Imatges de pÓgina


Thy dowerless daughter, king, thrown to my chance,
Is queen of us, of ours, and our fair France;
Not all the dukes in wat'rish Burgundy

Shall buy this unpriz'd, precious maid of me.
Bid them farewell, Cordelia, though unkind;

Thou lofeft here, a better where to find.

Lear. Thou haft her, France; let her be thine, for we Have no fuch daughter; nor fhall ever fee

That face of her's again; therefore be gone

Without our grace, f our love, our benizon.

Come, noble Burgundy.

[Flourish. Exeunt Lear and




France. Bid farewel to your fifters.

Cor. The jewels of our father, with wash'd eyes
Cordelia leaves you; I know h you what you are,
And, like a fifter, am moft loth to call

Your faults as they are nam'd. Love well our father;
To your profeffed bofoms I commit him;

But yet, alas! ftood I within his grace,

I would prefer him to a better place.
So farewel to you both.

The qu's read thy for my.

So the qu's; all the rest read of for in.

So the qu's; all the reft read can for fall.

Here and where are converted into nouns in this place.

f J. inferts without again before our love.

So the qu's, fo's, and R.'s octavo; all the reft read ye for the.

h All before R.'s duodecimo have you, all the rest omit it, except Steevens:

So all before P. who alters professed to professing, followed by all the reft.

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Be to content your lord, who hath receiv'd you

At fortune's alms; you have obedience scanted,

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And well are worth them want that you have wanted.
Cor. Time fhall unfold what plaited cunning hides,
Who cover faults, at last 4 fhame them derides..

Well may you profper!

France. Come, my fair Cordelia.

[Exeunt France and



Gon. Sifter, it is not a little I have to fay

Of what most nearly appertains to us both.
I think our father will hence to-night.

The qu's give this fpeech to Gonerill, and the next to Regan,

So the qu's; all the reft read duty.

The qu's read worth for want. H. reads And well are worthy to want, &c.

W. alters this to vaunted, and gives the following note;
-wanted] This nonfense must be corrected thus,

And well are worth the want that you have vaunted.

i. e. that disherifon, which you so much glory in, you deserve. W.

But did the not rather glory in her modesty and fincerity, which occafioned that difherifon? The old reading is not elegant indeed, but it is intelligible: it is a kind of Hebraism, like feeding feed, Gen. i. 29.

• The qu's read pleated; the fo's, R. and P.'s q. plighted; all the reft plaited.

P H. reads cover'd; all other editions covers.

'4 So the qu's; all the rest read with shame for shame them.

The qu's omit my.

• P. alters I have to I've; followed by the rest.

* R. and all after read will go hence.


Reg. That's most certain, and with you; next month

with us.


Gon. You fee how full of changes his age is, the obfervation we have made of it hath not been little; he always lov'd our fifler most, and with what poor judgment he hath now cast her off, appears too y grofly.

Reg. 'Tis the infirmity of his age; yet he hath ever but flenderly known himself.

Gon. The best and foundest of his time hath been but rash; then must we look, z from his age to receive not alone the a imperfections of long ingrafted condition, but therewithal the unruly waywardness, that infirm and choleric years bring with them.

Reg. Such unconftant starts are we like to have from him, as this of Kent's banishment.

Gon. There is further compliment of leave-taking between d France and him. Pray you, let us hit together. If our father carry authority, with fuch & difpofitions as he bears, this laft furrender of his will but offend us.

Reg. We fhall further think "on't.

Gon. We must do something, and i'th' heat.


u In all the editions till P. who, with all after him, omits nost.

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* The 2d, 3d, and 4th fo's, and R. read appears too too grofly. The qu's read grosse.

The qu's read to receive from his age.

The qu's read imperfe&tion.

b The qu's omit the.

© The 2d q. reads ftars.

d Hanmer reads Burgundy for France,
The qu's read pray let's hit, &c.
f Fo's, R. P. and H. read fit for hit.
So the qu's; all the reft difpofition.
So the qu's; all the reft of it for on't.




i A caftle belonging to the earl of Gloucefter. Enter Bastard with a letter.

Baft. Thou, Nature, art my goddess; to thy law

My fervices are bound; wherefore should I

Stand in the plague of custom, and permit

The courtesy of nations to deprive me,

For that I am fome twelve or fourteen moonshines
Lag of a brother? m Why baftard? wherefore bafe?
When my dimenfions are as well compact,
My mind as generous, and my shape as true,
As honest madam's iffue?


Why brand they us with base, base bastardy?

Who, in the lufty stealth of nature, take

More compofition and fierce quality;

•Than doth within P a dull, ftale tired bed

i The feene is not described in either qu's, fo's, or R. This is called fcena fecunda in fo's.

k W. remarks, that to stand in the plague of custom, is an abfurd expreffion. We should read plage, i. e. the place, the country, the boundary of cuftom. Why should I, when I profess to follow the freedom of nature, be confined within the narrow limits of custom? Plage is a word in common ufe amongst the old English writers. So Chaucer, The plagis of the north by land and fea. From plaga. W.

The qu's, fo's, and R. curiofity; P. nicety; T. and the rest courtesy. m H. reads and why baftard? bafe?

So the qu's; all the reft with bafe, with bafenefs, baftardy, base, base;

but then they make why brand they us, a part of the foregoing line. But in this reading there feems to be too much repetition.

o R.'s oct. that.

The qu's, a fiale, dull, lyed (zd q. lied) bed.


Go to 9 the creating ' of a whole tribe of fops,
Got 'tween afleep and wake? Well then,

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Legitimate Edgar, I muft have your land;
Our father's love is to the baftard Edmund,
As to th❜legitimate; u fine word-legitimate!—
Well, my legitimate, if this letter speed,
And my invention thrive, Edmund the base
Shall w top th' legitimate. I grow, I profper;
Now, gods, ftand up for bastards.

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Glo. Kent banifh'd thus! and France in choler parted! And the king gone to-night! x fubfcrib'd his power! Confin'd to exhibition! y all this done

Upon the gad!-Edmund, how now? what news?

The fo's and R. read th'; all the rest omit the.

So the qu's; the rest omit of.

The ad q. omits a.

H. adds after then, good brother, to fill up the measure; the qu's read the for then.

u The qu's omit fine word-legitimate!

w The qu's read tooth'; the fo's, R. and P.'s q. to'th'; H. toe th'; which he interprets, being upon even ground with him, as the treading on another's heels fignifies the being not far behind him : but if toe be read, J. would have it fignify, to kick out, or fupplant. P.'s duodecimo reads be 'th; followed by T. W. and J. But perhaps Shakespear wrote top th' legitimate. i. e, get above him; the corruption of this, by writing an o instead of a p, was very easy. If a conjecture be made without any regard to the traces of the letters, out, or rout, are better than be.

The fo's and R. read preferib'd.

So the qu's, ift f. and J. the three last fo's and R. read all this gone, which P. alters all is gone.

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