Page images
PDF
EPUB

Which he 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

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

[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 be-

fore 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 ;
And my estate deserves an heir more rais'd,
Than one which holds a trencher.

: 'Tis not enough, &c.] This thought is better expressed by Dr. Madden in his Elegy on Archbishop Boulter :

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

“Only,to help the poor-to beg again.” Johnson. It has been said that Dr. Johnson was paid ten guineas by Dr. Madden for correcting this poem. Steevens.

your honour !] The common address to a lord in our author's time, was your honour, which was indifferently used with your lordship. See any old letter, or dedication of that age; and Richard III. Act II. Sc. II. where a Pursuivant, speaking to Lord Hastings, says,

“ I thank

your

honour.” Steevens.

3

Tim.

Well; what further ? OLD Ath. One only daughter have I, no kin

else,
On whom I may confer what I have got:
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 * :

6. If the man

[ocr errors]

4 Therefore he will be, Timon :] The thought is closely expressed, and obscure : but this seems the meaning : be honest, my lord, for that reason he will be so in this; and not endeavour at the injustice of gaining my daughter without my consent." WARBURTON. I rather think an emendation necessary, and read :

Therefore well be him, Timon :

“ His honesty rewards him in itself.” That is, “ If he is honest, bene sit illi, I wish him the proper happiness of an honest man, but his honesty gives him no claim to my daughter." The first transcriber probably wrote—" will be with him,” which the next, not understanding, changed to,

he will be." JOHNSON.

I think Dr. Warburton's explanation is best, because it exacts no change. So, in King Henry VIII. :

May he continue
Long in his highness' favour; and do justice

For truth's sake and his conscience.Again, more appositely in Cymbeline :

66 This hath been
“ Your faithful servant : I dare lay mine nonour

He will remain 30." STEEVENS. “ Therefore he will be, Timon.” Therefore he will continue to be so, and is sure of being sufficiently rewarded by the consciousness of virtue; and he does not need the additional blessing of a beautiful and accomplished wife.

It has been objected, I forget by whom, if the old Athenian means to say that Lucilius will still continue to be virtuous, what occasion has he to apply to Timon to interfere relative to this marriage ? But this is making Shakspeare write by the card. The words mean undoubtedly, that he will be honest in his general

His honesty rewards him in itself,
It must not bear my daughter 5.
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. Āy, 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
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 R ?

OLD Ath. Three talents, on the present; in fu

ture, 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,

conduct, through life; in every other action except that now complained of. MALONE.

5 — BEAR my daughter.] A similar expression occurs in Othello :

" What a full fortune does the thick-lips owe,

“ If he can carry her thus !" STEEVENS. 6 And dispossess her all. Tim.

How shall she be endow'd, If she be mated with an equal husband ?] The players, those avowed enemies to even a common ellipsis, have here again disordered the metre by interpolation. Will a single idea of our author's have been lost, if, omitting the useless and repeated words she be, we should regulate the passage thus :

How shall she be
“ Endow'd, if mated with an equal husband ? ”

STEEvens.

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?!

Exeunt Lucilius and old Athenian. Poer. 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 Even such as they give out ø. 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 ?

7

Never may

That state or fortune fall into my keeping,

Which is not ow'd to you !] The meaning is, 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. Johnson. 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."

MALONE. pencil'd figures are Even such as they give out.] Pictures have no hypocrisy; they are what they profess to be. Johnson.

8

Tim. A meer satiety of commendations.
If I should pay you for't as 'tis extoll’d,
It would unclew me quite 9.
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': believe't, dear

lord,
You mend the jewel by the 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 ?

Enter APEMANTUS 3.
Jew. We will bear, with your lordship.
Mer.

He'll spare none,

, Tim. Good morrow to thee, gentle Apemantus! Apen. Till I be gentle, stay thou for 4 thy good

morrow ;

9 — UNCLEw me quite.] To unclew is to unwind a ball of thread. To unclew a man, is to draw out the whole mass of his fortunes. Johnson. So, in The Two Gentlemen of Verona :

“ Therefore as you unwind her love from him,

“ You must provide to bottom it on me.” STEEVENS. 1 Are prized by their masters :] Are rated according to the esteem in which their possessor is held. Johnson. 2 — by wearing it.] Old copy-" by the wearing it."

STEEVENS. 3 Enter Apemantus.] See this character of a cynick finely drawn by Lucian, in his Auction of the Philosophers ; and how well Shakspeare has copied it.

WARBURTON. 4 stay for -] Old copy-stay thou for- With Sir T. Hanmer I have omitted the useless thou, (which the compositor's eye might have caught from the following line,) because it disorders the metre. Steevens.

« PreviousContinue »