Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Pervez Rizvi
Not Peer Reviewed

King Lear (Quarto 2, 1619)

1655Enter Lear and Foole.
Lear. Blow winde and cracke your cheekes, rage, blow
You carterickes, and Hircanios spout till you haue drencht
The steeples, drownd the cockes, you sulpherous and
Thought executing fires, vaunt-currers to
1660Oke-cleauing thunder-bolts, sing my white head,
And thou all shaking thunder, smite flat
The thicke rotundity of the world, cracke natures
Mold, all Germains spill at once that make
Ingratefull man.
1665Foole. O Nunckle, Court holy water in a dry house
Is better then this raine water out a doore,
Good Nunckle in, and aske thy daughters blessing,
Here's a night pitties neyther wise man nor foole.
Lear. Rumble thy belly full, spit fire, spout raine,
1670Nor raine, winde, thunder, fire, are my daughters,
I taske not you, you Elements with vnkindnesse,
I neuer gaue you kingdome, cald you children,
You owe me no subscription; why then let fall your horrible
Pleasure, here I stand your slaue, a poore, infirme, weake, and
1675Despised old man, but yet I call you seruile
Ministers, that haue with two pernitious daughters ioyn'd
Your high engendered battell gainst a head so old and white
As this, O tis foule.
1680Foole. He that has a house to put his head in, has a good head-
peece, the codpeece that will house before the head, has any the
head and he shall lowse, so beggers marry many, the man that
makes his toe, what he his heart should make, shall haue a corne
1685cry woe, and turne his sleepe to wake, for there was neuer yet
faire woman, but she made mouthes in a glasse.
Lear. No, I will be the patterne of all patience,
1690I will say nothing.
Enter Kent.
Kent. Who's there?
Foole. Marry heere's grace and a codpis, that's a wiseman and
a foole.
Kent. Alasse sir, sit you heere?
Things that loue night, loue not such nights as these;
1695The wrathfull Skies gallow the very wanderer of the
Darke, and makes them keepe their caues,
Since I was man, such sheetes of fire,
Such bursts of horrid thunder, such grones of
Roring winde and raine, I nere remember
1700To haue heard, mans nature cannot carry
The affliction, nor the force.
Lear. Let the great Gods that keepe this dreadfull
Thundring ore our heads, finde out their enemies now,
Tremble thou wretch that hast within thee
1705Vndivulged crimes, vnwhipt of Iustice,
Hide thee thou bloudy hand, thou periur'd, and
Thou simular man of vertue that art incestious,
Caytiffe in peeces shake, that vnder couert
And conuenient seeming, hast practised on mans life,
1710Close pent vp guilts, riue your concealed centers,
And cry these dreadfull summoners grace,
I am a man more sind against their sinning.
Kent. Alacke bare headed, gracious my Lord, hard by here is
1715a houell, some friendship will it lend gainst the tempest, re-
pose you there, whilst I to this hard house, more hard then is the
stone whereof tis rais'd, which euen but now demanding after
me, denide me to come in, returne and force their scanted curte-
Lear. My wit begins to turne,
Come on my boy, how dost my boy, art cold?
I am cold my selfe, where is this straw my fellow,
1725The art of our necessities is strange, that can
Make vilde things precious, come you houell poore,
Foole and knaue, I haue one part of my heart
That sorrowes yet for thee.
Foole. He that has a little tine wit, with hey ho the winde and
1730the raine, must make content with his fortunes fit, for the raine,
it raineth euery day.
Lear. True my good boy, come bring vs to this houell.