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the surfeit* of our own behaviour) we make EDG. Some villain hath done me wrong. guilty of our disasters the sun, the moon, and Edm. That's my fear. I pray you, have a the † stars: as if we were villains by I necessity; continent forbearance till the speed of his rage fools by heavenly compulsion ; knaves, thieves, goes slower; and, as I
retire with me to my and treachers, by spherical predominance; drunk- lodging, from whence I will fitly bring you to ards, liars, and adulterers, by an enforced obedience hear my lord speak: pray ye, go; there's my of planetary influence; and all that we are evil in, key :--if you do stir abroad, go armed. by a divine thrusting on. An admirable evasion EDG. Armed, brother ? of whore-master man, to lay his goatish disposi- Edm. Brother, I advise you to the best; go tion on the charge of a star! My father com- armed ;* I am no honest man, if there be any pounded with my mother under the dragon's tail ; good meaning toward you: I have told you
what and my nativity was under ursa major; so that I have seen and heard but faintly; nothing like it follows, I am rough and lecherous.—Tut, $ I the image and horror of it: pray you, away. should have been that I am, had the maidenliest EDG. Shall I hear from you anon? star in the firmament twinkled on my bastardizing. Edm. I do serve you in this business.Edgar—and || pat he comes, like the catastrophe
[Exit EDGAR. of the old comedy: my cue is villainous melan- A credulous father, and a brother noble, choly, with a sigh like Tom o' Bedlam.
Whose nature is so far from doing harms,
That he suspects none; on whose foolish honesty Enter EDGAR.
My practices ride easy !-I see the business.
Let me, if not by birth, have lands by wit: O, these eclipses do portend these divisions ! fa,
All with me's meet, that I can fashion fit. [Exit. sol, la, mi.
Edg. How now, brother Edmund! what serious contemplation are you in ?
EDM. I am thinking, brother, of a prediction SCENE III.- A Room in the Duke of Albany's I read this other day, what should follow these
Palace. eclipses. EDG. Do you busy yourself with that?
Enter GONERIL, and Oswald her Steward. Edm. I promise you, the effects he writes of succeed unhappily; as of unnaturalness a between Gon. Did my father strike my gentleman for the child and the parent; death, dearth, dissolu- chiding of his fool ? tions of ancient amities ; divisions in state, menaces Osw. Ay, madam. and maledictions against king and nobles; needless Gon. By day and night he wrongs me; every diffidences, banishment of friends, dissipation of
hour cohorts, nuptial breaches, and I know not what. He flashes into one gross crime or other,
Eng. How long have you been a sectary That sets us all at odds : I'll not endure it : astronomical ?
His knights grow riotous, and himself upbraids us Edm. Come, come; when saw you my father On
trifle.—When he returns from hunting, last ?
I will not speak with him; say I am sick :Edg. The night gone by.
If you come slack of former services, Edm. Spake you with him ?
You shall do well; the fault of it I'll answer. EDG. Ay, two hours together.
Osw. He's coming, madam ; I hear him. Edm. Parted you iu good terms ? Found you
[Horns without no displeasure in him, by word nor countenance ? Gon. Put on what weary negligence you Edg. None at all.
please, EDM. Bethink yourself wherein you may have You and your fellows; I'd have it come to offended him: and at my entreaty forbear his
question: presence until some little time hath qualified the If he distaste it, let him to my sister, heat of his displeasure ; which at this instant so Whose mind and mine, I know, in that are one, rageth in him, that with the mischief of your Not to be over-ruld. Idle old man, person it would scarcely allay.
That still would manage those authorities,
That lie hath given away !—Now, by my life,
LEAR. Who wouldst thou serve ? Old fools are babes again, and must be us’d
KENT. You. With checks as flatteries,—when they are seen LEAR. Dost thou know me, fellow ? abus'd.
KENT. No, sir ; but you have that in your Remember what I have said.
countenance which I would fain call master. Osw. Well, madam.
LEAR. What's that? Gon. And let his knights have colder looks KENT. Authority. among you;
LEAR. What services canst thou do? What grows of it, no matter; advise your fellows KENT. I can keep honest counsel, ride, run,
mar a curious tale in telling it, and deliver a I would breed from hence occasions, and I shall, plain message bluntly: that which ordinary men That I may speak : _I'll write straight to my are fit for, I am qualified in"; and the best of me sister,
is,-- diligence. To hold my course.—Prepare for dinner.
LEAR. How old art thou ? [Exeunt. KENT. Not so young, sir, to love a woman for
singing; nor so old, to dote on her for any thing: I have years on my back forty-eight.
LEAŘ. Follow me; thou shalt serve me, if I SCENE IV.-A Hall in the same.
like thee no worse after dinner. I will not part
from thee yet.—Dinner, ho, dinner !_Where's Enter KENT, disguised.
my knave? my fool ? Go you and call my fool hither.
[Exit an Attendant, KENT. If but as well I other accents borrow, That can my speech diffuse, my good intent
You, you, sirrah, where's my daughter ?
Osw. So please you, If thou canst serve where thou dost stand
LEAR. What says the fellow there ? Call the So may it come, thy master, whom thou lov’st,
clotpoll back.—[Exit a Knight.]—Where's my Shall find thee full of labours.
fool, ho?-I think the world's asleep.
Horns without Enter LEAR, Knights, and
LEAR. Let me not stay a jot for dinner; go, get it ready. [Exit an Attendant.] How now! what art thou ?
KENT. A man, sir.
LEAR. What dost thou profess? What wouldst thou with us ?
KENT. I do profess to be no less than I seem; to serve him truly that will put me in trust ; to love him that is honest ; to converse with him that is wise, and says little; to fear judgment; to fight when I cannot choose ; and to eat no fish.(2) LEAR. What art thou ?
KENT. A very honest-hearted fellow, and as poor as the king
LEAR. If thou beest as poor for a subject, as he is for a king, thou art poor enough. What wouldst thou ?
How now! where's that mongrel ?
Knight. He says, my lord, your daughter* is not well.
LEAR. Why came not the slave back to me, when I call’d him ?
KNIGHT. Sir, he answered me in the roundest manner, he would not.
LEAR. He would not !
KNIGHT. My lord, I know not what the matter is; but, to my judgment, your highness is not entertained with that ceremonious affection as you were wont; there's a great abatement of kindness appears as well in the general dependants as in the duke himself also, and your daughter.
LEAR. Ha! sayest thou so ?
KNIGHT. I beseech you, pardon me, my lord, if I be mistaken ; for my duty cannot be silent when I think your highness wronged.
LEAR. Thou but rememberest me of mine own
I would breed from hence occasions, and I shall,
That I may speak:-) These lines are not in the folio.
(*) First folio, Daughters. b That can my speech diffuse,-) Diffuse, here, signifies. disguise.
LEAR. My lady's father! my lord's knave:
Learn more than thou trowest, you whoreson dog! you slave!
Set less than thou throwest ;
Leave thy drink and thy whore, your pardon.
And keep in-a-door, LEAR. Do you bandy looks with me, you
And thou shalt have more rascal ?
Than two tens to a score. Osw. I'll not be struck,* lord.
LEAR. This is nothing, fool.° Kent. Nor tripp'd neither, you base foot-ball
Fool. Then 'tis like the breath of an unfee'd player. [Tripping up his heels.
lawyer,—you gave me nothing for it. Can you LEAR. I thank thee, fellow; thou servest me,
make no use of nothing, nuncle ? and I'll love thee.
LEAR. Why, no, boy; nothing can be made Kent. Come, sir, arise, away! I'll teach you out of nothing differences; away, away! If you will measure
Fool. Pr’ythee, tell him, so much the rent of your lubber's length again, tarry: but away! go
his land comes to; he will not believe a fool. to; have
[To KENT. LEAR. Now, my friendly knave, I thank thee : LEAR. A bitter fool ! there's earnest of thy service.
Fool. Dost thou know the difference, my boy, [Giving KENT money. between a bitter fool and a sweet one ?
LEAR. No, lad, teach me.
Fool. That lord, that counsellid thee
To give away thy land,
Come place him here by me,coxcomb. [Giving Kent his cap.
Or* do thou for him stand; LEAR. How now, my pretty knave ! how dost
The sweet and bitter fool thou?
Will presently appear ; Fool. Sirrah, you were best take my coxcomb.
The one in motley here, KENT. Why, fool ?
The other found out there. Fool. Why, for taking one's part that 's out of
LEAR. Dost thou call me fool, boy ? favour. Nay, an thou canst not smile as the wind sits, thou'lt catch cold shortly: there, take my
Fool. All thy other titles thou hast given
away; that thou wast born with. coxcomb. Why, this fellow has banished two on's
KENT. This is not altogether fool, my lord. daughters, and did the third a blessing against his
Foot. No, 'faith, lords and great men will not will; if thou follow him, thou must needs wear my coxcomb.—How now, nuncle! Would I had
let me; if I had a monopoly out, (3) they would two coxcombs and two daughters !
have part on't: and ladies – too, they will not let LEAR. Why, my boy?
me have all fool to myself; they'll be snatching:Fool. If I gave them all my living, I'd keep
Nuncle, give me an egg, and I'll give thee two my coxcombs myself. There's mine; beg another
LEAR. What two crowns shall they be? of thy daughters. LEAR. 'Take heed, sirrah,—the whip.
Fool. Why, after I have cut the egg i' the Fool. Truth's a dog must to kennel ; he must
eat up the meat, the two crowns of be whipped out, when the lady brach may stand
the egg. When thou clovest thy crown & i' the by the fire and stink.
middle, and gavest away both parts, thou borest LEAR. A pestilent gall to me!
thine ass on thy back o'er the dirt : thou hadst Fool. Sirrah, I'll teach thee a speech.
little wit in thy bald crown, when thou gavest thy LEAR. Do.
golden one away. If I speak like myself in this, Fool. Mark it, nuncle :
let him be whipped that first finds it so.
[Singing. Have more than thou showest,
Fools had ne'er less grace in a year ;
For wise men are grown foppish,
And know not how their wits to wear,
Their manners are so apish.
(*) First folio, strucken. Why, fool?). This interrogatory, in the form of, "Why, my boy?" is given in the folio to Lear; but, as Mr. Dyce observes, it is plain that the Fool addresses the King for the first time, when he says, "How now, nuncle !"
b -- than thou trowest,-) That is, than thou believest.
c This is nothing, fool.] In the folio, this speech is assigned to Kent. d No, lad, teach me.] This line and the portion of the dialogue
(*) Old copies omit, Or. (+) Old copies, loades, lodes.
(I) First folio, Crownes. down to and including the words in the Fool's speech, "they 'll be snatching," are omitted in the folio. e Pools had ne'er less grace in a year;] The quartos have,
"-ne'er less wit in a year;" perhaps the true reading: as in Lyly's “Mother Bombie," 1594, we find, " I think gentlemen had never less wit in a year.'
LEAR. When were you wont to be so full of By what yourself too late have spoke and done,
That you protect this course, and put it on Fool. I have used it, nuncle, ever since thou By your allowance; which if you should, the madest thy daughters thy mothers : for when thou
fault gavest them the rod, and putt'st down thine own Would not 'scape censure, nor the redresses sleep, breeches,
Which, in the tender of a wholesome weal,
[Singing. Might in their working do you that offence, Then they for sudden joy did weep,
Which else were shame—that then necessity, And I for sorrow sung,"
Will call discreet proceeding.
Fool. For you trow,* nuncle,
The hedge-sparrow fed the cuckoo so long, Prythee, nuncle, keep a school-master that can That it's had it head bit off by it young." teach thy fool to lie ; I would fain learn to lie.
So, out went the candle, and we were left darkling.° LEAR. An you lie, sirrah, we'll have you LEAR. Are you our daughter ? whipped.
Gon. I would you would make use of that t FOOL. I marvel what kin thou and thy daughters
good wisdom are : they 'll have ine whipped for speaking true, Whereof I know you are fraught; and put away thou’lt have me whipped for lying; and some
These dispositions, which of late transport you times I am whipped for holding my peace. I had
From what you rightly are. rather be any kind o' thing than a fool ; and yet
Fool. May not an ass know when the cart I would not be thee, nuncle ; thou hast pared thy
draws the horse ?— Whoop, Jug! I love thee. wit o' both sides, and left nothing i’ the middle.
LEAR. Does any here know me ?—This is not Here comes one o' the parings.
[his eyes ? Does Lear walk thus ? speak thus ? Where are Enter GONERIL.
Either his notion weakens, his discernings
Are lethargied.—Ha! Waking ?—'tis not so.LEAR. How
Who is it that can tell me who I am ?-
Fool. Lear's shadow ? Methinks + you are too much of late i’ the frown.
LEAR. I would learn that, for, by the marks of Fool. Thou wast a pretty fellow when thou
sovereignty, knowledge, and reason, hadst no need to care for her frowning ; now thou
I should be false persuaded I had daughters.-art an O without a figure. I am better than thou
Fool. Which they will make an obedient art now; I am a fool, thou art nothing.–Yes,
father. forsooth [To Gon.], I will hold my tongue, so your
LEAR. Your name, fair gentlewoman ? face bids me, though you say nothing. Mum,
Gon. This admiration, sir, is much o’ the favour mum,
Of other your new pranks. I do beseech you He that keeps nor crust nor crumb, To understand my purposes aright:
[wise. Weary of all, shall want some.
As you are old and reverend, you I should be That's a sheal'd peascod. [Pointing to LEAR. Here do you keep a hundred knights and squires ;
Gon. Not only, sir, this your all-licens’d fool, Men so disordered, so debosh'd, and bold, But other of your insolent retinue
That this our court, infected with their manners, Do hourly carp and quarrel ; breaking forth Shows like a riotous inn : epicurism and lust In rank and not-to-be-endured riots. Sir,
Make it more like a tavern or a brothel, I had thought, by making this well known unto Than a grac'd palace. The shame itself doth you,
speak To have found a safe redress ; but now grow For instant remedy: be, then, desir'd fearful,
By her, that else will take the thing she begs,
(*) First folio, Foole. (t) First folio omits, Methinks.
Then they for sudden joy did weep,
And I for sorrow sung,” &c.] So in Heywood's “Rape of Lucrece,"
" When Tarquin first in court began,
And was approved King,
And I for sorrow sing."
c - darkling.) This word, which, like the Scotch darklins, implied in the dark, occurs again in " A Midsummer Night's Dream,"
(*) First folio, know.
(+) First folio, your. (1) First folio omits, you. Act II. Sc. 3; and is found in the ancient comedy of " Roister Doister," Act III. Sc. 1,-"He will go darklyng to his grave."
d - for, by the marks of sovereignty, knowledge, and reason, I should be false persuaded,” &c.] This is certainly obscure, Warburton reads, " — of sovereignty of knowledge," &c.; but possibly the meaning may be restored by simply omitting the comma after sovereignty, " - by the marks of sovereignty know, ledge and reason," i.e. of supreme or sovereign knowledge, &c.
e - an obedient father.) This and the three preceding lines are only found in the quartos.