd slaves, as high As I could pick my lance. Men. Nay, these are almost thoroughly per

suaded; For though abundantly they lack discretion, Yet are they passing cowardly. But, I beseech you, What says the other troop?. Mar.

They are dissolv’d: Hang 'em! They said, they were an-hungry; sigh'd forth pro


That, hunger broke stone walls; that, dogs must

eat; That, meat was made for mouths; that, the gods

sent not Corn for the rich men only:—With these shreds They vented their complainings; which being an

swer’d, And a petition granted them, a strange one, (To break the heart of generosity, And make bold power look pale,) they threw their

caps As they would hang them on the horns o'the moon, Shouting their emulation. Men.

What is granted them? Mar. Five tribunes, to defend their vulgar wis,


Of their own choice: One's Junius Brutus,
Sicinius Velutus, and I know not—'s death!
The rabble should have first unroof'd the city,
Ere so prevail'd with me: it will in time
Win upon power, and throw forth greater themes
For insurrection's arguing.

This is strange.
Mar. Go, get you home, you fragments !

Enter a Messenger. Mes. Where's Caius Marcius? Mar.

Here: What's the matter? Mes. The news is, sir, the Volces are in arins. Mar. I am glad on't; then we shall have means

to vent Our musty superfluity:-See, our best elders.

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