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Do on the oak, have with one winter's brush
Fell from their boughs and left me open, bare
For every storm that blows: I, to bear this,
That never knew but better, is some burden:
Thy nature did commence in sufferance, time
Hath made thee hard in't. Why shouldst thou
hate men?
They never flatter'd thee: what hast thou given?
If thou wilt curse, thy father, that poor rag,
Must be thy subject, who in spite put stuff
To some she beggar and compounded thee
Poor rogue hereditary. Hence, be gone!
If thou hadst not been born the worst of men,
Thou hadst been a knave and flatterer.


Art thou proud yet? Tim. Ay, that I am not thee. Apem.

I, that I was

No prodigal.

Tim. I, that I am one now: Were 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. Apem.

281 [Eating a root. Here; I will mend thy feast. [Offering him a root. Tim. First mend my company, take away thyself. Apem. So I shall mend mine own, by the

lack of thine.

Tim. 'Tis not well mended so, it is but botch'd; If not, I would it were.

Apem. What wouldst thou have to Athens? Tim. Thee thither in a whirlwind. If thou wilt,

Tell them there I have gold; look, so I have.
Apem. Here is no use for gold.
The best and truest; 290
For here it sleeps, and does no hired harm.
Apem. Where liest o' nights, Timon?
Under that's above me.
Where feed'st thou o' days, Apemantus?
Apem. Where my stomach finds meat; or,
rather, where I eat it.

Tim. Would poison were obedient and knew my mind!

Apem. Where wouldst thou send it?
Tim. To sauce thy dishes.


Apem. The middle of humanity thou never knewest, but the extremity of both ends: when thou wast in thy gilt and thy perfume, they mocked thee for too much curiosity; in thy rags thou knowest none, but art despised for the contrary. There's a medlar for thee, eat it.

Tim. On what I hate I feed not.
Apem. Dost hate a medlar?

Tim. Ay, though it look like thee. Apem. An thou hadst hated meddlers sooner, thou shouldst have loved thyself better now. What man didst thou ever know unthrift that was beloved after his means?

Tim. Who, without those means thou talkest of, didst thou ever know beloved?

Apem. Myself.

Tim. I understand thee; thou hadst some means to keep a dog.

the world, Apemantus, if it lay in thy power? Apem. Give it the beasts, to be rid of the

Apem. What things in the world canst thou nearest compare to thy flatterers?

319 Tim. Women nearest; but men, men are the things themselves. What wouldst thou do with


Tim. Wouldst thou have thyself fall in the confusion of men, and remain a beast with the beasts?

Apem. Ay, Timon.

Tim. A beastly ambition, which the gods grant thee t' attain to! If thou wert the lion, the fox would beguile thee: if thou wert the lamb, the fox would eat thee: if thou wert the fox, the lion would suspect thee, when peradventure thou wert accused by the ass: if thou wert the ass, thy dulness would torment thee, and still thou livedst but as a breakfast to the wolf: if thou wert the wolf, thy greediness would afflict thee, and oft thou shouldst hazard thy life for thy dinner: wert thou the unicorn, pride and wrath would confound thee and make thine own self the conquest of thy fury: wert thou a bear, thou wouldst be killed by the horse: wert thou a horse, thou wouldst be seized by the leopard: wert thou a leopard, thou wert german to the lion and 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! 349

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. 359

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 of all the fools alive. Tim. Would thou wert clean enough to spit upon!

Apem. A plague on thee! thou art too bad

to curse.

Tim. All villains that do stand, by thee are pure.

Apem. There is no leprosy but what thou speak'st.

Tim. If I name thee.

I'll beat thee, but I should infect my hands.

Apem. I would my tongue could rot them off! Tim. Away, thou issue of a mangy dog! 371 Choler does kill me that thou art alive; I swound to see thee. Apem. Tim.

Would thou wouldst burst!

Away, Thou tedious rogue! I am sorry I shall lose A stone by thee. [Throws a stone at him. Slave!



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Go, suck the subtle blood o' the

Here's gold. 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 Moe than you rob: take wealth and lives together;

Do villany, do, since you protest to do't,
Like workmen. 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, 440
And her pale fire she snatches from the sun:
The sea's a thief, whose liquid surge resolves
The moon into salt tears: the earth's a thief,
That feeds and breeds by a composture stolen
From general excrement: each thing's a thief:
The laws, your curb and whip, in their rough


Have uncheck'd theft. Love not yourselves:


Rob one another. There's more gold. Cut throats:




All that you meet are thieves: to Athens go,
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 !

Third Ban. Has almost charmed me from my profession, by persuading me to it.

First Ban. "Tis in the malice of mankind that he thus advises us; not to have us thrive in our mystery.

Sec. Ban. I'll believe him as an enemy, and give over my trade. 460

First Ban. Let us first see peace in Athens: there is no time so miserable but a man may be [Exeunt Banditti.


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SCENE I. The woods. Before Timon's cave. Enter Poet and Painter; TIMON watching them from his cave.

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's 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 we tender our loves to him, in this supposed distress of his: it will show honestly in us; and is very likely to load our purposes with what they travail for, 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 or testament which argues a great sickness in his judgement that makes it. [Timon comes from his cave, behind. Tim. [Aside] 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. [Aside] Must thou needs stand for a villain in thine own work? wilt thou whip thine own faults in other inen? Do so, I have gold for thee.

Poet. Nay, let's seek him: Then do we sin against our own estate, When we may profit meet, and come too late. Pain. True;

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Poet. Sir,


Having often of your open bounty tasted,
Hearing you were retired, your friends fall'n off,
Whose thankless natures-O abhorred spirits!-
Not all the whips of heaven are large enough:
What! to you,

Whose star-like nobleness gave life and influence
To their whole being! I am rapt and cannot cover
The monstrous bulk of this ingratitude
With any size of words.

Tim. Let it go naked, men may see 't the better: You that are honest, by being what you are, Make them best seen and known.


Pain. He and myself Have travail'd in the great shower of your gifts, And sweetly felt it. Tim. Ay, you are honest men. Pain. We are hither come to offer you our service.

Tim. Most honest men! Why, how shall I requite you? Can you eat roots, and drink cold water? no. Both. What we can do, we'll do, to do you service.

Tim. Ye're honest men: ye've heard that I have gold;

I am sure you have: speak truth; ye're honest



Pain. So it is said, my noble lord; but therefore Came not my friend nor I.

Tim. Good honest men! Thou draw'st a counterfeit

Best in all Athens: thou'rt, indeed, the best;
Thou counterfeit'st most lively.


So, so, my lord.

Tim. E'en so, sir, as I say. And, for thy fiction,

Why, thy verse swells with stuff so fine and smooth
That thou art even natural in thine art.
But, for all this, my honest-natured friends,
I must needs say you have a little fault:
Marry, 'tis not monstrous in you, neither wish
You take much pains to mend.



Beseech your honour

To make it known to us.
You'll take it ill.
Both. Most thankfully, my lord.
Will you, indeed?
Both. Doubt it not, worthy lord.
Tim. There's never a one of you but trusts a
That mightily deceives you.

Do we, my lord?

Tim. Ay, and you hear him cog, see him dissemble,

Know his gross patchery, love him, feed him,
Keep in your bosom: yet remain assured
That he's a made-up villain.

I know none such, my lord.




Nor I. Tim. Look you, I love you well; I'll give you gold,

Rid me these villains from your companies:
Hang them or stab them, drown them in a draught,
Confound them by some course, and come to me,
I'll give you gold enough.
Both. Name them, my lord, let's know them.
Tim. You that way and you this, but two in

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O, forget
What we are sorry for ourselves in thee.
The senators with one consent of love

Entreat thee back to Athens; who have thought
On special dignities, which vacant lie
For thy best use and wearing.


Sec. Sen. They confess Toward thee forgetfulness too general, gross: Which now the public body, which doth seldom Play the recanter, feeling in itself A lack of Timon's aid, hath sense withal | Of it own fail, restraining aid to Timon; And send forth us, to make their sorrow'd render, Together with a recompense more fruitful Than their offence can weigh down by the dram: Ay, even such heaps and sums of love and wealth As shall to thee blot out what wrongs were theirs And write in thee the figures of their love, 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 senators.
First Sen. Therefore, so please thee to return
with us

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,
Who, like a boar too savage, doth root up

His country's peace.

Tim. 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
The 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 mend!
Graves only be men's works and death their gain!
Sun, hide thy beams! Timon hath done his reign.
[Retires to his cave.
First Sen. His discontents are unremoveably
Coupled to nature

Sec. Sen. And shakes his threatening sword
Against the walls of Athens.

First Sen.


Therefore, Timon, Tim. Well, sir, I will; therefore, I will, sir; thus:

If Alcibiades kill my countrymen,

Let Alcibiades know this of Timon,

Sec. Sen. Our hope in him is dead: let us return,


That Timon cares not. But if he sack fair And strain what other means is left unto us
In our dear peril.
First Sen.


And take our goodly aged men by the beards,
Giving our holy virgins to the stain

Of contumelious, beastly, mad-brain'd war,
Then let him know, and tell him Timon speaks it,
In pity of our aged and our youth,

I cannot choose but tell him, that I care not, 180
And let him take't at worst; for their knives care

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
The reverend'st throat in Athens. So I leave you
To the protection of the prosperous gods,
As thieves to keepers.


Stay not, all's in vain.
Tim. 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,
And last so long enough!


First Sen.

We speak in vain.

Tim. But yet I love my country, and am not
One that rejoices in the common wreck,
As common bruit doth put it.

First Sen.
That's well spoke.
Tim. Commend me to my loving country-

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To stop affliction, let him take his haste,
Come hither, ere my tree hath felt the axe,
And hang himself. I pray you, do my greeting.
Flav. Trouble him no further; thus you still
shall find him.


It requires swift foot. [Exeunt.
SCENE II. Before the walls of Athens.
Enter two Senators and a Messenger.
First Sen. Thou hast painfully discover'd:
are his files

As full as thy report?
I have spoke the least:
Besides, his expedition promises
Present approach.
Sec. Sen. We stand much hazard, if they bring
not Timon.


Mess. I met a courier, one mine ancient friend ;
Whom, though in general part we were opposed,
+Yet our old love made a particular force,
And made us speak like friends: this man was
From Alcibiades to Timon's cave,
With letters of entreaty, which imported
His fellowship i' the cause against your city,
In part for his sake moved.
First Sen.

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Here come our brothers.

Enter the Senators from TIMON.
Third Sen. No talk of Timon, nothing of him

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.

[Exeunt. SCENE III. The woods. Timon's cave, and a rude tomb seen.

Enter a Soldier, seeking TIMON.

Sold. By all description this should be the place. Who's here? speak, ho! No answer! What is this?

Timon is dead, who hath outstretch'd his span:
Some beast rear'd this; there does not live a man.
Dead, sure; and this his grave. What's on this

I cannot read; the character I'll take with wax:
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. [Exit. 10

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