Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Michael Best
Not Peer Reviewed

King Lear (Quarto 1, 1608)


The Historie of King Lear.
your labour, your wife (so I would say) your affectionate seruant
and for you her owne for Venter, Gonorill.
Edg. O Indistinguisht space of womans wit,
2725A plot vpon her vertuous husbands life,
And the exchange my brother heere in the sands,
Thee ile rake vp, the post vnsanctified
Of murtherous leachers, and in the mature time,
With this vngratious paper strike the sight
2730Of the death practis'd Duke, for him tis well,
That of thy death and businesse I can tell.
Glost. The King is mad, how stiffe is my vild sence,
That I stand vp and haue ingenious feeling
2735Of my huge sorowes, better I were distract,
So should my thoughts be fenced from my griefes,
And woes by wrong imaginations loose
The knowledge of themselues.
A drum a farre off.
2740Edg. Giue me your hand far off me thinks I heare the beaten
Come father ile bestow you with a friend.
Exit.
Enter Cordelia, Kent and Doctor.
2745Cord. O thou good Kent how shall I liue and worke to match
My life will be too short and euery measure faile me.
2750Kent. To be acknowlegd madame is ore payd,
All my reports go with the modest truth,
Nor more, nor clipt, but so.
Cor. Be better suited these weeds are memories of those
Worser howers, 2755I prithe put them off.
Kent. Pardon me deere madame,
Yet to be knowne shortens my made intent,
My boone I make it that you know me not,
Till time and I thinke meete.
2760Cord. Then beet so, my good Lord how does the king.
Doct. Madame sleepes still.
Cord. O you kind Gods cure this great breach in his abused
2765The vntund and hurrying sences, O wind vp
Of this child changed father.
Doct. So please your Maiestie that we may wake the king,
He hath slept long.
Cord. Be gouernd by your knowledge and proceed,
Ith