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Servants to Timon's Creditors.
of Timon's Creditors.
} Mifreljes to Alcibiades.
Oiber Lordsq. Senators, Officers, Soldiers, Thieves, and
A CT I. SCENE I.
Athens. A Hall in Timon's House.
Poet. i The story of the Misanthrope is told in almost every colle&tion of the time, and particularly in two books, with which Shakspeare was intimately acquainted; the Palace of Pleasure, and the English Plwe tarcb. Indeed from a pariage in an old play, called Jack Drum's Entertainment, I conjecture that he had before made his appearance on the stage. FARMER.
Shakspeare undoubtedly formed this play on the passage in Plutarch's Life of Ancony relative to Timon, and not on the swenty-eighth novel of the first volume of Painter's Palace of Pleasure; because he is thereby merely described as “ a man-hater, of a strange and beally nature," without any cause assigned; whereas Plutarch furnished our authout with the following hint to work upon. “ Antonius forlook the citie, and companie of his friendes,-laying, that he would lead Timon's life, because he had the like wrong offered him, that was offered unto Timon; and for ibe untbankfulness of those be bad done good unto, and xbom be cooke to be bis friendes, be was angry wirb all men, and would Iruft no man."
To the manuscript play mentioned by Mr. Steevens, our authour, I have no doubt, was also indebted for some other circumstances. Here he found the faithful steward, the banquet-scene, and the story of Timon's being poflefled of great sums of gold which he had dug up in the woods : a circumstance which he could not have had from Lucian, there being then no trandation of the dialogue chasrelates to this subject.
Spon says, there is a building gear Athens, xee remaining, called Timon's Tower,
Timon of Arbens was written, I imagine, in the year 1610. See An Attempt to ascertain the order if Sbokípeare's plays, Vol. 1. MALONE.
The passage in Jack Drum'sEartainment or Pasquil and Karbarini, 1601, is this : “ Come, I'll be as fociable
as Timor of Athens.” But the allufion is so Night, that it might as well have been borrowed from Plutarch or the Novel. Mr. Strutt the engraver, to whom our antiquaries are under no
Poet. I have not seen you long; How goes the world?
Poet. Ay, that's well known:
Which inconsiderable obligations, has in his poffeffion a Mf. play on this subject. It appears to have been written, or transcribed, about the year 1600. There is a scene in it resembling Shakspeare's banquet given by Timon to his flatterers. Instead of warm water he sets before them fones painted like artichokes, and afterwards beats them out of the room. He then retires to the woods attended by his faithful steward, who (like Kent in King Lear) has disguised himself to continue his services to his matter. Timon, in the last act is followed by his fickle mistress, &c. after he was reported to have discovered a hidden treasure by digging. The piece itself (though it appears to be the work of an academick) is a wretched one. The persona dramatis are as follows.
The actors names.
} Two lying philosophers.
STIETENS. 2 In the old-copy: : Encer, &cMerokdns and Mercer, &c.
STEEVENS. 3 But wbat particularis antigo:&c.], Dr. Johnson, because “ the poet asks a question, and stays Doce for an answer," would give the word see in his speech to she painter. But there is, in my opinion, not the least occasion for such a licentious regulation the text. The poet is led by what ebe painter, basolaid, to aris whegher any thing very Itrange and unparalleled 'had lately happened, withoat any expectation that any Cuch had happened ; and is prevented from waiting for an answer by