« PreviousContinue »
Kent. Good my lord, enter here.
Kent. Good my lord, enter here.
Lear. Pr’ythee, go in thyself; seek thine own ease; This tempest will not give me leave to ponder On things would hurt me more.—But I'll go in : In, boy; go first.--[To the Fool.] You houseless po
verty, — Nay, get thee in. I'll pray, and then I'll sleep.- ..
[Fool goes in. Poor naked wretches, wheresoe'er you are, That bide the pelting of this pitiless storm,
How shall your houseless heads, and unfed sides,
[The Fool runs out from the Hovel. Fool. Come not in here, nuncle, here's a spirit. Help me, help me!
Kent. Give me thy hand.-Who's there?
straw? Come forth.
· Enter EDGAR, disguised as a Madman.
Lear. Hast thou given all to thy two daughters ?
Edg. Who gives any thing to poor Tom? whom the foul fiend hath led through fire and through flame, through ford and whirlpool, over bog and quagmire; that hath laid knives under his pillow, and halters in his pew; set ratsbane by his porridge; made him proud of heart, to ride on a bay trotting-horse over four-inched bridges, to course his own shadow for a traitor :-Bless thy five wits! Tom's a-cold.-0, do de, do de, do de.-Bless thee from whirlwinds, star-blasting, and taking! Do poor Tom some charity, whom the foul fiend vexes : There could I have him now,—and there,—and there, and there again, and there.
[Storm continues. Lear. What, have his daughters brought him to this
pass — Could'st thou save nothing ? Did'st thou give them all ?
Fool. Nay, he reserved a blanket, else we had been all shamed.
Lear. Now, all the plagues that in the pendulous air Hang fated o'er men's faults, light on thy daughters !
Kent. He hath no daughters, sir.
Edg. Pillicock sat on pillicock’s-hill ;-
Fool. This cold night will turn us all to fools and madmen.
Edg. Take heed o’the foul fiend: Obey thy parents ; keep thy word justly ; swear not; commit not with man's sworn spouse; set not thy sweet heart on proud array: Tom's a-cold.
Lear. What hast thou been ?
Edg. A serving-man, proud in heart and mind; that curled my hair ; wore gloves in my cap, served the lust of my mistress's heart, and did the act of darkness with
her; swore as many oaths as I spake words, and broke them in the sweet face of heaven: one, that slept in the contriving of lust, and waked to do it: Wine loved I deeply; dice dearly; and in woman, out-paramoured the Turk: False of heart, light of ear, bloody of hand; Hog in sloth, fox in stealth, wolf in greediness, dog in madness, lion in prey. Let not the creaking of shoes, nor the rustling of silks, betray thy poor heart to women : Keep thy foot out of brothels, thy hand out of plackets, thy pen from lenders' books, and defy the foul fiend.—Still through the hawthorn blows the cold wind: Says suum, mun, ha no nonny, dolphin my boy, my boy, sessa; let him trot by.
[Storm still continues. Lear. Why, thou were better in thy grave, than to answer with thy uncovered body this extremity of the skies.—Is man no more than this ? Consider him well : Thou owest the worm no silk, the beast no hide, the sheep no wool, the cat no perfume :-Ha! here's three of us are sophisticated !—Thou art the thing itself : unaccommodated man is no more but such a poor, bare, forked animal as thou art.-Off, off, you lendings:Come; unbutton here.- [Tearing off his Clothes.
Fool. Pr’ythee, nuncle, be contented; this is a naughty night to swim in.—Now a little fire in a wild field were like an old lecher's heart; a small spark, all the rest of his body cold.—Look, here comes a walking fire.
Edg. This is the foul fiend Flibbertigibbet: he begins at curfew, and walks till the first cock; he gives the web and the pin, squints the eye, and makes the harelip; mildews the white wheat, and hurts the poor creature of earth,
Saint Withold footed thrice the wold;
Bid her alight,
And her troth plight,
Kent. How fares your grace ?
Enter Gloster, with a Torch.
Edg. Poor Tom; that eats the swimming frog, the toad, the tadpole, the wall-newt, and the water; that in the fury of his heart, when the foul fiend rages, eats cowdung for sallets; swallows the old rat, and the ditchdog; drinks the green mantle of the standing pool; who is whipped from tything to tything, and stocked, punished, and imprisoned; who hath had three suits to his back, six shirts to his body, horse to ride, and weapon to wear,
But mice, and rats, and such small deer,
Beware my follower :—Peace, Smolkin; peace, thou
fiend! Glo. What, hath your grace no better company?
Edg. The prince of darkness is a gentleman ; Modo he's call’d, and Mahu.
Glo. Our flesh and blood, my lord, is grown so vile, That it doth hate what gets it.