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what do you in this wise company? How dost thou, Apemantus ?
Apem. 'Would I had a rod in my mouth, that I might answer thee profitably.
Page. Prythee, Apemantus, read me the supercription of these letters ; I know not which is which.
Apem. Canst not read?
Apem. There will little learning die then, that day thou art hanged. This is to lord Timon; this to Alcibiades. Go; thou wast born a bastard, and thou'lt die a bawd.
Page. Thou wast whelped a dog ; and thou shalt famish, a dog's death. Answer not, I am gone.
[Exit Page. Apem. Even so thou out-run'st grace. Fool, I will go
with you to lord Timon's. Fool. Will
leave me there? Apem. If Timon stay at home.--You three serve three usurers ?
All Sero. Ay; 'would they served us !
Apem. So would I,-as good a trick as ever hangman served thief.
Fool. Are you three usurers' men ?
Fool. I think, no usurer but has a fool to his servant: My mistress is one, and I am her fool. When men come to borrow of your masters, they approach sadly, and go away merry; but they enter my mistress' house merrily, and go away sadly: The reason of this?
Var. Sero. I could render one. Apem. Do it then, that we may account thee a whoremaster, and a knave; which notwithstanding, thou shalt be no less esteemed.
Var. Serv. What is a whoremaster, fool?
thee.' 'Tis a spirit: sometime, it appears like a lord; sometime, like a lawyer; sometime, like a philosopher, with two stones more than his artificial one: He is very often like a knight; and, generally in all shapes, that man goes up and down in, from .fourscore to thirteen, this spirit walks in.
Var. Serv. Thou art not altogether a fool.
Fool. Nor thou altogether a wise man: as much foolery as I have, so much wit thou lackest.
Apem. That answer might have become Apemantus.
All Serv. Aside, aside ; here comes lord Timor.
Re-enter TIMON and FLAVIUS.
Apem. Come, with me, fool, come.
Fool. I do not always follow lover, elder brother, and woman; sometime, the philosopher.
[Exeunt APEMANTUS and Fool. Flav. 'Pray you, walk near; I'll speak with you
[Exeunt Serv. Tim. You make me marvel : Wherefore, ere this
You would not hear me,
Go to :
O my good lord! At many times I brought in my accounts,
- made your minister,] The construction is :- And made that unaptness your minister.
Laid them before you ; you would throw them off,
pay your present debts. Tim.
Let all my land be sold. Flav. "Tis all engag'd, some forfeited and gone; And what remains will hardly stop the mouth Of present dues : the future comes apace : What shall defend the interim ? and at length How goes our reckoning ??
Tim. To Lacedæmon did my land extend. Fluv. O my good lord, the world is but a word; Were it all yours to give it in a breath, How quickly were it gone? Tim.
You tell me true. Flao. If you suspect my husbandry, or falsehood,
s Return so much,] He does not mean so great a sum, but a certain sum, as it might happen to be. Our author frequently uses this kind of expression.
• Though you hear now, (too late!) yet now's a time,) i. e. Though I tell you this at too late a period, perhaps, for the information to be of any service to you, yet late as it is, it is necessary that you should be acquainted with it. It is evident, that the steward had very little hope of assistance from his master's friends. i_ and at length
How goes our reckoning ?] How will you be able to subsist in the time intervening between the payment of the present demands (which your whole substance will hardly satisfy) and the claim of future dues, for which you have no fund whatsoever ; and finally on the settlement of all accounts in what a wretched plight will you be VOL. VII.
Call me before the exactest auditors,
Pr’ythec, no more. Flav. Heavens, have I said, the bounty of this
lord ! How many prodigal bits bave slaves, and peasants, This night englutted! Who is not Timon's ? What heart, head, sword, force, means, but is lord
Timon's ? Great Timon, noble, worthy, royal Timon? Ah! when the means are gone, that buy this praise, The breath is gone whereof this praise is made: Feast-won, fast-lost; one cloud of winter showers, These flies are couch’d. Tim.
Come, sermon me no further : No villainous bounty yet hath pass'd my heart; Unwisely, not ignobly, have I given.”
8 - our offices -] i.e. the apartments allotted to culinary purposes, the reception of domesticks, &c.
9 — a wasteful cock,] Of the various explanations of the commentators, the following appears most intelligible. A wasteful cock is what we now call a rvaste pipe; a pipe which is continually running, and thereby prevents the overflow of cisterns, and other reservoirs, by carrying off their superfluous water. This circumstance served to keep the idea of Timon's unceasing prodigality in the mind of the Steward, while its remoteness from the scenes of luxury within the house, was favourable to meditation. "No villainous bounty yet hath pass'd my heart ;
Unrisely, not ignobly, have I given.] Every reader must rejoice in this circumstance of comfort which presents itself to Timon, who, although beggar'd through want of prudence, consoles himself with reflection that his ruin was not brought on by thc pursuit of guilty pleasures. STEEVENS.
Why dost thou weep? Canst thou the conscience
lack, To think I shall lack friends ? Secure thy heart; If I would broach the vessels of my love, And try the argument' of hearts by borrowing, Men, and men's fortunes, could I frankly use, As I can bid thee speak. Flav.
Assurance bless your thoughts! Tim. And, in some sort, these wants of mine are
crown'd, That I account them blessings ; for by these Shall I try friends : You shall perceive, how you Mistake my fortunes; I am wealthy in my
friends. Within there, ho !-Flaminius! Servilius Enter FLAMINIUS, Servilius, and other Servants.
Serv. My lord, my lord,
have said, my lord. Flav. Lord Lucius, and lord Lucullus ? humph!
[Aside. Tim. Go you, sir, [To another Serv.] to the se
nators, (Of whom, even to the state's best health, I have Deserv'd this hearing,) bid 'em send o'the instant
* And try the argument - ] The licentiousness of our author forces us often upon far-fetch'd expositions. Arguments may mean contents, as the arguments of a book; or evidences and proofs. Johnson. crown'd,] i. e. dignified, adorned, made respectable.