Tullus Aufidius is the leader of the Volscian army and Rome and Coriolanus’s greatest enemy.
Refusing to give in to the fact that he is constantly beaten in battle by the Romans, he fights them time and again, meeting Coriolanus in single combat a dozen times, though never winning. This engenders in him a powerful hatred for his enemy, though he respects him. This respect allows him to greet Coriolanus as a friend when the latter is banished and comes to join the Volscians in their new campaign against Rome. He is soon envious, however, at how his soldiers begin to take the Roman as their commander, and he plans to use Coriolanus as a weapon against Rome and to destroy him afterwards – a plan in which he is successful. He is not entirely displeased when Coriolanus chooses not to attack Rome, as it gives him an excuse to bring the Roman down. Aufidius seems at times to be the Volscian equivalent to Coriolanus, but unlike the Roman, he is capable of deceit and can work within the framework of government.