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We know also that there existed about that date a play upon the subject of Timon of Athens. The original manuscript of it is in the library of the Rev. Alexander Dyce, who has recently superintended an impression of it for the shakespeare Society He gives it as his opinion, that it was "intended for the amusement of an academic audience," and although the epilogue may be considered rather of a contrary complexion, the learned editor is probably right: it is, however, nearly certain that it was acted ; and although it will not bear a moment's comparison with Shakespeare's “ Timon of Athens," similar incidents and persons are contained in both. Thus, 'Timon is in the commencement rich, bountiful, and devoured by flatterers : he becomes poor, and is at once deserted by all but his faithful steward ; —but before he abandons Athens in disgust, he invites his parasites to a last. banquet, where he gives them stones painted to resemble artichokes, which he fings at them as he drives them out of his hall. Shakespeare represents Timon as regaling his guests with warm water; but it is very remarkable, that at the end of his mock-banquet scene, after the hero has quitted the stage, leaving certain lords behind him, upon whom he had thrown the warm water, the following dialogue occurs :

"1 Lord. Let's make no stay.
2 Lord. Lord Timon's mad.
3 Lord.

I feel 't upon my bones. 4 Lord. One day he gives us diamonds, next day stones.Shakespeare's Timon had cast no "stones” at his guests, and the above extract reads exactly as if it had formed part of some play in which stones (as in the “ Timon” edited by the Rev. A. Dyce) had been employed instead of warm water. Unless stones' had been thrown, there could, as Steevens observes, be no propriety in the mention of them by the fourth Lord; and though Shakespeare may not have seen the academic play to which we have alluded, a fragment may by accident have found its way into his “ Timon of Athens," which belonged to some other drama, where the banquetscene was differently conducted. It is just possible that our great dramatist, at some subsequent date, altered his original draught, and by oversight left in the rhyming couplet with which the third Act concludes. We need not advert to other resemblances between the academic play and “ Timon of Athens,” because, by the liberality of the possessor of the manuscript, it may be now said to have become public, property

DRAMATIS PERSONÆ.

}

Timon, a noble Athenian.
Lucius,
LUCULLUS, Three flattering Lords.
SEMPRONIUS,
VENTIDIUS, one of Timon's false Friends.
APEMANTUS, a churlish Philosopher.
ALCIBIADES, an Athenian Captain.
Flavius, Steward to Timon.
FLAMINIUS,
LUCILIUS, Servants to Timon.
SERVILIUS,
CAPHIS,
PHILOTUS,
Titus, Servants to Timon's Creditors.
Lucius,
HORTENSIUS,
Servants of Varro, Ventidius, and Isidore: two of

Timon's Creditors.
Cupid and Maskers. Three Strangers.
Poet, Painter, Jeweller, and Merchant.
An old Athenian. A Page. A Fool.

PHRYNIA,

, } Mistresses to Alcibiades. TIMANDRA, Lords, Senators, Officers, Soldiers, Thieves, and At

tendants.

SCENE, Athens; and the Woods adjoining.

TIMON OF ATHENS.

ACT I.

SCENE I.-Athens. A Hall in TIMON's House. Enter Poet, Painter, Jeweller, Merchant, and others, at

several Doors. Poet. Good day, sir. Pain. I am glad you 're well. Poet. I have not seen you long. How goes the

world ? Pain. It wears, sir, as it grows. Poet.

Ay, that's well known;
But what particular rarity? what strange,
Which manifold record not matches ? See,
Magic of bounty! all these spirits thy power
Hath conjur'd to attend. I know the merchant.

Pain. I know them both : th other 's a jeweller.
Mer. O! 't is a worthy lord.
Jew.

Nay, that's most fix'd.
Mer. A most incomparable man; breath’d,' as it were,
To an untirable and continuate goodness :
He passes.

Jew. I have a jewel here [Showing it.
Mer. 0! pray, let's see 't. For the lord Timon, sir ?
Jew. If he will touch the estimate; but, for that-
Poet. " When we for recompense have prais'd the

vile,
It stains the glory in that happy verse
Which aptly sings the good.”
Mer.

'T is a good form.
Jew. And rich : here is a water, look ye.
Pain. You are rapt, sir, in some work, some dedi-

cation. To the great lord. 1 Inured by practice. » Excels

3 Not in f. e. Vol. VI.-32

Poet.

A thing slipp'd idly from me.
Our poesy is as a gum,' which issues”
From whence 't is nourish'd: the fire i’ the flint
Shows not, till it be struck; our gentle flame
Provokes itself, and, like the current, flies
Each bound it chafes. What have you there?

Pain. A picture, sir.-When comes your book forth ?

Poet. Upon the heels of my presentment, sir.
Let's see your piece.
Pain. ’T is a good piece.

Showing it.'
Poet. So 't is: this comes off well, and excellent.
Pain. Indifferent.
Poet.

Admirable! How this grace
Speaks his own standing; what a mental power
This eye shoots forth; how big imagination
Moves in this lip; to the dumbness of the gesture
One might interpret.

Pain. It is a pretty mocking of the life.
Here is a touch ; is 't good ?
Poet.

I'll say of it.
It tutors nature: artificial strife
Lives in these touches, livelier than life.

Enter certain Senators, who pass over the Stage.
Pain. How this lord is follow'd !
Poet. The senators of Athens :-happy men !
Pain. Look, more!
Poet. You see this confluence, this great flood of

visitors.
I have in this rough work shap'd out a man,
Whom this beneath world doth embrace and hug
With amplest entertainment: my free drift
Halts not particularly, but moves itself
In a wide sea of verse :4 no leveli'd malice
Infects one comma in the course I hold,
But flies an eagle flight, bold, and forth on,
Leaving no tract behind.

Pain. How shall I understand you ?
Poet. I will unbolt to you.

You see how all conditions, how all minds,
(As well of glib and slippery creatures, as
Of grave and austere quality) tender down
Their services to lord Timon: his large fortune,

gown: in folio. Pope made the change. ? oozes: in f. e. 3 Not in f. e. 4 wax : in f. e.

Upon his good and gracious nature hanging,
Subdues, and properties to his love and tendance,
All sorts of hearts; yea, from the glass-fac'd flatterer
To Apemantus, that few things loves better
Than to abhor himself: even he drops down
The knee before him, and returns in peace
Most rich in Timon's nod.

Pain. I saw them speak together.

Poet. Sir, I have upon a high and pleasant hill
Feign'd Fortune to be thron’d: the base o' the mount
Is rank'd with all deserts, all kind of natures,
That labour on the bosom of this sphere
To propagate their states : amongst them all,
Whose eyes are on this sovereign lady fix'd,
One do I personate of lord Timon's frame;
Whom Fortune with her ivory hand wafts to her,
Whose present grace to present slaves and servants
Translates his rivals.
Pain.

'Tis conceiv'd to scope.
This throne, this Fortune, and this hill, methinks,
With one man beckon'd from the rest below,
Bowing his head against the steepy mount,
To climb his happiness, would be well express'd
In our condition.
Poet.

Nay, sir, but hear me on.
All those which were his fellows but of late,
(Some better than his value) on the moment
Follow his strides; his lobbies fill with tendance,
Rain sacrificial whisperings in his ear,
Make sacred even his stirrup, and through him
Drink the free air.
Pain.

Ay, marry, what of these ?
Poet. When Fortune, in her shift and change of mood,
Spurns down her late belov’d, all his dependants,
Which labour'd after him to the mountain's top,
Even on their knees and hands, let him slip' down,
Not one accompanying his declining foot.

Pain. 'T is common : A thousand moral paintings I can show, That shall demonstrate these quick blows of Fortune's More pregnantly than words. Yet you do well, To show lord Timon that : mean eyes have seen The foot above the head.

1 sit: in folio. Rowe made the change.

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