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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    Not Peer Reviewed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.
    Our deere st Regan, wife to Cornwell, speake?
    Reg. Sir I am made of the selfe same mettall that my si ster is,
    75 And prize me at her worth in my true heart,
    I find she names my very deed of loue, onely she came short,
    That I profe s s e my selfe an enemie to all other ioyes,
    Which the mo st precious square of sence po s s e s s es,
    80 And find I am alone felicitate, in your deere highnes loue.
    Cord. Then poore Cord. & yet not so, since I am sure
    My loues more richer then my tongue.
    85 Lear. To thee and thine hereditarie euer
    Remaine this ample third of our faire kingdome,
    No le s s e in space, validity, and pleasure,
    Then that confirm'd on Gonorill, but now our ioy,
    Although the la st, not lea st in our deere loue,
    What can you say to win a third, more opulent
    Then your si sters.
    Cord. Nothing my Lord.
    Lear. How, nothing can come of nothing, speake (againe.
    Cord. Vnhappie that I am, I cannot heaue my heart into my
    mouth,--> I loue your Maie stie according to my bond, nor more nor
    le s s e.
    100 Lear. Goe to, goe to, mend your speech a little,
    Lea st it may mar your fortunes.
    Cord. Good my Lord,
    You haue begot me, bred me, loued me,
    I returne those duties backe as are right fit,
    105 Obey you, loue you, and mo st honour you,
    Why haue my si sters husbands if they say they loue you all,.
    Happely when I shall wed, that Lord whose hand
    Mu st take my plight, shall cary halfe my loue with him,
    Halfe my care and duty, 110 sure I shall neuer
    Mary like my si sters, to loue my father all.
    Lear. But goes this with thy heart?
    Cord. I good my Lord.
    Lear. So yong and so vntender.
    Cord. So yong my Lord and true.
    115 Lear. Well let it be so, thy truth then be thy dower,
    For by the sacred radience of the Sunne,