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Thus Kent, O princes, bids you all adieu ;
Enter Glo'ster, with France and Burgundy, and attendants.
Glo. Here's France and Burgundy, my noble lord.
Bur. • Most royal majesty,
Lear. Right noble Burgundy,
Bur. I know no answer.
I So the qu's; the fo's, R. and P. give this speech to Cordelia; and T. first discovers this error.
m The qu's read a for this.
I. SCENE HII
Dower'd with our curse, and stranger'd with our oath,
Bur. Pardon " me, royal sir;
Lear. Then leave her, fir; for by the pow'r that made me,
France. This is most strange!
Moft beft, most dearest, should in this trice of time
3 Before will the qu's insert fir.
The qu's read cover'd for dower'd. u P. and all after, omit me.
w So read all the editions before P. who alters it to worthy, followed by those after him. But the double comparative is very common in Shakespear; and was, no doubt, the language of that age. It is not the part of an editor to modernise his author.
* The qu's read that for who; the ist f. whom.
? P. alters this, Your preife's argument, &c. this is moderniling again, for the fake of measure: followed by all but J.
* So the qu's; the fo's, R. and J. the best, the deareft. P. first, and thea all the rest, dearest and beff.
6 Bejt (quoth 7.) is added from the first copy. Why, Dr. F. there is Ao copy without it.
I N G L
So many folds of favour! csure, her offence
That monsters it; (e or you for vouch'd affections
Cor. I yet beseech your majesty-
c P. and H. read furc th' offence, &c.
• So the qu’s; the fo's read Or your fore-voucht afchion fall into taint, &c. R. P. and H. read Or your fore-voucht affe&tion could not fall into saint, &c. T. and W. Or your fore-vouch'd affection fall'n into taint, &c. J. reads as the fo's, but interprets or before, because or ever signifies before cver; but does he remember where or had at any time this signification unless joined with ever? R. seems to make the best sense of all these readings, but then he is obliged to interpolate. But let us now try the old reading; and to make sense of it, the best way perhaps will be to consider what was the real cause of the estrangement of Lear's love from Cordelia; it was the vouch'd affedions of his three daughters : the two eldest vouch'd such affection to him as was beyond all nature and possibility to a father ; but Cordelia vouched only such an affection as was natural and reasonable for a daughter to feel for her father. Now Lear was fallen into taint, i. e. his judgment was corrupted, in preferring the extravagant and lying protestations of his eldest daughters, to the sincere and just ones of his youngest. And if we ruminate a little, this is the only second reason for Lear's rejecting Cordelia that can with any probability be supposed to be guesled at by France : for it would be rude in France to charge Lear with vouching the dearest affections to onc he did not really love; and it is absurd to suppose that so great a love Mould change to hate, without she had committed some very great crime, and which France could not be brought to believe; therefore this second guess becomes the only one, and the true one, viz. that Regar and Gonerill had, by their superior art in coaxing, won all Lezar's love from Cordelia.
f The ad q. reads plaint; fo Stecvens, and gives no other reading.
& H. alters. for to fo, to make. grammar of the passage ; but perhaps Shakespear designed this as an interruption. Sce p. 17, note i.
Lear. P Go to, go to! better thou hadft not been born
France. Is it'no more but this? a tardiness in nature,
The fo's and R. read will for well.
* The qu's read unclean for unchałe.
The qu's read rich.
So the qu's; all the rest omit go to, go to !
So the qu's, fo's, and R. where stands refers to love; Love is not love, wten, &c. love is not love, that stands, &c. all the rcit read stand.
Aloof from the u entire point. Say, will you have her?
Bur. (To Lear.] * Royal Lear,
Lear. Nothing :- I have sworn y.
Bur. I am sorry then you have so loft a father, [To Cor,
Cor. Peace be with Burgundy,
France. Fairest Cordelia, that art most rich, being poor,
w So the qu's; all the rest read th' intire.
W. explains intire, right, true ; J. single, unmixed with other considerations. But
w She is, herself, and dower (which is the reading of the qu's) explains the meaning of intire, whole. “ That is not love which is mingled with
regards; that cannot be love that stands aloof from the whole point (the " perfon and the dower) for in Cordelia you have both herself and her “ dower.” Shakespear, I suppose, means, that the super-plus of perfections and good qualities the possessed above the generality of her sex, were to her in lieu of a dower. The rest read five is herself a dowry.
* So the qu’s; all the rest read royal king, i. e. kingly king. Is it not strange that none of the editors should consult the qu's in this place? for if they had, they would certainly have restored the old reading.
y After sworn, the fo's and R. read I am firm.