Coriolanus av Marcii, född -535
i Roma, Lazio, Italien, död -488 i Roma, Lazio, Italien.
Gaius Marcius Coriolanus received his toponymic cognomen "Coriolanus" because of his exceptional valor in a Roman siege of the
Volscian city of Corioli.
Coriolanus came to fame as a young man serving in the army of the consul Postumus Cominius Auruncus in 493 BC during the
siege of the Volscian town of Corioli. While the Romans were focused on the siege, another Volscian force arrived from Antium
(modern Anzio and Nettuno and attacked the Romans, and at the same time the soldiers of Corioli launched a sally. Marcius held
watch at the time of the Volscian attack. He quickly gathered a small force of Roman soldiers to fight against the Volscians who
had sallied forth from Corioli. Not only did he repel the enemy, but he also charged through the town gates and then began setting
fire to some of the houses bordering the town wall. The citizens of Corioli cried out, and the whole Volscian force was dispirited
and was defeated by the Romans. The town was captured, and Marcius gained the cognomen Coriolanus.
In 491 BC, two years after Coriolanus' victory over the Volscians, Rome was recovering from a grain shortage. A significant
quantity of grain was imported from Sicily, and the senate debated the manner in which it should be distributed to the commoners.
Coriolanus advocated that the provision of grain should be dependent upon the reversal of the pro-plebeian political reforms
arising from the First secessio plebis in 494 BC.
The senate thought Coriolanus' proposal was too harsh. The populace were incensed at Coriolanus' proposal, and the tribunes put
him on trial. The senators argued for the acquittal of Coriolanus, or at the least a merciful sentence. Coriolanus refused to attend
on the day of his trial, and he was convicted.
Coriolanus fled to the Volsci in exile. He was received and treated kindly, and resided with the Volscian leader Attius Tullus
Plutarch's account of his defection tells that Coriolanus donned a disguise and entered the home of Aufidius as a supplicant.
Coriolanus and Aufidius then persuaded the Volscians to break their truce with Rome and raise an army to invade. Livy recounts
that Aufidius tricked the Roman senate into expelling the Volsci from Rome during the celebration of the Great Games, thereby
stirring up ill-will among the Volsci.
Coriolanus and Aufidius led the Volscian army against Roman towns, colonies and allies. Roman colonists were expelled from
Circeii. They then retook the formerly Volscian towns of Satricum, Longula, Pollusca and Corioli. Then the Volscian army took
Lavinium, then Corbio, Vitellia, Trebia, Lavici and Pedum.
From there the Volsci marched on Rome and besieged it. The Volscians initially camped at the Cluilian trench, five miles outside
Rome, and ravaged the countryside. Coriolanus directed the Volsci to target plebeian properties and to spare the patricians'
The consuls, now Spurius Nautius Rutilus and Sextus Furius Medullinus Fusus, readied the defences of the city. But the plebeians
implored them to sue for peace. The senate was convened, and it was agreed to send supplicants to the enemy. Initially
ambassadors were sent, but Coriolanus sent back a negative response. The ambassadors were sent to the Volsci a second time, but
were refused entry to the enemy camp. Next priests, in their regalia, were sent by the Romans, but achieved nothing more than had
Then Coriolanus' mother Veturia , his wife Volumnia and his two sons, together with the matrons of Rome, went out to the
Volscian camp and implored Coriolanus to cease his attack on Rome. Coriolanus was overcome by their pleas, and moved the
Volscian camp back from the city, ending the siege.
Rome honoured the service of these women by the erection of a temple dedicated to Fortuna (a female deity).
Volumnia av Volumnii, född -520
i Roma, Lazio, Italien, död -490 i Roma, Lazio, Italien.
Gaius Marcius av Marcii, född -500, död -445