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Lest they should spy my windpipe's dangerous

notes:

Great men should drink with harness on their

throats.

Tim. My lord, in heart; and let the health go round.

Sec. Lord. Let it flow this way, my good lord.

Apem. Flow this way! A brave fellow ! he keeps his tides well. Those healths will make thee and thy state look ill, Timon. Here's that

which is too weak to be a sinner, honest water,
which ne'er left man i' the mire:

This and my food are equals; there's no odds:
Feasts are too proud to give thanks to the gods.
Apemantus' grace.

Immortal gods, I crave no pelf;
I pray for no man but myself:
Grant I may never prove so fond,
To trust man on his oath or bond;
Or a harlot, for her weeping;
Or a dog, that seems a-sleeping;
Or a keeper with my freedom;
Or my friends, if I should need 'em.
Amen. So fall to 't:

Rich men sin, and I eat root.

[Eats and drinks. Much good dich thy good heart, Apemantus ! Tim. Captain Alcibiades, your heart's in the field now.

Alcib. My heart is ever at your service, my lord.

Tim. You had rather be at a breakfast of enemies than a dinner of friends.

60

70

Alcib. So they were bleeding-new, my lord, 80 53. harness, armour.

73. dich, a corruption of 'do it.'

there's no meat like 'em: I could wish my best friend at such a feast.

Apem. Would all those flatterers were thine enemies then, that then thou mightst kill 'em and bid me to 'em!

First Lord. Might we but have that happiness, my lord, that you would once use our hearts, whereby we might express some part of our zeals, we should think ourselves for ever perfect.

90

Tim. O, no doubt, my good friends, but the gods themselves have provided that I shall have much help from you: how had you been my friends else? why have you that charitable title from thousands, did not you chiefly belong to my heart? I have told more of you to myself than you can with modesty speak in your own behalf; and thus far I confirm you. O you gods, think I, what need we have any friends, if we should ne'er have need of 'em? they were the most need- 100 less creatures living, should we ne'er have use for 'em, and would most resemble sweet instruments hung up in cases that keep their sounds to themselves. Why, I have often wished myself poorer, that I might come nearer to you. We are born to do benefits: and what better or properer can we call our own than the riches of our friends? O, what a precious comfort 'tis, to have so many, like brothers, commanding one another's fortunes! O joy, e'en made away ere 't can be born! 110 Mine eyes cannot hold out water, methinks: to forget their faults, I drink to you.

Apem. Thou weepest to make them drink, Timon.

Sec. Lord. Joy had the like conception in our eyes And at that instant like a babe sprung up.

Apem. Ho, ho! I laugh to think that babe a bastard.

Third Lord. I promise you, my lord, you

moved me much.

Apem. Much!

Tim. What means that trump?

Enter a Servant.

[Tucket, within.

How now?

Serv. Please you, my lord, there are certain

ladies most desirous of admittance.

Tim. Ladies! what are their wills?

Serv. There comes with them a forerunner, my lord, which bears that office, to signify their pleasures.

Tim. I pray, let them be admitted.

Enter CUPID.

Cup. Hail to thee, worthy Timon, and to all That of his bounties taste! The five best senses Acknowledge thee their patron; and come freely To gratulate thy plenteous bosom: th' ear, Taste, touch and smell, pleased from thy table rise; They only now come but to feast thine eyes.

Tim. They're welcome all; let 'em have kind admittance:

Music, make their welcome!

[Exit Cupid.

First Lord. You see, my lord, how ample you're beloved.

Music. Re-enter CUPID, with a mask of Ladies as Amazons, with lutes in their hands, dancing and playing.

Apem. Hoy-day, what a sweep of vanity comes

120

130

this way!

136. a mask of Ladies. The

disguise, by members of the

Masques, or entertainments in Court, were in full vogue at

They dance! they are mad women.

Like madness is the glory of this life,
As this pomp shows to a little oil and root.
We make ourselves fools, to disport ourselves,
And spend our flatteries, to drink those men
Upon whose age we void it up again,
With poisonous spite and envy.
Who lives that's not depraved or depraves?
Who dies, that bears not one spurn to their
Of their friends' gift?

graves

I should fear those that dance before me now Would one day stamp upon me: 't has been done; Men shut their doors against a setting sun.

The Lords rise from table, with much adoring of TIMON; and to show their loves, each singles out an Amazon, and all dance, men with women, a lofty strain or two to the hautboys, and cease. Tim. You have done our pleasures much grace, fair ladies,

Set a fair fashion on our entertainment,

Which was not half so beautiful and kind;
You have added worth unto 't and lustre,
And entertain'd me with mine own device:
I am to thank you for 't.

First Lady. My lord, you take us even at the best. Apem. 'Faith, for the worst is filthy, and would not hold taking, I doubt me.

140

150

Tim. Ladies, there is an idle banquet attends you: 160

this time. First brought into England from Italy, in Henry VIII.'s reign, they had received a sudden accession of outward splendour and intrinsic worth in the hands of Ben Jonson, to whose verse Inigo Jones, Alfonso Ferrabosco, John Dowland,

and Thomas Gills furnished machinery, music, and dances. Shakespeare has introduced them twice elsewhere, in Hen. VIII. and The Tempest,-both within a few years of the date of Timon.

160. banquet, dessert.

Please you to dispose yourselves.

All Ladies. Most thankfully, my lord.

Tim. Flavius.

Flav. My lord?

Tim.

[Exeunt Cupid and Ladies

The little casket bring me hither. Flav. Yes, my lord. More jewels yet! [Aside. There is no crossing him in 's humour ;

Else I should tell him,-well, i' faith, I should,When all's spent, he'ld be cross'd then, an he could.

'Tis pity bounty had not eyes behind,

That man might ne'er be wretched for his mind.

First Lord. Where be our men?

Serv. Here, my lord, in readiness.
Sec. Lord. Our horses!

Tim.

Re-enter FLAVIUS, with the casket.

O my friends,

170

[Exit.

I have one word to say to you: look you, my

good lord,

I must entreat you, honour me so much

As to advance this jewel; accept it and wear it,

Kind my

lord.

First Lord. I am so far already in your gifts,—
All. So are we all.

Enter a Servant.

Serv. My lord, there are certain nobles of the

senate

Newly alighted, and come to visit you.

Tim. They are fairly welcome.

Flav.

I beseech your honour,

Vouchsafe me a word; it does concern you near.

VOL. X

176. advance, add value to.

177

N

180

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