• Rome. A public place.
    Enter MENENIUS with the two Tribunes of the people, SICINIUS and BRUTUS.

    MENENIUS

    The augurer tells me we shall have news to-night.

    BRUTUS

    Good or bad?

    MENENIUS

    Not according to the prayer of the people, for they
    love not Martius.

    SICINIUS

    5Nature teaches beasts to know their friends.

    MENENIUS

    Pray you, who does the wolf love?

    SICINIUS

    The lamb.

    MENENIUS

    Ay, to devour him; as the hungry plebeians would the
    noble Martius.

    BRUTUS

    10He’s a lamb indeed, that baes like a bear.

    MENENIUS

    He’s a bear indeed, that lives like a lamb. You two
    are old men: tell me one thing that I shall ask you.

    BOTH

    Well, sir.

    MENENIUS

    In what enormity is Martius poor in, that you two
    15have not in abundance?

    BRUTUS

    He’s poor in no one fault, but stored with all.

    SICINIUS

    Especially in pride.

    BRUTUS

    And topping all others in boasting.

    MENENIUS

    This is strange now: do you two know how you are
    20censured here in the city, I mean of us o’ the
    right-hand file? do you?
  • A public place in Rome.
    MENENIUS enters with SICINIUS and BRUTUS, the two tribunes of the people.

    MENENIUS

    The fortuneteller tells me we’ll receive news tonight.

    BRUTUS

    Good news or bad?

    MENENIUS

    Not the news people prayed for—they have no love for Martius.

    SICINIUS

    In nature, animals learn who their friends are.

    MENENIUS

    Tell me, who does the wolf love?

    SICINIUS

    The lamb.

    MENENIUS

    Yes, to devour him, as the hungry citizens would love to devour the noble Martius.

    BRUTUS

    Martius is like a lamb, a lamb that roars like a bear.

    MENENIUS

    Martius is like a bear, a bear that lives like a lamb. You two have been around a long time, answer one question for me.

    BOTH

    What do you want to know, sir?

    MENENIUS

    Tell me a quality that Martius lacks but that you two have in abundance.

    BRUTUS

    He doesn’t have just one fault—he has every fault.

    SICINIUS

    Especially pride.

    BRUTUS

    And boasting, above all.

    MENENIUS

    One thing is strange though. Do you two know how you are regarded by the nobles of the city? Do you?