Timon of Athens
Act 3, SCENE IV. The same. A hall in Timon’s house.
Enter two Servants of Varro, and the Servant of LUCIUS, meeting TITUS, HORTENSIUS, and other Servants of TIMON’s creditors, waiting his coming out
Well met; good morrow, Titus and Hortensius.
The like to you kind Varro.
What, do we meet together?
Lucilius’ Servant Ay, and I think
One business does command us all; for mine Is money.
So is theirs and ours.
Lucilius’ Servant And Sir Philotus too!
Good day at once.
Lucilius’ Servant Welcome, good brother.
What do you think the hour?
Labouring for nine.
Lucilius’ Servant So much?
Is not my lord seen yet?
Lucilius’ Servant Not yet.
I wonder on’t; he was wont to shine at seven.
Lucilius’ Servant Ay, but the days are wax’d shorter with him:
You must consider that a prodigal course
Is like the sun’s; but not, like his, recoverable.
I fear ’tis deepest winter in Lord Timon’s purse;
That is one may reach deep enough, and yet
I am of your fear for that.
I’ll show you how to observe a strange event.
Your lord sends now for money.
Most true, he does.
And he wears jewels now of Timon’s gift,
For which I wait for money.
It is against my heart.
Lucilius’ Servant Mark, how strange it shows,
Timon in this should pay more than he owes:
And e’en as if your lord should wear rich jewels,
And send for money for ’em.
I’m weary of this charge, the gods can witness:
I know my lord hath spent of Timon’s wealth,
And now ingratitude makes it worse than stealth.
Yes, mine’s three thousand crowns: what’s yours?
Lucilius’ Servant Five thousand mine.
‘Tis much deep: and it should seem by the sun,
Your master’s confidence was above mine;
Else, surely, his had equall’d.
One of Lord Timon’s men.
Lucilius’ Servant Flaminius! Sir, a word: pray, is my lord ready to
No, indeed, he is not.
We attend his lordship; pray, signify so much.
I need not tell him that; he knows you are too diligent.
Enter FLAVIUS in a cloak, muffled
Lucilius’ Servant Ha! is not that his steward muffled so?
He goes away in a cloud: call him, call him.
Do you hear, sir?
By your leave, sir,–
What do ye ask of me, my friend?
We wait for certain money here, sir.
If money were as certain as your waiting,
‘Twere sure enough.
Why then preferr’d you not your sums and bills,
When your false masters eat of my lord’s meat?
Then they could smile and fawn upon his debts
And take down the interest into their
You do yourselves but wrong to stir me up;
Let me pass quietly:
Believe ‘t, my lord and I have made an end;
I have no more to reckon, he to spend.
Lucilius’ Servant Ay, but this answer will not serve.
If ’twill not serve,’tis not so base as you;
For you serve knaves.
How! what does his cashiered worship mutter?
No matter what; he’s poor, and that’s revenge
enough. Who can speak broader than he that has no
house to put his head in? such may rail against
O, here’s Servilius; now we shall know some answer.
If I might beseech you, gentlemen, to repair some
other hour, I should derive much from’t; for,
take’t of my soul, my lord leans wondrously to
discontent: his comfortable temper has forsook him;
he’s much out of health, and keeps his chamber.
Lucilius’ Servant: Many do keep their chambers are not sick:
And, if it be so far beyond his health,
Methinks he should the sooner pay his debts,
And make a clear way to the gods.
We cannot take this for answer, sir.
FLAMINIUS[Within] Servilius, help! My lord! my lord!
Enter TIMON, in a rage, FLAMINIUS following
What, are my doors opposed against my passage?
Have I been ever free, and must my house
Be my retentive enemy, my gaol?
The place which I have feasted, does it now,
Like all mankind, show me an iron heart?
Lucilius’ Servant Put in now, Titus.
My lord, here is my bill.
Lucilius’ Servant Here’s mine.
And mine, my lord.
Varro’s Servants And ours, my lord.
All our bills.
Knock me down with ’em: cleave me to the girdle.
Lucilius’ Servant Alas, my lord,-
Cut my heart in sums.
Mine, fifty talents.
Tell out my blood.
Lucilius’ Servant Five thousand crowns, my lord.
Five thousand drops pays that.
What yours?–and yours?
Tear me, take me, and the gods fall upon you!
‘Faith, I perceive our masters may throw their caps
at their money: these debts may well be called
desperate ones, for a madman owes ’em.
Re-enter TIMON and FLAVIUS
They have e’en put my breath from me, the slaves.
My dear lord,–
What if it should be so?
I’ll have it so. My steward!
Here, my lord.
So fitly? Go, bid all my friends again,
Lucius, Lucullus, and Sempronius:
All, sirrah, all:
I’ll once more feast the rascals.
O my lord,
You only speak from your distracted soul;
There is not so much left, to furnish out
A moderate table.
Be’t not in thy care; go,
I charge thee, invite them all: let in the tide
Of knaves once more; my cook and I’ll provide.