Imatges de pÓgina

Yet I am doubtful; for I am mainly ignorant
What place this is; and all the skill I have
Remembers not these garments; nor I know not
Where I did lodge last night. Do not laugh at me;
For, as I am a man, I think this lady

To be my child Cordelia.


And so I am,

I am.

Lear. Be your tears wet? Yes, 'faith. I pray, weep not; If you have poison for me, I will drink it.

I know you do not love me, for your sisters
Have, as I do remember, done me wrong.
You have some cause; they have not.


Lear. Am I in France?

Lear. Do not abuse me.

No cause, no cause.

In your own kingdom, sir.

Phys. Be comforted, good madam. The great rage,
You see is killed in him; and yet it is danger

To make him even o'er the time he has lost.
Desire him to go in; trouble him no more,
Till further settling.

Cor. Will't please your highness walk?


You must bear with me;

'Pray you now, forget and forgive; I am old and foolish.

[Exeunt LEAR, CORDELIA, Physician, and Attendants.

Gent. Holds it true, sir,

That the duke of Cornwall was so slain?


Gent. Who is conductor of his people?

The bastard son of Gloster.


Most certain, sir.

As 'tis said,

They say, Edgar,

His banished son, is with the earl of Kent

In Germany.


Report is changeable.

'Tis time to look about; the powers o' the kingdom

Approach apace.

Gent. The arbitrement is like to be a bloody. Fare you well, sir.


Kent. My point and period will be thoroughly wrought, Or well, or ill, as this day's battle's fought.



SCENE I. The Camp of the British Forces, near Dover. Enter, with drums and colors, EDMUND, REGAN, Officers, Soldiers, and others.

Edm. Know of the duke, if his last purpose hold; Or, whether since he is advised by aught

To change the course. He's full of alteration,
And self-reproving;-bring his constant pleasure.

Now, sweet lord,

[To an Officer, who goes out.
Reg. Our sister's man is certainly miscarried.
Edm. 'Tis to be doubted, madam.
You know the goodness I intend upon you.
Tell me, but truly,- but then speak the truth,
Do you not love my sister?

In honored 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
And bosomed with her, as far as we call hers.
Edm. No, by mine honor, madam.

Reg. I never shall endure her. Dear my lord,
Be not familiar with her.


Fear me not;

She, and the duke her husband,

Enter ALBANY, GONERIL, and Soldier.

Gon. I had rather lose the battle, than that sister Should loosen him and me.


Alb. Our very loving sister, well be met.-
Sir, this I hear,-The king is come to his daughter,
With others, whom the rigor of our state

Forced 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,
More just and heavy causes make oppose.
Edm. Sir, you speak nobly.


Why is this reasoned?

Gon. Combine together 'gainst the enemy:
For these domestic and particular broils
Are not to question here.


Let us then determine
With the ancient of war on our proceedings.
Edm. I shall attend you presently at your tent.
Reg. Sister, you'll go with us?

Gon. No.

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, I can produce a champion, that will prove What is avouched there. If you miscarry, Your business of the world hath so an end, And machination ceases. Fortune love you! Alb. Stay till I have read the letter. Edg. I was forbid it. When time shall serve, let but the herald cry, And I'll appear again.

[Exit. Alb. Why, fare thee well; I will overlook thy paper.

Re-enter EDMUND.

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 urged on you.

We will greet the time.


Edm. To both these sisters have I sworn my love;
Each jealous of the other, as the stung

Are of the adder. Which of them shall I take?
Both one? or neither? Neither can be enjoyed,
If both remain alive. To take the widow,
Exasperates, makes mad her sister Goneril;
And hardly shall I carry out my side,

Her husband being alive. Now, then, we'll use
His countenance for the battle; which being done,
Let her, who would be rid of him, devise
His speedy taking off. As for the mercy
Which he intends to Lear, and to Cordelia,-

The battle done, and they within our power,

Shall never see his pardon; for my state
Stands on me to defend, not to debate.


SCENE II. A Field between the two Camps.

Alarum within. Enter, with drum and colors, LEAR, CORDELIA, and their Forces; and exeunt.


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,

I'll bring you comfort.


[blocks in formation]

Alarums; afterwards a retreat. Re-enter EDGAR. Edg. Away, old man, give me thy hand, away; King Lear hath lost, he and his daughter ta'en. Give me thy hand; come on.

Glo. No further, sir; a man may rot even here. Edg. What, in ill thoughts again? Men must endure Their going hence, even as their coming hither; Ripeness is all. Come on.


And that's true too.


SCENE III. The British Camp near Dover.

Enter, in conquest, with drum and colors, 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.

We are not the first,

Who, with best meaning, have incurred the worst.
For thee, oppressed king, am I cast down;
Myself could else outfrown false fortune's frown.
Shall we not see these daughters, and these sisters?
Lear. No, no, no, no! Come, let's away to prison:

We two alone will sing like birds i' the cage.
When thou dost ask me blessing, I'll kneel down,
And ask of thee forgiveness. So we'll live,

And pray, and sing, and tell old tales, and laugh
At gilded butterflies, and hear poor rogues
Talk of court news; and we'll talk with them too,
Who loses, and who wins; who's in, who's out;
And take upon us the mystery of things,

As if we were God's spies. And we'll wear out,
In a walled prison, packs and sects of great ones,
That ebb and flow by the moon.


Lear. Upon such sacrifices, my

The gods themselves throw incense.

Take them away.


Have I caught thee? He that parts us, shall bring a brand from heaven, And fire us hence, like foxes. Wipe thine eyes; The goujeers shall devour them, flesh and fell,

Ere they shall make us weep; we'll see them starve first. Come. [Exeunt LEAR and CORDELIA, guarded.

Edm. Come hither, captain; hark.

Take thou this note; [Giving a paper.] go, follow them to prison.

One step I have advanced thee; if thou dost

As this instructs thee, thou dost make thy way
To noble fortunes. Know thou this, that men
Are as the time is: to be tender-minded
Does not become a sword.-Thy great employment
Will not bear question; either say, thou'lt do't,
Or thrive by other means.


I'll do't, my lord. Edm. About it; and write happy, when thou hast done. Mark, I say instantly; and carry it so,

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.


[Exit Officer.

Enter ALBANY, GONERIL, REGAN, Officers, and


Alb. Sir, you have shown to-day, your valiant strain, And fortune led you well. You have the captives,

Who were the opposites of this day's strife.
We do require them of you; so to use them,
As we shall find their merits and our safety
May equally determine.


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,

To pluck the common bosom on his side,

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