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Give me the map there.--Know, that we have divided,
Burgundy, Great rivals in our youngest daughter's love, Long in our court have made their amorous sojourn, And here are to be answer'd.—Tell me, my daughters, (Since now we will divest us, both of rule, Interest of territory, cares of state,) Which of you, shall we say, doth love us most? That we our largest bounty may extend Where merit doth most challenge it.-Goneril, Our eldest-born, speak first. Gon.
Sir, I Do love you more than words can wield the matter, Dearer than eye-sight, space and liberty; Beyond what can be valued, rich or rare; No less than life, with grace, health, beauty, ho
nour: As much as child e'er lov’d, or father found. A love that makes breath poor, and speech unable; Beyond all manner of so much! I love you.
we will now discover what has not been told before, the reasons by which we shall regulate the partition. This interpretation will justify or palliate the exordial dialogue. JOHNSON.
7- and 'tis our fast intent-1 Our determined resolution.
8 constant will ] Constant is firm, determined. Constant will is the certa voluntas of Virgil.
3 Beyond all manner of so much-) Beyond all assignable quantity. I love you beyond limits, and cannot say it is so much, for how much soever I should name, it would be yet more.
Cor. What shall Cordelia do? Love, and be silent.
[Aside. Lear. Of all these bounds, even from this line to
this, With shadowy forests and with champains rich'd, With plenteous rivers and wide-skirted meads, We make thee lady: To thine and Albany's issue Be this perpetual. —What says our second daughter, Our dearest Regan, wife to Cornwall ? Speak.
Reg. I am made of that self metal as my sister, And prize me at her worth. In my true heart I find, she names my very deed of love; Only she comes too short,--that I profess? Myself an enemy to all other joys, Which the most precious square of sense possesses;a And find, I am alone felicitate In your dear highness' love. Cor.
Then poor Cordelia! [ And yet not so; since, I am sure, my love's More richer than my tongue.
Lear. To thee, and thine, hereditary ever, Remain this ample third of our fair kingdom; No less in space, validity,' and pleasure, Than that confirin'd on Goneril.-Now, our joy, Although the last, not least; to whose young love The vines of France, and milk of Burgundy, Strive to be interess'd;4 what can you say, to draw A third more opulent than your sisters? Speak.
— that I profess, &c.] In that, i. e. inasmuch as, I profess myself, &c.
? Which the most precious square of sense possesses ;] Perhaps square means only compass, comprehension ; or, the full complement of all the senses.
No less in space, validity,] Validity, for worth, value; not for integrity, or good title.
* Strive to be interess'd;] To interest and to interesse, are not, perhaps, different spellings of the same verb, but are two distinct words though of the same import; the one being derived from the Latin, the other from the French interesser.
least : 1 of Burmay, to
Cor. Nothing, my lord.
little, Lest it may mar your fortunes. Cor.
Good my lord, You have begot me, bred me, lov'd me: I Return those duties back as are right fit, Obey you, love you, and most honour you. Why have my sisters husbands, if they say, They love you, all? Haply, when I shall wed, That lord, whose hand must take my plight, shall
Lear. But goes this with thy heart?
Ay, good my lord.
Or he that makes his generation messes
Good my liege,-
[TO CORDELIA. So be my grave my peace, as here I give Her father's heart from her!—Call France ;-Who
stirs ? Call Burgundy. Cornwall, and Albany, With my two daughters' dowers digest this third: Let pride, which she calls plainness, marry her. I do invest you jointly with my power, Pre-eminence, and all the large effects That troop with majesty.–Ourself, by monthly
generation-1 i. e. his children.
- execution of the rest,] All the other business.
Lear The bow is bent and drawn, make from
the shaft. Kent. Let it fall rather, though the fork invade The region of my heart: be Kent unmannerly, When Lear is mad. What would'st thou do, old
man? Think'st thou, that duty shall have dread to speak, When power to flattery bows? To plainness hom
nour's bound, When majesty stoops to folly. Reverse thy doom; And, in thy best consideration, check This hideous rashness: answer my life my judgment, Thy youngest daughter does not love thee Jeast; Nor are those empty-hearted, whose low sound Reverbs no hollowness.
Kent, on thy life, no more. Kent. My life I never held but as a pawn To wage against thine enemies ; nor fear to lose it, Thy safety being the motive. Lear.
Out of my sight! Kent. See better, Lear; and let me still remain The true blank of thine eye.
Lear. Now, by Apollo,-
Now, by Apollo, king,
O, vassal! miscreant!
[Laying his Hand on his Sword. Alb. Corn. Dear sir, forbear.
* Reverbs ) This is, perhaps, a word of the poet's own mak. ing, meaning the same as reverberates.
9 The true blank of thine eye.] The blank is the white or exact mark at which the arrow is shot. See better, says Kent, and keep me always in your view.