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knave; which, for my part, I will not be, though I should win your displeasure to entreat me to it.

Corn. What was the offence you gave him?
Stew.

I never gave him any.
It pleased the king his master, very late,
To strike at me, upon his misconstruction;
When he, conjunct, and flattering his displeasure,
Tripp'd me behind; being down, insulted, rail'd,
And put upon him such a deal of man,
That worthy'd him, got praises of the king,
For him atteropting who was self-subdued ;
And, in the fleshment of this dread exploit,
Drew on me here again.
Kent.

None of these rogues and cowards, But Ajax is their fool.1 Corn.

Fetch forth the stocks, ho !
You stubborn ancient knave, you reverend braggart,
We'll teach you
Kent.

Sir, I am too old to learn :
Call not your stocks for me: I serve the king,
On whose employment I was sent to you.
You shall do small respect, show too bold malice
Against the grace

and
person

of

my master, Stocking his messenger. Corn.

Fetch forth the stocks : As I've life and honor, there shall he sit till noon. Re. Till noon! till night, my lord; and all night Kent. Why, madam, if I were your father's dog, You should not use me so. Re.

too.

Ti. e. Ajax is a fool to them.

Sir, being his knave, I will.

[stocks brought out. Corn. This is a fellow of the self-same color Our sister speaks of.—Come, bring away the stocks.

Glos. Let me beseech your grace not to do so : His fault is much, and the good king his master Will check him for 't: your purposed low correction Is such, as basest and contemned'st wretches, For pilferings and most common trespasses, Are punish'd with. The king must take it ill, That he's, so slightly valued in his messenger, Should have him thus restrain’d. Corn.

I'll answer that. Re. My sister may receive it much more worse, To have her gentleman abused, assaulted, For following her affairs.-- Put in his legs.

[Kent is put in the stocks. Come, my good lord; away.

[Exeunt Regan and Cornwall. Glos. I am sorry for thee, friend; 'tis the duke's

pleasure, Whose disposition, all the world well knows, Will not be rubb’d nor stopp'd. I'll entreat for

thee. Kent. Pray, do not, sir: I have watch'd and

travell’d hard ; Some time I shall sleep out, the rest I 'll whistle : A good man's fortune may grow out at heels. Give you good morrow!

Glos. The duke's to blame in this : 'twill be ill taken.

[Exit. Kent. Good king, that must approve the common

saw! Thou out of heaven's benediction comest To the warm sun ! Approach, thou beacon to this under globe, That by thy comfortable beams I may Peruse this letter. Nothing almost sees miracles, But misery. I know, 'tis from Cordelia, Who hath most fortunately been inform’d Of my obscured course; and shall find time From this enormous state,-seeking to give Losses their remedies.—All weary and o'erwatch'd, Take vantage, heavy eyes, not to behold This shameful lodging. Fortune, good night; smile once more; turn thy wheel !

[he sleeps.

SCENE III.

A part of the heath.

Enter EDGAR.

Edg. I heard myself proclaim'd; And, by the happy hollow of a tree, Escaped the hunt. No port is free; no place, That guard, and most unusual vigilance, Does not attend my taking. While I may scape, I will preserve myself; and am bethought To take the basest and most poorest shape,

That ever penury, in contempt of man,
Brought near to beast: my face I'll grime with

filth;

Blanket my loins; elf all my hair in knots ; 1
And with presented nakedness outface
The winds and persecutions of the sky.
The country gives me proof and precedent
Of Bedlam beggars, who, with roaring voices,
Strike in their numb'd and mortified bare arms
Pins, wooden pricks, nails, sprigs of rosemary;
And with this horrible object, from low farms,
Poor pelting villages, sheepcotes, and muls,
Sometime with lunatic bans, sometime with prayers,
Enforce their charity.—Poor Turlygood! poor Tom !
That's something yet ;-Edgar I nothing am.

[Exit.

SCENE IV.

Before Gloster's castle. Enter LEAR, FOOL, and GENTLEMAN. Lear: 'Tis strange, that they should so depart

from home, And not send back my messenger. Gen.

As I learn'd, The night before there was no purpose in them Of this remove.

1 Hair thus knotted was vulgarly supposed to be the work of elves and fairies in the night.

2 Curses.

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Kent. Hail to thee, noble master!

Lear. How !
Makest thou this shame thy pastime?
Kent.

No, my lord.
Fool. Ha, ha! look! he wears cruel 1 garters !
Horses are tied by the head, dogs and bears by the
neck, monkeys by the loins, and men by the legs :
when a man is over-lusty at legs, then he wears
wooden nether-stocks.?
Lear. What's he, that hath so much thy place

mistook, To set thee here? Kent.

It is both he and she,
Your son and daughter.

Lear. No.
Kent. Yes.
Lear. No, I say.
Kent. I say, yea.
Lear. No, no; they would not.
Kent. Yes, they have.
Lear. By Jupiter, I swear, no.
Kent. By Juno, I swear, ay.

Lear. They durst not do't;
They could not, would not do 't; 'tis worse than

murder,
To do upon respect such violent outrage.
Resolve me, with all modest haste, which

way

1 A quibble is here intended on the word crewel, which signifies worsted.

2. The old word for stockings.

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