Shakespeare's story is based on Plutarch's ParallelLives, a series of biographies which includes the deeds of Gaius Marcius, a Roman general who helped to conquer the Volscian
town of Corioles in 493 BCE and was thenceforth named Coriolanus.
As Brian Campbell, a professor of Roman history at Queen's University in Belfast, notes, around 40 separate Italic languages and dialects such as Oscan, Volscian
, Venetic, and Umbrian were spoken by Rome's neighbors until Latin became the dominant dialect of this region on the heels of Rome's military success.
campaigns in which Coriolanus made his name were not the same as the easily recognizable imperial follies that followed.
In Sabellian, the attested accusatives of singular personal pronouns include the Volscian
miom, Umbrian and South Picene tiom and Oscan siom (Rix, La lingua, 231, n.
Shakespeare's Marcius is already an action hero--before the end of Act I, we've seen him practically single-handedly conquering the Volscian
city of Corioli, which is how he wins his new name.
Spitting out Shakespeare's speeches and soliloquys with visceral relish, Fiennes elaborates Martius' primordial code: he lives to kill and the man he most yearns to kill is his loathed enemy, Volscian
leader Tullus Aufidius (Butler).
The name Coriolanus is earned defending Rome against Tullus Aufidius'' Volscian
unaccomplished gesture of kindness toward the nameless Volscian
Coriolanus foregrounds these issues in the hero's relationships to the Roman and Volscian
people, which unfold in a series of markedly performative encounters.
31 In which Shakespeare play is Volscian
general Tullus Aufidius a major character?
Tiny as she is, Roberta Maxwell holds her head high as Coriolanus' doting mothez, Volumnia, who is both appalled and proud when her disgraced son revenges himself by joining the Volscian
forces of Rome's archenemy.
And when Coriolanus abandons Rome for the Volscian
camp nothing changes.