Act 5 - Scene 4
Before the walls of Athens.
Trumpets sound. Enter ALCIBIADES with his powers
Sound to this coward and lascivious town
Our terrible approach.
A parley sounded
Enter Senators on the walls
Till now you have gone on and fill'd the time
With all licentious measure, making your wills
The scope of
justice; till now myself and such
As slept within the shadow of your power
Have wander'd with our traversed
arms and breathed
Our sufferance vainly: now the time is flush,
When crouching marrow in the bearer
Cries of itself 'No more:' now breathless wrong
Shall sit and pant in your great chairs of ease,
pursy insolence shall break his wind
With fear and horrid flight.
Noble and young,
When thy first griefs were but a mere conceit,
Ere thou hadst power or we had cause
We sent to thee, to give thy rages balm,
To wipe out our ingratitude with loves
Above their quantity.
So did we woo
Transformed Timon to our city's love
By humble message and by promised means:
were not all unkind, nor all deserve
The common stroke of war.
These walls of ours
Were not erected by their hands from whom
You have received your griefs; nor are
That these great towers, trophies and schools
For private faults in them.
Nor are they living
Who were the motives that you first went out;
Shame that they wanted cunning, in
Hath broke their hearts. March, noble lord,
Into our city with thy banners spread:
and a tithed death
If thy revenges hunger for that food
Which nature loathestake thou the destined tenth,
by the hazard of the spotted die
Let die the spotted.
All have not offended;
For those that were, it is not square to take
On those that are, revenges: crimes,
Are not inherited. Then, dear countryman,
Bring in thy ranks, but leave without thy rage:
thy Athenian cradle and those kin
Which in the bluster of thy wrath must fall
With those that have offended: like
Approach the fold and cull the infected forth,
But kill not all together.
What thou wilt,
Thou rather shalt enforce it with thy smile
Than hew to't with thy sword.
Set but thy foot
Against our rampired gates, and they shall ope;
So thou wilt send thy gentle heart before,
say thou'lt enter friendly.
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