Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

As flept within the shadow of your Power,
Have wander'd with our traverst arms, and breath'd
Our sufferance vainly. Now the time is flush,
When crouching marrow in the bearer strong
Cries, of itself, no more : now breathless wrong
Shall fit and pant in your great Chairs of ease,
And pursy Insolence shall break his wind
With fear and horrid flight.

i Sen. Noble and young,
When thy first griefs were but a meer conceit,
Ere thou hadft power, or we had cause to fear;
We sent to thee, to give thy rages balm,
To wipe out our ingratitude, with loves
Above their quantity.

; 2 Sen, So did we woo (32) Transformed Timon to oar city's love By humble message, and by promis'd 'mends : We were not all unkind, nor all deserve The common stroke of war.

i Sen. These walls of ours Were not erected by their hands, from whom You have receiv'd your griefs: nor are they such, That these great tow'rs, trophies, and schools should fall For private faults in them.

2 Sen. Nor are they living, Who were the motives that you first went out: Shame, that they wanted cunning, in excess (33)

Hath

[ocr errors]

(32)

So did we wood Transformed Timon to our City's Love

By humble Message, and by promis'd means :) Promis'd' Means must import a Supply of Substance, the recruiting his sunk for tunes; but that is not all, in my mind, that the Poet would aim at. The Senate had wooed him with humble Melage, and Promise of general Reparation for their Injuries and Ingratitude. This seems included in the Night Change which I have made and by promis'd’mends: and this Word, apoftrophe'd, or otherwise, is used in common with Amends.

(33) Shame, that they wanted Cunning in Excefs, Hath broke their Hearts.] i, e, in other Terms – -Shame, that

they

Hath broke their hearts. March on, oh, noble lord,
Into our city with thy banners spread ;
By decimation and a tithed death,
If thy revenges hunger for that food
Which nature loaths, take thou the destin'd tenth :
And by the hazard of the spotted die,
Let die the spotted.

i Sen. All have not offended:
For those that were, it is not square to take
On those that are, revenge: Crimes, like to lands,
Are not inherited. Then, dear countryman,
Bring in thy ranks, but leave without thy rage ;
Spare thy Athenian cradle, and those kin,
Which in the bluster of thy wrath muft fall
With those that have offended ; like a shepherd,
Approach the fold, and cull th’infected forth;
But kill not all together.

2 Sen. What thou wilt,
Thou rather shalt enforce it with thy smile,
Than hew to't with thy sword.

I Sen. Set but thy foot
Against our rampir'd gates, and they shall ope:
So thou wilt fend thy gentle heart before,
To say, thou'lt enter friendly.

Sen. Throw thy glove,
Or any token of thine Honour elfe,
That thou wilt use the wars as thy redress,
And not as our confusion : all thy Powers
Shall make their harbour in our town, till we
Have feal'd thy full defire.

Alc. Then there's my glove; they were not the cunning'ft Men alive, bath been the Caufe of their Death. For Cunning in Excess muft mean this or nothing. O brave Editors! They had heard it said, that too much Wit in some Cafes might be dangerous, and why not an absolute Want of it? But had they the skill or Courage to remove one perplexing comma, the casy and genuine Sense would ; immediately arise. “ Shame in Excess (i. e. Extremity of " Shame) that they wanted 'Cunning (i. e. that they were not " wife enough not to banith you;) hack broke their Hearts."

Descend,

Descend, and open your uncharged ports ;
Those enemies of Timon's, and mine own,
Whom you your selves shall set out for reproof,
Fall, and no more ; and to atone your fears
With my more noble meaning, not a man
Shall pass his quarter, or offend the stream
Of regular justice in your city's bounds ;
But shall be remedied by publick laws
At heaviest answer.

Both. 'Tis moft nobly spoken.
Alc. Descend, and keep your words.

Enter a Soldier.
Sold. My noble General, Timon is dead;
Entomb'd upon the very hem o'th' sea ;
And on the grave-stone this Insculpture, which
With wax I brought away; whose foft impression
Interpreteth for my poor ignorance.

[Alcibiades reads the epitaph.]
Here lies a wretched coarse, of wretched foul bereft:
Seek not my name; a plague consume you caitiffs left!
Here lye I Timon, wha all living men did hate,

Pass by, and curfe tby fill, but flay not here thy gaite, These well express in thee thy latter fpirits : Tho' thou abhor'dft in us our human griefs, Scorn'dft our brains' flow, and those our droplets, which From niggard nature fall; yet rich conceit (34)

Taught (34)

- yet rich Conceit
Taught thee to make vaft Neptune weep for aye
On thy low Grave, on faults forgiven. Dead
Is noble Timon, of whose Memory

Hereafter more. -) All the Editors, in their Learning and Sagacity, have suffer'd an unaccountable Absurdity to pass them in this Passage. Why was Neptune to weep on Timon's Faults forgiven: Os, indeed, what Faults had Timon committed, except against his own Fortune and happy Situation in Life? But the Çomption of the Text lies only in the bad Pointing, which

'Taught thee to make vaft Neptune weep for aye On thy low grave:

On: faults forgiven. Dead Is noble Timon, of whose memory Hereafter more- -Bring me into your City, And I will use the Olive with my Sword; Make War breed Peace; make Peace stint War; make

each Prescribe to other, as each other's Leach.' Let our drums strike.

(Exeunt.

I have disengag'd, and restord to the true Meaning. Alcibie ades's whole Speech, as the Editors might have observ'd, is in Breaks, betwixt his Reflexions on Timon's Death, and his Ad. dresses to the Athenian Senators: and as soon as he has com. mented on the Place of Timon's Grave, he bids the Senate set forward ; tells 'em, he has forgiven their Faults; and promises to use them with Mercy,

[ocr errors]
« ZurückWeiter »