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May be prevented now. The princes, France and Cor.
Ay, good my lord Burgundy,
Lear. So young, and so untender ? Great rivals in our youngest daughter's love,
Cor. So young, my lord, and true. Long in our court have made their amorous sojourn, Lear. Let it be so, — Thy truth then be thy And here are to be answer'd.
Tell me, my
dower : daughters,
For, by the sacred radiance of the sun ; (Since now we will divest us, both of rule,
The mysteries of Hecate, and the night;
By all the operations of the orbs,
Here I disclaim all my paternal care,
And as a stranger to my heart and me Gon.
Hold thee, from this, for ever. The barbarous Do love you more than words can wield the matter,
Scythian, Dearer than eye-sight, space and liberty;
Or he that makes his generation messes
To gorge his appetite, shall to my bosom
Good my liege, Beyond all manner of so much I love you.
Lear. Peace, Kent! Cor. What shall Cordelia do ? Love, and be Come not between the dragon and his wrath : silent.
[ Aside. I lov'd her most, and thought to set my rest Lear. Of all these bounds, even from this line to On her kind nursery.
Hence, and avoid my this,
[T. CORDELIA. With shadowy forests and with champains richd, So be my grave my peace, as here I give With plenteous rivers and wide-skirted meads, Her father's heart from her! - Call France ;We make thee lady : To thine and Albany's issue
Who stirs ? Be this perpetual. - What says our second daughter, Call Burgundy. – Cornwall, and Albany, Our dearest Regan, wife to Cornwall ? Speak. With my two daughters' dowers digest this third:
Reg. I am made of that self metal as my sister, Let pride, which she calls plainness, marry her. And prize me at her worth. In my true heart I do invest you jointly with my power, I find, she names my very deed of love ;
Pre-eminence, and all the large effects Only she comes too short, -that I profess
That troop with majesty. - Ourself, by monthly Myself an enemy to all other joys,
course, Which the nost precious square of sense possesses ;
With reservation of an hundred knights, And find, I am alone felicitate
By you to be sustain'd, shall our abode In your dear highness' love.
Make with you by due turns.
Only we still
Revenue, execution of the rest,
This coronet part between you. [Giving the comun. Than that confirm'd on Goneril. Now, our joy, Kent.
Royal Lear, Although the last, not least; to whose young love Whom I have ever honour'd as my king, The vines of France, and milk of Burgundy, Lov'd as my father, as my master follow'd, Strive to be interess'd; what can you say, to draw As my great patron thought on in my prayers, A third more opulent than your sisters ? Speak. Lear. The bow is bent and drawn, make from Cor. Nothing, my lord.
the shaft. Lear. Nothing?
Kent. Let it fall rather, though the fork invade Cor. Nothing.
The region of my heart : be Kent unmannerly, Lear. Nothing can come of nothing: speak again. When Lear is mad. What would'st thou do, old Cor. Unhappy that I am, I cannot heave
man ? My heart into my mouth : I love your majesty Think'st thou, that duty shall have dread to speak, According to my bond; nor more, nor less, When power to flattery bows? To plainness hoLear. How, how, Cordelia ? mend your speech a
nour's bound, little,
When majesty stoops to folly. Reverse thy doom; Lest it may mar your fortunes.
And, in thy best consideration, check Cor.
Good my lord, This hideous rashness: answer my life my judgment, You have begot me, bred me, lov'd me: I
Thy youngest daughter does not love thee least; Return those duties back as are right fit,
Nor are those empty-hearted, whose low sound Obey you, love you, and most honour you.
Reverbs no hollowness. Why have my sisters husbands, if they say
Kent, on thy life, no more. They love you, all ? Haply, when I shall wed, Kent. My life I never held but as a pawn That lord, whose hand must take my plight, shall To wage against thine enemies; nor fear to lose it, carry
Thy safety being the motive. Half my love with him, half my care, and duty : Lear.
Out of my sight! Sure, I shall never marry like my sisters,
Kent. See better, Lear; and let me still remain To love my father all.
The true blank of thine eye. Lear. But goes this with thy lieart?
Lear. Now, by Apollo,
Now, by Apollo, king, I would not from your love make such a stray, Thou swear'st thy gods in vain.
To match you where I hate; therefore beseech you Lear.
0, vassal! miscreant! To avert your liking a more worthier way,
[Laying his hand on his sword. Than on a wretch whom nature is asham'd Alb. Corn. Dear sir, forbear.
Almost to acknowledge hers. Kent. Do;
This is most strange! Kill thy physician, and the fee bestow
That she, that even but now was your best object, Upon the foul disease. Revoke thy gift;
The argument of your praise, balm of your age, Or, whilst I can vent rlamour from my throat, Most best, most dearest, should in this trice of time I'll tell thee, thou dost evil.
Commit a thing so monstrous, to dismantle Lear.
Hear me, recreant ! So many folds of favour! Sure, her offence On thine allegiance hear me !.
Must be of such unnatural degree, Since thou hast sought to make us break our vow, That monsters it, or your fore-vouch'd affection (Which we durst never yet,) and, with strain'd Fall into taint: whiclı to believe of her, pride,
Must be a faith, that reason without miracle To come betwixt our sentence and our power ; Could never plant in me. (Which nor our nature nor our place can bear,)
I yet beseech your majesty, Our potency made good, take thy reward.
(If for I want that glib and oily art, Five days we do allot thee, for provision
To speak and purpose not ; since what I well intend, To shield thee from diseases of the world ;
I'll do't before I speak,) that you make known And, on the sixth, to turn thy liated back
It is no vicious blot, murder, or foulness, Upon our kingdom : if, on the tenth day fol- No unchaste action, or dishonour'd step, lowing,
That hath depriv'd me of your grace and favour : Thy banish'd trunk be found in our dominions, But even for want of that, for which I am richer ; The moment is thy death : Away! by Jupiter, A sull-soliciting eye, and such a tongue This shall not be revok'd.
That I am glad I have not, though, not to have it, Kent. Fare thee well, king: since thus thou wilt Hath lost me in your liking. appcar,
Better thou Freedom lives hence, and banishment is here. Had’st not been born, than not to have pleas'd me The gods to their dear shelter take thee, maid,
[To CORDELIA. France. Is it but this? a tardiness in nature, That justly think'st, and hast most rightly said !-- Which often leaves the history unspoke, And your large speeches may your deeds approve, 'That it intends to do? – My lord of Burgu idy,
[ To Regan and Goneril. What say you to the lady ? Love is not love That good effects may spring from words of love. When it is mingled with respects, that stand Thus Kent, O princes, bids you all adieu ;
Aloof from the entire point. Will you have her? He'll shape his old course in a country new. (Erit. She is herself a dowry.
Royal Lear, Re-enter Gloster; with FRANCE, BURGUNDY, and Give but that portion which yourself propos'd, Attendants.
And here I take Cordelia by the band, Glo. Here's France and Burgundy, my noble Duchess of Burgundy. lord.
Lear. Nothing: I have sworn; I am firm. Lear. My lord of Burgundy,
Bur. I am sorry then, you have so lost a father, We first address towards you, who with this king That you must lose a husband. Hath rivall’d for our daughter; What, in the least, Cor.
Peace be with Burgund! Will you require in present dower with her, Since that respects of fortune are his love, Or cease your quest of love ?
I shall not be his wife. Bur.
Most royal majesty,
France. Fairest Cordelia, that art most rich, bem I crave no more than hath your highness offer'd,
ing poor; Nor will you tender less.
Most choice, forsaken ; and most lov’d, despis'd! Lear.
Right noble Burgundy, Thee and thy virtues here I seize upon : When she was dear to us, we did hold her so; Be it lawful, I take up what's cast away. But now her price is fall’n : Sir, there she stands; Gods, gods ! 'tis strange, that from their cold'st If aught within that little, seeming substance,
neglect Or all of it, with our displeasure piec'u,
My love should kindle to inflam'd respect. And nothing more, may fitly like your grace, Thy dowerless daughter, king, thrown to my chance, She's there, and she is yours.
Is queen of us, of ours, and our fair France : Bur.
I know no answer.
Not all the dukes of wat'rish Burgundy, Lear. Sir,
Shall buy this unpriz'd precious maid of me. Will you, with those infirmities she owes,
Bid them farewell, Cordelia, though unkind: Unfriended, new-adopted to our hate,
Thou losest here, a better where to find. Dower'd with our curse, and stranger'd with our Lear. Thou hast her, France : let her be thine ; oath,
for we Take her, or leave her?
Have no such daughter, nor shall ever see Bur.
Pardon me, royal sir ; That face of hers again : Therefore be gone, Election makes not up on such conditions.
Without our grace, our love, our benizon. Lear. Then leave her, sir ; for, by the power Come, noble Burgundy. that made ine,
(Flourish. Ereunt Lear, BURGUNDY, CorsI tell you all her wealth. — For you, great king.
WALL, ALBANY, GLOSTER, and Attendants. (To FRANCE. France. Bid farewell to your sisters.
Cor. The jewels of our father, with wash'd eyes And my invention thrive, Edmund the base Cordelia leaves you: I know you what you are ; Shall top the legitimate. I grow ; I prosper :And, like a sister, am most loath to call
Now, gods, stand up for bastards!
Glo. Kent banish'd thus! And France in choler I would prefer him to a better place.
parted So farewell to you both.
And the king gone to-night! subscrib'd his power ! Gon. Prescribe not us our duties.
Confin'd to exhibition ! All this done
Edmund! How now; what Be, to content your lord ; who hath receiv’d you
news? At fortune's alms, You have obedience scanted, Edm. So please your lordship, none. And well are worth the want that you have wanted.
[Putting up the letter. Cor. Time shall unfold what plaited cunning Glo. Why so earnestly seek you to put up that hides;
letter? Who cover faults, at last shame them derides.
Edm. I know no news, my lord. Well may you prosper !
Glo. What paper were you reading? France.
Come, my fair Cordelia. Edm. Nothing, my lord.
[Exeunt FRANCE and CORDELIA. Glo. No? what needed then that terrible deGon. Sister, it is not a little I have to say, of spatch of it into your pocket ? the quality of nowhat most nearly appertains to us both. I think, thing hath not such need to hide itself.
Let's see : our father will hence to-night.
Come, if it be nothing, I shall not need spectacles. Reg. That's most certain, and with you ; next Edm. I beseech you, sir, pardon me : it is a let. month with us.
ter from my brother, that I have not all o'er-read; Gon. You see how full of changes his age is; for so much as I have perused, I find it not fit for the observation we have made of it hath not been your over-looking. little: he always loved our sister most ; and with Glo. Give me the letter, sir. what poor judgment he hath now cast lier off, ap- Edm. I shall offend, either to detain or give it. pears too grossly.
The contents, as in part I understand them, are to Reg. 'Tis the infirmity of his age : yet he hath blame. ever but slenderly known himself.
Glo. Let's see, let's see. Gon. The best and soundest of his time hath been Edm. I hope, for my brother's justification, he but rash ; then must we look to receive from his wrote this but as an essay or taste of my virtue. age, not alone the imperfections of long-engrafted Glo. [Reads.] This policy, and reverence of age, condition, but, therewithal, the unruly waywardness makes the world bitter to the best of our times; keeps that infirm and cholerick years bring with them. our fortunes from us, till our oldness cannot relish
Reg. Such unconstant starts are we like to have them. I begin to find an idle and fond bondage from him, as this of Kent's banishment.
in the oppression of aged tyranny; who sways, not Gon. There is further compliment of leave-taking as it hath power, but as it is suffered.
Come to me, between France and him. Pray you, let us hit to- that of this I may speak more. If our father would gether : If our father carry authority with such dis- sleep till I waked him, you should enjoy half his repositions as he bears, this last surrender of his will venue for ever, and live the beloved of your brother, but offend us.
Edgar. Humph — Conspiracy ! Sleep till 1 Reg. We shall further think of it.
waked him, - you should enjoy half his revenue, Gon. We must do something, and i' the heat. My son Edgar! Hau he a hand to write this ? a heart
(Exeunt. and brain to breed it in ? When came this to you?
Who brought it? SCENE II. A Hall in the Earl of Gloster's Edm. It was not brought me, my lord ; there's Castle.
the cunning of it ; I found it thrown in at the case
ment of Enter EDMUND, with a letter.
Glo. You know the character to be your brother's ? Edm. Thou, nature, art my goddess; to thy law Edm. If the matter were good, my lord, I durst My services are bound : Wherefore should I swear it were his; but, in respect of that, I would Stand in the plague of custom; and permit
fain think it were not. The curiosity of nations to deprive me,
Glo. It is his. For that I am some twelve or fourteen moon-shines Edm. It is his hand, my lord ; but I hope, his Lag of a brother? Why bastard ? wherefore base ? heart is not in the contents. When my dimensions are as well compact,
Glo. Hath he never heretofore sounded you in My mind as generous, and my shape as true, this business? As honest madam's issue? Why brand they nas Edm. Never, my lord : But I have often heard With base ? with baseness? bastardy ? base, base ? him maintain it to be fit, that, sons at perfect age, Who, in the lusty stealth of nature, take
and fathers declining, the father should be as ward More composition and fierce quality,
to the son, and the son manage his revenue. Than doth, within a dull, stale, tired bed,
Glo. O villain, villain ! — His very opinion in Go to the creating a whole tribe of fops,
the letter ! - Abhorred villain! Unnatural, detested, Got 'tween asleep and wake ? - Well then,
brutish villain! worse than brutish! - Go, sirrah, Legitimate Edgar, I must have your land :
seek him ; I'll apprehend him : Abominable vilOur father's love is to the bastard Edmund,
lain ! - Where is he? As to the legitimate : Fine word, - legitimate ! Edm. I do not well know, my lord. If it shall Well, my legitimate, if this letter speed,
please you to suspend your indignation against my
brother, till you can derive from him better testi- | ancient amities; divisions in state, menaces and mamony of his intent, you shall run a certain course; ledictions against king and nobles; needless diffi.. where, if you violently proceed against him, mis- dences, banishment of friends, dissipation of colorts, taking his purpose, it would make a great gap in nuptial breaches, and I know not what. your own honour, and shake in pieces the heart of Edy. How long have you been a sectary astronohis obedience. I dare pawn down my life for him, mical ? that he hath writ this to feel my affection to your Edm. Come, come; when saw you my father honour, and to no other pretence of danger.
last? Glo. Think you so ?
Edg. Why, the night gone by. Edm. If your honour judge it meet, I will place Edm. Spake you with him ? you where you shall hear us confer of this, and by Edg. Ay, two hours together. an auricular assurance have your satisfaction ; and Edm. Parted you in good terms ? Found you no that without any further delay than this very eveuing. displeasure in him, by word, or countenance ? Glo. He cannot be such a monster.
Edg. None at all. Edm. Nor is not, sure.
Edm. Bethink yourself, wherein you may have Glo. To his father, that so tenderly and entirely offended him: and at my entreaty, forbear his preloves him. – Heaven and earth! Edmundi, seek sence, till some little time hath qualified the heat him out; wind me into him, I pray you; fame the of his displeasure ; which at this instant so rageth business after your own wisdom : I wou'd unstate in him, that with the mischief of your person it myself, to be in a due resolution.
would scarcely allay. Edm. I will seek him, sir, presently; convey the Edg. Some villain hath done me wrong. business as I shall find means, and acquaint you Edm. That's my fear. I pray you, have a conwithal.
tinent forbearance, till the speed of his rage goes Glo. These late eclipses in the sun and moon por- slower; and, as I say, retire with me to my lodging, tend no good to us : Though the wisdom of nature from whence I will fitly bring you to hear my lord can reason it thus and thus, yet nature finds itself speak : Pray you, go ; there's my key :- If you do scourged by the sequent effects : love cools, friend-stir abroad, go armed. ship falls off, brothers divide : in cities, mutinies; Edg. Armed, brother? in countries, discord ; in palaces, treason ; and the Edm. Brother, I advise you to the best; go armed;
ond cracked between son and father. This villain | I am no honest man, if there be any good meaning of mine comes under the prediction; there's son towards you : I have told you what I have seen and against father: the king falls from bias of nature; heard, but faintly; nothing like the image and there's father against child. We have seen the best horror of it: Pray you, away. of our time : Machinations, hollowness, treachery, Edg. Shall I hear from you anon? and all ruinous disorders, follow us disquietly to our Edm. I do serve you in this business. • graves! Find out this villain, Edmund; it shall
[Erit Edgar. lose thee nothing; do it carefully : — And the noble A credulous father, and a brother noble, and true-hearted Kent banished ! his offence, ho- | Whose nature is so far from doing harms, nesty! - Strange! strange!
[Exit. That he suspects none; on whose foolish honesty Edm. This is the excelent foppery of the world! | My practices ride easy ! - I see the business. that, when we are sick in fortune, (often the surfeit Let me, if not by birth, have lands by wit : of our own behaviour,) we make guilty of our dis- | All with me's meet, that I can fashion fil. [Erit. asters, the sun, the moon, and the stars : as if we were villains by necessity; fools, by heavenly compulsion; SCENE III. - A Room in the Duke of Albany's knaves, thieves, and treachers, by spherical predo
Palace. minance ; drunkards, liars, and adulterers, by an
Enter GONERIL and Steward. enforced obedience of planetary influence; and all that we are evil in, by a divine thrusting on: An Gon. Did my father strike my gentleman for admirable evasion of whore-master man, to lay his chiding of his fool? goatish disposition to the charge of a star! My Stew. Ay, madam. father compounded with my mother under the Gon. By day and night! he wrongs me; every dragon's tail: and my nativity was under ursa
hour major ; so that it follows, I am rough and lecherous. He flashes into one gross crime or other, Tut, I should have been that I am, had the
That set us all at odds : I'll not endure it : maidenliest star in the firmament twinkled on my His knights grow riotous, and himself upbraids us bastardizing. Edgar
On every trifle :- When he returns from hunting,
I will not speak with him ; say, I am sick :Enter EDGAR.
If you come slack of former services, and pat he comes, like the catastrophe of the old You shall do well; the fault of it I'll answer. comedy: My cue is villainous melancholy, with a Stew. He's coming, madam; I hear him. sigh like Tom o'Bedlam. O, these ipses do
[Horns within. portend these divisions ! fa, sol, la, mi.
Gon. Put on what weary negligence you please, Edg. How
brother Edmund? What serious You and your fellows; I'd have it come contemplation are you in ?
question : Edm. I am thinking, brother, of a prediction || If he dislike it, let him to my sister, read this other day, what should follow these eclipses. Whose mind and mine, I know, in that are one, Edg. Do you busy yourself with that?
Not to be over-rul'd.
Idle old man, Edm. I promise you, the effects he writes of, That still would manage those authorities, succeed unhappily; as of unnaturalness between the That he hath given away! Now, by my life, child and the parent; death, dearth, dissolutions of' Old fools are babes again ; and must be us'd
With checks, as flatteries, when they are seen Lear. What says the fellow there? Call the clot abus'd.
poll back. - Where's my fool, ho? - I think the Remember what I have said.
world's asleep. — How now ? where's that mongrel? Stew.
Very well, madam. Knight. He says, my lord, your daughter is no! Gon. And let his knights have colder looks among well. you;
Lear. Why came not the slave back to me, whes What grows of it, no matter ; advise your fellows | I call’d him ?
Knight. Sir, he answer'd me in the roundest I would breed froin hence occasions, and I shall, manner, he would not. That I may speak : — I'll write straight to my sister, Lear. He would not ! To hold my very course : - Prepare for dinner. Knight. My lord, I know not what the matter
(Ereunt. is; but, to my judgment, your highness is not en
tertain’d with that ceremonious affection as you SCENE IV.- A Hall in the same.
were wont; there's a great abatement of kindness
appears, as well in the general dependants, as in the Enter Kent, disguised.
duke liimself also, and your daughter. Kent. If but as well I other accents borrow,
Lear. Ha! say'st thou so? That can my speech diffuse, my good intent
K'night. I beseech you, pardon me, my lord, if I May carry through itself to that full issue
be mistaken : for my duty cannot be silent, when I For which I raz’d my likeness. — Now, banish'd think your highness is wrong'd. Kent,
Lear. Thou but remember'st me of mine own If thou can’st serve where thou dost stand con- conception; I have perceived a most faint neglect of demn'd,
late ; which I have rather blamed as mine own jea(So may it come!) thy master, whom thou lov'st, lous curiosity, than as a very pretence and purpose Shall find thee full of labours.
of unkindness: I will look further into't. - But
where's my fool ? I have not seen him this two days. Horns within. Enter LEAR, Knights, and
K'night. Since my young lady's going into France, Attendants.
sir, the fool hath much pined away. Lear. Let me not stay a jot for dinner ; go, get Lear. No more of that; I have noted it well. it ready. (Exit an Attendant.] How now, what art Go you, and tell my daughter I would speak with thou?
her. . Go you, call hither my fool. l'ent. A man, sir.
Re-enter Steward. Lear. What dost thou profess? What would'st thou with us?
O, you sir, you sir, come you hither : Who am I, Kent. I do profess to be no less than I seem ; to sir? serve him truly, that will put me in trust; to love Stew. My lady's father. him that is honest ; to converse with him that is wise, Lear. My lady's father! my lord's knare: you and says little; to fear judgment; to fight, when I whoreson dog! you slave ! you cur! cannot choosc; and to eat no fish.
Stew. I am none of this, my lord; I beseech you, Lear. What art thou?
pardon me. Kent. A very honest-hearted fellow, and as poor Lear. Do you bandy looks with me, you rascal ? as the king.
[Striking him. Lear. If thou be as poor for a subject, as he is Stew. I'll not be struck, my lord. for a king, thou art poor enough. What would'st Kent. Nor tripped neither; you base foot-ball thou?
[Tripping up his heels. Kent. Service.
Lear. I thank thee, fellow; thou servest me, and Lear. Who would'st thou serve?
I'll love thee. Kent. You.
Kent. Come, sir, arise, away ; I'll teach you difLear. Dost thou know me, fellow :
ferences; away, away: If you will measure your Kent. No, sir; but you have that in your coun- lubber's length again, tarry : but away: go to; tenance, which I would fain call master.
Have you wisdom ? so. (Pushes the Steward out. Lear. What's that?
Lear. Now, my friendly knave, I thank thee : Kent. Authority,
there's earnest of thy service. (Giving Kent money. Lear. What services canst thou do? Kent. I can keep honest counsel, ride, run, mar
Enter Fool. a curious tale in telling it, and deliver a plain mes
Fool. Let me hire him too;-)
-Here's my coxcomb. sage bluntly; that which ordinary men are fit for,
(Giving Kent his
cap. I am qualify'd in: and the best of me is diligence. Lear. How now, my pretty knave? how dost thou? Lear. How old art thou ?
Fool. Sirrah, you were best take my coxcomb. Kent. Not so young, sir, to love a woman for Kent. Why, fool ? singing ; nor so old, to dote on her for any thing: Fool. Why? For taking one's part that is out of I have years on my back forty-eight.
favour : Nay, an thou canst not smile as the wind Lear. Follow me; thou shalt serve me; if I like sits, thou'lt catch cold shortly: There, take my coxthee no worse after dinner, I will not part from thee comb: Why, this fellow has banish'd two of his yet. Dinner, ho, dinner. Where's my knave? daughters, and did the third a blessing against his my fool ? Go you, and call my fool hither : will; if thou follow him, thou must needs wear my Enter Steward.
coxcomb. — How now, nuncle ? 'Would I had two
coxcombs, and two daughters ! You, you, sirrah, where's my daughter ?
Lear. Why, my boy? Stew. So please you,
Fool. If I gave them all my living, I'd keep my