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APEM. Right, if doing nothing be death by the
TIM. How likest thou this picture, Apemantus? APEM. The best, for the innocence.
TIM. Wrought he not well, that painted it? APEM. He wrought better, that made the painter; and yet he's but a filthy piece of work. PAIN. You are a dog 7.
APEM. Thy mother's of my generation; What's she, if I be a dog?
TIM. Wilt dine with me, Apemantus ?
APEM. No; I eat not lords.
TIM. An thou should'st, thou'dst anger ladies. APEM. O, they eat lords; so they come by great bellies.
TIM. That's a lascivious apprehension.
APEM. So thou apprehend'st it: Take it for thy labour.
TIM. How dost thou like this jewel, Apemantus? APEM. Not so well as plain-dealing, which will not cost a man a doit.
TIM. What dost thou think 'tis worth?
APEM. Not worth my thinking.-How now, poet ?
POET. How now, philosopher?
APEM. Thou liest.
POET. Art not one?
POET. Then I lie not.
APEM. Art not a poet?
Pain. You are a dog.] This speech, which is given to the Painter in the old editions, in the modern ones must have been transferred to the Poet by mistake: it evidently belongs to the former. RITSON.
8 Not so well as plain-dealing.] Alluding to the proverb: “Plain dealing is a jewel, but they that use it die beggars."
APEM. Then thou liest: look in thy last work, where thou hast feign'd him a worthy fellow.
POET. That's not feign'd, he is so.
APEM. Yes, he is worthy of thee, and to pay thee for thy labour: He, that loves to be flattered, is worthy o' the flatterer. Heavens, that I were a lord!
TIM. What would'st do then, Apemantus?
APEM. Even as Apemantus does now, hate a lord with my heart.
TIM. What, thyself?
APEM. That I had no angry wit to be a lord 9.Art not thou a merchant ?
9 That I had NO ANGRY Wit to be a lord.] This reading is absurd, and unintelligible. But, as I have restored the text:
"That I had so hungry a wit to be a lord,"
it is satirical enough of conscience, viz. I would hate myself, for having no more wit than to covet so insignificant a title. In the same sense, Shakspeare uses lean-witted in his King Richard II. :
"And thou a lunatick, lean-witted fool." WARBURTON. The meaning may be,—I should hate myself for patiently enduring to be a lord. This is ill enough expressed. Perhaps some happy change may set it right. I have tried, and can do nothing, yet I cannot heartily concur with Dr. Warburton.
Mr. Heath reads:
"That I had so wrong'd my wit to be a lord." But the passage before us, is, in my opinion, irremediably corrupted. STEEVENS.
Perhaps the compositor has transposed the words, and they should be read thus:
Angry to be a lord,—that I had no wit." BLACKSTONE. Perhaps we should read:
"That I had an angry wish to be a lord ;' Meaning, that he would hate himself for having wished in his anger to become a lord.-For it is in anger that he says: Heavens, that I were a lord!" M. MASON.
I believe Shakspeare was thinking of the common expression
MER. Ay, Apemantus.
APEM. Traffick confound thee, if the gods will not!
MER. If traffick do it, the gods do it.
APEM. Traffick's thy god, and thy god confound thee!
Trumpets sound. Enter a Servant.
TIM. What trumpet's that?
'Tis Alcibiades, and Some twenty horse, all of companionship '.
TIM. Pray, entertain them; give them guide to [Exeunt some Attendants. You must needs dine with me :-Go not you hence, Till I have thank'd you; and, when dinner's done 2, Show me this piece. I am joyful of your sights.
"he has wit in his anger;" and that the difficulty arises here, as in many other places, from the original_editor's paying no attention to abrupt sentences. Our author, I suppose, wrote:
"That I had no angry wit.—To be a lord!
"Art thou, &c.
Apemantus is asked, why after having wished to be a lord, he should hate himself. He replies,-For this reason; that I had no wit [or discretion] in my anger, but was absurd enough to wish myself one of that set of men, whom I despise. He then exclaims with indignation-To be a lord !-Such is my conjecture, in which however I have not so much confidence as to depart from the mode in which this passage has been hitherto exhibited. MALONE.
1 - all of companionship.] This expression does not mean barely that they all belong to one company, but that " they are all such as Alcibiades honours with his acquaintance, and sets on a level with himself." STEEVENS.
AND, when dinner's done,] And, which is wanting in the first folio, is supplied by the second. STEEVENS.
That there should be small love 'mongst these sweet knaves,
And all this court'sy! The strain of man's bred out Into baboon and monkey3.
ALCIB. Sir, you have sav'd my longing, and I feed Most hungrily on your sight.
TIM. Right welcome, sir: Ere we depart 4, we'll share a bounteous time
In different pleasures. Pray you, let us in.
[Exeunt all but APEMANTUS.
Enter Two Lords.
1 LORD. What time a day is't, Apemantus ? APEM. Time to be honest.
1 LORD. That time serves still.
APEM. The most accursed thou 5, that still omit'st
2 LORD. Thou art going to lord Timon's feast. APEM. Ay; to see meat fill knaves, and wine heat fools.
2 LORD. Fare thee well, fare thee well.
APEM. Thou art a fool, to bid me farewell twice.
The strain of man's bred out
Into baboon and monkey.] Man is exhausted and degenerated; his strain or lineage is worn down into a monkey.
4 Ere we DEPART.] Who depart? Though Alcibiades was to leave Timon, Timon was not to depart. Common sense favours my emendation. THEOBALD.
Mr. Theobald proposes-do part. Common sense may favour it, but an acquaintance with the language of Shakspeare would not have been quite so propitious to his emendation. Depart and part have the same meaning. So, in King John:
"Hath willingly departed with a part."
i. e. hath willingly parted with a part of the thing in question. See vol. iv. p. 315, n. 7. STEEVENS.
5 The мOST accursed thou,] Read:
"The more accursed thou.' RITSON.
So, in The Two Gentlemen of Verona:
"The more degenerate and base art thou-." STEEVENS
2 LORD. Why, Apemantus?
APEM. Shouldst have kept one to thyself, for I mean to give thee none.
1 LORD. Hang thyself.
APEM. No, I will do nothing at thy bidding; make thy requests to thy friend.
2 LORD. Away, unpeaceable dog, or I'll spurn thee
APEM. I will fly, like a dog, the heels of the ass.
[Exit. 1 LORD. He's opposite to humanity. Come, shall we in,
And taste lord Timon's bounty? he outgoes
2 LORD. He pours it out; Plutus, the god of gold,
Is but his steward: no meed, but he repays
The noblest mind he carries,
That ever govern'd man.
2 LORD. Long may he live in fortunes! Shall we in ?
1 LORD. I'll keep you company.
6 no MEED,] Meed, which in general signifies reward or recompense, in this place seems to mean desert. So, in Hey'wood's Silver Age, 1613:
"And yet thy body meeds a better grave."
i. e. deserves. Again, in a comedy called Look About You, 1600:
"Thou shalt be rich in honour, full of speed;
"Thou shalt win foes by fear, and friends by meed."
7 All use of quittance.] i. e. all the customary returns made in discharge of obligations. WARBurton.