ACT I SCENE I. Athens. A hall in Timon's house.
Enter Poet, Painter, Jeweller, Merchant, and others, at several
Good day, sir.
I am glad you're well.
I have not seen you long: how goes the
It wears, sir, as it grows.
Ay, that's well known:
particular rarity? what strange,
Which manifold record
not matches? See,
Magic of bounty! all these spirits thy
Hath conjured to attend. I know the
I know them both; th' other's a
O, 'tis a worthy lord.
Nay, that's most fix'd.
A most incomparable man, breathed, as it
To an untirable and continuate goodness:
Jeweller: I have a jewel
O, pray, let's see't: for the Lord Timon,
Jeweller: If he will touch the estimate: but, for
[Reciting to himself] 'When we for recompense
praised the vile,
the glory in that happy verse
Which aptly sings the
'Tis a good form.
Looking at the jewel
And rich: here is a water, look
You are rapt, sir, in some work, some
To the great lord.
A thing slipp'd idly from me.
Our poesy is as a gum, which oozes
whence 'tis nourish'd: the fire i' the flint
till it be struck; our gentle flame
Provokes itself and
like the current flies
Each bound it chafes. What have
A picture, sir. When comes your book
Upon the heels of my presentment, sir.
Let's see your piece.
'Tis a good piece.
So 'tis: this comes off well and
Admirable: how this grace
Speaks his own standing! what a mental power
This eye shoots forth! how big imagination
Moves in this lip! to the dumbness of the gesture
One might interpret.
It is a pretty mocking of the life.
Here is a touch; is't good?
I will say of it,
nature: artificial strife
Lives in these touches,
livelier than life.
Enter certain Senators, and pass over
How this lord is follow'd!
The senators of Athens: happy
You see this confluence, this great flood
I have, in this rough work,
shaped out a man,
Whom this beneath world doth embrace
With amplest entertainment: my free
Halts not particularly, but moves itself
In a wide sea of wax: no levell'd malice
Infects one comma in the course I hold;
flies an eagle flight, bold and forth on,
How shall I understand you?
I will unbolt to you.
how all conditions, how all minds,
As well of glib and
slippery creatures as
Of grave and austere quality,
Their services to Lord Timon: his large
Upon his good and gracious nature
Subdues and properties to his love and
All sorts of hearts; yea, from the glass-faced
To Apemantus, that few things loves
Than to abhor himself: even he drops
The knee before him, and returns in peace
Most rich in Timon's nod.
I saw them speak together.
Sir, I have upon a high and pleasant hill
Feign'd Fortune to be throned: the base o' the mount
Is rank'd with all deserts, all kind of natures,
That labour on the bosom of this sphere
propagate their states: amongst them all,
Whose eyes are
on this sovereign lady fix'd,
One do I personate of Lord
Whom Fortune with her ivory hand wafts to
Whose present grace to present slaves and
Translates his rivals.
'Tis conceived to scope.
throne, this Fortune, and this hill, methinks,
man beckon'd from the rest below,
Bowing his head
against the sleepy mount
To climb his happiness, would
be well express'd
In our condition.
Nay, sir, but hear me on.
those which were his fellows but of late,
than his value, on the moment
Follow his strides, his
lobbies fill with tendance,
Rain sacrificial whisperings
in his ear,
Make sacred even his stirrup, and through
Drink the free air.
Ay, marry, what of these?
When Fortune in her shift and change of
Spurns down her late beloved, all his
Which labour'd after him to the mountain's
Even on their knees and hands, let him slip
Not one accompanying his declining
moral paintings I can show
That shall demonstrate these
quick blows of Fortune's
More pregnantly than words.
Yet you do well
To show Lord Timon that mean eyes have
The foot above the head.
Trumpets sound. Enter TIMON, addressing himself courteously to every
suitor; a Messenger from VENTIDIUS talking with him; LUCILIUS and other
Imprison'd is he, say you?
Ay, my good lord: five talents is his
His means most short, his creditors most
Your honourable letter he desires
To those have shut him up; which failing,
Periods his comfort.
Noble Ventidius! Well;
not of that feather to shake off
My friend when he must
need me. I do know him
A gentleman that well deserves a
Which he shall have: I'll pay the debt,
and free him.
Your lordship ever binds him.
Commend me to him: I will send his
And being enfranchised, bid him come to
'Tis not enough to help the feeble up,
But to support him after. Fare you well.
All happiness to your honour!
Enter an old Athenian
Lord Timon, hear me speak.
Freely, good father.
Thou hast a servant named
I have so: what of him?
Most noble Timon, call the man before
Attends he here, or no?
Here, at your lordship's
This fellow here, Lord Timon, this thy
By night frequents my house. I am a
That from my first have been inclined to
And my estate deserves an heir more
Than one which holds a
Well; what further?
One only daughter have I, no kin else,
On whom I may confer what I have got:
maid is fair, o' the youngest for a bride,
And I have
bred her at my dearest cost
In qualities of the best.
This man of thine
Attempts her love: I prithee, noble
Join with me to forbid him her resort;
Myself have spoke in vain.
The man is honest.
Therefore he will be, Timon:
His honesty rewards him in itself;
not bear my daughter.
Does she love him?
She is young and apt:
own precedent passions do instruct us
What levity's in
[To LUCILIUS] Love you the
Ay, my good lord, and she accepts of
If in her marriage my consent be
I call the gods to witness, I will
Mine heir from forth the beggars of the
And dispossess her all.
How shall she be endow'd,
if she be mated with an equal husband?
Three talents on the present; in future,
This gentleman of mine hath served me
To build his fortune I will strain a
For 'tis a bond in men. Give him thy
What you bestow, in him I'll
And make him weigh with
Most noble lord,
Pawn me to
this your honour, she is his.
My hand to thee; mine honour on my
Humbly I thank your lordship: never may
The state or fortune fall into my keeping,
Which is not owed to you!
Exeunt LUCILIUS and Old Athenian
Vouchsafe my labour, and long live your
I thank you; you shall hear from me
Go not away. What have you there, my
A piece of painting, which I do beseech
Your lordship to accept.
Painting is welcome.
painting is almost the natural man;
or since dishonour
traffics with man's nature,
He is but outside: these
pencill'd figures are
Even such as they give out. I
like your work;
And you shall find I like it: wait
Till you hear further from
The gods preserve ye!
Well fare you, gentleman: give me your
We must needs dine together. Sir, your
Hath suffer'd under praise.
What, my lord! dispraise?
A more satiety of commendations.
If I should pay you for't as 'tis extoll'd,
It would unclew me quite.
My lord, 'tis rated
those which sell would give: but you well know,
of like value differing in the owners
Are prized by
their masters: believe't, dear lord,
You mend the jewel
by the wearing it.
No, my good lord; he speaks the common
Which all men speak with
Look, who comes here: will you be chid?
Enter APEMANTUSJeweller: We'll bear, with your
He'll spare none.
Good morrow to thee, gentle
Till I be gentle, stay thou for thy good
When thou art Timon's dog, and these knaves
Why dost thou call them knaves? thou know'st them
Are they not Athenians?
Then I repent not.
Jeweller: You know me, Apemantus?
Thou know'st I do: I call'd thee by thy
Thou art proud, Apemantus.
Of nothing so much as that I am not like
Whither art going?
To knock out an honest Athenian's
That's a deed thou'lt die
Right, if doing nothing be death by the
How likest thou this picture,
The best, for the innocence.
Wrought he not well that painted
He wrought better that made the painter; and
he's but a filthy piece of
You're a dog.
Thy mother's of my generation: what's she, if I be
Wilt dine with me, Apemantus?
No; I eat not lords.
An thou shouldst, thou 'ldst anger
O, they eat lords; so they come by great
That's a lascivious
So thou apprehendest it: take it for thy
How dost thou like this jewel,
Not so well as plain-dealing, which will not cost
man a doit.
What dost thou think 'tis
Not worth my thinking. How now,
How now, philosopher!
Art not one?
Then I lie not.
Art not a poet?
Then thou liest: look in thy last work, where
hast feigned him a worthy
That's not feigned; he is so.
Yes, he is worthy of thee, and to pay thee for
labour: he that loves to be flattered is worthy
the flatterer. Heavens, that I were a
What wouldst do then,
E'en as Apemantus does now; hate a lord with my
That I had no angry wit to be a lord.
Art not thou a merchant?
Traffic confound thee, if the gods will
If traffic do it, the gods do
Traffic's thy god; and thy god confound
Trumpet sounds. Enter a Messenger
What trumpet's that?
'Tis Alcibiades, and some twenty horse,
All of companionship.
Pray, entertain them; give them guide to
Exeunt some AttendantsYou must needs dine with
me: go not you hence
Till I have thank'd you: when
Show me this piece. I am joyful of your
Enter ALCIBIADES, with the restMost welcome,
So, so, there!
contract and starve your supple joints!
should be small love 'mongst these
And all this courtesy! The strain of man's bred
Into baboon and monkey.
Sir, you have saved my longing, and I
Most hungerly on your sight.
Right welcome, sir!
depart, we'll share a bounteous time
pleasures. Pray you, let us in.
Exeunt all except APEMANTUS
Enter two Lords
What time o' day is't,
Time to be honest.
That time serves still.
The more accursed thou, that still omitt'st
Thou art going to Lord Timon's
Ay, to see meat fill knaves and wine heat
Fare thee well, fare thee
Thou art a fool to bid me farewell
Shouldst have kept one to thyself, for I mean
give thee none.
No, I will do nothing at thy bidding: make
requests to thy friend.
Away, unpeaceable dog, or I'll spurn thee
I will fly, like a dog, the heels o' the
He's opposite to humanity. Come, shall we
And taste Lord Timon's bounty? he outgoes
The very heart of kindness.
He pours it out; Plutus, the god of
Is but his steward: no meed, but he
Sevenfold above itself; no gift to
But breeds the giver a return exceeding
All use of quittance.
The noblest mind he carries
That ever govern'd man.
Long may he live in fortunes! Shall we
I'll keep you company.
SCENE II. A banqueting-room in Timon's house.
Hautboys playing loud music. A great banquet served in; FLAVIUS
and others attending; then enter TIMON, ALCIBIADES, Lords, Senators, and
VENTIDIUS. Then comes, dropping, after all, APEMANTUS, discontentedly, like
Most honour'd Timon,
pleased the gods to remember my father's age,
him to long peace.
He is gone happy, and has left me
Then, as in grateful virtue I am bound
To your free heart, I do return those talents,
Doubled with thanks and service, from whose help
I derived liberty.
O, by no means,
Ventidius; you mistake my love:
I gave it freely ever;
and there's none
Can truly say he gives, if he
If our betters play at that game, we must not
To imitate them; faults that are rich are
A noble spirit!
Nay, my lords,
They all stand ceremoniously looking on TIMONCeremony was but devised at first
To set a
gloss on faint deeds, hollow welcomes,
goodness, sorry ere 'tis shown;
But where there is true
friendship, there needs none.
Pray, sit; more welcome
are ye to my fortunes
Than my fortunes to me.
My lord, we always have confess'd
Ho, ho, confess'd it! hang'd it, have you
O, Apemantus, you are welcome.
You shall not make me
I come to have thee thrust me out of
Fie, thou'rt a churl; ye've got a humour
Does not become a man: 'tis much to
They say, my lords, 'ira furor brevis est;' but
man is ever angry. Go, let him have a table
himself, for he does neither affect company, nor
he fit for't, indeed.
Let me stay at thine apperil, Timon: I come
observe; I give thee warning
I take no heed of thee; thou'rt an
therefore welcome: I myself would have no
prithee, let my meat make thee
I scorn thy meat; 'twould choke me, for I
ne'er flatter thee. O you gods, what a number
men eat Timon, and he sees 'em not! It grieves
to see so many dip their meat in one man's
and all the madness is, he cheers them up
I wonder men dare trust themselves with
Methinks they should invite them without
Good for their meat, and safer for their
There's much example for't; the fellow that
next him now, parts bread with him, pledges
breath of him in a divided draught, is the
man to kill him: 't has been proved. If I were
huge man, I should fear to drink at meals;
Lest they should spy my windpipe's dangerous notes:
Great men should drink with harness on their
My lord, in heart; and let the health go
Let it flow this way, my good
Flow this way! A brave fellow! he keeps his
well. Those healths will make thee and thy
look ill, Timon. Here's that which is too weak
be a sinner, honest water, which ne'er left man i'
This and my food are equals; there's no
Feasts are too proud to give thanks to the
gods, I crave no pelf;
I pray for no man but
Grant I may never prove so fond,
To trust man on his oath or bond;
harlot, for her weeping;
Or a dog, that seems
Or a keeper with my freedom;
Or my friends, if I should need 'em.
So fall to't:
Rich men sin, and I eat root.
Eats and drinksMuch good dich thy good heart,
Captain Alcibiades, your heart's in the field
My heart is ever at your service, my
You had rather be at a breakfast of enemies than
dinner of friends.
So the were bleeding-new, my lord, there's no
like 'em: I could wish my best friend at such a
Would all those fatterers were thine enemies
that then thou mightst kill 'em and bid me to
Might we but have that happiness, my lord, that
would once use our hearts, whereby we might
some part of our zeals, we should think
for ever perfect.
O, no doubt, my good friends, but the
themselves have provided that I shall have much
from you: how had you been my friends else?
have you that charitable title from thousands,
not you chiefly belong to my heart? I have
more of you to myself than you can with
speak in your own behalf; and thus far I
you. O you gods, think I, what need we have
friends, if we should ne'er have need of 'em?
were the most needless creatures living, should
ne'er have use for 'em, and would most
sweet instruments hung up in cases that keep
sounds to themselves. Why, I have often
myself poorer, that I might come nearer to you.
are born to do benefits: and what better
properer can we can our own than the riches of
friends? O, what a precious comfort 'tis, to
so many, like brothers, commanding one
fortunes! O joy, e'en made away ere 't can be
Mine eyes cannot hold out water, methinks:
forget their faults, I drink to
Thou weepest to make them drink,
Joy had the like conception in our eyes
And at that instant like a babe sprung up.
Ho, ho! I laugh to think that babe a
I promise you, my lord, you moved me
What means that trump?
Enter a ServantHow now?
Please you, my lord, there are certain
ladies most desirous of admittance.
Ladies! what are their wills?
There comes with them a forerunner, my lord,
bears that office, to signify their
I pray, let them be admitted.
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 tale rise;
They only now come but to feast thine eyes.
They're welcome all; let 'em have kind
Music, make their welcome!
You see, my lord, how ample you're
Music. Re-enter Cupid with a mask of Ladies as Amazons, with lutes in
their hands, dancing and playing
Hoy-day, what a sweep of vanity comes this
They dance! they are mad women.
Like madness is the glory of this life.
this pomp shows to a little oil and root.
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 graves
Of their friends' gift?
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
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
You have done our pleasures much grace, fair
Set a fair fashion on our
Which was not half so beautiful and
You have added worth unto 't and
And entertain'd me with mine own
I am to thank you for 't.
My lord, you take us even at the
'Faith, for the worst is filthy; and would not
taking, I doubt me.
Ladies, there is an idle banquet attends
Please you to dispose
Most thankfully, my lord.
Exeunt Cupid and Ladies
The little casket bring me
Yes, my lord. More jewels yet!
There is no crossing him in 's humour;
AsideElse I should tell him,--well, i' faith I
When all's spent, he 'ld be cross'd then, an he
'Tis pity bounty had not eyes behind,
That man might ne'er be wretched for his mind.
Where be our men?
Here, my lord, in readiness.
Re-enter FLAVIUS, with the casket
O my friends,
I have one
word to say to you: look you, my good lord,
entreat you, honour me so much
As to advance this
jewel; accept it and wear it,
I am so far already in your
So are we all.
Enter a Servant
My lord, there are certain nobles of the
Newly alighted, and come to visit
They are fairly welcome.
I beseech your honour,
Vouchsafe me a word; it does concern you
Near! why then, another time I'll hear
I prithee, let's be provided to show
[Aside] I scarce know how.
Enter a Second Servant
May it please your honour, Lord Lucius,
Out of his free love, hath presented to you
Four milk-white horses, trapp'd in silver.
I shall accept them fairly; let the
Be worthily entertain'd.
Enter a third ServantHow now! what
Please you, my lord, that honourable
gentleman, Lord Lucullus, entreats your company
to-morrow to hunt with him, and has sent your honour
two brace of greyhounds.
I'll hunt with him; and let them be
Not without fair reward.
[Aside] What will this come to?
He commands us to provide, and give great gifts,
And all out of an empty coffer:
he know his purse, or yield me this,
To show him what a
beggar his heart is,
Being of no power to make his
His promises fly so beyond his
That what he speaks is all in debt; he
For every word: he is so kind that he
Pays interest for 't; his land's put to their
Well, would I were gently put out of
Before I were forced out!
Happier is he that has no friend to feed
Than such that do e'en enemies exceed.
bleed inwardly for my lord.
You do yourselves
wrong, you bate too much of your own merits:
lord, a trifle of our love.
With more than common thanks I will receive
O, he's the very soul of
And now I remember, my lord, you gave
Good words the other day of a bay courser
I rode on: it is yours, because you liked
O, I beseech you, pardon me, my lord, in
You may take my word, my lord; I know, no
Can justly praise but what he does
I weigh my friend's affection with mine
I'll tell you true. I'll call to
O, none so welcome.
I take all and your several visitations
So kind to heart, 'tis not enough to give;
Methinks, I could deal kingdoms to my friends,
And ne'er be weary. Alcibiades,
Thou art a
soldier, therefore seldom rich;
It comes in charity to
thee: for all thy living
Is 'mongst the dead, and all
the lands thou hast
Lie in a pitch'd
Ay, defiled land, my lord.
We are so virtuously bound--
Am I to
So infinitely endear'd--
All to you. Lights, more
The best of happiness,
Honour and fortunes, keep with you, Lord
Ready for his friends.
Exeunt all but APEMANTUS and TIMON
What a coil's here!
of becks and jutting-out of bums!
I doubt whether their
legs be worth the sums
That are given for 'em.
Friendship's full of dregs:
Methinks, false hearts
should never have sound legs,
Thus honest fools lay out
their wealth on court'sies.
Now, Apemantus, if thou wert not sullen, I would
good to thee.
No, I'll nothing: for if I should be bribed
there would be none left to rail upon thee, and
thou wouldst sin the faster. Thou givest so
Timon, I fear me thou wilt give away thyself
paper shortly: what need these feasts, pomps
Nay, an you begin to rail on society once, I
sworn not to give regard to you. Farewell; and
with better music.
Thou wilt not hear me
now; thou shalt not then:
I'll lock thy heaven from
O, that men's ears should be
To counsel deaf, but not to flattery!
SCENE I. A Senator's house.
Enter Senator, with papers in his hand
And late, five thousand: to Varro and to
He owes nine thousand; besides my former
Which makes it five and twenty. Still in
Of raging waste? It cannot hold; it will
If I want gold, steal but a beggar's dog,
And give it Timon, why, the dog coins gold.
I would sell my horse, and buy twenty more
he, why, give my horse to Timon,
Ask nothing, give it
him, it foals me, straight,
And able horses. No porter
at his gate,
But rather one that smiles and still
All that pass by. It cannot hold: no
Can found his state in safety. Caphis,
Caphis, I say!
Here, sir; what is your
Get on your cloak, and haste you to Lord
Importune him for my moneys; be not
With slight denial, nor then silenced
'Commend me to your master'--and the
Plays in the right hand, thus: but tell
My uses cry to me, I must serve my turn
Out of mine own; his days and times are past
And my reliances on his fracted dates
smit my credit: I love and honour him,
But must not
break my back to heal his finger;
Immediate are my
needs, and my relief
Must not be toss'd and turn'd to me
But find supply immediate. Get you
Put on a most importunate aspect,
A visage of demand; for, I do fear,
every feather sticks in his own wing,
Lord Timon will be
left a naked gull,
Which flashes now a phoenix. Get you
I go, sir.
'I go, sir!'--Take the bonds along with
And have the dates in
I will, sir.
SCENE II. The same. A hall in Timon's house.
Enter FLAVIUS, with many bills in his hand
No care, no stop! so senseless of expense,
That he will neither know how to maintain it,
Nor cease his flow of riot: takes no account
How things go from him, nor resumes no care
what is to continue: never mind
Was to be so unwise, to
be so kind.
What shall be done? he will not hear, till
I must be round with him, now he comes from
Fie, fie, fie, fie!
Enter CAPHIS, and the Servants of Isidore and Varro
Good even, Varro: what,
come for money?
Varro's Servant Is't not your business
It is: and yours too, Isidore?
Isidore's Servant It is so.
Would we were all discharged!
Varro's Servant I fear it.
Here comes the lord.
Enter TIMON, ALCIBIADES, and Lords, & c
So soon as dinner's done, we'll forth
My Alcibiades. With me? what is your
My lord, here is a note of certain
Dues! Whence are you?
Of Athens here, my lord.
Go to my steward.
Please it your lordship, he hath put me
To the succession of new days this month:
My master is awaked by great occasion
call upon his own, and humbly prays you
That with your
other noble parts you'll suit
In giving him his
Mine honest friend,
prithee, but repair to me next morning.
Nay, good my lord,--
Contain thyself, good friend.
Varro's Servant One Varro's servant, my good lord,--
Isidore's Servant From Isidore;
prays your speedy payment.
If you did know, my lord, my master's
Varro's Servant 'Twas due on forfeiture, my
lord, six weeks And past.
Isidore's Servant Your steward
puts me off, my lord;
And I am sent expressly to your
Give me breath.
I do beseech
you, good my lords, keep on;
I'll wait upon you
Exeunt ALCIBIADES and Lords
To FLAVIUSCome hither: pray you,
How goes the world, that I am thus encounter'd
With clamourous demands of date-broke bonds,
And the detention of long-since-due debts,
Against my honour?
Please you, gentlemen,
time is unagreeable to this business:
cease till after dinner,
That I may make his lordship
Wherefore you are not
Do so, my friends. See them well
Pray, draw near.
Enter APEMANTUS and Fool
Stay, stay, here comes the fool with
let's ha' some sport with 'em.
Varro's Servant Hang him, he'll abuse us.
Isidore's Servant A plague upon him, dog!
Varro's Servant How dost, fool?
Dost dialogue with thy shadow?
Varro's Servant I speak not to thee.
No,'tis to thyself.
To the FoolCome away.
Isidore's Servant There's the fool hangs on your back
No, thou stand'st single, thou'rt not on him
Where's the fool now?
He last asked the question. Poor rogues,
usurers' men! bawds between gold and
What are we, Apemantus?
That you ask me what you are, and do not
yourselves. Speak to 'em,
How do you, gentlemen?
Gramercies, good fool: how does your
She's e'en setting on water to scald such
as you are. Would we could see you at
Look you, here comes my mistress'
[To the Fool] Why, how now, captain! what do
in this wise company? How dost thou,
Would I had a rod in my mouth, that I might
Prithee, Apemantus, read me the superscription
these letters: I know not which is
Canst not read?
There will little learning die then, that day
art hanged. This is to Lord Timon; this
Alcibiades. Go; thou wast born a bastard, and
die a bawd.
Thou wast whelped a dog, and thou shalt famish
dog's death. Answer not; I am gone.
E'en so thou outrunnest grace. Fool, I will go
you to Lord Timon's.
Will you leave me there?
If Timon stay at home. You three serve three
Ay; would they served us!
So would I,--as good a trick as ever hangman
Are you three usurers' men?
I think no usurer but has a fool to his servant:
mistress is one, and I am her fool. When men
to borrow of your masters, they approach sadly,
go away merry; but they enter my mistress'
merrily, and go away sadly: the reason of
Varro's Servant I could render
Do it then, that we may account thee a
and a knave; which not-withstanding, thou
no less esteemed.
Varro's Servant What is a whoremaster, fool?
A fool in good clothes, and something like
'Tis a spirit: sometime't appears like a
sometime like a lawyer; sometime like a
with two stones moe than's artificial one:
very often like a knight; and, generally, in
shapes that man goes up and down in from
to thirteen, this spirit walks in.
Varro's Servant Thou art not altogether a
Nor thou altogether a wise man: as much foolery
I have, so much wit thou
That answer might have become
Aside, aside; here comes Lord Timon.
Re-enter TIMON and FLAVIUS
Come with me, fool, come.
I do not always follow lover, elder brother
woman; sometime the philosopher.
Exeunt APEMANTUS and Fool
Pray you, walk near: I'll speak with you
You make me marvel: wherefore ere this
Had you not fully laid my state before
That I might so have rated my expense,
As I had leave of means?
You would not hear me,
many leisures I proposed.
single vantages you took.
When my indispos ition put
And that unaptness made your
Thus to excuse yourself.
O my good lord,
times I brought in my accounts,
Laid them before you;
you would throw them off,
And say, you found them in
When, for some trifling present, you have
Return so much, I have shook my head and
Yea, 'gainst the authority of manners, pray'd
To hold your hand more close: I did
Not seldom, nor no slight cheques, when I
Prompted you in the ebb of your estate
And your great flow of debts. My loved lord,
Though you hear now, too late--yet now's a time--
The greatest of your having lacks a half
To pay your present debts.
Let all my land be sold.
'Tis all engaged, some forfeited and
And what remains will hardly stop the
Of present dues: the future comes
What shall defend the interim? and at
How goes our reckoning?
To Lacedaemon did my land
O my good lord, the world is but a word:
Were it all yours to give it in a breath,
How quickly were it gone!
You tell me true.
If you suspect my husbandry or
Call me before the exactest
And set me on the proof. So the gods bless
When all our offices have been oppress'd
With riotous feeders, when our vaults have wept
With drunken spilth of wine, when every room
Hath blazed with lights and bray'd with minstrelsy,
I have retired me to a wasteful cock,
set mine eyes at flow.
Prithee, no more.
Heavens, have I said, the bounty of this
How many prodigal bits have slaves and
This night englutted! Who is not
What heart, head, sword, force, means, but
noble, worthy, royal Timon!
Ah, when the means are gone
that buy this praise,
The breath is gone whereof this
praise is made:
Feast-won, fast-lost; one cloud of
These flies are
Come, sermon me no further:
No villanous bounty yet hath pass'd my heart;
Unwisely, not ignobly, have I given.
dost thou weep? Canst thou the conscience lack,
think I shall lack friends? Secure thy heart;
would broach the vessels of my love,
And try the
argument of hearts by borrowing,
Men and men's fortunes
could I frankly use
As I can bid thee
Assurance bless your
And, in some sort, these wants of mine are
That I account them blessings; for by
Shall I try friends: you shall perceive how
Mistake my fortunes; I am wealthy in my
Within there! Flaminius! Servilius!
Enter FLAMINIUS, SERVILIUS, and other Servants
My lord? my lord?
I will dispatch you severally; you to Lord
to Lord Lucullus you: I hunted with his
to-day: you, to Sempronius: commend me to
loves, and, I am proud, say, that my occasions
found time to use 'em toward a supply of money:
the request be fifty talents.
As you have said, my lord.
[Aside] Lord Lucius and Lucullus?
Go you, sir, to the senators--
Of whom, even to the state's best health, I have
Deserved this hearing--bid 'em send o' the instant
A thousand talents to me.
I have been bold--
I knew it the most general way--
To them to use your
signet and your name;
But they do shake their heads,
and I am here
No richer in return.
Is't true? can't be?
They answer, in a joint and corporate
That now they are at fall, want treasure,
Do what they would; are sorry--you are
But yet they could have wish'd--they know
Something hath been amiss--a noble
May catch a wrench--would all were well--'tis
And so, intending other serious
After distasteful looks and these hard
With certain half-caps and cold-moving
They froze me into silence.
You gods, reward them!
Prithee, man, look cheerly. These old fellows
Have their ingratitude in them hereditary:
Their blood is caked, 'tis cold, it seldom flows;
'Tis lack of kindly warmth they are not kind;
And nature, as it grows again toward earth,
Is fashion'd for the journey, dull and heavy.
To a ServantGo to Ventidius.
To FLAVIUSPrithee, be not sad,
Thou art true and honest; ingeniously I speak.
No blame belongs to thee.
To ServantVentidius lately
Buried his father; by whose death he's stepp'd
Into a great estate: when he was poor,
Imprison'd and in scarcity of friends,
clear'd him with five talents: greet him from me;
him suppose some good necessity
Touches his friend,
which craves to be remember'd
With those five
To FLAVIUSThat had, give't these
To whom 'tis instant due. Ne'er speak, or
That Timon's fortunes 'mong his friends can
I would I could not think it: that thought
itself, it thinks all others so.
SCENE I. A room in Lucullus' house.
FLAMINIUS waiting. Enter a Servant to him
I have told my lord of you; he is coming down to
I thank you, sir.
Here's my lord.
[Aside] One of Lord Timon's men? a gift, I
warrant. Why, this hits right; I dreamt of a silver
basin and ewer to-night. Flaminius, honest
Flaminius; you are very respectively welcome, sir.
Fill me some wine.
Exit ServantsAnd how does that honourable,
gentleman of Athens, thy very
bountiful good lord
His health is well sir.
I am right glad that his health is well, sir:
what hast thou there under thy cloak, pretty
'Faith, nothing but an empty box, sir; which, in
lord's behalf, I come to entreat your honour
supply; who, having great and instant occasion
use fifty talents, hath sent to your lordship
furnish him, nothing doubting your present
La, la, la, la! 'nothing doubting,' says he?
good lord! a noble gentleman 'tis, if he would
keep so good a house. Many a time and often I
dined with him, and told him on't, and come again
supper to him, of purpose to have him spend
and yet he would embrace no counsel, take no
by my coming. Every man has his fault, and
is his: I ha' told him on't, but I could ne'er
Re-enter Servant, with wine
Please your lordship, here is the
Flaminius, I have noted thee always wise. Here's to
Your lordship speaks your
I have observed thee always for a towardly
spirit--give thee thy due--and one that knows
belongs to reason; and canst use the time well,
the time use thee well: good parts in thee.
To ServantGet you gone, sirrah.
Exit ServantDraw nearer, honest Flaminius. Thy
bountiful gentleman: but thou art wise; and
knowest well enough, although thou comest to
that this is no time to lend money, especially
bare friendship, without security. Here's
solidares for thee: good boy, wink at me, and
thou sawest me not. Fare thee
Is't possible the world should so much
And we alive that lived? Fly, damned
To him that worships thee!
Throwing the money back
Ha! now I see thou art a fool, and fit for thy
May these add to the number that may scald
Let moulten coin be thy damnation,
Thou disease of a friend, and not himself!
Has friendship such a faint and milky heart,
It turns in less than two nights? O you gods,
I feel master's passion! this slave,
his honour, has my lord's meat in him:
Why should it
thrive and turn to nutriment,
When he is turn'd to
O, may diseases only work upon't!
And, when he's sick to death, let not that part of
Which my lord paid for, be of any power
To expel sickness, but prolong his hour!
SCENE II. A public place.
Enter LUCILIUS, with three Strangers
Who, the Lord Timon? he is my very good friend,
an honourable gentleman.
We know him for no less, though we are but
to him. But I can tell you one thing, my lord,
which I hear from common rumours: now Lord
happy hours are done and past, and his
shrinks from him.
Fie, no, do not believe it; he cannot want for
But believe you this, my lord, that, not long
one of his men was with the Lord Lucullus to
so many talents, nay, urged extremely for't
showed what necessity belonged to't, and yet was
I tell you, denied, my lord.
What a strange case was that! now, before the
I am ashamed on't. Denied that honourable
there was very little honour showed in't. For my
part, I must needs confess, I have received
small kindnesses from him, as money, plate,
and such-like trifles, nothing comparing to
yet, had he mistook him and sent to me, I
ne'er have denied his occasion so many
See, by good hap, yonder's my lord;
I have sweat to see his honour. My honoured lord,--
Servilius! you are kindly met, sir. Fare thee
commend me to thy honourable virtuous lord, my
May it please your honour, my lord hath
Ha! what has he sent? I am so much endeared
that lord; he's ever sending: how shall I
him, thinkest thou? And what has he sent
Has only sent his present occasion now, my
requesting your lordship to supply his instant
with so many talents.
I know his lordship is but merry with me;
He cannot want fifty five hundred talents.
But in the mean time he wants less, my
If his occasion were not virtuous,
I should not urge it half so faithfully.
Dost thou speak seriously,
Upon my soul,'tis true, sir.
What a wicked beast was I to disfurnish
against such a good time, when I might ha'
myself honourable! how unluckily it happened, that
should purchase the day before for a little
and undo a great deal of honoured! Servilius,
before the gods, I am not able to do,--the
beast, I say:--I was sending to use Lord
myself, these gentlemen can witness! but I
not, for the wealth of Athens, I had done't
Commend me bountifully to his good lordship; and
hope his honour will conceive the fairest of
because I have no power to be kind: and tell
this from me, I count it one of my
afflictions, say, that I cannot pleasure such
honourable gentleman. Good Servilius, will
befriend me so far, as to use mine own words to
Yes, sir, I shall.
I'll look you out a good turn, Servilius.
Exit SERVILIUSTrue as you said, Timon is shrunk
And he that's once denied will hardly
Do you observe this,
Ay, too well.
Why, this is the world's soul; and just of
flatterer's spirit. Who can call him
His friend that
dips in the same dish? for, in
My knowing, Timon has
been this lord's father,
And kept his credit with his
Supported his estate; nay, Timon's
Has paid his men their wages: he ne'er
But Timon's silver treads upon his
And yet--O, see the monstrousness of man
When he looks out in an ungrateful shape!--
He does deny him, in respect of his,
charitable men afford to beggars.
Religion groans at it.
For mine own part,
tasted Timon in my life,
Nor came any of his bounties
To mark me for his friend; yet, I
For his right noble mind, illustrious
And honourable carriage,
Had his necessity made use of me,
have put my wealth into donation,
And the best half
should have return'd to him,
So much I love his heart:
but, I perceive,
Men must learn now with pity to
For policy sits above conscience.
SCENE III. A room in Sempronius' house.
Enter SEMPRONIUS, and a Servant of TIMON's
Must he needs trouble me in
might have tried Lord Lucius or Lucullus;
Ventidius is wealthy too,
Whom he redeem'd from prison:
Owe their estates unto
They have all been
touch'd and found base metal, for
They have au denied
How! have they denied him?
Has Ventidius and Lucullus denied him?
does he send to me? Three? hum!
It shows but little love
or judgment in him:
Must I be his last refuge! His
give him over: must I take the cure upon me?
disgraced me in't; I'm angry at him,
That might have
known my place: I see no sense for't,
But his occasion
might have woo'd me first;
For, in my conscience, I was
the first man
That e'er received gift from
And does he think so backwardly of me
That I'll requite its last? No:
So it may prove an argument of laughter
the rest, and 'mongst lords I be thought a fool.
rather than the worth of thrice the sum,
Had sent to me
first, but for my mind's sake;
I'd such a courage to do
him good. But now return,
And with their faint reply
this answer join;
Who bates mine honour shall not know
Excellent! Your lordship's a goodly villain.
devil knew not what he did when he made
politic; he crossed himself by 't: and I
think but, in the end, the villainies of man
set him clear. How fairly this lord strives
appear foul! takes virtuous copies to be
like those that under hot ardent zeal would
whole realms on fire: Of such a nature is
This was my
lord's best hope; now all are fled,
Save only the gods:
now his friends are dead,
Doors, that were ne'er
acquainted with their wards
Many a bounteous year must
Now to guard sure their master.
And this is all a liberal course allows;
cannot keep his wealth must keep his house.
SCENE IV. The same. A hall in Timon's house.
Enter two Servants of Varro, and the Servant of LUCIUS, meeting
TITUS, HORTENSIUS, and other Servants of TIMON's creditors, waiting his coming
Well met; good morrow, Titus and
The like to you kind Varro.
What, do we meet
Lucilius' Servant Ay, and I think
One business does command us all; for mine Is
So is theirs and ours.
Enter PHILOTUSLucilius' Servant And Sir Philotus
Good day at once.
Servant Welcome, good brother.
What do you think the
Labouring for nine.
Servant So much?
Is not my lord seen yet?
Lucilius' Servant Not yet.
I wonder on't; he was wont to shine at
Lucilius' Servant Ay, but the days are wax'd
shorter with him:
You must consider that a prodigal
Is like the sun's; but not, like his,
I fear 'tis deepest winter in Lord Timon's
That is one may reach deep enough, and
I am of your fear for that.
I'll show you how to observe a strange
Your lord sends now for
Most true, he does.
And he wears jewels now of Timon's gift,
For which I wait for money.
It is against my heart.
Lucilius' Servant Mark, how strange it shows,
Timon in this should pay more than he owes:
And e'en as if your lord should wear rich jewels,
And send for money for 'em.
I'm weary of this charge, the gods can
I know my lord hath spent of Timon's
And now ingratitude makes it worse than
Yes, mine's three thousand crowns: what's
Lucilius' Servant Five thousand mine.
'Tis much deep: and it should seem by the
Your master's confidence was above mine;
Else, surely, his had equall'd.
One of Lord Timon's men.
Lucilius' Servant Flaminius! Sir, a word: pray, is my lord ready
No, indeed, he is not.
We attend his lordship; pray, signify so
I need not tell him that; he knows you are too
Enter FLAVIUS in a cloak, muffledLucilius'
Servant Ha! is not that his steward muffled so?
away in a cloud: call him, call him.
Do you hear, sir?
By your leave, sir,--
What do ye ask of me, my
We wait for certain money here,
If money were as certain
as your waiting,
'Twere sure enough.
Why then preferr'd you not your sums and bills,
When your false masters eat of my lord's meat?
Then they could smile and fawn upon his debts
And take down the interest into their
You do yourselves but wrong
to stir me up;
Let me pass quietly:
Believe 't, my lord and I have made an end;
I have no more to reckon, he to spend.
Lucilius' Servant Ay, but this answer will not
If 'twill not serve,'tis not so base as
For you serve knaves.
How! what does his cashiered worship
No matter what; he's poor, and that's
enough. Who can speak broader than he that has
house to put his head in? such may rail
O, here's Servilius; now we shall know some
If I might beseech you, gentlemen, to repair
other hour, I should derive much from't;
take't of my soul, my lord leans wondrously
discontent: his comfortable temper has forsook
he's much out of health, and keeps his
Lucilius' Servant: Many do keep their chambers
are not sick:
And, if it be so far beyond his
Methinks he should the sooner pay his
And make a clear way to the
We cannot take this for answer,
[Within] Servilius, help! My lord! my lord!
Enter TIMON, in a rage, FLAMINIUS following
What, are my doors opposed against my
Have I been ever free, and must my
Be my retentive enemy, my gaol?
The place which I have feasted, does it now,
Like all mankind, show me an iron heart?
Lucilius' Servant Put in now, Titus.
My lord, here is my bill.
Lucilius' Servant Here's mine.
And mine, my lord.
Varro's Servants And ours, my
All our bills.
Knock me down with 'em: cleave me to the
Lucilius' Servant Alas, my
Cut my heart in sums.
Mine, fifty talents.
Tell out my blood.
Lucilius' Servant Five thousand crowns, my
Five thousand drops pays that.
What yours?--and yours?
Tear me, take me, and the gods fall upon
'Faith, I perceive our masters may throw their
at their money: these debts may well be
desperate ones, for a madman owes 'em.
Re-enter TIMON and FLAVIUS
They have e'en put my breath from me, the
My dear lord,--
What if it should be so?
I'll have it so. My steward!
Here, my lord.
So fitly? Go, bid all my friends again,
Lucius, Lucullus, and Sempronius:
I'll once more feast the
O my lord,
You only speak
from your distracted soul;
There is not so much left,
to furnish out
A moderate table.
Be't not in thy care; go,
charge thee, invite them all: let in the tide
once more; my cook and I'll provide.
SCENE V. The same. The senate-house. The Senate sitting.First Senator
My lord, you have my voice to it; the
Bloody; 'tis necessary he should die:
Nothing emboldens sin so much as mercy.
Most true; the law shall bruise him.
Enter ALCIBIADES, with Attendants
Honour, health, and compassion to the
I am an humble suitor to your virtues;
For pity is the virtue of the law,
but tyrants use it cruelly.
It pleases time and fortune
to lie heavy
Upon a friend of mine, who, in hot
Hath stepp'd into the law, which is past
To those that, without heed, do plunge into
He is a man, setting his fate aside,
Of comely virtues:
Nor did he soil the fact
An honour in him which buys out his
But with a noble fury and fair spirit,
Seeing his reputation touch'd to death,
did oppose his foe:
And with such sober and unnoted
He did behave his anger, ere 'twas
As if he had but proved an
You undergo too strict a paradox,
Striving to make an ugly deed look fair:
Your words have took such pains as if they labour'd
To bring manslaughter into form and set quarrelling
Upon the head of valour; which indeed
valour misbegot and came into the world
When sects and
factions were newly born:
He's truly valiant that can
The worst that man can breathe, and make
His outsides, to wear them like his
prefer his injuries to his heart,
To bring it into
If wrongs be evils and enforce us
What folly 'tis to hazard life for
You cannot make gross sins look clear:
To revenge is no valour, but to bear.
My lords, then, under favour, pardon me,
If I speak like a captain.
Why do fond men
expose themselves to battle,
And not endure all threats?
And let the foes quietly cut their
Without repugnancy? If there be
Such valour in the bearing, what make we
Abroad? why then, women are more valiant
That stay at home, if bearing carry it,
the ass more captain than the lion, the felon
with irons wiser than the judge,
If wisdom be in
suffering. O my lords,
As you are great, be pitifully
Who cannot condemn rashness in cold
To kill, I grant, is sin's extremest
But, in defence, by mercy, 'tis most
To be in anger is impiety;
But who is man that is not angry?
the crime with this.
You breathe in vain.
In vain! his service done
Lacedaemon and Byzantium
Were a sufficient briber for
I say, my lords, he has done fair
And slain in fight many of your
How full of valour did he bear
In the last conflict, and made plenteous
He has made too much plenty with 'em;
He's a sworn rioter: he has a sin that often
Drowns him, and takes his valour prisoner:
If there were no foes, that were enough
overcome him: in that beastly fury
He has been known to
And cherish factions: 'tis inferr'd to
His days are foul and his drink
Hard fate! he might have died in war.
My lords, if not for any parts in him--
Though his right arm might purchase his own time
And be in debt to none--yet, more to move you,
Take my deserts to his, and join 'em both:
And, for I know your reverend ages love
Security, I'll pawn my victories, all
honours to you, upon his good returns.
If by this crime
he owes the law his life,
Why, let the war receive 't in
For law is strict, and war is nothing
We are for law: he dies; urge it no more,
On height of our displeasure: friend or brother,
He forfeits his own blood that spills
Must it be so? it must not be. My lords,
I do beseech you, know me.
Call me to your remembrances.
I cannot think but your age has forgot
It could not else be, I should prove so
To sue, and be denied such common
My wounds ache at you.
Do you dare our anger?
in few words, but spacious in effect;
We banish thee
dotage; banish usury,
That makes the senate
If, after two days' shine, Athens contain
Attend our weightier judgment. And, not to
He shall be
Now the gods keep you old enough; that you may
Only in bone, that none may look on you!
I'm worse than mad: I have kept back their foes,
While they have told their money and let out
Their coin upon large interest, I myself
Rich only in large hurts. All those for this?
Is this the balsam that the usuring senate
Pours into captains' wounds? Banishment!
It comes not ill; I hate not to be banish'd;
It is a cause worthy my spleen and fury,
That I may strike at Athens. I'll cheer up
My discontented troops, and lay for hearts.
'Tis honour with most lands to be at odds;
Soldiers should brook as little wrongs as gods.
SCENE VI. The same. A banqueting-room in Timon's house.
Music. Tables set out: Servants attending. Enter divers Lords,
Senators and others, at several doors
The good time of day to you,
I also wish it to you. I think this honourable
did but try us this other day.
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
It should not be, by the persuasion of his new
I should think so: he hath sent me an
inviting, which many my near occasions did urge
to put off; but he hath conjured me beyond them,
I must needs appear.
In like manner was I in debt to my
business, but he would not hear my excuse. I
sorry, when he sent to borrow of me, that
provision was out.
I am sick of that grief too, as I understand how
Every man here's so. What would he have borrowed
A thousand pieces.
A thousand pieces!
What of you?
He sent to me, sir,--Here he comes.
Enter TIMON and Attendants
With all my heart, gentlemen both; and how fare
Ever at the best, hearing well of your
The swallow follows not summer more willing than
[Aside] Nor more willingly leaves winter;
summer-birds are men. Gentlemen, our dinner will
recompense this long stay: feast your ears with
music awhile, if they will fare so harshly o'
trumpet's sound; we shall to 't
I hope it remains not unkindly with your
that I returned you an empty
O, sir, let it not trouble
My noble lord,--
Ah, my good friend, what
My most honourable lord, I am e'en sick of
that, when your lordship this other day sent to
I was so unfortunate a beggar.
Think not on 't, sir.
If you had sent but two hours
Let it not cumber your better remembrance.
The banquet brought inCome, bring in all
All covered dishes!
Royal cheer, I warrant you.
Doubt not that, if money and the season can
How do you? What's the news?
Alcibiades is banished: hear you of
First Lord Second Lord
'Tis so, be sure of it.
I pray you, upon what?
My worthy friends, will you draw
I'll tell you more anon. Here's a noble feast
This is the old man still.
Will 't hold? will 't hold?
It does: but time will--and
I do conceive.
Each man to his stool, with that spur as he would
the lip of his mistress: your diet shall be in
places alike. Make not a city feast of it, to
the meat cool ere we can agree upon the first
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 are they welcome.
Uncover, dogs, and
The dishes are uncovered and seen to be full of warm
What does his lordship mean?
I know not.
May you a better feast never behold,
You knot of mouth-friends I smoke and lukewarm water
Is your perfection. This is Timon's last;
Who, stuck and spangled with your flatteries,
Washes it off, and sprinkles in your faces
Your reeking villany.
Throwing the water in their facesLive loathed and
Most smiling, smooth, detested
Courteous destroyers, affable wolves, meek
You fools of fortune, trencher-friends, time's
Cap and knee slaves, vapours, and
Of man and beast the infinite
Crust you quite o'er! What, dost thou
Soft! take thy physic first--thou too--and
Stay, I will lend thee money, borrow
Throws the dishes at them, and drives them outWhat, 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!
Re-enter the Lords, Senators, & c
How now, my lords!
Know you the quality of Lord Timon's
Push! did you see my cap?
I have lost my gown.
He's but a mad lord, and nought but humour sways
He gave me a jewel th' other day, and now he
beat it out of my hat: did you see my
Did you see my cap?
Here lies my gown.
Let's make no stay.
Lord Timon's mad.
I feel 't upon my bones.
One day he gives us diamonds, next day
SCENE I. Without the walls of Athens.
Let me look back upon thee. O thou wall,
That girdlest in those wolves, dive in the earth,
And fence not Athens! Matrons, turn incontinent!
Obedience fail in children! slaves and fools,
Pluck the grave wrinkled senate from the bench,
And minister in their steads! to general filths
Convert o' the instant, green virginity,
in your parents' eyes! bankrupts, hold fast;
render back, out with your knives,
And cut your
trusters' throats! bound servants, steal!
robbers your grave masters are,
And pill by law. Maid,
to thy master's bed;
Thy mistress is o' the brothel! Son
pluck the lined crutch from thy old limping
With it beat out his brains! Piety, and
Religion to the gods, peace, justice,
Domestic awe, night-rest, and
Instruction, manners, mysteries, and
Degrees, observances, customs, and
Decline to your confounding contraries,
And let confusion live! Plagues, incident to men,
Your potent and infectious fevers heap
Athens, ripe for stroke! Thou cold sciatica,
senators, that their limbs may halt
As lamely as their
manners. Lust and liberty
Creep in the minds and marrows
of our youth,
That 'gainst the stream of virtue they may
And drown themselves in riot! Itches,
Sow all the Athenian bosoms; and their
Be general leprosy! Breath infect breath,
at their society, as their friendship, may
merely poison! Nothing I'll bear from thee,
But nakedness, thou detestable town!
thou that too, with multiplying bans!
Timon will to the
woods; where he shall find
The unkindest beast more
kinder than mankind.
The gods confound--hear me, you
good gods all--
The Athenians both within and out that
And grant, as Timon grows, his hate may
To the whole race of mankind, high and low!
SCENE II. Athens. A room in Timon's house.
Enter FLAVIUS, with two or three Servants
Hear you, master steward, where's our
Are we undone? cast off? nothing
Alack, my fellows, what should I say to
Let me be recorded by the righteous gods,
I am as poor as you.
Such a house broke!
So noble a
master fall'n! All gone! and not
One friend to take his
fortune by the arm,
And go along with
As we do turn our backs
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
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
All broken implements of a ruin'd
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
Into this sea of air.
Good fellows all,
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
'We have seen better days.' Let each
Nay, put out all your hands. Not one word
Thus part we rich in sorrow, parting poor.
Servants embrace, and part several waysO, the
fierce wretchedness that glory brings us!
Who would not
wish to be from wealth exempt,
Since riches point to
misery and contempt?
Who would 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 accursed,
Rich, only to be wretched, thy great fortunes
Are made thy chief afflictions. Alas, kind lord!
He's flung in rage from this ingrateful seat
Of monstrous friends, nor has he with him to
Supply his life, or that which can command it.
I'll follow and inquire him out:
serve his mind with my best will;
Whilst I have gold,
I'll be his steward still.
SCENE III. Woods and cave, near the seashore.
Enter TIMON, from the cave
O blessed breeding sun, draw from the
Rotten humidity; below thy sister's orb
Infect the air! Twinn'd brothers of one womb,
Whose procreation, residence, and birth,
Scarce is dividant, touch them with several fortunes;
The greater scorns the lesser: not nature,
whom all sores lay siege, can bear great fortune,
contempt of nature.
Raise me this beggar, and deny 't
The senator shall bear contempt
The beggar native honour.
It is the pasture lards the rother's sides,
The want that makes him lean. Who dares, who dares,
In purity of manhood stand upright,
'This man's a flatterer?' if one be,
So are they all;
for every grise of fortune
Is smooth'd by that below:
the learned pate
Ducks to the golden fool: all is
There's nothing level in our cursed
But direct villany. Therefore, be
All feasts, societies, and throngs of
His semblable, yea, himself, Timon
Destruction fang mankind! Earth, yield me
DiggingWho seeks for better of thee, sauce his
With thy most operant poison! What is
Gold? yellow, glittering, precious gold? No,
I am no idle votarist: roots, you clear
Thus much of this will make black white, foul
Wrong right, base noble, old young, coward
Ha, you gods! why this? what this, you gods?
Will lug your priests and servants from your
Pluck stout men's pillows from below their
This yellow slave
and break religions, bless the accursed,
Make the hoar
leprosy adored, place thieves
And give them title, knee
With senators on the bench: this is
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 route of nations, I will make thee
Do thy right nature.
March afar offHa! a drum ? Thou'rt
But yet I'll bury thee: thou'lt go, strong
When gouty keepers of thee cannot
Nay, stay thou out for earnest.
Keeping some gold
Enter ALCIBIADES, with drum and fife, in warlike manner; PHRYNIA and
What art thou there? speak.
A beast, as thou art. The canker gnaw thy
For showing me again the eyes of
What is thy name? Is man so hateful to
That art thyself a man?
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.
I know thee too; and more than that I know
I not desire to know. Follow thy drum;
With man's blood paint the ground, gules, gules:
Religious canons, civil laws are cruel;
what should war be? This fell whore of thine
Hath in her
more destruction than thy sword,
For all her cherubim
Thy lips rot off!
I will not kiss thee; then the rot
To thine own lips again.
How came the noble Timon to this
As the moon does, by wanting light to
But then renew I could not, like the
There were no suns to borrow
may I do thee?
None, but to
What is it, Timon?
Promise me friendship, but perform none: if
wilt not promise, the gods plague thee, for thou
a man! if thou dost perform, confound thee,
thou art a man!
I have heard in some sort of thy
Thou saw'st them, when I had
I see them now; then was a blessed
As thine is now, held with a brace of
Is this the Athenian minion, whom the
Voiced so regardfully?
Art thou Timandra?
Be a whore still: they love thee not that use
Give them diseases, leaving with thee their
Make use of thy salt hours: season the
For tubs and baths; bring down rose-cheeked
To the tub-fast and the diet.
Hang thee, monster!
Pardon him, sweet Timandra; for his wits
Are drown'd and lost in his calamities.
have but little gold of late, brave Timon,
whereof doth daily make revolt
In my penurious band: I
have heard, and grieved,
How cursed Athens, mindless of
Forgetting thy great deeds, when neighbour
But for thy sword and fortune, trod upon
I prithee, beat thy drum, and get thee
I am thy friend, and pity thee, dear
How dost thou pity him whom thou dost
I had rather be alone.
Why, fare thee well:
is some gold for thee.
Keep it, I cannot eat it.
When I have laid proud Athens on a
Warr'st thou 'gainst Athens?
Ay, Timon, and have cause.
The gods confound them all in thy
And thee after, when thou hast
Why me, Timon?
That, by killing of villains,
Thou wast born to conquer my country.
up thy gold: go on,--here's gold,--go on;
Be as a
planetary plague, when Jove
Will o'er some high-viced
city hang his poison
In the sick air: let not thy sword
Pity not honour'd age for his white
He is an usurer: strike me the counterfeit
It is her habit only that is honest,
Herself's a bawd: let not the virgin's cheek
Make soft thy trenchant sword; for those milk-paps,
That through the window-bars bore at men's eyes,
Are not within the leaf of pity writ,
set them down horrible traitors: spare not the babe,
Whose dimpled smiles from fools exhaust their mercy;
Think it a bastard, whom the oracle
doubtfully pronounced thy throat shall cut,
it sans remorse: swear against objects;
Put armour on
thine ears and on thine eyes;
Whose proof, nor yells of
mothers, maids, nor babes,
Nor sight of priests in holy
Shall pierce a jot. There's gold to
Make large confusion; and, thy fury
Confounded be thyself! Speak not, be
Hast thou gold yet? I'll take the gold
Not all thy
Dost thou, or dost thou not, heaven's
Give us some gold, good Timon: hast thou
Enough to make a whore forswear her
And to make whores, a bawd. Hold up, you
Your aprons mountant: you are not
Although, I know, you 'll swear, terribly
Into strong shudders and to heavenly
The immortal gods that hear you,--spare your
I'll trust to your conditions: be whores
And he whose pious breath seeks to convert
Be strong in whore, allure him, burn him
Let your close fire predominate his
And be no turncoats: yet may your pains, six
Be quite contrary: and thatch your poor thin
With burthens of the dead;--some that were
No matter:--wear them, betray with them: whore
Paint till a horse may mire upon your
A pox of wrinkles!
Well, more gold: what then?
Believe't, that we'll do any thing for gold.
bones of man; strike their sharp shins,
And mar men's
spurring. Crack the lawyer's voice,
That he may never
more false title plead,
Nor sound his quillets shrilly:
hoar the flamen,
That scolds against the quality of
And not believes himself: down with the
Down with it flat; take the bridge quite
Of him that, his particular to foresee,
Smells from the general weal: make curl'd-pate
And let the unscarr'd
braggarts of the war
Derive some pain from you: plague
That your activity may defeat and quell
The source of all erection. There's more gold:
Do you damn others, and let this damn you,
And ditches grave you all!
More counsel with more money, bounteous
More whore, more mischief first; I have given you
Strike up the drum towards Athens! Farewell,
If I thrive well, I'll visit thee
If I hope well, I'll never see thee
I never did thee harm.
Yes, thou spokest well of me.
Call'st thou that harm?
Men daily find it. Get thee away, and
Thy beagles with thee.
We but offend him. Strike!
Drum beats. Exeunt ALCIBIADES, PHRYNIA, and
That nature, being sick of man's
Should yet be hungry! Common mother,
DiggingWhose womb unmeasurable, and infinite
Teems, and feeds all; whose self-same
Whereof thy proud child, arrogant man, is
Engenders the black toad and adder
The gilded newt and eyeless venom'd
With all the abhorred births below crisp
Whereon Hyperion's quickening fire doth
Yield him, who all thy human sons doth
From forth thy plenteous bosom, one poor
Ensear thy fertile and conceptious
Let it no more bring out ingrateful
Go great with tigers, dragons, wolves, and
Teem with new monsters, whom thy upward
Hath to the marbled mansion all above
Never presented!--O, a root,--dear thanks!--
Dry up thy marrows, vines, and plough-torn leas;
Whereof ungrateful man, with liquorish draughts
And morsels unctuous, greases his pure mind,
That from it all consideration slips!
Enter APEMANTUSMore man? plague,
I was directed hither: men report
Thou dost affect my manners, and dost use
'Tis, then, because thou dost not keep a
Whom I would imitate: consumption catch
This is in thee a nature but infected;
A poor unmanly melancholy sprung
change of fortune. Why this spade? this place?
slave-like habit? and these looks of care?
flatterers yet wear silk, drink wine, lie soft;
their diseased perfumes, and have forgot
Timon was. Shame not these woods,
By putting on the
cunning of a carper.
Be thou a flatterer now, and seek
By that which has undone thee: hinge thy
And let his very breath, whom thou'lt
Blow off thy cap; praise his most vicious
And call it excellent: thou wast told
Thou gavest thine ears like tapsters that bid
To knaves and all approachers: 'tis most
That thou turn rascal; hadst thou wealth
Rascals should have 't. Do not assume my
Were I like thee, I'ld throw away
Thou hast cast away thyself, being like
A madman so long, now a fool. What,
That the bleak air, thy boisterous
Will put thy shirt on warm? will these
That have outlived the eagle, page thy
And skip where thou point'st out? will
ice, caudle thy morning taste,
To cure thy o'er-night's
surfeit? Call the creatures
Whose naked natures live in
an the spite
Of wreakful heaven, whose bare unhoused
To the conflicting elements exposed,
Answer mere nature; bid them flatter thee;
O, thou shalt find--
A fool of thee: depart.
I love thee better now than e'er I
I hate thee worse.
Thou flatter'st misery.
I flatter not; but say thou art a
Why dost thou seek me out?
To vex thee.
Always a villain's office or a fool's.
Dost please thyself in't?
What! a knave too?
If thou didst put this sour-cold habit
To castigate thy pride, 'twere well: but
Dost it enforcedly; thou'ldst courtier be
Wert thou not beggar. Willing misery
Outlives encertain pomp, is crown'd before:
The one is filling still, never complete;
The other, at high wish: best state, contentless,
Hath a distracted and most wretched being,
Worse than the worst, content.
shouldst desire to die, being miserable.
Not by his breath that is more
Thou art a slave, whom Fortune's tender
With favour never clasp'd; but bred a
Hadst thou, like us from our first swath,
The sweet degrees that this brief world
To such as may the passive drugs of
Freely command, thou wouldst have plunged
In general riot; melted down thy
In different beds of lust; and never
The icy precepts of respect, but
The sugar'd game before thee. But
Who had the world as my
The mouths, the tongues, the eyes and
hearts of men
At duty, more than I could frame
That numberless upon me stuck as
Do on the oak, hive with one winter's
Fell from their boughs and left me open,
For every storm that blows: I, to bear
That never knew but better, is some
Thy nature did commence in sufferance,
Hath made thee hard in't. Why shouldst thou hate
They never flatter'd thee: what hast thou
If thou wilt curse, thy father, that poor
Must be thy subject, who in spite put
To some she beggar and compounded thee
Poor rogue hereditary. Hence, be gone!
thou hadst not been born the worst of men,
been a knave and flatterer.
Art thou proud yet?
Ay, that I am not thee.
I, that I was
I, that I am one now:
all the wealth I have shut up in thee,
I'ld give thee
leave to hang it. Get thee gone.
That the whole life of
Athens were in this!
Thus would I eat it.
Eating a root
Here; I will mend thy feast.
Offering him a root
First mend my company, take away
So I shall mend mine own, by the lack of
'Tis not well mended so, it is but
if not, I would it were.
What wouldst thou have to
Thee thither in a whirlwind. If thou
Tell them there I have gold; look, so I
Here is no use for gold.
The best and truest;
here it sleeps, and does no hired harm.
Where liest o' nights, Timon?
Under that's above me.
Where feed'st thou o' days, Apemantus?
Where my stomach finds meat; or, rather, where I
Would poison were obedient and knew my
Where wouldst thou send it?
To sauce thy dishes.
The middle of humanity thou never knewest, but
extremity of both ends: when thou wast in thy
and thy perfume, they mocked thee for too
curiosity; in thy rags thou knowest none, but
despised for the contrary. There's a medlar
thee, eat it.
On what I hate I feed not.
Dost hate a medlar?
Ay, though it look like thee.
An thou hadst hated meddlers sooner, thou
have loved thyself better now. What man didst
ever know unthrift that was beloved after his
Who, without those means thou talkest of, didst
ever know beloved?
I understand thee; thou hadst some means to keep
What things in the world canst thou nearest
to thy flatterers?
Women nearest; but men, men are the
themselves. What wouldst thou do with the
Apemantus, if it lay in thy
Give it the beasts, to be rid of the
Wouldst thou have thyself fall in the confusion
men, and remain a beast with the
A beastly ambition, which the gods grant thee
attain to! If thou wert the lion, the fox
beguile thee; if thou wert the lamb, the fox
eat three: if thou wert the fox, the lion
suspect thee, when peradventure thou wert accused
the ass: if thou wert the ass, thy dulness
torment thee, and still thou livedst but as
breakfast to the wolf: if thou wert the wolf,
greediness would afflict thee, and oft thou
hazard thy life for thy dinner: wert thou
unicorn, pride and wrath would confound thee
make thine own self the conquest of thy fury:
thou a bear, thou wouldst be killed by the
wert thou a horse, thou wouldst be seized by
leopard: wert thou a leopard, thou wert german
the lion and the spots of thy kindred were jurors
thy life: all thy safety were remotion and
defence absence. What beast couldst thou be,
were not subject to a beast? and what a beast
thou already, that seest not thy loss in
If thou couldst please me with speaking to me,
mightst have hit upon it here: the commonwealth
Athens is become a forest of
How has the ass broke the wall, that thou art out
of the city?
Yonder comes a poet and a painter: the plague
company light upon thee! I will fear to catch
and give way: when I know not what else to do,
see thee again.
When there is nothing living but thee, thou shalt
welcome. I had rather be a beggar's dog than
Thou art the cap of all the fools
Would thou wert clean enough to spit
A plague on thee! thou art too bad to
All villains that do stand by thee are
There is no leprosy but what thou
If I name thee.
thee, but I should infect my hands.
I would my tongue could rot them
Away, thou issue of a mangy dog!
Choler does kill me that thou art alive;
swound to see thee.
Would thou wouldst burst!
Thou tedious rogue! I
am sorry I shall lose
A stone by thee.
Throws a stone at him
Rogue, rogue, rogue!
sick of this false world, and will love nought
the mere necessities upon 't.
Then, Timon, presently
prepare thy grave;
Lie where the light foam the sea may
Thy grave-stone daily: make thine
That death in me at others' lives may
To the goldO thou sweet king-killer, and dear
'Twixt natural son and sire! thou bright
Of Hymen's purest bed! thou valiant
Thou ever young, fresh, loved and delicate
Whose blush doth thaw the consecrated
That lies on Dian's lap! thou visible
That solder'st close impossibilities,
And makest them kiss! that speak'st with
To every purpose! O thou
touch of hearts!
Think, thy slave man rebels, and by
Set them into confounding odds, that
May have the world in
Would 'twere so!
till I am dead. I'll say thou'st gold:
Thou wilt be
throng'd to shortly.
Thy back, I prithee.
Live, and love thy misery.
Long live so, and so die.
Exit APEMANTUSI am quit.
Moe things like men! Eat, Timon, and abhor them.
Where should he have this gold? It is some
fragment, some slender sort of his remainder:
mere want of gold, and the falling-from of
friends, drove him into this
It is noised he hath a mass of
Let us make the assay upon him: if he care
for't, he will supply us easily; if he
reserve it, how shall's get
True; for he bears it not about him, 'tis
Is not this he?
'Tis his description.
He; I know him.
Save thee, Timon.
Soldiers, not thieves.
Both too; and women's sons.
We are not thieves, but men that much do
Your greatest want is, you want much of
Why should you want? Behold, the earth hath
Within this mile break forth a hundred
The oaks bear mast, the briers scarlet
The bounteous housewife, nature, on each
Lays her full mess before you. Want! why
We cannot live on grass, on berries,
As beasts and birds and
Nor on the beasts themselves, the birds, and
You must eat men. Yet thanks I must you
That you are thieves profess'd, that you work
In holier shapes: for there is boundless
In limited professions. Rascal thieves,
Here's gold. Go, suck the subtle blood o' the grape,
Till the high fever seethe your blood to froth,
And so 'scape hanging: trust not the physician;
His antidotes are poison, and he slays
than you rob: take wealth and lives together;
villany, do, since you protest to do't,
I'll example you with thievery.
The sun's a thief, and
with his great attraction
Robs the vast sea: the moon's
an arrant thief,
And her pale fire she snatches from
The sea's a thief, whose liquid surge
The moon into salt tears: the earth's a
That feeds and breeds by a composture
From general excrement: each thing's a
The laws, your curb and whip, in their rough
Have uncheque'd theft. Love not yourselves:
Rob one another. There's more gold. Cut
All that you meet are thieves: to Athens
Break open shops; nothing can you steal,
But thieves do lose it: steal no less for this
I give you; and gold confound you howsoe'er!
Has almost charmed me from my profession,
persuading me to it.
'Tis in the malice of mankind that he thus
us; not to have us thrive in our
I'll believe him as an enemy, and give over my
Let us first see peace in Athens: there is no
so miserable but a man may be true.
O you gods!
despised and ruinous man my lord?
Full of decay and
failing? O monument
And wonder of good deeds evilly
What an alteration of honour
Has desperate want made!
What viler thing
upon the earth than friends
Who can bring noblest minds
to basest ends!
How rarely does it meet with this
When man was wish'd to love his
Grant I may ever love, and rather
Those that would mischief me than those that
Has caught me in his eye: I will present
My honest grief unto him; and, as my lord,
Still serve him with my life. My dearest
Away! what art thou?
Have you forgot me, sir?
Why dost ask that? I have forgot all
Then, if thou grant'st thou'rt a man, I have
An honest poor servant of
Then I know thee not:
never had honest man about me, I; all
I kept were
knaves, to serve in meat to villains.
The gods are witness,
did poor steward wear a truer grief
For his undone lord
than mine eyes for you.
What, dost thou weep? Come nearer. Then
Because thou art a
woman, and disclaim'st
Flinty mankind; whose eyes do
But thorough lust and laughter. Pity's
Strange times, that weep with laughing, not
I beg of you to know me, good my lord,
To accept my grief and whilst this poor wealth lasts
To entertain me as your steward still.
Had I a steward
So true, so
just, and now so comfortable?
It almost turns my
dangerous nature mild.
Let me behold thy face. Surely,
Was born of woman.
Forgive my general and exceptless rashness,
You perpetual-sober gods! I do proclaim
One honest man--mistake me not--but one;
No more, I pray,--and he's a steward.
fain would I have hated all mankind!
And thou redeem'st
thyself: but all, save thee,
I fell with
Methinks thou art more honest now than
For, by oppressing and betraying me,
Thou mightst have sooner got another service:
For many so arrive at second masters,
their first lord's neck. But tell me true--
For I must
ever doubt, though ne'er so sure--
Is not thy kindness
If not a usuring kindness, and, as
rich men deal gifts,
Expecting in return twenty for
No, my most worthy master; in whose
Doubt and suspect, alas, are placed too
You should have fear'd false times when you did
Suspect still comes where an estate is
That which I show, heaven knows, is merely
Duty and zeal to your unmatched mind,
Care of your food and living; and, believe it,
My most honour'd lord,
For any benefit
that points to me,
Either in hope or present, I'ld
For this one wish, that you had power and
To requite me, by making rich
Look thee, 'tis so! Thou singly honest
Here, take: the gods out of my misery
Have sent thee treasure. Go, live rich and happy;
But thus condition'd: thou shalt build from men;
Hate all, curse all, show charity to none,
But let the famish'd flesh slide from the bone,
Ere thou relieve the beggar; give to dogs
What thou deny'st to men; let prisons swallow 'em,
Debts wither 'em to nothing; be men like
And may diseases lick up
their false bloods!
And so farewell and
O, let me stay,
you, my master.
If thou hatest curses,
not; fly, whilst thou art blest and free:
thou man, and let me ne'er see thee.
Exit FLAVIUS. TIMON retires to his cave
SCENE I. The woods. Before Timon's cave.
Enter Poet and Painter; TIMON watching them from his cave
As I took note of the place, it cannot be far
What's to be thought of him? does the rumour
for true, that he's so full of
Certain: Alcibiades reports it; Phrynia
Timandra had gold of him: he likewise enriched
straggling soldiers with great quantity: 'tis
he gave unto his steward a mighty
Then this breaking of his has been but a try for his
Nothing else: you shall see him a palm in
again, and flourish with the highest.
'tis not amiss we tender our loves to him, in
supposed distress of his: it will show honestly
us; and is very likely to load our purposes
what they travail for, if it be a just true
that goes of his having.
What have you now to present unto
Nothing at this time but my visitation: only I
promise him an excellent
I must serve him so too, tell him of an
that's coming toward him.
Good as the best. Promising is the very air o'
time: it opens the eyes of expectation:
performance is ever the duller for his act; and,
but in the plainer and simpler kind of people, the
deed of saying is quite out of use. To promise is
most courtly and fashionable: performance is a kind
of will or testament which argues a great sickness
in his judgment that makes it.
TIMON comes from his cave, behind
[Aside] Excellent workman! thou canst not paint
man so bad as is thyself.
I am thinking what I shall say I have provided
him: it must be a personating of himself; a
against the softness of prosperity, with a
of the infinite flatteries that follow youth
[Aside] Must thou needs stand for a villain
thine own work? wilt thou whip thine own faults
other men? Do so, I have gold for
Nay, let's seek him:
we sin against our own estate,
When we may profit meet,
and come too late.
When the day serves,
before black-corner'd night,
Find what thou want'st by
free and offer'd light. Come.
[Aside] I'll meet you at the turn. What a
That he is worshipp'd in a baser
Than where swine feed!
thou that rigg'st the bark and plough'st the foam,
Settlest admired reverence in a slave:
thee be worship! and thy saints for aye
Be crown'd with
plagues that thee alone obey!
Fit I meet them.
Hail, worthy Timon!
Our late noble master!
Have I once lived to see two honest
Having often of your
open bounty tasted,
Hearing you were retired, your
friends fall'n off,
Whose thankless natures--O abhorred
Not all the whips of heaven are large
What! to you,
star-like nobleness gave life and influence
whole being! I am rapt and cannot cover
bulk of this ingratitude
With any size of
Let it go naked, men may see't the
You that are honest, by being what you
Make them best seen and known.
He and myself
in the great shower of your gifts,
And sweetly felt
Ay, you are honest men.
We are hither come to offer you our
Most honest men! Why, how shall I requite
Can you eat roots, and drink cold water?
What we can do, we'll do, to do you
Ye're honest men: ye've heard that I have
I am sure you have: speak truth; ye're honest
So it is said, my noble lord; but
Came not my friend nor I.
Good honest men! Thou draw'st a
Best in all Athens: thou'rt, indeed, the
Thou counterfeit'st most
So, so, my lord.
E'en so, sir, as I say. And, for thy
Why, thy verse swells with stuff so fine and
That thou art even natural in thine
But, for all this, my honest-natured
I must needs say you have a little
Marry, 'tis not monstrous in you, neither wish
You take much pains to mend.
Beseech your honour
it known to us.
You'll take it ill.
Most thankfully, my lord.
Will you, indeed?
Doubt it not, worthy lord.
There's never a one of you but trusts a
That mightily deceives you.
Do we, my lord?
Ay, and you hear him cog, see him
Know his gross patchery, love him, feed
Keep in your bosom: yet remain assured
That he's a made-up villain.
I know none such, my lord.
Look you, I love you well; I'll give you
Rid me these villains from your
Hang them or stab them, drown them in a
Confound them by some course, and come to
I'll give you gold enough.
Name them, my lord, let's know
You that way and you this, but two in
Each man apart, all single and
Yet an arch-villain keeps him company.
If where thou art two villains shall not be,
Come not near him. If thou wouldst not reside
But where one villain is, then him abandon.
Hence, pack! there's gold; you came for gold, ye slaves:
To PainterYou have work'd for me; there's
payment for you: hence!
To PoetYou are an alchemist; make gold of
Out, rascal dogs!
Beats them out, and then retires to his cave
Enter FLAVIUS and two Senators
It is in vain that you would speak with
For he is set so only to himself
That nothing but himself which looks like man
Is friendly with him.
Bring us to his cave:
our part and promise to the Athenians
To speak with
At all times alike
not still the same: 'twas time and griefs
him thus: time, with his fairer hand,
fortunes of his former days,
The former man may make
him. Bring us to him,
And chance it as it
Here is his cave.
content be here! Lord Timon! Timon!
Look out, and speak
to friends: the Athenians,
By two of their most
reverend senate, greet thee:
Speak to them, noble
TIMON comes from his cave
Thou sun, that comfort'st, burn! Speak,
For each true
word, a blister! and each false
Be as cauterizing to
the root o' the tongue,
Consuming it with
Of none but such as you, and you of
The senators of Athens greet thee,
I thank them; and would send them back the
Could I but catch it for
What we are sorry
for ourselves in thee.
The senators with one consent of
Entreat thee back to Athens; who have
On special dignities, which vacant
For thy best use and wearing.
forgetfulness too general, gross:
Which now the public
body, which doth seldom
Play the recanter, feeling in
A lack of Timon's aid, hath sense
Of its own fail, restraining aid to
And send forth us, to make their sorrow'd
Together with a recompense more
Than their offence can weigh down by the
Ay, even such heaps and sums of love and
As shall to thee blot out what wrongs were
And write in thee the figures of their
Ever to read them thine.
You witch me in it;
Surprise me to the very brink of tears:
Lend me a fool's heart and a woman's eyes,
And I'll beweep these comforts, worthy
Therefore, so please thee to return with
And of our Athens, thine and ours, to take
The captainship, thou shalt be met with thanks,
Allow'd with absolute power and thy good name
Live with authority: so soon we shall drive back
Of Alcibiades the approaches wild,
like a boar too savage, doth root up
And shakes his threatening sword
Against the walls of Athens.
Well, sir, I will; therefore, I will, sir;
If Alcibiades kill my countrymen,
Let Alcibiades know this of Timon,
Timon cares not. But if be sack fair Athens,
our goodly aged men by the beards,
Giving our holy
virgins to the stain
Of contumelious, beastly,
Then let him know, and tell him Timon
In pity of our aged and our youth,
I cannot choose but tell him, that I care not,
And let him take't at worst; for their knives care not,
While you have throats to answer: for myself,
There's not a whittle in the unruly camp
But I do prize it at my love before
reverend'st throat in Athens. So I leave you
protection of the prosperous gods,
As thieves to
Stay not, all's in vain.
Why, I was writing of my epitaph;
it will be seen to-morrow: my long sickness
Of health and living now begins to mend,
And nothing brings me all things. Go, live still;
Be Alcibiades your plague, you his,
last so long enough!
We speak in vain.
But yet I love my country, and am not
One that rejoices in the common wreck,
common bruit doth put it.
That's well spoke.
Commend me to my loving
These words become your lips as they
And enter in our ears like great
In their applauding
Commend me to them,
tell them that, to ease them of their griefs,
fears of hostile strokes, their aches, losses,
pangs of love, with other incident throes
fragile vessel doth sustain
In life's uncertain voyage,
I will some kindness do them:
I'll teach them to
prevent wild Alcibiades' wrath.
I like this well; he will return
I have a tree, which grows here in my
That mine own use invites me to cut
And shortly must I fell it: tell my
Tell Athens, in the sequence of
From high to low throughout, that whoso
To stop affliction, let him take his
Come hither, ere my tree hath felt the
And hang himself. I pray you, do my
Trouble him no further; thus you still shall find
Come not to me again: but say to Athens,
Timon hath made his everlasting mansion
Upon the beached verge of the salt flood;
Who once a day with his embossed froth
turbulent surge shall cover: thither come,
And let my
grave-stone be your oracle.
Lips, let sour words go by
and language end:
What is amiss plague and infection
Graves only be men's works and death their
Sun, hide thy beams! Timon hath done his
Retires to his cave
His discontents are unremoveably
Coupled to nature.
Our hope in him is dead: let us return,
And strain what other means is left unto us
In our dear peril.
It requires swift foot.
SCENE II. Before the walls of Athens.
Enter two Senators and a Messenger
Thou hast painfully discover'd: are his
As full as thy report?
have spoke the least:
his expedition promises
We stand much hazard, if they bring not
I met a courier, one mine ancient friend;
Whom, though in general part we were opposed,
Yet our old love made a particular force,
made us speak like friends: this man was riding
Alcibiades to Timon's cave,
With letters of entreaty,
His fellowship i' the cause against your
In part for his sake moved.
Here come our brothers.
Enter the Senators from TIMON
No talk of Timon, nothing of him expect.
The enemies' drum is heard, and fearful scouring
Doth choke the air with dust: in, and prepare:
Ours is the fall, I fear; our foes the snare.
SCENE III. The woods. Timon's cave, and a rude tomb seen.
Enter a Soldier, seeking TIMON
By all description this should be the
Who's here? speak, ho! No answer! What is
Timon is dead, who hath outstretch'd his
Some beast rear'd this; there does not live a
Dead, sure; and this his grave. What's on this
I cannot read; the character I'll take with
Our captain hath in every figure skill,
An aged interpreter, though young in days:
Before proud Athens he's set down by this,
Whose fall the mark of his ambition is.
SCENE IV. Before the walls of Athens.
Trumpets sound. Enter ALCIBIADES with his powers
Sound to this coward and lascivious town
Our terrible approach.
A parley sounded
Enter Senators on the wallsTill now you have gone
on and fill'd the time
With all licentious measure,
making your wills
The scope of justice; till now myself
As slept within the shadow of your
Hav e wander'd with our traversed arms and
Our sufferance vainly: now the time is
When crouching marrow in the bearer
Cries of itself 'No more:' now breathless
Shall sit and pant in your great chairs of
And pursy insolence shall break his wind
With fear and horrid flight.
Noble and young,
first griefs were but a mere conceit,
Ere thou hadst
power or we had cause of fear,
We sent to thee, to give
thy rages balm,
To wipe out our ingratitude with
Above their quantity.
So did we woo
Timon to our city's love
By humble message and by
We were not all unkind, nor all
The common stroke of war.
These walls of ours
erected by their hands from whom
You have received your
griefs; nor are they such
That these great towers,
trophies and schools
For private faults in them.
Nor are they living
the motives that you first went out;
Shame that they
wanted cunning, in excess
Hath broke their hearts.
March, noble lord,
Into our city with thy banners
By decimation, and a tithed death--
If thy revenges hunger for that food
nature loathes--take thou the destined tenth,
And by the
hazard of the spotted die
Let die the
All have not offended;
those that were, it is not square to take
On those that
are, revenges: crimes, like lands,
Are not inherited.
Then, dear countryman,
Bring in thy ranks, but leave
without thy rage:
Spare thy Athenian cradle and those
Which in the bluster of thy wrath must
With those that have offended: like a
Approach the fold and cull the infected
But kill not all together.
What thou wilt,
shalt enforce it with thy smile
Than hew to't with thy
Set but thy foot
rampired gates, and they shall ope;
So thou wilt send
thy gentle heart before,
To say thou'lt enter
Throw thy glove,
Or any token
of thine honour else,
That thou wilt use the wars as thy
And not as our confusion, all thy
Shall make their harbour in our town, till
Have seal'd thy full desire.
Then there's my glove;
Descend, and open your uncharged ports:
Those enemies of Timon's and mine own
you yourselves shall set out for reproof
Fall and no
more: and, to atone your fears
With my more noble
meaning, not a man
Shall pass his quarter, or offend the
Of regular justice in your city's
But shall be render'd to your public
At heaviest answer.
'Tis most nobly spoken.
Descend, and keep your words.
The Senators descend, and open the gates
My noble general, Timon is dead;
Entomb'd upon the very hem o' the sea;
on his grave-stone this insculpture, which
With wax I
brought away, whose soft impression
Interprets for my
[Reads the epitaph] 'Here lies a
wretched corse, of wretched soul bereft:
Seek not my name: a plague consume you wicked
Here lie I, Timon; who,
alive, all living men did hate:
Pass by and curse thy
fill, but pass and stay
not here thy gait.'
These well express in thee thy latter spirits:
Though thou abhorr'dst in us our human griefs,
Scorn'dst our brain's flow and those our
From niggard nature fall, yet
Taught thee to make vast Neptune weep for
On thy low grave, on faults forgiven. Dead
Is noble Timon: of whose memory
more. Bring me into your city,
And I will use the olive
with my sword,
Make war breed peace, make peace stint
war, make each
Prescribe to other as each other's
Let our drums strike.