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coloured and truly I think, if all our wits were to issue out of one skull, they would fly east, west, north, south; and their consent of one direct way1 should be at once to all the points o'the compass.
2 CIT. Think you so? Which way, do you judge, my wit would fly?
3 CIT. Nay, your wit will not so soon out as another man's will, 'tis strongly wedged up in a block-head: but if it were at liberty, 'twould, sure, southward.
2 CIT. Why that way?
3 CIT. To lose itself in a fog; where being three parts melted away with rotten dews, the fourth would return for conscience sake, to help to get thee a wife.
2 CIT. You are never without your tricks :-You may, you may.2
3 CIT. Are you all resolved to give your voices? But that's no matter, the greater part carries it. I
-if all our wits were to issue out of one skull, &c.] Meaning though our having but one interest was most apparent, yet our wishes and projects would be infinitely discordant.
To suppose all their wits to issue from one scull, and that their common consent and agreement to go all one way, should end in their flying to every point of the compass, is a just description of the variety and inconsistency of the opinions, wishes, and actions of the multitude. M. MASON.
'—and their consent of one direct way-] See Vol. X. p. 96, n. 3; and Vol. XIII. P. 6, n. 4.
may, you may,] This colloquial phrase, which seems to signify-You may divert yourself, as you please, at my expence, ➡has occurred already in Troilus and Cressida:
"Hel. By my troth, sweet lord, thou hast a fine forehead. "Pan. Ay, you may, you may." STEEVENS.
say, if he would incline to the people, there was never a worthier man.
Enter CORIOLANUS and MENENIUS.
Here he comes, and in the gown of humility; mark his behaviour. We are not to stay all together, but to come by him where he stands, by ones, by twos, and by threes. He's to make his requests by particulars: wherein every one of us has a single honour, in giving him our own voices with our own tongues: therefore follow me, and I'll direct you how you shall go by him.
ALL. Content, content.
MEN. O sir, you are not right: have you not
The worthiest men have done it?
What must I say?
pray, sir,-Plague upon't! I cannot bring My tongue to such a pace:Look, sir;- -my
got them in my country's service, when Some certain of your brethren roar'd, and ran From the noise of our own drums.
O me, the gods! You must not speak of that; you must desire them
To think upon you.
Think upon me? Hang 'em! I would they would forget me, like the virtues Which our divines lose by them.3
3 I would they would forget me, like the virtues
Which our divines lose by them.] i. e. I wish they would forget me as they do those virtuous precepts, which the divines
You'll mar all;
I'll leave you: Pray you, speak to them, I pray you, In wholesome manner.+
Enter Two Citizens.
Bid them wash their faces,
And keep their teeth clean.-So, here comes a
You know the cause, sir, of my standing here.
1 CIT. We do, sir; tell us what hath brought
preach up to them, and lose by them, as it were, by their neg, lecting the practice. THEOBALD.
In wholesome manner.] So, in Hamlet: "If it shall please you to make me a wholesome answer." STEEVENS.
Mine own desire.] The old copy-but mine own desire. If but be the true reading, it must signify, as in the North-without. STEEVens.
But is only the reading of the first folio: Not is the true reading. RITSON.
The answer of the Citizen fully supports the correction, which was made by the editor of the third folio. But and not are often confounded in these plays. See Vol. VIII. p. 40, n. 1, and Vol. XI. p. 416, n. 5. .
In a passage in Love's Labour's Lost, Vol. VII, p. 106, n. 7, from the reluctance which I always feel to depart from the original copy, I have suffered not to remain, and have endeavoured to explain the words as they stand; but I am now convinced that I ought to have printed
By earth, she is but corporal; there you lie. MALONE.