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Enter GLOSTER, led by an OLD MAN. My father, poorly led ? —World, world, O world! But that thy strange mutations make us hate thee, Life would not yield to age.

0. Man. O my good lord, I have been your tenant, and your father's tenant, these fourscore years. Glos. Away, get thee away; good friend, be

gone : Thy comforts can do me no good at all; Thee they may hurt.

0. Man. Alack, sir, you cannot see your way. Glos. I have no way, and therefore want no

I stumbled when I saw.

Full oft 'tis seen,
Our means secure us ; 1 and our mere defects
Prove our commodities.—Ah, dear son Edgar,
The food of thy abused father's wrath !
Might I but live to see thee in my touch,
I'd say, I had eyes again!
0. Man.

How now? Who's there? Edg. [aside.] O gods! Who is ’t can say, 'I am

at the worst?' I am worse than e'er I was. 0. Man.

'Tis poor mad Tom. Edg. [aside.] And worse I may be yet: the worst So long as we can say, 'This is the worst.'

is not,

1 Our mediocrity of condition becomes our security.

0. Man. Fellow, where goest ? Glos.

Is it a beggar-man? 0. Man. Madman and beggar too.

Glos. He has some reason, else he could not beg.
l' the last night's storm I such a fellow saw,
Which made me think a man a worm : my son
Came then into my mind; and yet my mind
Was then scarce friends with him : I have heard

more since.
As flies to wanton boys, are we to the gods ;
They kill us for their sport.

How should this be?
Bad is the trade must play the fool to sorrow,
Angering itself and others. [aside.]—Bless thee,

master! Glos. Is that the naked fellow ? 0. Man.

Ay, my lord. Glos. Then, pr’ythee, get thee gone. If, for my

sake, Thou wilt o'ertake us, hence a mile or twain, l' the way to Dover, do it for ancient love ; And bring some covering for this naked soul, Whom I 'll entreat to lead me. 0. Man.

Alack, sir, he's mad. Glos. 'Tis the times' plague, when madmen lead

the blind : Do as I bid thee, or rather do thy pleasure ; Above the rest, be gone. 0. Man. I'll bring him the best 'parel that I


Come on 't what will.

[Exit. Glos. Sirrah, naked fellow! Edg. Poor Tom 's a-cold.—I cannot daub 1 it farther.

[aside. Glos. Come hither, fellow. Edg. [aside.] And yet I must.-Bless thy sweet

eyes, they bleed. Glos. Knowest thou the way to Dover ?

Edg. Both stile and gate, horseway and footpath. Poor Tom hath been scared out of his good wits. Bless the good man from the foul fiend! Five fiends have been in poor Tom at once; of lust, as Obidicut; Hobbididance, prince of dumbness; Mahu, of stealing ; Modo, of murder; and Flibbertigibbet, of mopping and mowing,? who since possesses chambermaids and waiting-women. So, bless thee, master! Glos. Here, take this purse, thou whom the

heaven's plagues Have humbled to all strokes : that I am wretched, Makes thee the happier.—Heavens, deal so still ! Let the superfluous and lust-dieted man, That slaves your ordinance,3 that will not see Because he doth not feel, feel your power quickly; So distribution should undo excess, And each man have enough.-Dost thou know

Dover ?

1 Disguise.

? Of making wry mouths. 3 i. e. who makes your ordinance subject to him, instead of acting in obedience to it.

Edg. Ay, master.
Glos. There is a cliff, whose high and bending

Looks fearfully in the confined deep :
Bring me but to the very brim of it,
And I'll repair the misery thou dost bear
With something rich about me: from that place
I shall no leading need.

Give me thy arm;
Poor Tom shall lead thee.




Before the Duke of Albany's palace. Enter GONERIL and EDMUND ; STEWARD meeting

them. Gon. Welcome, my lord : I marvel, our mild

husband Not met on the way.-Now, where's

your master? Stew. Madam, within; but never man so changed. I told him of the army that was landed ; He smiled at it: I told him, you were coming ; His answer was, “The worse :' of Gloster's treachery, And of the loyal service of his son, When I inform’d him, then he call'd me sot; And told me, I had turn’d the wrong side out. What most he should dislike, seems pleasant to

him ;

What like, offensive.

Then shall you go no farther.

[to Edmund.
It is the cowish terror of his spirit,
That dares not undertake: he'll not feel wrongs,
Which tie him to an answer: our wishes, on the

way, May prove effects. Back, Edmund, to my brother ; Hasten his musters, and conduct his powers : I must change arms at home, and give the distaff Into my

husband's hands. This trusty servant Shall pass between us : ere long you are like to

hear, If

you dare venture in your own behalf, A mistress's command. Wear this; spare speech ;

[giving a favor. Decline


head : this kiss, if it durst speak, Would stretch thy spirits up into the air. Conceive, and fare thee well.

Edm. Yours in the ranks of death.

My most dear Gloster!

[Exit Edmund. 0, the difference of man and man! To thee a woman's services are due; My fool usurps my bed. Stew.

Madam, here comes my lord.

[Exit Steward.

Ti. e. the wishes we have expressed on our journey may be carried into effect.

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