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  • Title: King Lear (Quarto 2, 1619)
  • Editor: Pervez Rizvi
  • Coordinating 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: Pervez Rizvi
    Not Peer Reviewed

    King Lear (Quarto 2, 1619)

    The History of King Lear.
    1150 Bring oile to stir, snow to their colder moods,
    Reneag, affirme, and turne their halcion beakes
    With euery gale and vary of their ma sters,
    Knowing nought like daies but following,
    A plague vpon your Epilipticke visage,
    1155 Smoile you my speeches, as I were a foole?
    Goose, if I had you vpon Sarum Plaine,
    Ide send you cackling home to Camulet.
    Duke. What art thou mad olde fellow?
    Glo st . How fell you out, say that?
    1160 Kent. No contraries hold more antipathy,
    Then I and such a knaue.
    Duke. Why do st thou call him knaue, what's his offence?
    Kent. His countenance likes me not.
    1165 Duke. No more perchance doth mine, or his, or hers.
    Kent. Sir, tis my occupation to be plaine,
    I haue seene better faces in my time,
    Than stands on any shoulder that I see
    Before me at this in stant.
    1170 Duke. This is a fellow, who hauing beene praisd
    For bluntne s s e, doth affect a saucie ruffines,
    And con straines the garb quite from his nature,
    He cannot flatter he, he mu st be plaine,
    He mu st speake truth, and they will take it so,
    1175 If not hee's plaine, these kinde of knaues I know,
    Which in this plainne s s e harbour more craft,
    And more corrupter ends, then twenty silly ducking,
    Obseruants, that stretch their duties nicely.
    1180 Kent. Sir in good sooth, or in sincere verity,
    Vnder the allowance of your grand aspect.
    Whose influence like the wreath of radient fire
    In flitkering Phœbus front.
    Duke. What mean st thou by this?
    1185 Kent. To go out of my dialogue which you discommend so
    much; I know sir, I am no flatterer, he that beguild you in a plain
    accent, was a plaine knaue, which for my part I wil not be, thogh
    I should win your displeasure to entreate me to it.