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Timon of Athens

Timon of Athens Translation Act 2, Scene 1

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Enter Senator, with papers in his hand

SENATOR

And late, five thousand: to Varro and to Isidore He owes nine thousand; besides my former sum, Which makes it five and twenty. Still in motion Of raging waste? It cannot hold; it will not. If I want gold, steal but a beggar's dog, And give it Timon, why, the dog coins gold. If I would sell my horse, and buy twenty more Better than he, why, give my horse to Timon, Ask nothing, give it him, it foals me, straight, And able horses. No porter at his gate, But rather one that smiles and still invites All that pass by. It cannot hold: no reason Can found his state in safety. Caphis, ho! Caphis, I say!

SENATOR

So Timon right now owes five thousand, plus the nine thousand he borrowed from Varro and Isidore, not including what he previously owed me, which totals up to twenty five thousand. And he is still wasting all of this money? This cannot last. Right now, if I want money, all I have to do is take a beggar's dog and give it to Timon. When he gives me gifts in return, it is as if the dog were made of gold. If I wanted to sell my horse and then buy twenty better ones, all I need to do is give that horse to Timon, and without even asking for anything in return, he will give me horses right away—good ones, too. It is as if he has no guard at the gate of his house, only a man that smiles and invites anyone walking by to enjoy his house. This cannot last, and no man of sound mind could think his estate is safe. Hey, Caphis! Caphis!

Enter CAPHIS

CAPHIS

Here, sir; what is your pleasure?

CAPHIS

Hello, sir, what do you want?

SENATOR

Get on your cloak, and haste you to Lord Timon; Importune him for my moneys; be not ceased With slight denial, nor then silenced when— 'Commend me to your master'—and the cap Plays in the right hand, thus: but tell him, My uses cry to me, I must serve my turn Out of mine own; his days and times are past And my reliances on his fracted dates Have smit my credit: I love and honour him, But must not break my back to heal his finger; Immediate are my needs, and my relief Must not be toss'd and turn'd to me in words, But find supply immediate. Get you gone: Put on a most importunate aspect, A visage of demand; for, I do fear, When every feather sticks in his own wing, Lord Timon will be left a naked gull, Which flashes now a phoenix. Get you gone.

SENATOR

Get your cloak and go straight to Lord Timon. Ask him to give me my money, and do not take no for an answer. Don't even stop asking for my money when he asks you to bring him to me. Tell him that I am busy with other things, and that the terms of his loans have expired and that my kindness to his delays in repaying them has damaged my credit. I do like him, but I cannot suffer for his sake. I need money right away, and I will not accept excuses, only what I am owed. Go now, and make sure to seem urgent, like you are demanding and not asking him. I am afraid that by the time every creditor tries to take back what Timon borrowed from them, he will default with nothing, left like a naked seagull after everyone has plucked a feather from his wing, despite his current brilliant, phoenix-like appearance. Go right away. 

CAPHIS

I go, sir.

CAPHIS

I will leave now, sir.

SENATOR

'I go, sir!'—Take the bonds along with you,And have the dates in contempt.

SENATOR

Yes, leave, and take these notes of the debt with you, and make sure to show him that the time has already passed to pay me back.

CAPHIS

I will, sir.

CAPHIS

Ok, sir.

SENATOR

Go.

SENATOR

Go.

Exeunt

Timon of athens
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