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Edg. (R.) Before you fight the battle, ope this letter. If you have victory, let the trumpet sound For him that brought it: wretched tho' I seem,
I can produce a champion, that will prove What is avouched there : If you miscarry, Your business of the world hath so an end, And machination ceases. Fortune love you !
Alb. Stay till I have read the letter.
Edg, I was forbid it.
[Exit, R. Alb. Why, fare thee well; I will o'erlook thy paper.
Re-enter EDMUND, Ļ. with folded Paper. Edm., The enemy's in view, draw up your powers. Here is the guess of their true strength and forces, By diligent discovery; but your haste Is now urg'd on you. Alb. We will greet the time.
[Exit, L. Edm. To both these sisters have I sworn my love; Each jealous of the other, as the stung Are of the adder.' Which of them shall I take? Both ? one? or neither? To take the widow, Exasperates, makes mad her sister Goneril; And hardly shall I carry out my side, Her husband being alive. Now then, we'll use His countenance for the battle; which being done, Let her who would be rid of him, devise His speedy taking off. As for the mercy Which he intends to Lear and Cordelią The battle done, and they within our power, Shall never see his pardon: for my state Stands on me to defend, not to debate. [Exit, R.
SCENE III.-A Valley near the Field of Battle.
Enter EDGAR and GLOSTER, R. Ú. E. Edg. Here, father, take the shadow of this tree For your good host; pray that the right may thrive: If ever I return to you again, I'll bring you comfort.
[Exit EDGAR, L. Glost. Grace go with you, sir.
[An alarum within, w The fight grows hot; the whole war's now at work, And the gor'd battle bleeds iņ every vein,
Whilst drums and trumpets drown loud slaughter's roar.
[Advances a little. 0, dark despair! When, Edgar, wilt thou come To pardon, and dismiss me to the grave ?
[A retreat sounded, L. Hark! a retreat; the king, I fear, has lost.
Re-enter EDGAR, L.
[Crosses to R. King Lear has lost; he and his daughter ta'en : Give me thy hand. Come on!
Glost. No farther, sir ; a man may rot even here.
Edg. What I in'ill thoughts again ? Men must endure Their going hence, ev'n as their coming hither. Ripeness is all.-Come on! Glost. And that's true too.
SCENE IV.-The British Camp near Dover. Enter, in conquest, with Banners, &c. EDMUND, L.;
Lear and CORDELIA as prisoners; an Officer and four Soldiers preceding them, and the same number following, L. S. E.-Flourish.
Edm. (R.) Some officers take them away: good guard; Until their greater pleasures first be known That are to censure them. Cord. (R. C.) [Coming forward a little.] We are
not the first,
thine eyes ;
At gilded butterflies, and hear poor rogues
[LEAR and CORDELIA go forward, R. Lear. (R. C.) Upon such sacrifices, my Cordelia, The gods themselves throw incense. Have I caught
thee? He that parts us, shall bring a brand from heaven, And fire us hence, like foxes. [Officer on the R. advances
. a little, and motions them to follow.] Wipe The goujeers shall devour them, flesh and fell, Ere they shall make us weep; we'll see them starve first. Come. [Exeunt Lear and CORDELIA, preceded by Oficer,
and followed by four Soldiers, r. Edm. (L.) Come hither, captain; hark
[Officer comes down r. Take thou this note ; [Giving a paper] go, follow them
to prison :
Officer. I'll do't, my lord,
[Exit, R. Flourish.-Enter ALBANY, GONERIL, REGAN, Officers
and Guards, L.
Edm (B.) Sir, I thought it fit
To send the old and miserable king
Alb. Sir, by your patience,
Reg. (L.) That's as we list to grace him.
Gon. (L. c.) Not so hot:
Reg. In my rights,
[Crosses to EDMUND,
Alb. The let-alone lies not in your good will.
claim, fair sister, I bar it in the interest of my wife; 'Tis she is sub-contracted to this lord, And I, her husband, contradict your bans. Thou art arm'd, Gloster : let the truinpet sound : If none appear to prove upon thy person, Thy heinous, manifest, and many treasons, There is my pledge; (Throwing down a Gauntlet.] I'll
prove it on thy heart, Ere I taste bread, thou art nothing less Than I have here proclaim'd thee.
Reg. Sick, O sick !
Gauntlet] what in the world he is
Alb. A herald, ho !
Enter Herald, R.
[Regan is led off, L. Come hither, herald-Let the trumpet sound, And read out this. [Gives paper. ] Sound, trumpet.
[Trumpet sounds, R. Her. (R.) [Reads.] “ If any man of quality, or degree, within the lists of the army, will maintain upon Edmund, supposed Earl of Gloster, that he is a manifold traitor, let him appear at the third sound of the trumpet. He is bold in his defence." Edm. Sound !
[1st Trumpet. Her. Again ! [2d Trumpet.] Again ! [3d Trumpet.
[A Trumpet answers on L. three times. 'Enter EDGAR, L, at the end of the second sound.
Alb. (c.) Ask bim his purposes, why he appears
Her. What are you ?
Edg. (L.) Know, my name is lost;
[Herald retires up. Alb. [A little up Stage in c.] Which is that adverEdg. What's he, that speaks for Edmund, Earl of