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Alarums; afterwards a Retreat. Re-enter EDGAR. Edm. Some officers take them away: good

guard,
Edg. Away, old man !-give me thy hand, - Until their greater pleasures first be known

That are to censure them.
King Lear nath lost, he and his daughter ta en.
Give me thy hand; come ou.

a And that's true too.] These words are not in the quartos.

away!

COR.

We're not the first And fortune led you well : you have the captives Who, with best meaning, have incurr'd the worst. Who were the opposites of this day's strife : For thee, oppressed king, am I* cast down; We* do require them of you, so to use them, Myself could else out-frown false fortune's frown. As we shall find their merits and our safety Shall we not see these daughters and these sisters? May equally determine. LEAR. No, no, no, no! Come, let's away to

Edm.

Sir, I thought it fit prison :

To send the old and miserable king
We two alone will sing like birds i’the cage : To some retention and appointed guard ; †
When thou dost ask me blessing, I'll kneel down, Whose

age

has † charms in it, whose title more, And ask of thee forgiveness. So we'll live, To pluck the common bosom on his side, And pray, and sing, and tell old tales, and laugh And turn our impress'd lances in our eyes At gilded butterflies, and hear poor rogues

Which do command them. With him I sent the Talk of court news; and we'll talk with them

queen ; too,

My reason all the same; and they are ready Who loses, and who wins; who's in, who's out;- To-morrow, or at further space, to appear And take upon 's the mystery of things,

Where

you shall hold your session. At this time, As if we were God's spies : and we'll wear out, We sweat, and bleed: the friend hath lost his In a wall d prison, packs and sects of great ones,

friend; That ebb and flow by the moon.

And the best quarrels, in the heat, are curs’d Edu.

Take them away.

By those that feel their sharpness ;-
LEAR. Upon such sacrifices, my Cordelia, The question of Cordelia, and her father,
The gods themselves throw incense. Have I Requires a fitter place.
caught thee?

ALB.

Sir, by your patience, He that parts us shall bring a brand from heaven, I hold you but a subject of this war, And fire us hence like foxes. Wipe thine eyes ; Not as a brother. The goujeers shall devour them, flesh and fell, REG.

That's as we list to grace him. Ere they shall make us weep: we'll see 'em Methinks our pleasure might have been demanded, starvet first. Come.

Ere
you

had spoke so far. He led our powers ; Exeunt LEAR and CORDELIA, guarded. Bore the commission of my place and person ; EDM. Come hither, captain ; hark.

The which immediacy may well stand up, Take thou this note; [Giving a paper.] go, follow And call itself your brother. them to prison :

Gon.

Not so hot:
One step I have advanc'd thee; if thou dost In his own grace he doth exalt himself,
As this instructs thee, thou dost make thy way

More than in

your

addition. To noble fortunes. Know thou this,—that men REG.

In my rights, Are as the time is : to be tender-minded

By me invested, he compeers the best. Does not become a sword :—thy great employment Gon. That were the most, if he should husband Will not bear question ; either say thou'st do't, Or thrive by other means.

REG. Jesters do oft prove prophets.
OFF.

lord.
Gon.

Holla, holla ! Edm. About it; and write happy when thou That eye that told you so look'd but a-squint. hast done.

Reg. Lady, I am not well; else I should Mark,-I say, instantly; and carry it so, As I have set it down.

[oats; From a full-flowing stomach.-General, OFF. I cannot draw a cart, nor eat dried Take thou my soldiers, prisoners, patrimony; If it be man's work, I will do 't.

[Exit. Dispose of them, of me; the walls are thine :

Witness the world, that I create thee here
Flourish. Enter ALBANY, GONERIL, REGAN,

My lord and master.
Officers, and Attendants.

Gon.

Mean

you to enjoy him ?

ALB. The let-alone lies not in your good will. ALB. Sir, you have shown to-day your valiant Edm. Nor in thine, lord. strain,

Half-blooded fellow, yes.

d

you.

I'll do't, my

answer

ALB.

(*) First folio, I am.

(+) First folio, staro'd. (1) First folio, shew'd. The goujeers shall decour them,-) The "goujeers," misprinted "good yeares." in the folio, is supposed to mean the morbus gallicus. Tieck, however, insists that the “good yeares of the folio is used ironically for the bad year—the year of pestilence; and like il mal anno of the Italians, had been long used as a curse in England.

(*) First folio, I. (+) First folio omits, and appointed guard.

(1) First folio, had.
b I cannot draw a cart,-) The folio omits this speech.

c Where you shall hold your session.] In the folio the speech terminates here.

d That were the most, &c.] In the folio this is assigned to Albany.

e — the walls are thine :) So the folio; the phrase, Warburton says, signifying, to surrender at discretion.

wife;

If

Reg. Let the drum strike, and prove my title Edm. Sound !*

[First trumpet. thine.

[To EDMUND.
HER. Again.

Second trumpet. ALB. Stay yet ; hear reason.—Edmund, I HER. Again.

[Third trumpet. arrest thee

[After a pause a trumpet answers without. On capital treason ; and, in thine attaint, *

Enter EDGAR, armed, and preceded by a This gilded serpent. [Pointing to Gon.]—For your

Trumpet. claim, fair sister,

ALB. Ask him his purposes, why he appears I bar it in the interest of my

Upon this call o'the trumpet. 'Tis she is sub-contracted to this lord,

HER.

What are you? And I, her husband, contradict your

bans.

Your name, your quality ? and why you answer you will marry, make your lovef to me, This present summons ? My lady is bespoke.

EDG.

Know, my name is lost; Gon. An interlude!

By treason's tooth bare- gnawn and canker-bit: ALB. Thou art arm'd, Gloster: - let the Yet am I noble as the adversary trumpet sound :

I come to cope. If none appear to prove upon thy person

ALB. Which is that adversary ? Thy heinous, manifest, and many treasons,

Eng. What’s he that speaks for Edmund earl There is my pledge; [Throwing down a glove.] I'll

of Gloster ? make it on thy heart,

Edm. Himself:—what say'st thou to him ? Ere I taste bread, thou art in nothing less

EDG.

Draw thy sword, Than I have here proclaim'd thee !

That, if my speech offend a noble heart, REG.

Sick, O, sick! Thy arm may do thee justice: here is mine. Gon. [Aside.] If not, I'll ne'er trust medicine. Behold, it is the privilege of mine honours," Edm. There's my exchange: [Throwing down My oath, and my profession. I protest,

a glove.] what in the world he is Maugre thy strength, youth, place, t and eminence, That names me traitor, villain-like he lies ! Despite | thy victor sword and fire-new fortune, Call by thy trumpet : he that dares approach, Thy valour and thy heart,—thou art a traitor! On him, on you, who not ? I will maintain False to thy gods, thy brother, and thy father ; My truth and honour firmly.

Conspirant against this high illustrious prince ; Alb. A herald, ho !

And, from the extremest upward of thy head, EDM.

A herald, ho, a herald ! - To the descent and dust below thy foot, Alb. Trust to thy single virtue;" for thy soldiers, A most toad-spotted traitor! Say thou, No! All levied in my name, have in my name

This sword, this arm, and my best spirits, are bent Took their discharge.

To prove upon thy heart, whereto I speak,
Reg.
My sickness grows upon me.

Thou liest.
ALB. She is not well ; convey her to my tent.

EDM. In wisdom, I should ask thy name; [Exit REGAN, led. But, since thy outside looks so fair and warlike,

And that thy tongue some 'say® of breeding Enter a Herald.

breathes,

What safe and nicely I might well delay Come hither, herald, let the trumpet sound,- By rule of knighthood, I disdain and spurn : And read out this.

Back do I toss these treasons to thy head ; OFF. Sound, trumpet ! [Trumpet sounds. With the hell-hated lie o'erwhelm thy heart;

Which, for they yet glance by, and scarcely Herald reads.

bruise,

This sword of mine shall give them instant way, If any man of quality or degree within the Where they shall rest for ever.—Trumpets, speak ! lists of the army, will maintain upon Edmund, [Alarums. They fight. EDMUND falls. supposed earl of Gloucester, that he is a mani- ALB. Save him, save him ! fold traitor, let him appear at the third sound Gon.

This is practice, Gloster ;' of the trumpet. He is bold in his defence. By the law of arms, thou wast not bound to answer

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(*) First folio, thy arrest.

(t) First folio, loves.

(1) First folio, by. & EDM. A herald, ho, a herald !) Omitted in the folio.

virtue ;) That is, valour. • Opp. Sound, trumpet!) Omitted in the folio. d Behold, it is the privilege of mine honours,---] The quartos read,

(*) First folio omits, Edm. Sound! (t) First folio, place, youth.

(1) First folio, Despise. And the folio,

“Behold, it is my priviledge,

"Behold it is the priviledge of my longue

My oath and profession, &c.

The priviledge of mine Honours,

My oath, and my profession," &c. . — some 'say - ) 'say means assay,=sample, or laste,

practice,-) Stratagem, machination.

An unknown opposite ; thou art not vanquishid, Not sure, though hoping, of this good success, But cozen'd and beguild.

I ask'd his blessing, and from first to last ALB.

Shut your mouth, dame, Told him my* pilgrimage: but his flaw'd heart, Or with this paper shall I stop it.—Hold, sir : Alack, too weak the conflict to support! Thou worse than any name, read thine own evil :- 'Twixt two extremes of passion, joy and grief, No tearing, lady; I perceive, you know it. Burst smilingly. [Gives the letter to EDMUND. Edm. This speech of yours

hath mov'd me, Gon. Say, if I do ;—the laws are mine, not And shall perchance do good : but speak you on; thine:

You look as you had something more to say. Who shall arraign me for it?

[Exit. ALB. If there be more, more woeful, hold it in; ALB,

Most monstrous !- For I am almost ready to dissolve, Know'st * thou this paper ?

Hearing of this. Edm.

Ask me not what I know. EDG. This would have seem'd a period Alb. Go after her : she's desperate ; govern her. To such as love not sorrow; but another,

[To an Officer, who goes out. To amplify too much, would make much, more, Edm. What you have charg'd me with, that And top extremity. have I done;

Whilst I was big in clamour, came there in a man,
And more, much more, the time will bring it out: Who, having seen me in my worst estate,
'Tis past, and so am I.—But what art thou Shunn'd my abhorr'd society; but then, finding
That hast this fortune on me? If thou’rt noble, Who 't was that so endur'd, with his strong arms
I do forgive thee.

He fasten'd on my neck, and bellow'd out
EDG.
Let's exchange charity.

As he'd burst heaven; threw himf on my I am no less in blood than thou art, Edmund;

father; If more, the more thou hast wrong'd me.

Told the most piteous tale of Lear and him, My name is Edgar, and thy father's son.

That ever ear receiv'd: which in recounting, The gods are just, and of our pleasant vices His grief grew puissant, and the strings of life Make instruments to plague us :

Began to crack : twice then the trumpets sounded, The dark and vicious place where thee he got, And there I left him tranc'd. Cost him his eyes.

ALB.

But who was this? EDM. Thou hast spoken right, 'tis true; Edg. Kent, sir, the banish'd Kent; who in The wheel is come full circle, I am here.

disguise Alb. Methought thy very gait did prophesy Follow'd his enemy king, and did him service A royal nobleness :-I must embrace thee; Improper for a slave. Let sorrow split my heart, if ever I Did hate thee or thy father !

Enter a Gentleman hastily, with a bloody knife. EDG.

Worthy prince, I know 't. ALB. Where have hid yourself?

GENT. Help! help ! O help! How have you known the miseries of your Edg.

What kind of help? father?

ALB.

Speak, man. Edg. By nursing them, my lord.--List a brief EDG. What means thatř bloody knife ?

GENT.

'Tis hot, it smokes ; And, when 'tis told, O, that my heart would It came even from the heart of—0, she's dead ! burst!

ALB. Who dead ? speak, man! The bloody proclamation to escape,

GENT. Your lady, sir, your lady: and her That follow'd me so near, (O, our lives' sweetness !

sister That we the pain of death would hourly die, By her is poison'd; she hath confess'd it.$ Rather than die at once !) taught me to shift EDM. I was contracted to them both; all three Into a madman's rags; to assume a semblance Now marry in an instant ! That very dogs disdain'd: and in this habit

Edg.

Here comes Kent. Met I my father with his bleeding rings,

ALB. Produce their bodies, be they alive or Their precious stones new lost; became his guide,

dead; Led him, begg'd for him, sav'd him from despair ; This judgment of the heavens, that makes us Never (O fault !) reveal'd myself unto him,

tremble, Until some half-hour past, when I was arm’d; Touches us not with pity. [Exit Gentleman.

you

tale ;

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