Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Pervez Rizvi
Not Peer Reviewed

King Lear (Quarto 2, 1619)

The History of King Lear.
Ile this way, you that, he that first lights
On him, hollow the other.
Enter Lear and Foole.
Lear. Blow winde and cracke your cheekes, rage, blow
You carterickes, and Hircanios spout till you haue drencht
The steeples, drownd the cockes, you sulpherous and
Thought executing fires, vaunt-currers to
1660Oke-cleauing thunder-bolts, sing my white head,
And thou all shaking thunder, smite flat
The thicke rotundity of the world, cracke natures
Mold, all Germains spill at once that make
Ingratefull man.
1665Foole. O Nunckle, Court holy water in a dry house
Is better then this raine water out a doore,
Good Nunckle in, and aske thy daughters blessing,
Here's a night pitties neyther wise man nor foole.
Lear. Rumble thy belly full, spit fire, spout raine,
1670Nor raine, winde, thunder, fire, are my daughters,
I taske not you, you Elements with vnkindnesse,
I neuer gaue you kingdome, cald you children,
You owe me no subscription; why then let fall your horrible
Pleasure, here I stand your slaue, a poore, infirme, weake, and
1675Despised old man, but yet I call you seruile
Ministers, that haue with two pernitious daughters ioyn'd
Your high engendered battell gainst a head so old and white
As this, O tis foule.
1680Foole. He that has a house to put his head in, has a good head-
peece, the codpeece that will house before the head, has any the
head and he shall lowse, so beggers marry many, the man that
makes his toe, what he his heart should make, shall haue a corne
1685cry woe, and turne his sleepe to wake, for there was neuer yet
faire woman, but she made mouthes in a glasse.
Lear. No, I will be the patterne of all patience,
1690I will say nothing.
Enter Kent.
Kent. Who's there?