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  • Title: King Lear (Quarto 1, 1608)
  • Editor: Michael Best
  • ISBN: 978-1-55058-463-9

    Copyright Michael Best. This text may be freely used for educational, non-profit purposes; for all other uses contact the Editor.
    Author: William Shakespeare
    Editor: Michael Best
    Not Peer Reviewed

    King Lear (Quarto 1, 1608)

    The Historie of King Lear.
    Thy dowreles daughter King throwne to thy chance,
    Is Queene of vs, of ours, and our faire France:
    Not all the Dukes in watri sh Burgundie,
    Shall buy this vnprizd precious maide of me,
    285 Bid them farewell Cordelia, though vnkind
    Thou loose st here, a better where to find.
    Lear. Thou ha st her France, let her be thine,
    For we haue no such daughter, nor shall euer see
    That face of hers againe, therfore be gone,
    290 Without our grace, our loue, our benizon? come noble (Burgũdy.
    Exit Lear and Burgundie.
    Fran. Bid farewell to your si sters?
    Cord. The iewels of our father,
    With wa sht eyes Cordelia leaues you, I know you what (you are,
    295 And like a si ster am mo st loath to call your faults
    As they are named, vse well our Father,
    To your profe s s ed bosoms I commit him,
    But yet alas stood I within his grace,
    I would preferre him to a better place:
    300 So farewell to you both?
    Gonorill. Prescribe not vs our duties?
    Regan. Let your study be to content your Lord,
    Who hath receaued you at Fortunes almes,
    You haue obedience scanted,
    305 And well are worth the worth that you haue wanted.
    Cord. Time shal vnfould what pleated cũning hides,
    Who couers faults, at la st shame them derides:
    Well may you prosper.
    Fran. Come faire Cordelia? Exit France & Cord.
    310 Gonor. Si ster, it is not a little I haue to say,
    Of what mo st neerely appertaines to vs both,
    I thinke our father will hence to night.
    Reg. Thats mo st certaine, and with you, next moneth with vs.
    Gon. You see how full of changes his age is the ob315 seruation we
    haue made of it hath not bin little; hee alwaies loued our si ster
    mo st, and with what poore iudgement hee hath now ca st her
    off, appeares too gro s s e.
    Reg. Tis the infirmitie of his age, yet hee hath euer but slen-
    derly