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  • Title: Timon of Athens (Folio 1, 1623)

  • Copyright Internet Shakespeare Editions. This text may be freely used for educational, non-proift purposes; for all other uses contact the Coordinating Editor.
    Author: William Shakespeare
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    Timon of Athens (Folio 1, 1623)

    Enter Lucius, with three strangers.
    Luc. Who the Lord Timon? He is my very good friend
    and an Honourable Gentleman.
    1 We know him for no lesse, thogh we are but stran-
    gers to him. But I can tell you one thing my Lord, and
    985which I heare from common rumours, now Lord Timons
    happie howres are done and past, and his estate shrinkes
    from him.
    Lucius. Fye no, doe not beleeue it: hee cannot want
    for money.
    9902 But beleeue you this my Lord, that not long agoe,
    one of his men was with the Lord Lucullus, to borrow so
    many Talents, nay vrg'd extreamly for't, and shewed
    what necessity belong'd too't, and yet was deny'de.
    Luci. How?
    9952 I tell you, deny'de my Lord.
    Luci. What a strange case was that? Now before the
    Gods I am asham'd on't. Denied that honourable man?
    There was verie little Honour shew'd in't. For my owne
    part, I must needes confesse, I haue receyued some small
    1000kindnesses from him, as Money, Plate, Iewels, and such
    like Trifles; nothing comparing to his: yet had hee mi-
    stooke him, and sent to me, I should ne're haue denied his
    Occasion so many Talents.
    Enter Seruilius.
    1005Seruil. See, by good hap yonders my Lord, I haue
    swet to see his Honor. My Honor'd Lord.
    Lucil. Seruilius? You are kindely met sir. Farthewell,
    commend me to thy Honourable vertuous Lord, my ve-
    ry exquisite Friend.
    1010Seruil. May it please your Honour, my Lord hath
    Luci. Ha? what ha's he sent? I am so much endeered
    to that Lord; hee's euer sending: how shall I thank him
    think'st thou? And what has he sent now?
    1015Seruil. Has onely sent his present Occasion now my
    Lord: requesting your Lordship to supply his instant vse
    with so many Talents.
    Lucil. I know his Lordship is but merry with me,
    He cannot want fifty fiue hundred Talents.
    1020Seruil. But in the mean time he wants lesse my Lord.
    If his occasion were not vertuous,
    I should not vrge it halfe so faithfully.
    Luc. Dost thou speake seriously Seruilius?
    Seruil. Vpon my soule 'tis true Sir.
    1025Luci. 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
    1030not 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
    1035I 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 Seruili-
    us, will you befriend mee so farre, as to vse mine owne
    words to him?
    1040Ser. Yes sir, I shall.
    Exit Seruil.
    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.
    1 Do you obserue this Hostilius?
    10452 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
    1050Timon 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,
    1055And 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.
    10601 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,
    1065Had 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,
    1070For Policy sits aboue Conscience.