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Enter Lear, Cornwall, Albany, Goneril, Regan,

Cordelia, and Attendants. SCENE I.-A room of state in King Lear's pal- Lear. Attend the lords of France and Burgundy, Enter Kent, Gloster, and Edmund.


Glo. I shall, my liege.

(Exe. Glo. and Edm.

Lear. Mean-time we shall express our darkere I THOUGHT, the king had more affected the

purpose. duke of Albany, than Cornwall.

Give me the map there.-Know, that we have dıGlo. It did always seem so to us : but now, in

vided, the division of the kingdom, it appears not which In three, our kingdom: and 'tis our fast intents of the dukes he values most; for equalities are so To shake all cares and business from our age; weigh'd, that curiosityl in neither can make choice Conferring them on younger strengths, while we of either's moiety.

Unburden'd crawl toward death. Ourson of CornKent. Is not this your son, my lord ?

wall, Glo. His breeding, sir, hạth been at my charge:|| And you, our no less loving son of Albany, I have so often blushed to acknowledge him, that we have this hour a constant will to publish now I am brazed to it.

Our daughters' several dowers, that future strife Kent. I cannot conceive you.

May be prevented now. The princes, France and Glo. Sir, this young fellow's mother could : Burgundy, whereupon she grew round-wombed ; and had, in-| Great rivals in o’r youngest daughter's love, deed, sir, a son for her cradle, ere she had a hus- Long in our court have made their amorous 80band for her bed. Do you smell a fault?

journ, Kent. I cannot wish the fault undone, the issue And here are to be answer'd.—Tell me, my daughof it being so proper.3

ters, Glo. But I have, sir, a son by order of law, some (Since now we will divest us, both of rule, year elder than this, who yet is no dearer in my Interest of territory, cares of state,) account: though this knave came somewhat saucily Which of you, shall we say, doth love us most ? into the world before he was sent for, yet was his That we our largest bounty may extend mother fair; there was good sport at his making, Where merit doth most challenge it.-Goneril, and the whoreson must be acknowledged.-Do you Our eldest-born, speak first. know this noble gentleman, Edmund ?


Sir, I Edm. No, my lord.

Do love you more than words can wield the matter, Glo. My lord of Kent: remember him hereaf-Dearer than eye-sight, space and liberty ; ter as my honourable friend.

Beyond what can be valued, rich or rare; Edm. My services to your lordship.

No less than life, with grace, health, beauty, honour: Kent. I must love you, and sue to know you As much as child e'er lov'd, or father found. better

A love that makes breath poor, and speech unable; Edm. Sir, I shall study deserving.

Beyond all manner of so much I love you. Glo. He hath been out nine years, and away he Cor. What shall Cordelia do ? Love, and be sishall again :-The king is coming.


(.Aside. [Trumpets sound within. Lear. Of all these bounds, even from this line

to this, (1) Most scrupulous nicety. (2) Part or division. (3) Handsome.

(4) More secret. (5) Determined resolution.


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With shadowy forests and with champains! rich'd, || Her father's heart from her -Call France ;-Who. With plenteous rivers and wide-skirted meads,

stirs ? We make thee lady: To thine and Albany's issueCall Burgundy:-Cornwall

, and Albany, Be this perpetual.-What says our second daughter, With my two daughters' dowers digest this third : Our dearest Regan, wife to Cornwall? Speak. Let pride, which she calls plainness, marry her.

Reg. I am made of that self metal as my sister, 1 do invest you jointly with my power, And prize me at her worth. In my true heart Pre-eminence, and all the large effects I find, she names my very deed of love ;

That troop with majesty.-- Ourself, by monthly Only she comes too short,—That I profess

course, Myself an enemy to all other joys,

With reservation of a hundred knights, Which the most precious square2 of sense possesses ; By you to be sustain'd, shall our abode And find, I am alone felicitate3

Make with you by due turns. Only we still retain In your dear highness' love.

The name, and all the additions to a king; Cor.

Then poor Cordelia! (Aside. The sway, And yet not so; since, I am sure, my love's Revenue,

execution of the rest, 10 More richer than my tongue.

Beloved be

yours :

which to confirm, Lear. To thee, and thine, hereditary ever, This coronet part between you. (Giving the crown. Remain this ample third of our fair kingdom; Kent.

Royal Lear, No less in space, validity, 4 and pleasure,

Whom I have ever honour'd as my king, Than that confirm'd on Goneril.–Now, our joy, Lov'd as my father, as my master follow'd, Although the last, not least; to whose young love As my great patron thought on in my prayers, The vines of France, and milk of Burgundy, Lear. The bow is bent and drawn, make from Strive to be interess'd: what can you say, to draw

the shaft. A third more opulent than your sisters ? Speak. Kent. Let it fall rather, though the fork invade Cor. Nothing, my lord.

The region of my heart : be Kent unmannerly, Lear. Nothing?

When Lear is mad. What would'st thou do, ald Cor.


man? Lear. Nothing can come of nothing: speak again. Think'st thou, that duty shall have dread to speak, Cor. Unhappy that I am, I cannot heave When power to flattery bows? To plainness honMy heart into my mouth : I love your majesty

our's bound, According to my bond ; nor more, nor less. When majesty stoops to folly: Reverse thy doom; Lear. How, how, Cordelia ? mend your speech And, in thy best consideration, check a little,

This hideous rashness: answer my life my judg; Lest it may mar your fortunes.

ment, Cor.

Good my lord, Thy youngest daughter does not love thee least; You have begot me, bred me, lov'd me: I Nor are those empty-hearted, whose low sound Return those duties back as are right fit,

Reverbsll no hollowness. Obey you, love you, and most honour you.


Kent, on thy life, no more. Why have my sisters husbands, if they say, Kent. My life I never held but as a pawn They love you, all? Haply, when I shall wed, To wage against thine enemies ; nor fear to lose it, That lord, whose hand must take my plight, shall Thy safety being the motive, carry


Out of my sight! Half my love with him, half my care, and duty : Kent. See better, Lear; and let me still remain Sure, I shall never marry like my sisters,

The true blank12 of thine eye. To love my father all.

Lear. Now, by Apollo, Lear. But goes this with thy heart?


Now, by Apollo, king, Cor.

Ay, good my lord. Thou swear'st thy gods in vain. Lear. So young, and so untender?


O, vassal! miscreant! Cor. So young, my lord, and true.

(Laying his hand on his sword Lear. Let it be so. —Thy truth then be thy dower: Alb. Corn, Dear sir, forbear. For, by the sacred radiance of the sun ;

Kent. Do ;
The mysteries of Hecate, and the night; Kill thy physician, and the fee bestow
By all the operations of the orbs,

Upon the foul disease. Revoke thy gift; From whom we do exist, and cease to be; Or, whilst I can vent clamour from my throat, Here I disclaim all my paternal care,

I'll tell thee, thou dost evil. Propinquityø and property of blood,


Hear me, recreant! And as a stranger to my heart and me

On thine allegiance hear me!-Hold thee, from this,7 for ever. The barbarous Since thou hast sought to make us break our vow Scythian,

(Which we durst never yet,) and, with strain'! Or be that makes his generation messes

pride, To gorge bis appetite, shall to my bosom To come betwixt our sentence and our power Be as well neighbour'd, pitied, and reliev'd, (Which nor our nature nor our place can bear;) As thou my sometime daughter.

Our potency make good, take thy reward. Kent.

Good my liege,-Five days we do allot thee, for provision
Lear. Peace, Kent!

To shield thee from diseases of the world ;
Come not between the dragon and his wrath: And, on the sixth, to turn thy hated back
I lov'd her most, and thought to set my

rest Upon our kingdom : if, on the tenth day following On her kind nursery.--Hence, and avoid my sight!

—Thy banish'd trunk be found in our dominions,

(To Cordelia. The moment is thy death: Away! By Jupiter, So be my grave my peace, as here I give

This shall not be revok'd. (1) Open plains. (2) Comprehension.

(7) From this time. (8) His children. (3) Made happy. (4) Value.

(9) Titles. (10) All other subjects. (5) Perhaps. (6) Kindred.

(11) Reverberates. (12) The mark to shoot at.

Is queen

Kent. Fare thee well, king: since thus thou wilt || A still-soliciting eye, and such a tongue appear,

That I am glad I have not, though not to have it, Freedom lives hence, and banishment is here.-- Hath lost me in your liking. The gods to their dear shelter take thee, maid, Lear.

Better thou [To Cordelia. | Hadst not been born, than not to have pleas'd me That justly think'st, and hast most rightly said :

better. And your large speeches may your deeds approve, France. Is it but this? a tardiness in nature,

(To Regan and Goneril

. Which often leaves the history unspoke, That good effects may spring from words of love. That it intends to do?-My lord of Burgundy, Thus Kent, O princes, bids you

all adieu; What say you to the lady? Love is not love, He'll shape his old coursel in a country new. (Ex. When it is mingled with respects, that stand

Aloof from the entire point. 10 Will you have her? Re-enter Gloster; with France, Burgundy, and

She is herself a dowry.


Royal Lear, Glo. Here's France and Burgundy, my noble|Give but that portion which yourself propos'd, lord.

And here I take Cordelia by the hand, Lear. My lord of Burgundy,

Duchess of Burgundy. We first address towards you, who with this king Lear. Nothing : I have sworn; I am firm. Hath rivall’d for our daughter; What, in the least Bur. I am sorry then, you have so lost a father, Will you require in present dower with her, That you must lose a husband. Or cease your quest of love ?2


Peace be with Burgundy! Bur..

Most royal majesty, | Since that respects of fortune are his love, crave no more than hath your highness offer'd, I shall not be his wife. Nor will you tender less.

France. Fairest Cordelia, thou art most rich, Lear. Right noble Burgundy,

being poor; When she was dear to us, we did hold her so; Most choice, forsaken; and most lov'd, despis'd! But now her price is fall'n: Sir, there she stands ; Thee and thy virtues here I seize upon : If aught within that little, seeming3 substance, Be it lawful, I take up what's cast away. Or all of it, with our displeasure piec’d, Gods, gods ! 'tis strange, that from their cold'st And nothing more, may fitly like your grace,

neglect She's there, and she is yours.

My love should kindle to inflam'd respect. Bur.

I know no answer. | Thy dowerless daughter, king, thrown to my chance, Lear. Sir,

us, of ours,

and our fair France : Will you, with those infirmities she owes, Not all the dukes of wat'rish Burgundy Unfriended, new-adopted to our hate,

Shall buy this unpriz'd precious maid of me. Dower'd with our curse, and stranger'd with our Bid them farewell, Cordelia, though unkind: oath,

Thou losest here, a better wherell to find. Take her, or leave her?

Lear. Thou hast her, France : let her be thine ; Bur.

Pardon me, royal sir; Election makes not ups on such conditions. Have no such daughter, nor shall ever see Lear. Then leave her, sir ; for by the power that That face of hers again :—Therefore be gone,

Without our grace, our love, our benizon. 12– I tell you all her wealth. -For you, great king, Come, noble Burgundy.

(To France. (Flourish. Exeunt Lear, Burgundy, Cornwall, I would not from your love make such a stray,

Albany, Gloster, and Attendants. To match you where I hate; therefore beseech you France. Bid farewell to your sisters. To averto your liking a more worthier way, Cor. The jewels of our father, with wash'd eyes Than on a wretch whom nature is asham'd Cordelia leaves you : I know you what you are; Almost to acknowledge hers.

And, like a sister, am most loath to call France.

This is most strange! Your faults, as they are nam'd. Use well our father : That she, that even but now was your best object, To your professed bosoms I commit him : The argument of your praise, balm of your age, But yet, alas! stood I within his grace, Most best, most dearest, should in this trice of time I would prefer him to a better place. Commit a thing so monstrous, to dismantle So farewell to you both. So many folds of favour! Sure, her offence

Gon. Prescribe not us our duties. Must be of such unnatural degree,


Let your study That monsters it, or your fore-vouch'd7 affection Be, to content your lord; who hath receiv'd you Fall into taint:8 which to believe of her,

At fortune's alms. You have obedience scanted, Must be a faith, that reason without miracle And well are worth the want that you have wanted. Could never plant in me.

Cor. Time shall unfold what plaited13 cunning Cor. I yet beseech your majesty

hides; (If for? I want that glib and oily art,

Who cover faults, at last shame them derides. To speak and purpose not; since what I well ||Well may you prosper! intend,


Come, my fair Cordelia. I'll do't before I speak,) that you make known

(Exeunt France and Cordelia. It is no vicious blot, murder, or foulness,

Gon. Sister, it is not a little I have to say, of No unchaste action, or dishonour'd step,

what most nearly appertains to us both. I think, That hath depriv'd me of your grace and favour : our father will hence to-night. But even for want of that, for which I am richer ; Reg. That's most certain, and with you ; next

month with us. (1) Follow his old mode of life. (2) Amorous expedition. (3) Specious. (8) Reproach or censure. (9) Because. (4) Owns, is possessed of. (5) Concludes not. ||(10) Who seeks for aught in love but love alone! (6) Turn. (7) Former declaration of. (11) Place. (12) Blessing. (13) Folded, doubleda

for we

made me;

let's see.

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 her 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. 'T'is the infirmity of his age : yet he hath | blame. ever but slenderly known himself.

Glo. Let's see, Gon. The best and soundest of his time hath Edm. I hope, for my brother's justification, he been but rash; then must we look to receive from wrote this but as an essay or taste of my virtue. his age, not alone the imperfections of long-engraft- Glo. (Reads. ] This policy, and reverence of age, ed condition, but therewithal, the unruly way. || makes the world bitter to the best of our times; wardness that infirm and choleric years bring with keeps our fortunes from us, till our oldness canthem.

not relish them. I begin to find an idle and fondo Reg. Such unconstant starts are we like to have bondage in the oppression of aged tyranny; who from him, as this of kent's banishment.

sways, not as it hath power, but as it is suffered. Gon. There is further compliment of leave- Come to me, that of this I may speak more. If taking between France and him. Pray you, let us our father would sleep till I waked him, you should hit together : If our father carry authority with | enjoy half his revenue for ever, and live the besuch dispositions as he bears, this last surrender of loved of your brother, Edgar.-Humph-Conspihis will but offend us.

racy !-Sleep till I waked him, you should enjoy Reg. We shall further think of it.

half his revenue,—My son Edgar! Had he a hand Gon. We must do something, and i'the heat.2 to write this ? a heart and brain to breed it in ?

(Exeunt. When came this to you? Who brought it? SCENE 11.A hall in the Earl of Gloster’s || the cunning of it; I found it thrown in at the case

Edm. It was not brought me, my lord, there's castle. Enter Edmund, with a letter.

ment of my closet. Edm. Thou, nature, art my goddess; to thy law Glo. You know the character to be your broMy services are bound : Wherefore should I ther's? Stand in the plague of custom; and permit Edm. If the matter were good, my lord, I durst The curiositys of nations to deprive me,

swear it were his; but, in respect of that, I would For that I am some twelve or fourteen moon-shines || fain think it were not. Lag of a brother? Why bastard ? wherefore base? Glo. It is his. When my dimensions are as well compact,

Edm. It is his hand, my lord; but, I hope, his My mind as generous, and my shape as true, heart is not in the contents. Aš honest madam's issue? Why brand they us Glo. Hath he never heretofore sounded you in With base? with baseness ? bastardy? base, base? | this business ? Who, in the lusty stealth of nature, take

Edm. Never, my lord : But I have often heard More composition and fierce quality,

him maintain it to be fit, that, sons at perfect age, Than doth, within a dull, stale, tired bed, and fathers declining, the father should be as ward Go to the creating a whole tribe of fops,

to the son, and the son manage his revenue. Got 'tween asleep and wake?-Well then,

Glo. O villain, villain !-His very opinion in the Legitimate Edgar, I must have your land: letter !-Abhorred villain! Unnatural, detested, Our father's love is to the bastard Edmund, brutish villain! worse than brutish -Go, sirrah, As to the legitimate : Fine word, -legitimate! seek him; I'll apprehend him :-Abominable vilWell, my legitimate, if this letter speed,

lain !- Where is he? And my invention thrive, Edmund the base

Edm. I do not well know, my lord. If it shall Shall top the legitimate. I grow ; 1 prosper :- please you to suspend your indignation against my Now, gods, stand up for bastards !

brother, till you can derive from him better testiEnter Gloster.

mony of his intent, you shall run a certain course;

where, 10 if you violently proceed against him, mis. Glo. Kent banish'd thus! And France in choler taking his purpose, it would make a great gap in parted!

your own honour, and shake in pieces the heart of And the king gone to-night! subscrib'ds his power! | his obedience. I dare pawn down my life for him, Confin'd to exhibition !6 All this done

that he hath writ this to feel my affection to your Upon the gad!?—Edmund! How now? what news?honour, 11 and to no other pretencel2 of danger. Edm. So please your lordship, none.

Glo. Think you so ? (Putting up the letter. Edm. If your honour judge it meet, I will place Glo. Why so earnestly seek you to put up that you where you shall hear us confer of this, and by letter?

an auricular assurance have your satisfaction ; and Edm. I know no news, my lord.

that without any further delay than this very Glo. What paper were you reading?

evening Edm. Nothing, my lord.

Glo. He cannot be such a monster. Glo. No? What needed then that terrible des- Edm. Nor is not, sure. patch of it into your pocket? the quality of nothing Glo. To his father, that so tenderly and entirely hath not such need to hide itself. Let's see: Come, II loves him. --Heaven and earth !-Edmund, seek if it be nothing, I shall not need spectacles. him out; wind me into him, I pray you: frame the

Edm. I beseech you, sir, pardon me : it is a let-business after your own wisdom: I would unstate ter from my brother, that I have not all o'er-read; || myself, to be in a due resolution. 13 (1) Qualities of mind.

(7) Suddenly (2) Strike while the iron is hot.

(9) Weak and foolish. (10) Whereas. (3) The injustice.

(11) The usual address to a lord (12) Design. (4) The nicety of civil institution.

(13) Give all that I am possessed of, to be cer(5) Yielded, surrendered. (6) Allowance. tain of the truth.

(8) Trial.

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