Course Hero Logo

Coriolanus | Study Guide

William Shakespeare

Download a PDF to print or study offline.

Study Guide
Cite This Study Guide

How to Cite This Study Guide

quotation mark graphic


Course Hero. "Coriolanus Study Guide." Course Hero. 16 Mar. 2018. Web. 1 June 2023. <>.

In text

(Course Hero)



Course Hero. (2018, March 16). Coriolanus Study Guide. In Course Hero. Retrieved June 1, 2023, from

In text

(Course Hero, 2018)



Course Hero. "Coriolanus Study Guide." March 16, 2018. Accessed June 1, 2023.


Course Hero, "Coriolanus Study Guide," March 16, 2018, accessed June 1, 2023,

Coriolanus | Act 1, Scene 5 | Summary



Soldiers return with the spoils of victory such as precious metal, coins, and clothing. Lartius notices Martius's bloodied countenance and comments that he has fought too hard to continue fighting. Martius brushes off the comment and states the blood is of no real consequence and he intends to vanquish Aufidius. Lartius prays to Fortune for Martius's victory in battle.


The themes of honor and war play large in this short scene, as does the recurring symbol of blood. Lartius praises Martius's willingness to continue fighting. Whether Martius is exemplifying true humility and altruism for the Roman cause or merely showing off vain heroics is uncertain. Shakespeare could be showing the opposing forces within the character. Readers are not certain what is in the victory for Martius other than glory—and possibly the satisfaction of defeating his sworn enemy. Yet the blood on Martius appears to speak for itself, placing any act of heroism beyond reproach in the eyes of Lartius.

Cite This Study Guide

information icon Have study documents to share about Coriolanus? Upload them to earn free Course Hero access!