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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,
But set them down horrible traitors. Spare not the babe ,
Whose dimpled smiles from fools exhaust their mercy:
Think it a bastard, whom the oracle
Hath doubtfully pronounc'd thy throat shall cut,
And mince 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 vestments bleeding
Shall pierce a jot. There's gold to pay thy soldiers:
Make large confusion; and thy fury spent,
Confounded be thyself! Speak not, be gone.
Alcib. Hast thou gold yet? I'll take the gold thou giv'st me, Not all thy counsel.
Tim. Dost thou, or dost thou not, heaven's curse upon thee!
Phr. & Timan. Give us some gold, good Timon: hast thou
Tim. Enough to make a whore forswear her trade,
And to make whores, a bawd. · Hold up, you sluts,
Your aprons mountant: you are not oathable,
Although, I know, you 'll swear, terribly swear,
Into strong shudders, and to heavenly agues,
The immortal gods that hear you,
spare your oaths,
I'll trust to your conditions: be whores still;
And he whose pious breath seeks to convert you,
Be strong in whore, allure him, burn him up;
Let your close fire predominate his smoke,
And be no turncoats. Yet may your pains, six months,
Be quite contrary: and thatch your poor thin roofs
With burdens of the dead; some that were hang’d,
wear them, betray with them: whore still;
Paint till a horse may mire upon your face:
A pox of wrinkles !
Phr. & Timan. Well, more gold. -- What then? Believ't, that we 'll do any thing for gold.
T'im. Consumptions sow
In hollow 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 flesh,
And not believes himself: down with the nose,
Down with it flat; take the bridge quite away
Of him, that his particular to foresee,
Smells from the general weal: make curl’d-pate ruffians bald;
And let the unscarr'd braggarts of the war
Derive some pain from you. Plague all,
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!
Phr. & Timan. More co with more money, bounteous
Tim. More whore, more mischief first; I have given you
earnest. Alcib. Strike up the drum towards Athens! Farewell, Timon: If I thrive well, I'll visit thee again.
Tim. If I hope well, I'll never see thee more.
Alcib. I never did thee harm.
Tim. Yes, thou spok'st well of me.
Call'st thou that harm?
Tim. Men daily find it. Get thee away,
And take thy beagles with thee.
We but offend him. Strike!
[Drum beats. Exeunt ALCIBIADES, PARYNIA, and
TIMANDRA. Tim. That nature, being sick of man's unkindness, Should yet be hungry! Common mother, thou, (Digging. Whose womb uomeasurable, and infinite breast,
Teems, and feeds all; whose self-same mettle,
Whereof thy proud child, arrogant man, is puff'd,
Engenders the black toad, and adder blue,
The gilded newt, and eyeless venom'd worm,
With all the abhorred births below crisp heaven
Whereon Hyperion's quickening fire doth shine;
Yield him, who all the human sons doth hate,
From forth thy plenteous bosom, one poor root!
Ensear thy fertile and conceptious womb;
Let it no more bring out ingrateful man!
Go great with tigers, dragon's, wolves, and bears;
Teem with new monsters, whom thy upward face
Hath to the marbled mansion all above
Never presented! - 0! a root, dear thanks!
Dry up thy marrows, vines, and plough-torn leas;
Whereof ingrateful man, with liquorish draughts,
And morsels unctuous, greases his pure mind,
That from it all consideration slips —
More man? Plague! plague!
Apem. I was directed hither: men report, Thou dost affect my manners, and dost use them.
Tim. 'T is, then, because thou dost not keep a dog Whom I would imitate. Consumption catch thee!
Apem. This is in thee a nature but infected; A poor unmanly melancholy, sprung, From change of fortune. Why this spade? this place? This slave-like habit? and these looks of care? Thy flatterers yet wear silk, drink wine, lie soft, Hug their diseas'd perfumes, and have forgot That ever Timon was. Shame not these woods, By putting on the cunning of a carper. Be thou a flatterer now, and seek to thrive By that which has undone thee: hinge thy knee, And let his very breath, whom thou 'lt observe, Blow off thy cap; praise his most vicious strain,
And call it excellent. Thou wast told thus;
Thou gav'st thine ears, like tapsters that bade welcome,
To knaves, and all approachers: 't is most just,
That thou turn rascal; had'st thou wealth again,
Rascals should have 't. Do not assume my likeness.
T'im. Were I like thee, I'd throw away myself.
Apem. Thou hast cast away thyself, being like thyself;
A madman so long, now a fool. What! think'st
That the bleak air, thy boisterous chamberlain,
Will put thy shirt on warm? Will these moist trees,
That have outliv'd the eagle, page thy heels,
And skip when thou point'st out? Will the cold brook,
Candied with ice, caudle thy morning taste,
To cure thy o'er-night's surfeit? call the creatures,
Whose naked natures live in all the spite
Of wreakful heaven, whose bare unhoused trunks,
To the conflicting elements expos'd,
Answer mere nature, - bid them flatter thee;
0! thou shalt find
A fool of thee. Depart,
Apem. I love thee better now than e'er I did.
Tim. I hate thee worse.
Thou flatter'st misery.
Apem. I flatter not, but say thou art a caitiff.
Tim. Why dost thou seek me out?
To vex thee.
Tim. Always a villain's office, or a fool's.
Dost please thyself in 't?
What! a knave too?
Apem. If thou didst put this sour cold habit on
To castigate thy pride, 't were well; but thou
Dost it enforcedly: thou ’dst courtier be again,
Wert thou not beggar. Willing misery
Outlives incertain 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.
Thou should'st desire to die, being miserable.
T'im. Not by his breath, that is more miserable.
Thou art a slave, whom Fortune's tender arm
With favour never clasp’d, but bred a dog.
Hadst thou, like us, from our first swath, proceeded
The sweet degrees that this brief world affords
To such as may the passive drugs of it
Freely command, thou would'st have plung'd thyself
In general riot; melted down thy youth
In different beds of lust; and never learn'd
The icy precepts of respect, but follow'd
The sugar'd game before thee. But myself,
Who had the world as my confectionary;
The mouths, the tongues, the eyes, and hearts of men
At duty, more than I could frame employment;
That numberless upon me stuck, as leaves
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, 10 bear this,
That never knew but better, is some burden:
Thy nature did commence in sufferance, time
Hath made thee hard in 't. Why should'st thou hate men ?
They never flatter'd thee: what hast thou giyen ?
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.
I, that I was