Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Michael Best
Not Peer Reviewed

King Lear (Quarto 1, 1608)


The Historie of King Lear.
2270Stew. Madame within, but neuer man so chang'd, I told him
of the army that was landed, he smild at it, I told him you were
coming, his answere was the worse, of Glosters treacherie, and of
the loyall seruice of his sonne 2275when I enform'd him, then hee
cald me sott, and told me I had turnd the wrong side out, what
hee should most desire seemes pleasant to him, what like offen-
siue.
Gon. Then shall you goe no further,
2280It is the cowish curre of his spirit
That dares not vndertake, hele not feele wrongs
Which tie him to an answere, our wishes on the way
May proue effects, backe Edgar to my brother,
Hasten his musters, and conduct his powers
2285I must change armes at home, and giue the distaffe
Into my husbands hands, this trusty seruant
Shall passe betweene vs, ere long you are like to heare
If you dare venture in your owne behalfe
A mistresses coward, weare this spare speech,
2290Decline your head: this kisse if it durst speake
Would stretch thy spirits vp into the ayre,
Conceaue and far you well.
Bast. Yours in the ranks of death.
Gon. My most deere Gloster, to thee womans seruices
My foote vsurps my body.
Stew. Madam here comes my Lord.
Exit Stew.
2300Gon. I haue beene worth the whistle.
Alb. O Gonoril, you are not worth the dust which the
Blowes in your face, I feare your disposition
2303.1That nature which contemnes it origin
Cannot be bordered certaine in it selfe,
She that her selfe will sliuer and disbranch
From her materiall sap, perforce must wither,
.5And come to deadly vse.
Gon. No more, the text is foolish.
Alb. Wisedome and goodnes, to the vild seeme vild,
Filths sauor but themselues, what haue you done?
Tigers, not daughters, what haue you perform'd?
.10A father, and a gracious aged man
Whose