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TIMON, a noble Athenian.

two flattering Lords.
Apemantus, a churlish Philosopher.
Seinpronius, another flattering Lord.
Alcibiades, an Athenian General.
Flavius, Steward to Timon.
Lucilius, Timon's Servants,

Several Servants to Usurers.
Ventidius, one of Timon's falfe Friends.
Cupid and Maskerso


Phrynia,... } Mifresses to Alcibiades.

Thieves, Senators, Poet, Painter, Jeweller, Mercer and

Merchant; with divers servants and attendants.

SCE N E, Athens; and the Woods not far

from it.




A C T I.

SCENE, A Hall in Timon's House.

Enter Poet, Painter, Jeweller, Merchant, and

Mercer, at several doors.


PoE т.
OOD day, Sir.
Pain. I am glad y' are well.

Poet. I have not seen you long; how goes the world? Pain. It wears, Sir, as it goes.

Poet. Ay, that's well known.
But what particular rarity? what so strange,
Which manifold record not matches ? see,
(Magick of bounty!) all these fpirits thy power
Hath conjur'd to attend. I know the merchant. .

Pain. I know them both; th' other's a jeweller.
Mer. O'tis a worthy Lord !
Jew. Nay, that's most fixt.

Mer. A most incomparable man, breath'd as it were
To an untirable and continuate goodness.
He passes

Jew. I have a jewel here.

Mer. O, pray, let's-fee't: For the Lord Timon, Sir ? Vol. VI.


Jewe Jew. If he will touch the estimate : but for that

Poet. When we for recompence have prais’d the vile, It stains the glory in that happy verse Which aptly sings the good.

Mer. 'Tis a good form. (Looking on the jewel. Jew. And rich ; here is a water, look ye.

Pain. You're rapt, Sir, in some work, some dedication To the great Lord.

Poet. A thing slipt idly from me.
Our poesy is as a gum, which issues
From whence 'tis nourished. The fire i’ th' flint
Shews not, 'till it be ftruck: our gentle fiame
Provokes itself, and like the current Aies
Each bound it chafes. What have you there? (1)

Pain. A picture, Sir:—when comes your book forth?

Poet. Upon the heels of my presentment, Sir. Let's see your piece.

Pain. 'Tis a good piece.

Poet. So 'tis,
This comes off well and excellent.

Pain. Indiff'rent.

Pcet. Admirable! how this grace
Speaks his own standing? what a mental power
This eye shoots forth ? how big imagination
Moves in this lip? to th' dumbness of the gesture
One might interpret.

Pain. It is a pretty mocking of the life :
Here is a touch-is't good ?

Poet. I'll say of it,
It tutors nature; artificial strife
Lives in those touches, livelier than life.

(1) Each bound it chases.--] How, chases? The flood, indeed beata ing up upon the shore, covers a part of it, but cannot be said to drive the shore away. The poet's allusion is to a wave, which, foaming and chafing on the thore, breaks; and then the water seems to the eye to retire. So, in Lear.

-The murmuring surge,
That on th' unnumber'd idle pebbles chafes, &c.
And so in Jul. Cæsar.

The troubled Tiber, chafing with his shores,




Enter certain Senators.
Pain. How this Lord is followed !
Poet. The Senators of Athens! happy man! (2)
Pain. Look, more!

Poet. You see this confluence, this great food of visiters.
I have, in this tough work shap'd out a man,
Whom this beneath world doth embrace and hag
With amplest entertainment. My free drift
Halts not particular, but moves itself
In a wide sea of wax; no levell'd malice
Infects one comma in the course I hold,
But flies an eagle-flight, bold, and forth on,
Leaving no tract behind.

Pain. How shall I understand you?

Poet. I'll unbolt to you. You see, how all conditions, how all minds, As well of glib and flipp’ry creatures, as Of grave and austere quality, tender down Their service to Lord Timon: his large fortune, Upon his good and gracious nature hanging, Subdues and properties to his love and tendance All sorts of hearts; yea, from the glass-fac’d flatterer To Apemantus, that few things loves better Than to abhor himself; ev’n he drops down The knee before him, and returns in peace Most rich in Timon's nod.

Pain. I saw them speak together.

Poet. I have upon a high and pleasant hill Feign'd Fortune to be thron'd. The base o'th' mount Is rank'd with all deserts, all kind of natures, That labour on the bosom of this sphere To propagate their states; amongst them all, Whose eyes are on this sov'reign Lady fixt, One do I personate of Timon's frame, Whom Fortune with her iv'ry hand wafts to her,

(2) Happy mer!] Thus the printed copies: but I cannot think the poet meant, that the senators were happy in being admitted to Timon; Elleir quality might command that: but that Timon was happy in being follow'd, and caress’d, by those of their rank and dignity.


F 2

Whose present grace to present llaves and servants
Translates his rivals.

Pain. 'Tis conceiv'd to th’ scope. (3)
This throne, this fortune, and this hill, methinks,
With one man beckon'd from the rest below,
Bowing his head against the steepy mount
To climb his happiness, would be well exprest
In our condition.

Poet. Nay, but hear me on:
All those which were his fellows but of late,
Some better than his value, on the moment
Follow his ftrides; his lobbies fill with tendance;
Rain facrificial whisp'rings in his ear;
Make sacred even his stirrop; and through him
Drink the free air.

Pain. Ay, marry, what of these?

Poet. When Fortune in her shift and change of mood Spurns down her late belov'd, all his dependants (Which labour'd after to the mountain's top, Even on their knees and hands,) let him sip down, Not one accompanying his declining foot.

Pain. 'Tis common: A thousand moral paintings I can shew, That shall demonstrate these quick blows of fortune More pregnantly than words. Yet you do well To Thew Lord Timom, that mean eyes have seen The foot above the head.

(3) 'Tis conceiv'd, to scope

Ibis throne, ibis fortune, &c.] Thus all the editors hitherto have nonsensically writ, and pointed, this paslage. But, sure, the painter would tell the poet, your conception, Sir, hits the very scope you aim at. This the Greeks would have render'd, tő omotað tuxeis, recia ad fcopum tendis: and Cicero has thus express'd on the like occasion, Signum oculis diftinatum feris. This sense our author, in his Henry Sth, expresles;

I think, you've hit the mark.
And in his Julius Cæfar, at the conclusion of the first act;

Him, anu his worth, and our great need of him,
You have right well conceited.


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