Page images
PDF
EPUB
[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

plainer and fimpler kind of people, the deed is quite out of use. To promise, is most courtly, and fashion, able; performance is a kind of will or teftament, which argues a great fickness in his judgment that makes it.

Re-enter Timon from his cave, unseen. Tim. Excellent workman! thou canst not paint a man so bad as thyseif.

Poet. I am thinking, what I shall say I have provided for him: it must be a personating of himself; a satire against the softness of prosperity, with a discovery of the infinite flatteries that follow youth ard opulency.

Tim. Must thou needs stand for a villain in thine own work? wilt thou whip thine own faults in other men ? do so, I have gold for thee.

Poet. Nay, let's seek him.
Then do we fin against our own estate,
When we may profit meet, and come too late.

Pain. True.
Poet. While the day serves, before black-corner'd

night, (35)
Find what thou want'st, by free and offer'd light.
Come,

Tim. I'll meet you at the turn What a god's gold, that he is worshipped In baser temples, than where swine do teed! 'Tisthou that rigg'st the bark, and plow's the wave, (36) Settleft admired rev'rence in a slave; To thee be worship, and thy faints for aye Be crown’d with plagues, that thee alone obey! 'Tis fit I meet them.

Poet. Hail! worthy Timon. Pain. Our late noble maiter. (35) While the day serves, &c.] This couplet in all the editions is placed to the painter, but, as it is in rhyme, and a sequel of the sentiment begun by the poet, I have made no scruple to afcribe it to him,

(36) 'Tis thou that rigg fit obe bark, and plomus ibe foam, Settlest admired rev'rence in a flave ;] As both the couplet preceding, and following this, are in rhyme, I am very apt to suspect, the rhyme is dismounted here by an accidental corruption; and therefore have ventur'd to replace wave in the room of foam,

Tim. Have I once liv'd to see two honest men ?

Poet. Sir, having often of your bounty tafted,
Hearing you were retir’d, your friends, falin off,
Whose thankless natures, oh abhorred fpirits !
Not all the whips of heav'n are large enough
What! to you!
Whose star-like nobleness gave life and influence
To their whole being! I am rapt, and cannot
Cover the monstrous bulk of this ingratitude
With any size of words.

Tim. Let it go naked, men may fee't the better: (37)
You that are honest, by being what you are,
Make them beft seen and known.

Pain. He, and myself,
Have traveli'd in the great shower of your gifts,
And sweetly felt it.

Tim. Ay, you're honeft men.
Pain. We're hither come to offer you our service.

Tim. Most honeft men! why, how shall I requite you? Can you eat roots, and drink cold water? no.

Both. What we can do, we'll do, to do you service.

Tim. Y'are honest men; you've heard, that I have gold; I'nı sure, you have; speak truth, y' are honest men.

Pain. So it is said, my noble Lord, but therefore Came not my friend, nor I.

Tim. Good honest man ; thou draw'st a counterfeit Beft in all Athens; thou’rt, indeed, the best; Thou counterfeit'it most lively.

Pain. So, so, my Lord.

(37). Les it go, naked men may see't the better;] Thus has this palfage been stupidly pointed thro' all the editions, as if naked men could fee better than men in their cloaths. I think verily, if there were any room to credit the experiment, such editors ought to go naked for the improvement of their eye-lights. But, perhaps, they have as little faith as judgment in their own readings. The poet, in the preceding speech haranguing on the ingratitude of Timon's false friends, fays, he cannot cover the monstrousness of it with any fize of words; to which Timon, as I have rectitied the pointing, very aptly replies ; Let it

- men may fee't tbe better. So, our poet in his Much Ado about Nothing.

Why seekft thou then to cover with excuse
That, which appears in proper nakednefs.

go naked,

Tim. E'en so, Sir, as I say And for thy fiction, Why, thy verse. swells with stuff so fine and smooth, That thou art even natural in thine art. But for all this, my honeft-natur'd friends, I must needs say, you have a little fault; Marry, not monstrous in you; neither wish I, You take much pains to mend.

Both. Beseech your honour
To make it known to us.

Tim. You'll take it ill.
Both. Most thankfully, my Lord.
Tim. Will you, indeed ?
Both. Doubt it not, worthy Lord.

Tim. There's ne'er a one of you but trufts a knave, That mightily deceives you.

Both. Do we, my Lord?

Tim. Ay, and you hear him cogg, see him difsemble,
Know his grofs patchery, love him, and feed him;
Keep in your bosom, yet remain aflur'd,
That he's a made-up villain.

Pain. I know none fuch, my Lord.
Poet. Nor I.

Tim. Look you, I love you well, I'll give you gold,
Rid me these villains from your companies;
Hang them, or ftab them, drown them in a draught,
Confound them by some course, and come to me,
I'll give you gold enough.

Both. Name them, my Lord, let's know them.

Tim. You that way, and you this;-but twoin company: Each man apart, all single and alone, Yet an arch villain keeps him company. If where thou art, two villains shall not be, [To the Painter. Come not near him.-ifthou would not reside (Tothe Poet. But where one villain is, then him abandon. Hence, pack, there's gold; ye came for gold, ye flaves; You have work for me ; there's your payment, hence ! You are an alchymist, make gold of that: Out, rascal dogs! [Beating and driving 'em out.

Enter

Enter Flavius and two Senators. Flav. It is in vain that you would speak with Timon: For he is set so only to himself, That nothing but himself, which looks like man Is friendly with him.

i Sen. Bring us to his cave.
It is our part and promise to thAthenians
To speak with Timon.

2 Sen. At all times alike
Men are not still the fame; 'twas time and griefs
That fram'd him thus. Time, with his fairer hand
Offering the fortunes of his former days,
The former man may make him; bring us to him,
And chance it as it may.

Flav. Here is his cave:
Peace and content be here, Lord Timon! Timon !
Look out, and speak to friends: th’ Athenians
By two of their most rev’rend senate greet thee;
Speak to them, noble Timon.

Enter Timon out of his Cave.
Tim. Thou sun, that comfortit, burn!-
Speak, and be hang'd;
For each true word a blister, and each false
Be cauterizing to the root o'th' tongue,
Consuming it with speaking.

i Sen. Worthy Timon,
Tim. _Of none but such as you, and

you

of Timon. 2 Sen. The Senators of Athens greet thee, Timon.

Tim. I thank them. And would send them back the Could I but catch it for them.

(plague, i Sen. O, forget What we are sorry for ourselves, in thee : The Senators, with one consent of love, Intreat thee back to Athens; who have thought On fpecial dignities, which vacant lie For thy best use and wearing.

2 Sen. They confess Tow'rd thee forgetfulness, too general, gross;

Which

« PreviousContinue »