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Corn. Bind fast his corky arms.
Corn. Bind him, I say. (Servants bind him.
Hard, hard.-O filthy traitor!
[Regan plucks his beard. Glos. By the kind gods, 'tis most ignobly done To pluck me by the beard.
Re. So white, and such a traitor!
Naughty lady, These hairs, which thou dost ravish from my chin, Will quicken and accuse thee : I
host: With robbers' hands my hospitable favors 1 You should not ruffle thus. What will you do? Corn. Come, sir, what letters had you late from
France ? Re. Be simple-answer'd, for we know the truth. Corn. And what confederacy have you with the
traitors Late footed in the kingdom ? Re. To whose hands have you sent the lunatic
Glos. I have a letter guessingly set down, Which came from one that's of a neutral heart,
And not from one opposed.
And false. Corn. Where hast thou sent the king ? Glos.
To Dover. Re.
Wherefore To Dover? Wast thou not charged at perilCorn. Wherefore to Dover ? Let him first answer
that. Glos. I am tied to the stake, and I must stand
the course. Re. Wherefore to Dover ?
Glos. Because I would not see thy cruel nails Pluck out his poor old eyes, nor thy fierce sister In his anointed flesh stick boarish fangs. The sea, with such a storm as his bare head In hell-black night endured, would have buoy'd up, And quench'd the stelled i fires; yet, poor old
heart, He holp the heavens to rain. If wolves had at thy gate howl'd that stern time, Thou shouldst have said, 'Good porter, turn the
key;' All cruels else subscribed : 2_but I shall see The winged vengeance overtake such children. Corn. See it shalt thou never.-Fellows, hold the Ser.
Starry ? Yielded, submitted to the necessity of the occasion.
Cornwall plucks out one of his eyes,
and sets his foot on it. Glos. He, that will think to live till he be old, Give me some help.–O cruel! O ye gods !
Re. One side will mock another : the other too. Corn. If you see vengeance,
Hold your hand, my lord : I have served you ever since I was a child ; But better service have I never done you, Than now to bid
How now, you dog? Ser. If you did wear a beard upon your chin, I'd shake it on this quarrel. What do you mean?
Corn. My villain ! [draws, and runs at him. Ser. Nay, then come on, and take the chance of
[draws. They fight. Cornwall is wounded. . Re. Give me thy sword.—[to another Ser.] A
peasant stand up thus ! [snatches a sword, comes behind, and stabs him. Ser. O, I am slain !—My lord, you have one eye
left To see some mischief on him :-0!
[dies. Corn. Lest it see more, prevent it.-Out, vile
jelly! Where is thy lustre now?
[tears out Gloster's other eye, and throws it
on the ground.
Glos. All dark and comfortless.- Where's my
son Edmund ?
Out, treacherous villain !
O my follies !
smell His way to Dover.-How is 't, my lord ? How look
you? Corn. I have received a hurt :-follow me,
[Exit Cornwall, led by Regan ; Servants unbind
Gloster, and lead him out.
If she live long,
i Ser. Let 's follow the old earl, and get the
bedlam 1 To lead him where he would; his roguish madness Allows itself to any thing.
2 Ser. Go thou; I 'll fetch some flax, and whites
To apply to his bleeding face. Now, Heaven help him !
ACT I V.
Edg. Yet better thus, and known to be con
temn'd, Than still contemn’d and flatter'd.2 To be worst, The lowest, and most dejected thing of fortune, Stands still in esperance,lives not in fear: The lamentable change is from the best ; The worst returns to laughter. Welcome then, Thou unsubstantial air, that I embrace ! The wretch, that thou hast blown unto the worst, Owes nothing to thy blasts. But who comes here?
1 Bedlamite, madman.
? It is better to be thus contemned and know it, than to be flattered by those who secretly contemn us.