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my lord leans wondrously to discontent. His comfortable temper has forsook him: he's much out of health, and keeps his chamber. Luc. Serv. Many do keep their chambers, are not sick : And if it be so far beyond his health,
Methinks, he should the sooner pay his debts,
And make a clear way to the gods.
Tit. We cannot take this for answer, Sir.
Flam. [Within.] Servilius, help! - my lord! my lord!
Enter TIMON, in a rage; FLAMINIUS, following.
Tim. What! are my doors oppos'd against my passage? Have I been ever free, and must my house
Be my retentive enemy, my gaol?
The place which I have feasted, does it now,
Tit. My lord, here is my bill.
Hor. Serv. And mine, my lord.
Both Var. Serv. And ours, my lord.
Phi. All our bills.
Tim. Knock me down with 'em: cleave me to the girdle.
Luc. Serv. Alas! my lord,
Tim. Cut my heart in sums.
Tit. Mine, fifty talents.
Tim. Tell out my blood.
Luc. Serv. Five thousand crowns, my lord.
Tim. Five thousand drops pays that.
1 Var. Serv. My lord,
2 Var. Serv. My lord,
Tim. Tear me, take me; and the gods fall upon you! [Exit. Hor. Faith, I perceive our masters may throw their caps at their money: these debts may well be called desperate ones, for a madman owes 'em.
Re-enter TIMON and FLAVIUS.
Tim. They have e'en put my breath from me, the slaves. Creditors? devils!
Tim. So fitly? Go, bid all my friends again, Lucius, Lucullus, and Sempronius; Ullorxa,
I'll once more feast the rascals.
0 my lord!
You only speak from your distracted soul:
A moderate table.
Be 't not in thy care: go,
The Same. The Senate-House.
The Senate sitting. Enter ALCIBIADES, attended.
1 Sen. My lord, you have my voice to 't: the fault's bloody; 't is necessary he should die.
Nothing emboldens sin so much as mercy.
2 Sen. Most true; the law shall bruise him.
Alcib. Honour, health, and compassion to the senate! 1 Sen. Now, captain?
Alcib. I am an humble suitor to your virtues;
For pity is the virtue of the law,
And none but tyrants use it cruelly.
It pleases time and fortune to lie heavy
Hath stepp'd into the law, which is past depth
Of comely virtues :
Nor did he soil the fact with cowardice;
(An honour in him which buys out his fault)
And with such sober and unnoted passion
1 Sen. 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
Is valour misbegot, and came into the world
He's truly valiant, that can wisely suffer
The worst that man can breathe, and make his wrongs
You cannot make gross sins look clear:
To revenge is no valour, but to bear.
Alcib. 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? sleep upon 't,
And let the foes quietly cut their throats,
And the ass more captain than the lion; the fellow,
If wisdom be in suffering. O, my lords!
Who cannot condemn rashness in cold blood?
But who is man, that is not angry?
2 Sen. You breathe in vain.
At Lacedæmon, and Byzantium,
1 Sen. Alcib.
In vain? his service done
Why, say, my lords, he has done fair service,
And slain in fight many of your enemies.
In the last conflict, and made plenteous wounds?
Alcib. Hard fate! he might have died in war.
Though his right arm might purchase his own time,
1 Sen. 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 another.
Alcib. Must it be so? it must not be. My lords, I do beseech you, know me.
2 Sen. How!
Call me to your remembrances.
Alcib. I cannot think, but your age has forgot me;
It could not else be, I should prove so base,
To sue, and be denied such common grace.
1 Sen. If, after two days' shine Athens contain thee, Attend our weightier judgment. And, not to swell our spirit, He shall be executed presently.
Alcib. Now the gods keep you old enough; that you may live
Only in bone, that none may look on you!
I am worse than mad: I have kept back their foes,