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An they will take it, so; if not, he's plain.
These kind of knaves I know, which in this plainness
KENT. Sir, in good faith, in sincere verity,
Whose influence, like the wreath of radiant fire
CORN. What was the offence you gave him?
It pleas'd the King his master very late
When he, conjunct, and flattering his displeasure,
None of these rogues and cowards
You shall do small respect, shew too bold malice
CORN. Fetch forth the stocks! As I have life and honour,
REG. Till noon! till night, my Lord; and all night too.
1 i.e. they pretend to greater prowess than Ajax.
KENT. Why, Madam, if I were your father's dog,
You should not use me so.
GLOU. Let me beseech your Grace not to do so:
I'll answer that.
[KENT is put in the stocks.
Come, my good Lord, away. [Exeunt all but GLOUCESTER and KENT. GLOU. I am sorry for thee, Friend; 'tis the Duke's
Whose disposition, all the world well knows,
Will not be rubb'd nor stopp'd: I'll entreat for thee. KENT. Pray, do not, Sir: I have watch'd, and travell'd
Some time I shall sleep out, the rest I'll whistle.
A good man's fortune may grow out at heels:
GLOU. The Duke's to blame in this; 'twill be ill taken.
KENT. Good King, that must approve the common saw,
To the warm Sun !1
Approach, thou Beacon to this under Globe,
That by thy comfortable beams I may
Peruse this letter! Nothing, almost, sees miracles
Who hath most fortunately been inform'd
1 'Out of God's blessing into the warm sun.' A proverb used of a treacherous advancement, and perhaps suggested by the proximity of church and market-place. 299
Of my obscured course; and shall find time,
Take vantage, heavy Eyes, not to behold
This shameful lodging.
Fortune, good night: smile once more; turn thy wheel!
SCENE III. A Wood.
EDG. I heard myself proclaim'd;
And by the happy hollow of a tree
Escap'd the hunt. No port is free; no place,
That guard and most unusual vigilance
Does not attend my taking. Whiles I may 'scape,
I will preserve myself; and am bethought
To take the basest and most poorest shape
That ever penury, in contempt of man,
Brought near to beast: my face I'll grime with filth;
. Blanket my loins; elf all my hair in knots;
SCENE IV. Before GLOUCESTER's Castle; KENT
Enter LEAR, the Fool, and a Gentleman.
LEAR. 'Tis strange that they should so depart from home,
As I learn'd,
The night before there was no purpose in them
Of this remove.
Hail to thee, noble Master!
Mak'st thou this shame thy pastime? KENT.
No, my Lord.
Horses are tied
FOOL. Ha, ha! he wears cruel garters.
It is both he and she;
Your son and daughter.
LEAR. No, I say.
KENT. I say, yea.
LEAR. No, no, they would not.
LEAR. By Jupiter, I swear, no.
They durst not do 't;
They could not, would not do 't; 'tis worse than murder,
To do upon respect1 such violent outrage:
Resolve me, with all modest haste, which way
Which presently they read: on whose contents,
1 i.c. deliberately.
The leisure of their answer; gave me cold looks:
Whose welcome, I perceiv'd, had poison'd mine
Display'd so saucily against your Highness)
He rais'd the house with loud and coward cries.
Your son and daughter found this trespass worth
FOOL. Winter's not gone yet, if the wild geese fly
Fathers that wear rags
Do make their children blind;
Shall see their children kind.
But, for all this, thou shalt have as many dolours for
LEAR. O, how this mother swells up toward my heart!
Hysterica passio, down, thou climbing Sorrow,
Thy element's below! Where is this daughter?
LEAR. Follow me not; stay here.
GENT. Made you no more offence but what you speak of?
How chance the King comes with so small a train? FOOL. An thou hadst been set i' the stocks for that
question, thou hadst well deserv'd it.
KENT. Why, Fool?
FOOL. We'll set thee to school to an ant, to teach thee there's no labouring i' the Winter. All that follow their noses are led by their eyes but blind men; and there's not a nose among twenty but can smell him that's stinking. Let go thy hold when a great wheel runs down a hill, lest it break thy neck with following it; but the great one that goes up the hill, let him draw thee after. When a wise man gives thee better counsel, give me mine again: I would have none but knaves follow it, since a Fool gives it.