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SCENE I. The Camp of the British Forces, near DovER. Enter, with Drums and Colours, EDMUND, REGAN, Officers, Soldiers, and others.
Edm. Know of the duke, if his last purpose hold; Or, whether since he is advis'd by aught
To change the course: He's full of alteration,
[To an Officer, who goes out. Reg. Our sister's man is certainly miscarried. Edm. 'Tis to be doubted, madam.
Now, sweet lord,
In honour'd love.
Reg. But have you never found my brother's way
To the forefended place?
That thought abuses you.
Reg. I am doubtful that you have been conjunct
Reg. I never shall endure her: Dear, my lord,
Fear me not:
She, and the duke her husband,
Enter ALBANY, GONERIL, and Soldiers.
Gon. I had rather lose the battle, than that sister Should loosen him and me.
[Aside. Alb. Our very loving sister, well be met.Sir, this I hear,-The king is come to his daughter, With others, whom the rigour of our state Forc'd to cry out. Where I could not be honest, I never yet was valiant: for this business, It toucheth us as France invades our land, Not bolds the king; with others, whom, I fear, Most just and heavy causes make oppose. Edm. Sir, you speak nobly.
Why is this reason'd?
Gon. Combine together 'gainst the enemy:
Let us then determine
With the ancient of war on our proceedings.
Reg. "Tis most convenient; pray you, go with us. Gon. O, ho, I know the riddle: [Aside] I will go.
As they are going out, enter EDGAR, disguised. Edg. If e'er your grace had speech with man so poor, Hear me one word.
I'll overtake you.-Speak. [Exeunt Edmund, Regan, Goneril, Officers, Soldiers, and Attendants.
Edg. Before you fight the battle, ope this letter. If you have victory, let the trumpet sound
For him that brought it: wretched though I seem,
[Exit. Alb. Why, fare thee well; I will o'erlook thy paper.
Edm. The enemy's in view, draw up your powers. Here is the guess of their true strength and forces By diligent discovery;-but your haste
Is now urg'd on you.
Are of the adder. Which of them shall I take?
Her husband being alive. Now then, we'll use
SCENE 11. A Field between the two Camps. Alarum within. Enter, with Drum and Colours, LEAR, CORDELIA, and their Forces; and Exeunt.
Enter EDGAR and GLOSTER.
Edg. Here, father, take the shadow of this tree For your good host; pray that the right may thrive;
If ever I return to you again,
Grace go with you, sir!
Alarums; afterwards a Retreat. Re-enter EDGAR.
Glo. No further, sir; a man may rot even here.
And that's true too.
SCENE III. The British Camp near DoVER. Enter, in Conquest, with Drum and Colours, EDMUND; LEAR and CORDELIA, as Prisoners; Officers, Soldiers, &c.
Edm. Some officers take them away: good guard; Until their greater pleasures first be known That are to censure them.
As if we were God's spies: And we'll wear out,
Take them away.
Lear. Upon such sacrifices, my Cordelia,
The gods themselves throw incense. Have I caught
He, that parts us, shall bring a brand from heaven,
Ere they shall make us weep: We'll see them starve first.
Take thou this note; [Giving a Paper] go, follow them to prison:
One step I have advanc'd thee; if thou dost
Does not become a sword:-Thy great employment
I'll do't, my lord.
Edm. About it; and write happy, when thou hast done. Mark,-I say, instantly; and carry
As I have set it down.
Off. I cannot draw a cart, nor eat dried oats; If it be man's work, I will do it.
Flourish. Enter ALBANY, GONERIL, REGAN,
Alb. Sir, you have shown to-day your valiant strain,
Sir, I thought it fit To send the old and miserable king
To some retention, and appointed guard;
Whose age has charms in it, whose title more,
And turn our impress'd lances in our eyes
Which do command them. With him I sent the queen ;