Luci. What a wicked Beast was I to disfurnish my self against such a good time, when I might ha shewn my selfe Honourable? How vnluckily it hapned, that I shold Purchase the day before for a little part, and vndo a great deale of Honour? Seruilius, now before the Gods I am not able to do (the more beast I say) I was sending to vse Lord Timon my selfe, these Gentlemen can witnesse; but I would not for the wealth of Athens I had done't now. Commend me bountifully to his good Lordship, and I hope his Honor will conceiue the fairest of mee, because I haue no power to be kinde. And tell him this from me, I count it one of my greatest afflictions say, that I cannot pleasure such an Honourable Gentleman. Good Seruilius, will you befriend mee so farre, as to vse mine owne words to him? Ser. Yes sir, I shall.

Exit Seruil[ius].

Lucil. Ile looke you out a good turne Seruilius. True as you said, Timon is shrunke indeede, And he that's once deny'de, will hardly speede. Enter.

1 Do you obserue this Hostilius? 2 I, to well

1 Why this is the worlds soule, And iust of the same peece Is euery Flatterers sport: who can call him his Friend That dips in the same dish? For in my knowing Timon has bin this Lords Father, And kept his credit with his purse: Supported his estate, nay Timons money Has paid his men their wages. He ne're drinkes, But Timons Siluer treads vpon his Lip, And yet, oh see the monstrousnesse of man, When he lookes out in an vngratefull shape; He does deny him (in respect of his) What charitable men affoord to Beggers

3 Religion grones at it

1 For mine owne part, I neuer tasted Timon in my life Nor came any of his bounties ouer me, To marke me for his Friend. Yet I protest, For his right Noble minde, illustrious Vertue, And Honourable Carriage, Had his necessity made vse of me, I would haue put my wealth into Donation, And the best halfe should haue return'd to him, So much I loue his heart: But I perceiue, Men must learne now with pitty to dispence, For Policy sits aboue Conscience.

Exeunt.

Enter a third seruant with Sempronius, another of Timons Friends.

Semp. Must he needs trouble me in't? Hum. 'Boue all others? He might haue tried Lord Lucius, or Lucullus, And now Ventidgius is wealthy too, Whom he redeem'd from prison. All these Owes their estates vnto him

Ser. My Lord, They haue all bin touch'd, and found Base-Mettle, For they haue all denied him

Semp. How? Haue they deny'de him? Has Ventidgius and Lucullus deny'de him, And does he send to me? Three? Humh? It shewes but little loue, or iudgement in him. Must I be his last Refuge? His Friends (like Physitians) Thriue, giue him ouer: Must I take th' Cure vpon me? Has much disgrac'd me in't, I'me angry at him, That might haue knowne my place. I see no sense for't, But his Occasions might haue wooed me first: For in my conscience, I was the first man That ere receiued guift from him. And does he thinke so backwardly of me now, That Ile requite it last? No: So it may proue an Argument of Laughter To th' rest, and 'mong'st Lords be thought a Foole: I'de rather then the worth of thrice the summe, Had sent to me first, but for my mindes sake: I'de such a courage to do him good. But now returne, And with their faint reply, this answer ioyne; Who bates mine Honor, shall not know my Coyne.

Exit

Ser. Excellent: Your Lordships a goodly Villain: the diuell knew not what he did, when hee made man Politicke; he crossed himselfe by't: and I cannot thinke, but in the end, the Villanies of man will set him cleere. How fairely this Lord striues to appeare foule? Takes Vertuous Copies to be wicked: like those, that vnder hotte ardent zeale, would set whole Realmes on fire, of such a nature is his politike loue. This was my Lords best hope, now all are fled Saue onely the Gods. Now his Friends are dead, Doores that were ne're acquainted with their Wards Many a bounteous yeere, must be imploy'd Now to guard sure their Master: And this is all a liberall course allowes, Who cannot keepe his wealth, must keep his house. Enter.

The Life of Timon of Athens Page 14

William Shakespeare Plays

Free Books in the public domain from the Classic Literature Library ©

William Shakespeare
Classic Literature Library

All Pages of This Book