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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    Not Peer Reviewed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)

    Enter Cornwall, Regan, Gonorill, and Bastard.
    2060Corn. Poste speedily to my Lord your husband, shew him this
    Letter,
    The army of France is landed, seeke out the villaine Glocester.
    Reg. Hang him instantly.
    Gon. Plucke out his eyes.
    2065Corn. Leaue him to my displeasure, Edmund keepe you our si-
    ster company. The reuenge we are bound to take vpon your trai-
    terous father, are not fit for your beholding, aduise the Duke
    where you are going to a most festuant preparation, wee are
    bound to the like.
    Our poste shall be swift and intelligence betwixt vs;
    2070Farwell deare sister, farwell my Lord of Glocester.
    How now, wheres the King?
    G3Enter
    The History of King Lear.
    Enter Steward.
    Stew. My Lord of Glocester hath conueyed him hence,
    2075Some fiue or sixe and thirty of his Knights hot questrits after
    him, met him at gate, who with some other of the Lords depen-
    dants are gone with him towards Douer, where they boast to
    haue well armed friends.
    2080Corn. Get horses for your misttris.
    Gon. Farwell sweet Lord and sister.
    Exit Gon. and Bast.
    Corn. Edmund farwell: go seeke the traitor Glocester,
    Pinion him like a theefe, bring him before vs,
    Though we may not passe vpon his life
    2085Without the forme of iustice, yet our power
    Shall do a curtesie to our wrath, which men may blame
    But not controle; who's there, the traitor?
    Enter Glocester, brought in by two or three.
    2090Reg. Ingratefull Fox tis he.
    Corn. Binde fast his corky armes.
    Glost. What meanes your Graces, good my friends consider,
    You are my guests, do me no foule play friends.
    2095Corn. Binde him I say.
    Reg. Hard, hard, O filthy traitor!
    Glost. Vnmercifull Lady as you are, I am true.
    Corn. To this chaire binde him, villaine thou shalt find -----
    2100Glost. By the kinde Gods tis mosst ignobly done, to plucke me
    by the beard.
    Reg. So white, and such a Traitor.
    Glost. Naughty Lady, these haires which thou dost rauish frõ (my chin,
    2105Will quicken and accuse thee, I am your host:
    With robbers hands, my hospitable fauours
    You should not ruffell thus, what will you do?
    Corn. Come sir, what letters had you late from France?
    2110Reg. Be simple answerer, for we know the truth.
    Corn. And what confederacy haue you with the traitors lately
    footed in the kingdome?
    Reg. To whose hands haue you sent the lunaticke king, speak?
    Glost.
    The History of King Lear.
    2115Glost. I haue a letter guessingly set downe,
    Which came from one that's of a neutrall heart,
    And not from one opposed.
    Corn. Cunning.
    Reg. And false.
    2120Corn. Where hast thou sent the King?
    Glost. To Douer.
    Reg. Wherefore to Douer? wast thou not charg'd at perill ------
    Corn. Wherefore to Douer? let him first answer that.
    2125Glost. I am tide tot'h stake, and I must stand the course.
    Reg. Wherefore to Douer sir?
    Glost. Because I would not see thy cruell nayles
    Plucke out his poore old eyes, nor thy fierce sister
    2130In his aurynted flesh rash borish phangs,
    The sea with such a storme of his lou'd head
    In hell blacke night endur'd, would haue laid vp
    And quencht the steeled fires, yet poore old heart,
    He holpt the heauens to rage,
    2135If Wolues had at thy gate heard that dearne time,
    Thou shouldst haue said, good Porter turne the key,
    All cruels else subscrib'd, but I shall see
    The winged vengeance ouertake such children.
    Corn. See't shalt thou neuer, fellowes hold the chaire,
    2140Vpon those eies of thine, lle set my foote.
    Glost. He that will thinke to liue till he be old -----
    Giue me some helpe, ô cruell, ô ye Gods!
    Reg. One side will mocke another, tother to.
    Corn. If you see vengeance ------
    2145Seruant. Hold your hand my Lord,
    I haue seru'd you euer since I was a childe,
    But better seruice haue I neuer done you, then now to bid you (hold.
    Reg. How now you dog.
    2150Ser. If you did weare a beard vpon your chin, ide shake it on
    this quarrell, what do you meane?
    Corn. My villaine.Draw and fight.
    Ser. Why then come on, and take the chance of anger.
    Reg. Giue me thy sword, a pesant stand vp thus.
    She
    The History of King Lear.
    2155She takes a sword, and runs at him behinde.
    Seruant. Oh I am slaine my Lord, yet haue you one eye left to
    see some mischiefe on him, oh! He dies.
    Corn. Least it see more, preuent it, out vilde Ielly,
    Where is thy luster now?
    2160Glost. All darke and comfortles, wheres my sonne Edmund?
    Edmund vnbridle all the sparkes of nature, to quit this horrid
    acte.
    Reg. Out villaine, thou calst on him that hates thee, it was hee
    that made the ouerture of thy treasons to vs, who is too good to
    pitty thee.
    Glost. O my follies, then Edgar was abused,
    Kinde Gods forgiue me that, and prosper him.
    2170Reg. Goe thrust him out at gates, and let him smell his way to
    Douer, how ist my Lord? how looke you?
    Corn. I haue receiued a hurt, follow me Lady,
    Turne out that eyelesse villaine, throw this slaue vpon
    2175The dunghill, Regan I bleed apace, vntimely
    Comes this hurt, giue me your arme. Exit.
    2176.1Seruant. Ile neuer care what wickednesse I do,
    If this man come to good.
    2.Seruant. If she liue long, and in the end meet the old course
    of death, women will all turne monsters.
    2177.51.Ser. Let's follow the old Earle, and get the bedlam
    To lead him where he would, his rogish madnesse
    Allowes it selfe to any thing.
    2.Ser. Goe thou, ile fetch some flaxe and whites of egges to
    apply to his bleeding face, now heauen helpe him.