Study Guide

Coriolanus Act 2, Scene 2

By William Shakespeare

Act 2, Scene 2

Read the full text of Coriolanus Act 2 Scene 2 with a side-by-side translation HERE.

  • At the Capitol, a couple of Officers prepare for the senate and talk about Coriolanus' chances of getting elected. On the one hand, he's a "brave" war hero. On the other hand, he's way too proud and hates the "common people."
  • One of the Officers points out that plenty of politicians hate the commoners but they're good at flattering voters. The only difference is that Coriolanus refuses to pander.
  • The Senators show up and get down to business. It's official: Coriolanus is running for "consul."
  • Cominius gets up and gives a big speech. Mostly, he fanboys about Coriolanus' bravery in battle.
  • Coriolanus is so embarrassed that he leaves the room, but the Senators can't get enough and say they want to make him consul.
  • Next step is for Coriolanus to get the plebes' votes. This involves wearing a special toga, getting "naked," and showing the people his war wounds.
  • Hey, it's tradition.
  • Coriolanus is not happy about this, but he promises the Senate he'll do it anyway.
  • Everyone exits except Sicinius and Brutus.
  • After talking more smack about Coriolanus, they decide to bad mouth him to the Citizens.