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So noble a master fallen! "All gone, and not
One friend to take his fortune by the arm,
And go along with him!
As we do turn our backs
From our companion, thrown into bis 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 self,
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,
Flav. All broken implements of a ruin'd house.
3 Serv. 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,
The latest 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,
As 't were a knell unto our master's fortunes,
“We have seen better days." Let each take some;
[Giving them Money. Nay, put out all your hands. Not one word more: Thus part we rich in sorrow, parting poor.
[They embrace, and part several ways. 0, 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 accurs’d,
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:
I'll ever serve his mind with my best will;
Whilst I have gold I 'll be his steward still.
Tim. 0, blessed breeding sun! draw from the earth
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,
(To whom all sores lay siege) can bear great fortune,
But by contempt of nature.
Raise me this beggar, and deny 't that lord;
The senator shall bear contempt hereditary,
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,
And say, “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 oblique;
There's nothing level in our cursed natures,
But direct villainy. Therefore, be abhorr'd
All feasts, societies, and throngs of men!
His semblable, yea, himself, Timon disdains:
Destruction fang mankind! Earth, yield me roots !
Who seeks for better of thee, sauce his palate
With thy most operant poison What is here?
Gold? yellow, glittering, precious gold? No, gods,
I am no idle votarist. Roots, you clear heavens!
Thus much of this will make black, white; foul, fair;
Wrong, right; base, noble; old, young;-coward, valiant.
Ha! you gods, why this? What this, you gods! Why, this
Will lug your priests and servants from your sides,
Pluck stout men's pillows from below their heads.
This yellow slave
Will knit and break religions; bless th' accurs’d;
Make the hoar leprosy ador’d; place thieves,
And give them title, knee, and approbation,
With senators on the bench: this is it,
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 rout of nations, I will make thee
Do thy right nature. [March afar off.] Ha! a drum?
Thou 'rt quick,
But yet I 'll bury thee: thou ’lt go, strong thief,
When gouty keepers of thee cannot stand.
Nay, stay thou out for earnest.
[Reserving some gold. Enter ALCIBIADES, with Drum and Fife, in warlike manner;
Tim. A beast, as thou art. The canker gnaw thy heart, For showing me again the eyes of man!
Alcib. What is thy name? Is man so hateful to thee,
That art thyself a man?
Tim. 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.
T'im. I know thee too; and more, than that I know thee,
I not desire to know. Follow thy drum;
With man's blood paint the ground, gules, gules :
Religious canons, civil laws are cruel;
Then what should war be? This fell whore of thine
Hath in her more destruction than thy sword,
For all her cherubin look.
Thy lips rot off!
Tim. I will not kiss thee; then, the rot returns
To thine own lips again.
Alcib. How came the noble Timon to this change?
Tim. As the moon does, by wanting light to give :
But then, renew I could not, like the moon;
There were no suns to borrow of.
What friendship may I do thee?
None, but to
Maintain my opinion.
What is it,
Timon? Tim. Promise me friendship, but perform none: if thou wilt not promise, the gods plague thee, for thou art a man! if thou dost perform, confound thee, for thou art a man!
Alcib. I have heard in some sort of thy miseries.
Tim. Thou saw'st them, when I had prosperity.
Alcib. I see them now; then was a blessed time.
Tim. As thine is now, held with a brace of harlots.
Timan. Is this th’Athenian minion, whom the world
Voic'd so regardfully?
Art thou Timandra?
Tim. Be a whore still! they love thee not, that use thee:
Give them diseases, leaving with thee their lust.
Make use of thy salt hours; season the slaves
For tubs, and baths; bring down rose-cheeked youth
To the tub-fast, and the diet.
Hang thee, monster!
Alcib. Pardon him, sweet Timandra, far his wits
Are drown'd and lost in his calamities.
I have but little gold of late, brave Timon,
The want whereof doth daily make revolt
In my penurious band: I have heard and griev'd ,
How cursed Athens, mindless of thy worth,
Forgetting thy great deeds, when neighbour states,
But for thy sword and fortune, trod upon them,
Tim. I pr’ythee, beat thy drum, and get thee gone.
Alcib. I am thy friend, and pity thee, dear Timon.
Tim. How dost thou pity him, whom thou dost trouble?
I had rather be alone.
Why, fare thee well:
Here is some gold for thee.
Keep it, I cannot eat it.
Alcib. When I have laid proud Athens on a heap, -
Tim. Warr'st thou 'gainst Athens?
Alcib. Ay Timon, and have cause.
Tim. The gods confound them all in thy conquest;
And thee after, when thou hast conquered:
Alcib. Why me, Timon?
That, by killing of villains,
Thou wast born to conquer my country.
Put up thy gold: go on, here's gold,
Be as a planetary plague, when Jove
Will o'er some high-vic'd city hang his poison
In the sick air: let not thy sword skip one.
Pity not honour'd age for his white beard;
He is an usurer. Strike me the counterfeit matron;