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Good my lord,

You have begot me, bred me, lov'd me: I
Return those duties back as are right fit,
Obey you, love and most honour you.
Why have my sisters husbands, if they say,
They love you, all? Haply, when I shall wed,
That lord, whose hand must take my plight, shall


Half my love with him, half my care, and duty :
Sure, I shall never marry like my sisters,

To love my father all.

Lear. But goes this with thy heart?


Ay, good my lord.

Lear. So young, and so untender

Car. So young, my lord, and true.

Lear. Let it be so,-Thy truth then be thy


For, by the sacred radiance of the sun;
The mysteries of Hecate, and the night;
By all the operations of the orbs,

From whom we do exist, and cease to be;
Here I disclaim all my paternal care,
Propinquity and property of blood,
And as a stranger to my heart and me
Hold thee, from this, for ever.


The barbarous

Or he that makes his generation 4 messes
To gorge his appetite, shall to my bosom
Be as well neighbour'd, pitied, and reliev❜d,
As thou my some time daughter.


Lear, Peace, Kent!

Good my liege,

Come not between the dragon and his wrath:

2 Kindred.

1 Perhaps.

3 From this time.

4 His children.

I lov'd her most, and thought to set my rest

On her kind nursery. Hence, and avoid my



[TO CORDELIA. So be my grave my peace, as here I give

Her father's heart from her!-Call France;-Who stirs?

Call Burgundy.-Cornwall, and Albany,

With my two daughters' dowers digest this third:
Let pride, which she calls plainness, marry her.
I do invest you jointly with my power,
Pre-eminence, and all the large effects

That troop with majesty.-Ourself, by monthly course,

With reservation of an hundred knights,
By you to be sustain'd, shall our abode

Make with you by due turns. Only we still retain
The name, and all the additions to a king;
The sway,

Revenue, execution of the rest,"

Beloved sons, be yours: which to confirm,

This coronet part between you. [Giving the Crown.
Royal Lear,
Whom I have ever honour'd as my king,
Lov'd as my father, as my master follow'd,
As my great patron thought on in my prayers,-
Lear. The bow is bent and drawn, make from
the shaft.

Kent. Let it fall rather, though the fork invade The region of my heart: be Kent unmannerly, When Lear is mad. What would'st thou do, old man?

Think'st thou, that duty shall have dread to speak, When power to flattery bows? To plainness honour's bound,

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When majesty stoops to folly. Reverse thy doom; And, in thy best consideration, check

This hideous rashness: answer my life my judgment, Thy youngest daughter does not love thee least; Nor are those empty-hearted, whose low sound Reverbs no hollowness.


Kent, on thy life, no more. Kent. My life I never held but as a pawn

To wage against thine enemies; nor fear to lose it,

Thy safety being the motive.


Out of my sight!

Kent. See better, Lear, and let me still remain The true blanks of thine eye.

Lear. Now, by Apollo,


Thou swear'st thy gods in vain.


Now, by Apollo, king,

O, vassal! miscreant !

[Laying his Hand on his Sword.

Alb. Corn. Dear sir, forbear.

Kent. Do;

Kill thy physician, and the fee bestow

Upon the foul disease. Revoke thy gift;

Or, whilst I can vent clamour from my throat,

I'll tell thee, thou dost evil.


On thine allegiance hear me !

Hear me, recreant!

Since thou hast sought to make us break our vow, (Which we durst never yet,) and, with strain'd


To come betwixt our sentence and our power;
(Which nor our nature nor our place can bear,)
Our potency made good, take thy reward.
Five days we do allot thee, for provision
To shield thee from diseases of the world;

7 Reverberates.


8 The mark to shoot at.


And, on the sixth, to turn thy hated back

Upon our kingdom: if, on the tenth day following, Thy banish'd trunk be found in our dominions, The moment is thy death: Away! By Jupiter, This shall not be revok'd.

Kent. Fare thee well, king: since thus thou wilt


Freedom lives hence, and banishment is here.—
The gods to their dear shelter take thee, maid,
That justly think'st, and hast most rightly said!
And your large speeches may your deeds approve,
That good effects may spring from words of love.-
Thus Kent, O princes, bids you all adieu;
He'll shape his old course9 in a country new.

[Exit. Re-enter GLOSTER; with FRANCE, BURGUNDY, and Attendants.

Glo. Here's France and Burgundy, my noble lord.
Lear. My lord of Burgundy,

We first address towards you, who with this king
Hath rivall'd for our daughter; What, in the least,
Will you require in present dower with her,
Or cease your quest of love?

Most royal majesty,
I crave no more than hath your highness offer'd,
Nor will you tender less.

Lear. Right noble Burgundy, When she was dear to us, we did hold her so; But now her price is fall'n: Sir, there she stands; If aught within that little, seeming2 substance,

9 Follow his old mode of life. Amorous expedition.

2 Spécious.

Or all of it, with our displeasure piec'd,
And nothing more, may fitly like your grace,
She's there, and she is yours.


Lear. Sir,


I know no answer.

you, with those infirmities she owes,3 Unfriended, new-adopted to our hate,

Dower'd with our curse, and stranger'd with our


Take her, or leave her?


Pardon me, royal sir;

Election makes not up4 on such conditions. Lear. Then leave her, sir; for, by the power that made me,

I tell you all her wealth. For you, great king,
I would not from your love make such a stray,
To match you where I hate; therefore beseech
To avert 5 your liking a more worthier way,
Than on a wretch whom nature is asham'd
Almost to acknowledge hers,


This is most strange !

That she, that even but now was your best object,
The argument of your praise, balm of your age,
Most best, most dearest, should in this trice of time
Commit a thing so monstrous, to dismantle
So many folds of favour! Sure, her offence
Must be of such unnatural degree,

That monsters it, or your fore-vouch'd6 affection
Fall into taint7: which to believe of her,
Must be a faith, that reason without miracle
Could never plant in me.

3 Owns, is possessed of.
5 Turn.

4 Concludes not.

6 Former declaration of.

7 Reproach or censurę.

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