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Athens. A Room in Timon's House.

Enter Flavius, with Two or Three Servants. 1 Serv. Hear you, master steward, where's our

master? Are we undone ? cast off? nothing remaining?

Flav. Alack, my fellows, what should I say to you? Let me be recorded by the righteous gods, I am as poor as you. 1 Seru.

Such a house broke! So noble a master fallen! All gone! and not One friend, to take his fortune by the arm, And

go along with him! 2 Serv.

As we do turn our backs From our companion, thrown into his grave; So his familiars to his buried fortunes Slink all away; leave their false vows with him, Like empty purses pick’d: and his poor self, A dedicated beggar to the air, With his disease of all-shunn'd poverty, Walks, like contempt, alone. More of our fellows.

Enter other Servants.

Flav. All broken implements of a ruin'd house.

3 Serv. Yet do our hearts wear Timon's livery, That see I by our faces; we are fellows still, Serving alike in sorrow: Leak'd is our bark; And we, poor mates, stand on the dying deck, Hearing the surges threat: we must all part

Enter Flavius,] Nothing contributes more to the exaltation of Timon's character than the zeal and fidelity of his servants. Nothing but real virtue can be honoured by domesticks; nothing but impartial kindness can gain affection from dependants.

Into this sea of air.

Good fellows all,
The latest of my wealth I'll share amongst you.
Wherever we shall meet, for Timon's sake,
Let's yet be fellows; let's shake our heads, and say,
As 'twere a knell unto our master's fortunes,
We have seen better days. Let each take some;

[Giving them money. Nay, put out all your hands. Not one word more: Thus part we rich in sorrow, parting poor.

[Exeunt Servants. O, the fierce wretchedness that glory brings us ! Who would not wish to be from wealth exempt, Since riches point to misery and contempt? Who'd be so mock'd with glory? or to live But in a dream of friendship? To have his pomp, and all what state compounds, But only painted, like his varnish'd friends ? Poor honest lord, brought low by his own heart; Undone by goodness! Strange, unusual blood, When man's worst sin is, he does too much good! Who then dares to be half so kind again? For bounty, that makes gods, does still mar men. My dearest lord, -bless'd, to be most accurs'd, Rich, only to be wretched;-thy great fortunes Are made thy chief afflictions. Alas, kind lord! He's flung in rage from this ungrateful seat Of monstrous friends: nor has he with him to Supply his life, or that which can command it. I'll follow, and enquire him out: I'll serve his mind with my best will; Whilst I have gold, I'll be his steward still. [Exit.

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10, the fierce wretchedness -] Fierce is here used for hasty, precipitate.

- Strange, unusual blood,] Strange, unusual blood, may mean, strange, unusual disposition.



The Woods.

Enter TIMON.

Tim. O blessed breeding sun, draw from the earth Rotten humidity; below thy sister's orb} Infect the air! Twinn'd brothers of one womb,Whose procreation, residence, and birth, Scarceis

dividant, -touch them with several fortunes;
The greater scorns the lesser: Not nature,
To whom all sores lay siege, can bear great fortune,
But by contempt of nature.*
Raise me this beggar, and denude that lord;
The senator shall bear contempt hereditary,
The beggar native honour.
It is the pasture lards the brother's sides,
The want that makes hiin lean. Who dares, who

In purity of manhood stand upright,
And say, This man's a flatterer? if one be,
So are they all; for every grize of fortunes
Is smooth'd by that below: the learned pate
Ducks to the golden fool: All is oblique;
There's nothing level in our cursed natures,

below thy sister's orb-] That is, the moon's, this sublu

nary world.

Not nature,
To whom all sores lay siege, can bear great fortune,

But by contempt of nature,] Mr. M. Mason observes, that this passage

“ but by the addition of a single letter may be rendered clearly intelligible ; by merely reading natures instead of nature.The meaning will then be—“ Not even beings reduced to the utmost extremity of wretchedness, can bear good fortune, without contemning their fellow-creatures.”'

- for every grize of fortune --] Grize for step or degree,

But direct villainy. Therefore, be abhorrd
All feasts, societies, and throngs of men!
His semblable, yea, himself, l'imon disdains:
Destruction fang mankind!—Earth, yield me roots!

Who seeks for better of thee, sauce his palate
With thy most operant poison! What is here?
Gold? yellow, glittering, precious gold? No, gods,
I am no idle votarist. Roots, you clear heavens !8
Thus much of this, will make black, white; foul,

fair; Wrong, right; base, noble; old, young; coward,

valiant. Ha, you gods! why this? What this, you gods?


Why this

Will lug your priests and servants from your sides;
Pluck stout men's pillows from below their heads:
This yellow slave
Will knit and break religions; bless the accurs’d;
Make the hoar leprosy ador'd; place thieves,
And give them title, knee, and approbation,
With senators on the bench: this is it,
That makes the wappen'd widow wed again;
She, whom the spital-house, and ulcerous sores
Would cast the gorge at, this embalms and spices
To the April day again. Come, damned earth,
Thou common whore of mankind, that put'st odds
Among the rout of nations, I will make thee


6---fang mankind!] i. e. seize, gripe.

no idle rotarist.] No insincere or inconstant supplicant. Gold will not serve ine instead of roots. JOHNSON. - you clear heavens!) This may mean either


cloudless skies, or ye deities exempt from guilt.

9 To the April day again.] The April day does not relate to the uidow, but to the other diseased female, who is represented as the outcast of an hospital. She it is whom gold embalms and spices to the April day again: i, e. gold restores her to all the freshness and sweetness of youth.

Do thy right nature.—[March afar off]-Ha! a

drum?-Thou'rt quick,
But yet I'll bury thee: Thou'lt go, strong thief,
When gouty keepers of thee cannot stand:-
Nay, stay thou out for earnest.

[Keeping some Gold.

Enter ALCIBIADES, with Drum and Fife, in warlike

manner; PHRYNIA and TIMANDRA. Alcil.

What art thou there? Speak. Tim. A beast, as thou art. The canker gnaw thy

heart, For showing me again the eyes of man! Alcib. What is thy name? Is man so hateful to

That art thyself a man?

Tim. I am misanthropos, and hate mankind.
For thy part, I do wish thou wert a dog,
That I might love thee something:

I know thee well;
But in thy fortunes am unlearn'd and strange.
Tim. I know thee too; and more, than that I

know thee, I not desire to know. Follow thy drum; With man’s blood paint the ground, gules, gules: Religious canons, civil laws are cruel; Then what should war be? This fell whore of thine Hath in her more destruction than thy sword, For all her cherubin look. Phry.

Thy lips rot off! Tim. I will not kiss thee; then the rot returns To thine own lips again.

Alcib. How came the noble Timon to this change?

1 Do thy right nature.] Lie in the earth where nature laid thee.

Thou'rt quick,] Thou hast life and motion in thee. vol. VII.


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