Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

I am not of that feather, to shake off
My friend when he must need me 7. I do know him
A gentleman, that well deserves a help,
Which be shall have: I'll pay the debt, and free him.

Ven. Serv. Your lordship ever binds him.
Tim. Commend me to him: I will send his ran-

some;
And, being enfranchis’d, bid him come to me:-
'Tis not enough to help the feeble up,
But to support him after 28.—Fare you well.
Ven. Serv. All happiness to your honour 29!

[Exit.

:

Enter an old Athenian.
Old Ath. Lord Timon, hear me speak.
Tim.

Freely, good father.
Old Ath. Thou hast a servant nam'd Lucilius.
Tim. I have so: What of him ?
Old Ath. Most noble Timon, call the man before

thee. Tim. Attends he here, or no ?—Lucilius !

Enter LUCILIUS.

Luc. Here, at your lordship’s service.
Old Ath. This fellow here, Lord Timon, this thy

creature,
By night frequents my house. I am a man
That from my first have been inclin’d to thrift;

27 Should we not read. When he most needs me?'

28 Johnson says this thought is better expressed by Dr. Madden in bis Elegy on Archbishop Boulter :

• More than they ask'd he gave; and deem'd it mean

Only to help the poor-to beg again.' It is said that Dr. Madden gave Jobpson ten guineas for correcting this poem.

29 See note on King Richard III. Act iii. Sc. 2, note 3, p. 78.

[ocr errors][merged small]

a

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

And my estate deserves an heir more rais’d,
Than one which holds a trencher.
Tim.

Well; what further ?
Old Ath. One only daughter have I, no kin else,
On whom I may confer what I have got:

I
The maid is fair, o'the youngest for a bride,
And I have bred her at my dearest cost,
In qualities of the best. This man of thine
Attempts her love: I pr’ythee, noble lord,
Join with me to forbid him her resort;
Myself have spoke in vain.
Tim.

The man is honest.
Old Ath. Therefore he will be, Timon 30 :
His honesty rewards him in itself,
It must not bear my daughter.
Tim.

Does she love him ?
Old Ath. She is

young,

and apt:
Our own precedent passions do instruct us
What levity's in youth.

Tim. [To Lucilius.] Love you the maid?
Luc. Ay, my good lord, and she accepts of it.

Old Ath. If in her marriage my consent be missing,
I call the gods to witness, I will choose

[ocr errors]

a

[ocr errors]

30 It appears to me that a word is omitted in this line. Perhaps we should read :

Therefore he will be (rewarded], Timon;
His honesty rewards him in itself,

It must not bear my daughter.
It is true that Shakspeare often uses elliptical phrases, and this
has been thought to mean:-You say the man is honest; there-
fore he will continue to be so, and is sure of being sufficiently
rewarded by the consciousness of virtue; he does not need the
additional blessing of a beautiful and accomplished wife. But
• it must not bear my daughter' means “ His honesty is its own
reward, it must not carry my daughter.' A similar expression
occurs in Othello:-

• What a full fortune does the thick-lips owe
If he can carry her thus.'

[ocr errors]

a

Mine heir from forth the beggars of the world,
And dispossess her all.
Tim.

How shall she be endow'd,
If she be mated with an equal husband ?
Old Ath. Three talents, on the present; in future,

all. Tim. This gentleman of mine hath serv'd me long; To build his fortune, I will strain a little, For 'tis a bond in men. Give him thy daughter: What you bestow, in him I'll counterpoise, And make him weigh with her. Old Ath.

Most noble lord, Pawn me to this

your honour, she is his. Tim. My hand to thee; mine honour on my

promise. Luc. Humbly I thank your lordship: Never may That state or fortune fall into my keeping, Which is not ow'd to you 31 !

[Exeunt Lucilius and old Athenian. Poet. Vouchsafe my labour, and long live your

lordship! Tim. I thank you; you shall hear from me anon; Go not away.—What have you there, my

friend?
Pain. A piece of painting, which I do beseech
Your lordship to accept.
Tim.

Painting is welcome.
The painting is almost the natural man;
For since dishonour trafficks with man's nature,
He is but outside: These pencil'd figures are

31 • Let me never henceforth consider any thing that I possess but as owed or due to you; held for your service, and at your disposal.' So Lady Macbeth says to Duncan :

• Your servants ever
Have theirs, themselves, and what is theirs in compt,
To make their audit at your highness' pleasure,
Still to return your own.'

Even such as they give out 32. I like

your

work; And you shall find, I like it: wait attendance Till you

hear further from me. Pain.

The gods preserve you!
Tim. Well fare you, gentlemen: Give me your

hand :
We must needs dine together.-Sir, your jewel
Hath suffer'd under praise.
Jew.

What, my lord ? dispraise?
Tim. A meer satiety of commendations.
If I should pay you for't as 'tis extollid,
It would unclew 33 me quite.
Jew.

My lord, 'tis rated
As those, which sell, would give: But you well know,
Things of like value, differing in the owners,
Are prized by their masters 34 : believ't, dear lord,
You mend the jewel by wearing it.
Tim.

Well mock'd,
Mer. No, my good lord; he speaks the common

tongue, Which all men speak with him.

Tim. Look, who comes here. Will you be chid ?

[ocr errors]

Enter APEMANTUS 35.
Jew. We will bear, with your lordship.
Mer.

He'll

spare none. Tim. Good morrow to thee, gentle Apemantus!

[ocr errors]

32 Pictures have no hypocrisy ; they are what they profess to be.

33 To unclew a man is to draw out the whole mass of his fortunes. To unclew being to unwind a ball of thread.

34 Are rated according to the esteem in which their possessor is held.

35 See this character of a cynic finely drawn by Lucian, in his Auction of the Philosophers; and how well Shakspeare has copied it.

[ocr errors]

Apen. Till I be gentle, stay thou for thy good

morrow; When thou art Timon's dog, and these knaves

honest 36. Tim. Why dost thou call them knaves ? thou

know'st them not. Apem. Are they not Athenians ? Tim. Yes. Apem. Then I repent not. Jew. You know me, Apemantus. Apem. Thou knowest, I do; I call’d thee by thy

name.

а

Tim. Thou art proud, Apemantus.

Apem. Of nothing so much, as that I am not like Timon.

Tim. Whither art going ?
Apem. To knock out an honest Athenian's brains.
Tim. That's a deed thou'lt die for.
Apem. Right, if doing nothing be death by the law.
Tim. How likest thou this picture, A pemantus ?
Apem. The best for the innocence.
Tim. Wrought he not well, that painted it?

Apem. He wrought better, that made the painter; and yet he's but a filthy piece of work.

Pain. You are a dog.

Apem. Thy mother's of my generation; What's she, if I be a dog ?

Tim. Wilt dine with me, Apemantus ?
Apem. No; I eat not lords.
Tim. An thou shouldst, thou'dst anger ladies.

Apem. O, they eat lords ; so they come by great bellies. Tim. That's a lascivious apprehension.

Stay for thy good morrow till I be gentle, which will happen at the same time when thou art Timon's dog, and these knaves honest. i. e, never.

364

« AnteriorContinuar »