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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    Not Peer Reviewed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.
    With hor-docks, hemlocke, netles, cookow flowers,
    2355 Darnell and all the idle weedes that grow,
    In our su stayning, corne, a centurie is sent forth,
    Search euery acre in the hie growne field,
    And bring him to our eye, what can mans wisdome
    In the re storing his bereued sence, he that can helpe him
    2360 Take all my outward worth.
    Doct . There is meanes Madame.
    Our fo ster nurse of nature is repose,
    The which he lackes that to prouoke in him,
    Are many simples operatiue whose power,
    2365 Will close the eye of angui sh.
    Cord. All ble st secrets all you vnpubli sht vertues of the earth,
    Spring with my teares be aydant and remediat,
    In the good mans di stre s s e, seeke, seeke, for him,
    2370 Le st his vngouernd rage di s s olue the life.
    That wants the meanes to lead it. Enter me s s enger .
    Mes . News Madam, the Britti sh powers are marching hither- (ward.
    2375 Cord. Tis knowne before, our preparation stands,
    In expect ation of them, ô deere father
    It is thy bu sines that I go about, therfore great France
    My mourning and important teares hath pitied,
    No blowne ambition doth our armes in sight
    2380 But loue, deere loue, and our ag'd fathers right,
    Soone may I heare and see him. Exit.
    Enter Regan and Steward.
    Reg. But are my brothers powers set forth?
    2385 Stew. I Madam. Reg. Himselfe in person ?
    Stew. Madam with much ado, your si ster is the better soldier.
    Reg. Lord Edmund spake not with your Lady at home.
    2390 Stew. No Madam.
    Reg. What might import my si sters letters to him ?
    Stew. I know not Lady.
    Reg. Faith he is po sted hence on serious matter,
    It was great ignorance, Glo sters eyes being out
    2395 To let him liue, where he ariues he moues
    All harts again st vs, and now I thinke is gone
    In pitie of his misery to dispatch his nighted life,