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Sir, I thought it fit To send the old and miserable king To some retention and appointed guard; Whose age has charms in it, whose title more, To pluck the common bosom on his side, And turn our impress'd lances in our eyes

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Edm. A herald, ho, a herald! Alb. Trust to thy single virtue; for thy soldiers, All levied in my name, have in my name

Which do command them. With him I sent the Took their discharge.

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In my rights,

By me invested, he compeers the best.

Gon. That were the most, if he should husband you.

Reg. Jesters do oft prove prophets. Gon. Holla, holla! That eye, that told you so, look'd but a-squint. Reg. Lady. I am not well; else I should answer From a fuil-ilowing stomach.-General, Take tnou my soldiers, prisoners, patrimony; Dispose of them, of me; the walls are thine: Witness the world, that I create thee here My lord and master.


Mean you to enjoy him?
Alb. The let-alone lies not in your good will.
Edm. Nor in thine, lord.

Half-blooded fellow, yes. Reg. Let the drum strike, and prove my title thine. [To EDMUND. Alb. Stay yet; hear reason:-Edmund, I arrest


On capital treason; and, in thy arrest,


This sickness grows upon me.

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If any man of quality, or degree, within the lists of the army, will maintain upon Edmund, supposed earl of Gloster, that he is a manifold traitor, let him appear at the third sound of the trumpet: He is bold in his defence.

Edm. Sound. Her. Again.

Her. Again.

[1 Trumpet.

[2 Trumpet.

[3 Trumpet.

[Trumpet answers within.

Enter EDGAR, armed, preceded by a trumpet. Alb. Ask him his purposes, why he appears Upon this call o'the trumpet.


What are you?

Your name, your quality? and why you answer
This present summons?
Know, my name is lost;
By treason's tooth bare gnawn, and canker-bit :
Yet am I noble, as the adversary

I come to cope withal.


Which is that adversary? Edg. What's he, that speaks for Edmund earl of Gloster?

Edm. Himself;-What say'st thou to him?
Draw thy sword;

That, if my speech offend a noble heart,
Thy arm may do thee justice: here is mine.
Behold, it is the privilege of mine honours,
My oath, and my profession; I protest,-
Maugre thy strength, youth, place, and eminence,
Despite thy victor sword, and fire-new fortune,
Thy valour, and thy heart,-thou art a traitor:
False to thy gods, thy brother, and thy father;

This gilded serpent: [Pointing to GON.]-for your Conspirant 'gainst this high illustrious prince;

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Alb. Thou art arm'd, Gloster :-Let the trumpet But, since thy outside looks so fair and warlike,


If none appear to prove upon thy person,

Toy heinous, manifest, and many treasons,

And that thy tongue some 'say of breeding breathes,
What safe and nicely I might well delay
By rule of knighthood, I disdain and spurn:

There is my pledge; [Throwing down a glove.] I'll Back do I toss these treasons to thy head;

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Alh. O save him, save him! Gon This is mere practice, Gloster: By the law of arms, thou wast not bound to answer An unknown opposite; thou art not vanquish'd, But cozen'd and beguil'd. Alb. Shut your mouth, dame, Or with this paper shall I stop it :-Hold, sir:Thou worse than any name, read thine own evil:No tearing, lady; I perceive you know it. [Gives the letter to EDMUND. Gon. Say, if I do: the laws are mine, not thine: Who shall arraign me for't?

Most monstrous !

Know'st thou this paper?
Ask me not what I know.
Alb. Go after her; she's desperate; govern her.
[To an Officer, who goes out.
Edm. What you have charg'd me with, that have
I done;

And more, much more: the time will bring it out;
"Tis past, and so am I: But what art thou,
That hast this fortune on me? If thou art noble,
I do forgive thee.


Let's exchange charity.

I am no less in blood than thou art, Edmund
If more, the more thou hast wrong'd me.
My name is Edgar, and thy father's son.
The gods are just, and of our pleasant vices
Make instruments to scourge us :

The dark and vicious place where thee he got,
Cost him his eyes.

Thou hast spoken right, 'tis true;
The wheel is come full circle; I am here.
Alb. Methought, thy very gait did prophesy
A royal nobleness:-I must embrace thee;
Let sorrow split my heart, if ever I
Did hate thee, or thy father!

I know it well.

Worthy prince,

Alb. Where have you hid yourself? How have you known the miseries of your father? Edg. By nursing them, my lord.-List a brief


And, when 'tis told, O, that my heart would burst!—
The bloody proclamation to escape,

That follow'd me so near, (O our lives' sweetness!
That with the pain of death we'd hourly die,
Rather than die at once!) taught me to shift
Into a madman's rags; to asume a semblance
That very dogs disdain'd: and in this habit
Met I my father with his bleeding rings,
Their precious stones new lost; became his guide,
Led him, begg'd for him, sav'd him from despair;
Never (O fault!) reveal'd myself unto him,
Until some half hour past, when I was arm'd,
Not sure, though hoping, of this good success,
I ask'd his blessing, and from first to last
Told him my pilgrimage: But his flaw'd heart,
(Alack, too weak the conflict to support!)
Twixt two extremes of passion, joy and grief,
Burst smilingly.


This speech of yours hath mov'd me, And shall, perchance, do good: but speak you on; You look as you had something more to say.

Alb. If there be more, more woful, hold it in;
For I am almost ready to dissolve,
Hearing of this.


This would have seem'd a period To such as love not sorrow; but another, To amplify too much, would make much more And top extremity.

Whilst I was big in clamour, came there a man,
Who having seen me in my worst estate,
Shunn'd my abhorr'd society; but then, finding
Who 'twas that so endur'd, with his strong arms
He fasten'd on my neck, and bellow'd out
As he'd burst heaven; threw him on my father:
Told the most piteous tale of Lear and him,
That ever ear receiv'd: which in recounting
His grief grew puissant, and the strings of life
Began to crack: Twice then the trumpet sounded,
And there I left him tranc'd.
But who was this?


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Had I your tongues and eyes, I'd use them so
That heaven's vault should crack:-O, she is gone

for ever!

I know when one is dead, and when one lives; She's dead as earth :-Lend me a looking-glass; If that her breath will mist or stain the stone, Why, then she lives.


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Is this the promis'd end?
Edg. Or image of that horror?

Fall, and cease!
Lear. This feather stirs; she lives! if it be so,
It is a chance that does redeem all sorrows
That ever I have felt

Ony goou master! [Kneeling.
Lear. Pr'ythee, away.
'Tis noble Kent, your friend.
Lear. A plague upon you, murderers, traitors all!
I might have sav'd her; now she's gone for ever!-
Cordelia, Cordelia, stay a little. Ha!

What is't thou say'st?-Her voice was ever soft,
Gentle, and low: an excellent thing in woman :-
I kill'd the slave that was a hanging thee.
Off: 'Tis true, my lords, he did.

Did I not, fellow?
I have seen the day, with my good biting faulchion
I would have made them skip: I am old now,
And these same crosses spoil me.- -Who are you?
Mine eyes are none o'the best :-I'll tell you

Kent. If fortune brag of two she lov'd and hated, One of them we behold.

Lear. This is a dull sight: Are you not Kent? Kent. The same; Your servant Kent: Where is your servant Caius ? Lear. He's a good fellow, I can tell you that; He'll strike, aud quickly too: He's dead and rotten. Kent. No, my good lord; I am the very man ;Lear. I'll see that straight.

Kent. That, from your first of difference and decay,
Have follow'd your sad steps.
You are welcome hither.
Kent. Nor no man else; all's cheerless, dark,
and deally.-

Your eldest daughters have fore-doom'd themselves,
And desperately are dead.

Ay, so I think.

Alb. He knows not what he says; and vain it is


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Off. Edmund is dead, my lord. Alb. That's but a trifle here.You lords, and noble friends, know our intent. What comfort to this great decay may come, Shall be applied: For us, we will resign, During the life of this old majesty, To him our absolute power :-You, to your rights; [To EDGAR and KENT. With boot, and such addition as your honours Have more than merited.-All friends shall taste The wages of their virtue, and all foes The cup of their deservings.—O, see, see!

Lear. And my poor fool is bang'd! No, no, no life:

Why should a dog, a horse, a rat, have life,
And thou no breath at all? O, thou wilt come no

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That would upon the rack of this tough world Stretch him out longer.


O, he is gone, indeed. Kent. The wonder is, he hath endur'd so long. He but usurp'd his life.

Alb. Bear them from hence.-Our present business

Is general woe. Friends of my soul, you twain
Rule in this realm, and the gor'd state sustain.
Kent. I have a journey, sir, shortly to go;
My master calls, and I must not say, no.

Alb. The weight of this sad time we must obey; Speak what we feel, not what we ought to say. The oldest hath borne most: we, that are young, Shall never see so much, nor live so long.

Exeunt, with a dead murd



E CALUS, Prince of Verona.

PARIS, a young nobleman, kinsman to the Prince.
MONTAGUE, heads of two houses at variance with

each other.

An Old Man, uncle to Capulet.

ROMEO, son to Montague.
MERCUTIO, kinsman to the Prince, and friend to

BENVOLIO, nephew to Montague, and friend to Romeo.
TYBALT, nephew to Lady Capulet.

Friar LAURENCE, a franciscan.
Friar JOHN, of the same order.
BALTHAZAR, servant to Romeo.


servants to Capulet.

ABRAM, servant to Montague.

An Apothecary.

Three Musicians.

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Which, but their children's end, nought could re


Is now the two hours' traffick of our stage;
The which if you with patient ears attend,
What here shall miss, our toil shall strive to mend.


SCENE I.-A publick Place.

Enter SAMSON and GREGORY, armed with swords and


Sam. Gregory, o'my word, we'll not carry coals.
Gre. No, for then we should be colliers.
Sam. I mean, an we be in choler, we'll draw.
Gre. Ay, while you live, draw your neck out of
the collar.

Sam. I strike quickly, being moved.

Gre. But thou art not quickly moved to strike. Sam. A dog of the house of Montague moves me. Gre. To move is-to stir; and to be variant, isto stand to it: therefore, if thou art movd, thou run'st away.

Sam. A dog of that house snail move me to stand: I will take the wall of any man or maid of Montague's.

Gre. That shows thee a weak slave; for the weakest goes to the wall. rela-weaker vessels, are ever thrust to the wall:-thereSam. True; and therefore women, being the fore I will push Montague's men from the wall, and

Citizens of Verona; several Men and Women,
tions to both houses; Maskers, Guards, Watchmen,

and Attendants.

SCENE,-during the greater Part of the Play, in
VERONA; once in the Fifth Act, at MANTUA.


Two households, both alike in dignity,

In fair Verona, where we lay our scene,
From ancient grudge break to new mutiny,
Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean.
From forth the fatal loins of these two foes

A pair of star-cross'd lovers take their life;
Whose misadventur'd piteous overthrows

Do, with their death, bury their parents' strife. The fearful passage of their death-mark'd love, And the continuance of their parents' rage,

thrust his maids to the wall.

Gre. The quarrel is between our masters, and us their men.

Sam. 'Tis all one, I will show myself a tyrant: when I have fought with the men, I will be cruel with the maids; I will cut off their heads.

Gre. The heads of the maids?

Sam. Ay, the heads of the maids, or their maiden heads; take it in what sense thou wilt.

Gre. They must take it in sense, that feel it. Sam. Me they shall feel, while I am able to stand: and 'tis known I am a pretty piece of flesh.

Gre. 'Tis well, thou art not fish; if thou hadst thou hadst been poor John. Draw thy tool; her comes two of the house of the Montagues.

Sam. My naked weapon is out; quarrel, I will

back thee.

Gre. How? turn thy back, and run?
Sam. Fear me not.

Gre. No, marry: I fear thee!

Sam. Let us take the law of our sides; let them begin.

Gre. I will frown, as I pass by; and let them take it as they list.

Sam. Nay, as they dare. I will bite my thumb
at them; which is a disgrace to them, if they bear it.
Abr. Do you bite your thumb at us, sir?
Sam. I do bite my thumb, sir.

Abr. Do you bite your thumb at us, sir?
Sam. Is the law on our side, if I say-ay?

Gre. No.

And hear the sentence of your moved prince.-
Three civil brawls, bred of an airy word,
By thee, old Capulet, and Montague,
Have thrice disturb'd the quiet of our streets;
And made Verona's ancient citizens
Cast by their grave beseeming ornaments,
To wield our partizans, in hands as old,
Canker'd with peace, to part your canker'd hate:
If ever you disturb our streets again,
Your lives shall pay the forfeit of the peace.
For this time, all the rest depart away:
You, Capulet, shall go along with me;
And, Montague, come you this afternoon,
To know our further pleasure in this case,

Sam. No, sir, I do not bite my thumb at you, sir; To old Free-town, our common judgment-place.

but I bite my thumb, sir.

Gre. Do you quarrel, sir?

Abr. Quarrel, sir? no, sir.

Sam. If you do, sir, I am for you; I serve as good

a man as you.

Abr. No better.

Sam. Well, sir.

Enter BENVOLIO, at a distance.

Once more, on pain of death, all men depart.

[Exeunt PRINCE and Attendants; CAPULET, Lady CAPULET, TYBALT, Citizens, and Servants.

Mon. Who set this ancient quarrel new abroach ?—
Speak, nephew, were you by, when it began ?

Ben. Here were the servants of your adversary,
And yours, close fighting ere I did approach:
I drew to part them; in the instant came

Gre. Say-better; here comes one of our mas- The fiery Tybalt, with his sword prepar'd; ter's kinsmen.

Sam. Yes, better, sir.

Abr. You lie.

Sam. Draw, if you be men.-Gregory, remember thy swashing blow. [They fight. Ben. Part, fools; put up your swords; you know not what you do [Beats down their swords.


Tyb. What, art thou drawn among these hartless

Turn thee, Benvolio, look upon thy death.
Ben. I do but keep the peace; put up thy sword,
Or manage it to part these men with me.
Tyb. What, drawn, and talk of peace? I hate
the word,

As I hate hell, all Montagues, and thee:
Have at thee coward.

[They fight. Enter several partizans of both houses, who join the fray; then enter Citizens, with clubs.

1 Cit. Clubs, bills, and partizans! strike! beat
them down!

Down with the Capulets! down with the Montagues!
Enter CAPULET, in his gown ; and Lady CAPULET.
Cap. What noise is this?-Give me my long
sword, ho!

La. Cap. A crutch, a crutch!-Why call you for

a sword?

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Which, as he breath'd defiance to my ears,
He swung about his head, and cut the winds,
Who, nothing hurt withal, hiss'd him in scorn:
While we were interchanging thrusts and blows,
Came more and more, and fought on part and part,
Till the prince came, who parted either part.

La. Mon. 9, where is Romeo !-saw you him

Right glad I am, he was not at this fray.

Ben. Madam, an hour before the worshipp'd sun
Peer'd forth the golden window of the east,
A troubled mind drave me to walk abroad;
Where,-underneath the grove of sycamore,
That westward rooteth from the city's side,-
So early walking did I see your son:
Towards him I made; but he was 'ware of me,
And stole into the covert of the wood:

I, measuring his affections by my own,—
Pursu'd my humour, not pursuing his,
That most are busied when they are most alone,-
And gladly shunn'd who gladly fled from me.

Mon. Many a morning hath he there been seen,
With tears augmenting the fresh morning's dew,
Adding to clouds more clouds with his deep sighs:
But all so soon as the all-cheering sun
Should in the further east begin to draw
The shady curtains from Aurora's bed,
Away from light steals home my heavy son,
And private in his chamber pens himself;
Shuts up his windows, locks fair daylight out,
And makes himself an artificial night:
Black and portentous must this humour prove,
Unless good counsel may the cause remove.

Ben. My noble uncle, do you know the cause?
Mon. I neither know it, nor can learn of him.
Ben. Have you impórtun'd him by any means?
Mon. Both by myself, and many other friends:
But he, his own affections' counsellor,
Is to himself-I will not say, how true-
But to himself so secret and so close,
So far from sounding and discovery,
As is the bud bit with an envious worm,
Ere he can spread his sweet leaves to the air,
Or dedicate his beauty to the sun.

Could we but learn from whence his sorrows grow,
We would as willingly give cure, as know.

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