Imatges de pÓgina

They never flatter'd thee: What hast thou given ?
If thou wilt curse, — thy father, that poor rag,
Must be thy subject; who, in spite, put stuff
To some she-beggar, and compounded thee
Poor rogue hereditary. Hence ! be gone! -
If thou hadst not been born the worst of men,
Thou hadst been a knave, and flatterer. 7

Art thou proud yet?
Tim. Ay, that I am not thee.
Арет. .

I, that I was
No prodigal.

Tim. I, that I am one now;
Were all the wealth I have, shut up in thee,
I'd give thee leave to hang it. Get thee gone. -
That the whole life of Athens were in this !
Thus would I eat it.

[Eating a root. Арет. .

Here; I will mend thy feast.

[Offering him something. Tim. First mend my company, take away thyself. Apem. So I shall mend mine own, by the lack of thine.

Tim. 'Tis not well mended so, it is but botch’d; If not, I would it were.

Apem. What would'st thou have to Athens?

Tim. Thee thither in a whirlwind. If thou wilt,
Tell them there I have gold; look, so I have.

Apem. Here is no use for gold.

The best, and truest : For here it sleeps, and does no hired harm.

Apem. Where ly’st o’nights, Timon ?

7 Thou hadst been a knave, and flatterer.] Dryden has quoted two verses of Virgil to show how well he could have written satires. Shakspeare has here given a specimen of the same power by a line bitter beyond all bitterness, in which Timon tells Apemantus, that he had not virtue enough for the vices which he condemns. I have heard Mr. Burke commend the subtilty of discrimination with which Shakspeare distinguishes the present character of Timon from that of Apemantus, whom to vulgar eyes he would now resemble. Johnson.


Under that's above me. Where feed'st thou o'days, Apemantus ?

Apem. Where my stomach finds meat; or, rather, where I eat it.

Tim. 'Would poison were obedient, and knew my mind!

Apem. Where would'st thou send it ?
Tim. To sauce thy dishes.

Apem. The middle of humanity thou never knewest, but the extremity of both ends: When thou wast in thy gilt, and thy perfume, they mocked thee for too much curiosity® ; in thy rags thou knowest none, but art despised for the contrary. There's a medlar for thee, eat it.

Tim. On what I hate, I feed not.
Apem. Dost hate a medlar?
Tim. Ay, though it look like thee.

Apem. An thou hadst hated medlers sooner, thou should'st have loved thyself better now.

What man didst thou ever know unthrift, that was beloved after his means ?

Tim. Who, without those means thou talkest of, didst thou ever know beloved ?

Apem. Myself.

Tim. I understand thee; thou hadst some means to keep a dog.

Apem. What things in the world canst thou nearest compare to thy flatterers ?

Tim. Women nearest; but men, men are the things themselves. What would'st thou do with the world, Apemantus, if it lay in thy power?

Apem. Give it the beasts, to be rid of the men.
Tim. Would'st thou have thyself fall in the confusion
men, and remain a beast with the beasts?
Apem. Ay, Timon.
Tim. A beastly ambition, which the gods grant thee



- for too much curiosity;] i. e. for too much finical delicacy.

to attain to! If thou wert the lion, the fox would beguile thee: if thou wert the lamb, the fox would eat thee: if thou wert the fox, the lion would suspect thee, when, peradventure, thou wert accused by the ass: if thou wert the ass, thy dulness would torment thee; and still thou livedst but as a breakfast to the wolf: if thou wert the wolf, thy greediness would afflict thee, and oft thou should'st hazard thy life for thy dinner: wert thou the unicorn', pride and wrath would confound thee, and make thine own self the conquest of thy fury: wert thou a bear, thou would'st be killed by the horse: wert thou a horse, thou would'st be seized by the leopard : wert thou a leopard, thou wert german to the lion, and the spots of thy kindred were jurors on thy life: all thy safety were remotion"; and thy defence, absence. What beast could'st thou be, that were not subject to a beast? and what a beast art thou already, that seest not thy loss in transformation ?

Apem. If thou could'st please me with speaking to me, thou might'st have hit upon it here: The commonwealth of Athens is become a forest of beasts.

Tim. How has the ass broke the wall, that thou art out of the city ?

Apem. Yonder comes a poet, and a painter: The plague of company light upon thee! I will fear to catch it, and give way: when I know not what else to do, I'll see thee again.

Tim. When there is nothing living but thee, thou shalt be welcome. I had rather be a beggar's dog, than Apemantus.

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the unicorn, &c.] The account given of the unicorn is this: that he and the lion being enemies by nature, as soon as the lion sees the unicorn he betakes himself to a tree: the unicorn in his fury, and with all the swiftness of his course, running at him, sticks his horn fast in the tree, and then the lion falls upon him and kills him.

-were remotion ;] i. e. removal from place to place; or perhaps, remoteness.

Apem. Thou art the cap of all the fools alive.? 2
Tim. 'Would thou wert clean enough to spit upon.
Apem. A plague on thee, thou art too bad to curse.
Tim. All villains, that do stand by thee, are pure.
Apem. There is no leprosy, but what thou speak’st.

Tim. If I name thee,
I'll beat thee, but I should infect my hands.

Apem. I would, my tongue could rot them off!

Tim. Away, thou issue of a mangy dog!
Choler does kill me, that thou art alive;
I swoon to see thee.

'Would thou would'st burst! Tim.

Away, Thou tedious rogue ! I am sorry, I shall lose A stone by thee.

[Throws a stone at him. Apem.


Арет. .

Toad !

Rogue, rogue, rogue!
[APEMANTUS retreats backward, as going.
I am sick of this false world; and will love nought
But even the mere necessities upon it.
Then, Timon, presently prepare thy grave;
Lie where the light foam of the sea may beat
Thy grave-stone daily: make thine epitaph,
That death in me at others' lives may laugh.
O thou sweet king-killer, and dear divorce

[Looking on the gold. 'Twixt natural son and sire! thou bright defiler Of Hymen's purest bed! thou valiant Mars ! Thou ever young, fresh, lov'd, and delicate wooer, Whose blush doth thaw the consecrated snow That lies on Dian's lap! thou visible god, That solder'st close impossibilities, And mak'st them kiss ! that speak’st with every tongue,

. Thou art the cap, &c.] The top, the principal. The remaining dialogue has more malignity than wit. Johnson.



To every purpose ! O thou touch of hearts !3
Think, thy slave man rebels; and by thy virtue
Set them into confounding odds, that beasts
May have the world in empire !
Арет. .

'Would 'twere so ;But not till I am dead ! I'll


thou hast gold:
Thou wilt be throngd to shortly.

Throng'd to?

Tim. Thy back, I prythee.
Арет. .

Live, and love thy misery!
Tim. Long live so, and so die ! - I am quit.

[Exit APEMANTUS. More things like men ? - Eat, Timon, and abhor them.

Enter Thieves.

1 Thief. Where should he have this gold ? It is some poor fragment, some slender ort of his remainder: The mere want of gold, and the falling-from of his friends, drove him into this melancholy.

2 Thief. It is noised, he hath a mass of treasure.

3 Thief. Let us make the assay upon him; if he care not fort, he will supply us easily; If he covetously reserve it, how shall's get it?

2 Thief. True; for he bears it not about him, 'tis hid, 1 Thief. Is not this he? Thieves. Where? 2 Thief. 'Tis his description. 3 Thief. He; I know him. Thieves. Save thee, Timon. Tim. Now, thieves ? Thieves. Soldiers, not thieves. Tim. Both too; and women's sons. Thieves. We are not thieves, but men that much do



0 thou touch of hearts! ] Touch, for touchstone.

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