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Send quickly down to tame the vile offences,
Humanity must perforce prey on itself,
Like monsters of the deep.
Gon. Milk-liver'd man!
That bear'st a cheek for blows, a head for wrongs ;
Who haft not in thy brows an eye discerning
Thine honour, from thy suffering: that not know'st,
Fools do these villains pity, who are punish'd
Ere they have done their mischief.
France spreads his Banners in our noiseless land,
With plumed helm thy flayer begins his threats ;
Whilst thou, a mortal fool, fit'ít still, and cry'ft,
Alack! why does he so?
Alb. See thyself, devil :
Proper deformity seems not in the fiend
So horrid as in woman.
Gon. O vain fool!
Alb. Thou chang'd, and self-converted thing! For
Be-monster not thy feature. Were't
Were't my fitness
To let these hands obey my (boiling] blood,
They're apt enough to dislocate and tear
Thy flesh and bones. Howe'er thou art a fiend,
A woman's shape doth fhield thee.
Gon. Marry, your manhood now!
Mef. Oh, my good lord, the Duke of Cornwall's
dead: Slain by his servant, going to put out The other eye of Gloster.
Alb. Gloster's eyes !
Mef. A fervant, that he bred, thrill'd with remorse, Oppos'd against the act; bending his sword To his great master: who, thereat enrag'd, Flew on him, and amongst them felld him dead: But now without that harmful stroke, which since
Kent. Know you the reason ?,
Hath pluck'd him after.
Alb. This shews
You Justices, that these our nether crime's ...
So speedily can 'venge. But O, poor Glofter!
Loft he his other eye?'
Mes. Both, both, my lord.
This letter, Madam, craves a speedy answer:
'Tis from your fifter:
Gon. One way, I like this well;
But being widow, and my Gloster with her,
May all the building in my fancy pluck
hateful life. Another way,
The news is not fo-tart. I'll read, and answer. (Exit.
Alb. Where was his fon, when they did take bis
Mef. Come with my lady hitler.
Alb. He's not here.
Mef. No, my good lord, I met him back again.
Alb. Knows he the wickedness ?
Mef. Ay, my good lord, 'twas he inform’d against
And quit the house of purpose, that their punishment
Might have the freer course.
Alb. Glofter, I live
To thank thee for the love thou fhew dft the King,
And to revenge thine eyes. Come hither, friend,
Tell me, what more thou know'ft.
SC E N E III:
DOV E R.
Enter Kent, and a Gentleman,
HE King of France so suddenly gone back!
Gent. Something he left imperfect in the State,
Which since his coming forth is thought of, which
Imports the Kingdom so much fear and danger,
That his return was most requird and necessary:
Kent. Whom hath he left behind him General ?
Gent. The Mareschal of France, Monsieur le Far.
Kent. Did your letters pierce the Queen to any demonstration of grief?.
Gent. I, Sir, she took 'em, read 'em in my presence; And now and then an ample tear trillid down Her delicate cheek; it seem'd, she was a Queen Over her passion, which, most rebel-like, Sought to be King o'er her.
Kent. O, then it mov'd her.
Gent. But not to Rage. Patience and Sorrow strove
Which should express her goodliest; you have seen
Sun-fhine and rain at once-her Smiles and Tears
Were like a wetter May. Those happiest smiles,
That play'd on her ripe lip, seem'd not to know
What guests were in her Eyes; which parted thence,
As pearls from diamonds dropt. -In brief,
Sorrow would be a rarity, most beloy’d,
If all could so become it.
Kent. Made fhe no verbal quest?
Gent. Yes, once, or twice, she heav'd the Name of
Pantingly forth; as if it prest her heart,
Cry'd, lifters ! fiffers ! - Shame of Ladies ! fifters!
Kent! Father! Sisters ! what? i'th' storm? i'th' night?
Let Pity ne'er believe it! -there she shook
The holy water from her heav'nly Eyes ;
And, Clamourmotion'd, then away she started
To deal with grief alone.
Kent. It is the stars, ,
The Stars above us, govern our conditions:
Else one self-mate and mate could not beget
Such diff'rent issues. Spoke you with her fince ?
Kent. Was this before the King return'd ?..
Gent. No, lince.
Kent. Well, Sir ; the poor diftreffed Lear's in town;
Who sometimes, in his better tune, remembers
What we are come about; and by no means
Will yield to see his daughter.
Gent. Why, good Sir ?
Kent. A sov'reign shame so bows him ; his unkind-
That stript her from his benedi&ion, turn'd her
To foreign casualties, gave her dear rights
To his dog-hearted daughters : These things sting
So venomously, that burning shame detains him
From his Cordelia.
Gent. Alack, poor gentleman !
Kent. Of Albany's, and Cornwall's Pow'rs you heard
Gent. 'Tis said they are a-foot.
Kent. Well, Sir, I'll bring you to our master Lear, And leave you to attend him. Some dear cause Will in Concealment wrap me up a while: When I am known aright, you shall not grieve Lending me this acquaintance. Pray, along with me.
Enter Cordelia, Physician, and Soldiers. Cor.
LACK, 'tis he; why, he was met even now
As mad as the vext fea; singing aloud; Crown'd with rank fumiter, and furrow-weeds, With hardocks, hemlock, nettles, cuckoo flowers, Darnel, and all the idle weeds that grow In our fuftaining corn. Send forth a cent'ry ; Search ev'ry acre in the high-grown field, And bring him to our eye. What can man's Wisdom In the restoring his bereaved sense,
He, that helps him, take all my outward worth.
Phys. There are means, Madam:
Our fofter nürfe of nature is repose ;
The which he lacks ; that to provoke in him,
Are many Simples operative, whose power
Will close the eye of anguish.
Cor. All bleft Secrets,
All you unpublish'd Virtues of the Earth,
Spring with my tears; be aidant, and remediate
In the good man's distress! — seek, seek for him;
Left his ungovern'd rage dissolve the life,
That wants the means to lead it.
Enter a Meffenger.
Mef. News, Madam :
The British Pow'rs are marching hitherward.
Cor. 'Tis known before. Our preparation stands
In expectation of them. O, dear father,
It is tby business that I go about: therefore great
My Mourning and important Tears hath pitied.
No blown ambition doth our arms incite,
But love, dear love, and our ag'd father's right:
Soon may I hear, and see him !
Enter Regan and Steward.
UT are my Brother's Powers fet forth?
Reg. Himself in person there ?
Stew. With much ado.
Your sister is the better soldier.
Reg. Lord Edmund spake not with your lady at
Stew. No, Madam.