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A magnificent Room in Timon's House.
Musick. Tables set out : Servants attending. Enter
divers Lords, at several Doors.
i Lord. The good time of day to you, sir.
2 Lord. I also wish it to you. I think, this honourable lord did but try us this other day.
i Lord. Upon that were my thoughts tiring,' when we encountered : I hope, it is not so low with him, as he made it seem in the trial of his several friends.
2 Lord. It should not be, by the persuasion of his new feasting
i Lord. I should think so : He hath sent me an earnest inviting, which many my near occasions did urge me to put off; but he hath conjured me beyond them, and I must needs
appear. 2 Lord. In like manner was I in debt to my importunate business, but he would not hear my excuse. I am sorry, when he sent to borrow of me, that my provision was out.
i Lord. I am sick of that grief too, as I understand how all things go. 2 Lord. Every man here's so.
What would he have borrowed of you?
i Lord. A thousand pieces.
* Upon that were my thoughts tiring,] A hawk, I think, is said to tire, when she amuses herself with pecking a pheasant's wing, or any thing that puts her in mind of prey. To tire upon a thing, is therefore, to be idly employed upon it.
Enter Timon, and Attendants. Tim. With all my heart, gentlemen both:—And how fare you?
i Lord. Ever at the best, hearing well of your lordship.
2 Lord. The swallow follows not summer more willing, than we your lordship.
Tim. [Aside. ] Nor inore willingly leaves winter; such summer-birds are men.-Gentlemen, our dinner will not recompense this long stay: feast your ears with the musick awhile; if they will fare so harshly on the trumpet's sound: we shall to't presently.
i Lord. I hope, it remains not unkindly with your lordship, that I returned you an empty messenger.
Tim. O, sir, let it not trouble you.
[The Banquet brought in. 2 Lord. My most honourable lord, I am e'en sick of shame, that, when your lordship this other day sent to me, I was so unfortunate a beggar. Tim. Think not on't, sir. 2 Lord. If you had sent but two hours before,–
Tim. Let it not cumber your better remembrance.—Come, bring in all together.
2 Lord. All covered dishes!
3 Lord. Doubt not that, if money, and the season can yield it.
i Lord. How do you do? What's the news?
- your better remembrance.] i. e. your good memory: the comparative for the positive degree.
1 & 2 Lord. Alcibiades banished !
draw near? 3 Lord. I'll tell you more anon.
Here's a noble feast toward.
2 Lord. This is the old man still.
Tim. Each man to his stool, with that spur as he would to the lip of his mistress: your diet shall be in all places alike. Make not a city feast of it, to let the meat cool ere we can agree upon the first place: Sit, sit. The gods require our thanks.
You great benefactors, sprinkle our society with thankfulness
. For your own gifts, make yourselves praised; but reserve still to give, lest your deities be despised. Lend to each man enough, that one need not lend to another : for, were your godheads to borrow of men, men would forsake the gods. Make the meat be beloved,
more than the man that gives it. Let no assembly of twenty be without a score of villains : If there sit twelve women at the table, let a dozen of them be—as they are.— The rest of your fees, O gods, --the senators of Athens, together with the common lag* of people, what is amiss in them, you gods make suitable for destruction. For these my present
friends,—as they are to me nothing, so in nothing bless them, and to nothing they are welcome. Uncover, dogs, and lap.
[The Dishes uncovered, are full of warm Water. ? Here's a noble feast toward.] i. e. in a state of readiness. in some places, called the lag-end.
lag -] The fag-end of a web of cloth is,
Some speak. What does his lordship mean?
Tim. May you a better feast never behold,
Throwing Water in their Faces.
out. Stay, I will lend thee money, borrow none.What, all in motion? Henceforth be no feast, Whereat a villain's not a welcome guest. Burn, house; sink, Athens! henceforth hated be Of Timon, man, and all humanity! [Exit.
Re-enter the Lords, with other Lords and Senators.
i Lord. How now, my lords?
2 Lord. Know you the quality of lord Timon's fury?
9 Is your perfection.] Your perfection, is the highest of your ercellence.
time's flies,] Flies of a season. JOHNSON.
minute-jacks!) A minute-jack is what was called formerly a Jack of the clock-house; an image whose office was the same as one of those at St. Dunstan's church, in Fleet-street.
3- the infinite malady —] Every kind of disease incident to man and beast.