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  • Title: The History of King Leir (Modern)
  • Editor: Andrew Griffin

  • Copyright Queen's Men Editions. This text may be freely used for educational, non-profit purposes; for all other uses contact the Editor.
    Author: Anonymous
    Editor: Andrew Griffin
    Peer Reviewed

    The History of King Leir (Modern)

    1807.1[Scene 21] [Video Sc.21]
    Enter Gallia, Cordella and Mumford
    By this, our father understands our mind
    1810And our kind greetings sent to him of late;
    Therefore, my mind presageth ere't be long,
    We shall receive from Britain happy news.
    I fear my sister will dissuade his mind,
    For she to me hath always been unkind.
    Fear not, my love, since that we know the worst,
    The last means helps if that we miss the first.
    If he'll not come to Gallia unto us,
    Then we will sail to Britain unto him.
    Well, if I once see Britain again, 1820I have sworn I'll ne'er come home without my wench, and I'll not be forsworn; I'll rather never come home while I live.
    Are you sure, Mumford, she is a maid still?
    Nay, I'll not swear she is a maid, but she goes for one. 1825I'll take her at all adventures, if I can get her.
    Ay, that's well put in.
    Well put in? Nay, it was ill put in, for had it been as well put in as e'er I put in in my days, I would have made her follow me to France.
    Nay, you'd have been so kind as take her with you, or else, were I as she, I would have been so loving as I'd stay behind you. Yet I must confess, you are a very proper man, and able to make a wench do more than she would do.
    Well, I have a pair of slops for the nonce will hold all your mocks.
    Nay, we see you have a handsome hose.
    Ay, and of the newest fashion.
    More bobs, more; put them in still! 1840They'll serve instead of bombast; yet put not in too many, lest the seams crack and they fly out amongst you again. You must not think to outface me so easily in my mistress' quarrel, who if I see once again, ten team of horses shall not draw me away till I have full and whole possession.
    Ay, but one team and a cart will serve the turn.
    Not only for him, but also for his wench.
    Well, you are two to one; I'll give you over; and since I see you so pleasantly disposed, which indeed is but seldom seen, I'll claim 1850a promise of you which you shall not deny me, for promise is debt, and by this hand you promised it me, therefore you owe it me, and you shall pay it me, or I'll sue you upon an action of unkindness.
    Prithee, Lord Mumford, what promise did I make thee?
    Faith, nothing but this: that the next fair weather, which is very now, you would go in progress down to the seaside, which is very near.
    Faith, in this motion I will join with thee,
    1860And be a mediator to my queen. --
    Prithee, my love, let this match go forward;
    My mind foretells 'twill be a lucky voyage.
    Entreaty needs not where you may command;
    So you be pleased, I am right well content.
    1865Yet as the sea I much desire to see,
    So am I most unwilling to be seen.
    We'll go disguised, all unknown to any.
    Howsoever you make one, I'll make another.
    And I the third. Oh, I am overjoyed!
    1870See what love is, which getteth with a word
    What all the world besides could ne'er obtain!
    But what disguises shall we have, my lord?
    Faith, thus: my queen and I will be disguised
    Like a plain country couple, and you shall be Roger,
    1875Our man, and wait upon us. Or, if you will,
    You shall go first, and we will wait on you.
    'Twere more than time; this device is excellent.
    Come let us about it.