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the spots of thy kindred were jurors on thy life: all thy safety were remotion; * and thy defence, absence. What beast couldst thou be, that were not subject to a beast ? and what a beast art thou already, that seest not thy loss in transformation ?
Apem. If thou couldst please me with speaking to me, thou mightst have hit upon it here: The commonwealth of Athens is become a forest of beasts.
Tim. How has the ass broke the wall, that thou art out of the city ?
Apem. Yonder comes a poet, and a painter: The plague of company light upon thee! I will fear to catch it, and give way: When I know not what else to do, I'll see thee again.
Tim. When there is nothing living but thee, thou shalt be welcome. I had rather be a beggar's dog, than Apemantus.
Apem. Thou art the cap t of all the fools alive.
Tim. If I name thee.-
Apem. I would, my tongue could rot them off!
Apem. 'Would thou wouldst burst!
[Throws a stone at him.
[APEMANTUS retreats backward, as going. I am sick of this false world; and will love nought But even the mere necessities upon it. Then, Timon, presently prepare thy grave; Lie where the light foam of the sea may beat Thy gravestone daily: make thine epitaph, That death in me at others' lives may laugh. O thou sweet king-killer, and dear divorce (Looking on the gold. 'Twixt natural son and sire! thou bright defiler Of Hymen's purest bed! thou valiant Mars ! Thou ever young, fresh, loved, and delicate wooer, Whose blush doth thaw the consecrated snow That lies on Dian's lap ! thou visible god, That solder’st close impossibilities, And mak'st them kiss! that speak’st with every tongue, To every purpose! O thou touch I of hearts ! Think, thy slave man rebels; and by thy virtue Set them into confounding odds, that beasts May have the world in empire ! * Remoteness. † Top, principal.
Apem. 'Would 'twere so ;-
Tim. Throng'd to ?
[Exit APEMANTUS. More things like men ?-Eat, Timon, and abhor them.
Enter THIEVES. 1 Thief. Where should he have this ·gold ? It is some poor fragment, some slender ort of his remainder : The mere want of gold, and the falling-from of his friends, drove him into this melancholy
2 Thief. It is noised, he hath a mass of treasure.
3 Thief. Let us make the assay upon him: if he care not for't, he will supply us easily; If he covetously reserve it, how shall's get it?
2 Thief. True; for he bears it not about him, 'tis hid.
i Thief. We cannot live on grass, on berries, water, As beasts, and birds, and fishes.
Tim. Nor on the beasts themselves, the birds, and fishes;
And her pale fire she snatches from the sun:
(TIMON retires to his Cave. 3 Thief. He has almost charm’d me from my profession, by persuading me to it.
i Thief: 'Tis in the malice of mankind, that he thus advises us; not to have us thrive in our mystery.
2 Thief. I'll believe him as an enemy, and give over my trade.
1 Thief. Let us first see peace in Athens: There is no time so miserable, but a man may be true.
TIMON comes forward from his Cave.
Tim. Why dost ask that? 'I have forgot all men;
Flav. An honest poor servant of yours.
Flav. The gods are witness,
+ Honourable state.
Tim. What, dost thou weep ?--Come nearer;—then I love thee,
Flav. I beg of you to know me, good my lord,
Tim. Had I a steward so true, so just, and now
Flav. No, my most worthy master, in whose breast
Tim. Look thee, 'tis so !-Thou singly honest man,
* From human habitation.
Flav. O, let me stay,
Tim. If thou hatest
SCENE I.-The same. Before TIMON's Cave.
Enter POET and PAINTER; TIMON behind, unseen. Pain. As I took note of the place, it cannot be far where he abides.
Poet. What's to be thought of him ? Does the rumour hold for true, that he is so full of gold ?
Pain. Certain : Alcibiades reports it; Phrynia and Timandra had gold of him: he likewise enriched poor straggling soldiers with great quantity: 'Tis said, he gave unto his steward a mighty
Poet. Then this breaking of his has been but a try for his friends.
Pain. Nothing else : you shall see him a palm in Athens again, and flourish with the highest. Therefore, 'tis not amiss, wo tender our loves to him, in this supposed distress of his : will show honestly in us; and is very likely to load our purposes with what they travel sor, if it be a just and true report that goes of his having.
Poet. What have you now to present unto him?
Pain. Nothing at this time but my visitation : only I will promise him an excellent piece.
Poet. I must serve him so too; tell him of an intent that's coming toward him.
Pain. Good as the best. Promising is the very air o' the 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 and testament, which argues a great sickness in his judgment that makes it.
Tim. Excellent workman! Thou canst not paint a man so bad as is thyself.
Poet. I am thinking, what I shall say I have provided for him: It must be a personating
of himself : a satire against the softness of prosperity ; with a discovery of the infinite flatteries, that follow youth and opulency.
Tim. Must thou needs stand for a villain in thine own work? Wilt thou whip thine own faults in other men ? Do so, I have gold for thee.
Poet. Nay, let's seek him:
* The doing that we said we would do.