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You are not worth the dust which the rude wind
Blows in your face.-I fear your disposition :
That nature, which contemns its origin,
Cagnot be border'd certain in itself;
She that herself will sliver and disbranch
From her material sap, perforce must wither,
And come to deadly use.
Gon. No more; the text is foolish.
Alb. Wisdom and goodness to the vile seem vile:
Filths savour but themselves. What have you done?
Tigers, not daughters, what have you perform'd ?
A father, and a gracious aged man,
Whose reverence the head-lugg'd bear would lick,
Most barbarous, most degenerate! have you
Could my good brother suffer you to do it?
A man, a prince, by him so benefited ?
If that the heavens do not their visible spirits
Send quickly down to tame these vile offences,
Humanity must perforce prey on itself,
Like monsters of the deep.
Milk-liver'd man !
That bear'st a cheek for blows, a head for wrongs;
Who hast not in thy brows an eye discerning
Thine honour from thy suffering; that not know'st,
Fools do those villains pity, who are punish'd
Ere they have done their mischief. Where's thy
France spreads his banners in our noiseless land :
With plumed helm thy slayer begins threats ;
Whilst thou, a moral fool, sit'st still, and cri'st,
Alack! why does he so ?
See thyself, devil!
Proper deformity seems not in the fiend
So horrid, as in woman.
O vain fool!
Alb. Thou changed and self-cover'd thing, for
shame, Be-monster not thy feature. Were it my fitness To let these hands obey my blood,
They are apt enough to dislocate and tear Thy flesh and bones :-Howe'er thou art a fiend, A woman's shape doth shield thee. Gon. Marry, your manhood now !
Enter a Messenger.
Alb. What news?
Mess. O, my good lord, the duke of Cornwall's
Slain by his servant, going to put out
The other eye of Gloster.
Mess. A servant that he bred, thrill'd with re-
morse, Oppos'd against the act, bending his sword To his great master: who, thereat ermag'd, Flew on him, and amongst them felld him dead: But not without that harmful stroke, which sure Hath pluck'd him after. Alb.
This shows you are above, You justicers, that these our nether crimes So speedily can venge -But, O poor Gloster! Lost he his other eye? Mess.
Both, both, my lord. This letter, madam, craves a speedy answer ; 'Tis from your sister.
Gon. (Aside.] One way I like this well; But being widow, and my Gloster with her, May all the building in my fancy pluck Upon my hateful life : Another way, The news is not so tart—I'll read, and answer.
. Alb. Where was his son, when they did take his
Mess. Come with my lady hither.
He is not here.
Mess. No, my good lord; I met him back again.
Alb. Knows he the wickedness!
Mess. Ay, my good lord; 'twas he inform'd
against him ;
And quit the house on purpose, that their punish-
Might have the freer course.
Gloster, I live
To thank thee for the love thou show'dst the king,
And to revenge thine eyes.-Come hither, friend;
Tell me what more thou knowest. (Eseunt.
SCENE III.---The French camp near Dover.
Enter Kent, and a Gentleman.
Kent. Why the king of France is so suddenly
gone back know you the reason?
Gent. Sornething he left imperfect in the state,
Which since his coming forth is thought of; which
Imports to the kingdom so much fear and danger,
That his personal return was most requir'd,
Kent. Who bath he left behind him general ?
Gent. The mareschal of France, Monsieur le Fer.
Kent. Did your letters pierce the queen to any
demonstration of grief?
Gent. Ay, sir; she took them, read them in my
And now and then an ample tear trill'd down
Her delicate cheek: it seem'd, she was a queen
Over her passion ; who, most rebel-like,
Sought to be king o'er her.
O, then it mov'd her.
Gent. Not to a rage; patience and sorrow strove
Who should express her goodliest. You have seen
Sunshine and rain at once ; her smiles and tears
Were like a better day: Those happy smiles,
That play'd on her ripe lip, seem'd not to know
What guests were in her eyes; which parted thence,
As pearls from diamonds dropp'd. - In brief, sorrow
Would be a rarity most belov'd, if all
Could so become it.
Made she no verbal question ? Gent. 'Faith, once, or twice, she heav'd the name
Pantingly forth, as if it press'd her heart;
Cried, Sisters ! sisters!-Shame of ladies! sisters:
Kent! father! sisters! What? i'the storm.? i'the
Let pity not be believed!2There she shook
The holy water from her heavenly eyes,
And clamour moisten'd: then away she started
To deal with grief alone.
It is the stars,
The stars above us, govern our conditions :3
Else one self mate and mate could not beget
Such different issues. You spoke not with her since ?
Kent. Was this before the king return'd?
No, since. Kent. Well, sir; The poor distress'd Lear is i'the
Who sometime, in his better tune, remembers
What we are come about, and by no means
Will yield to see his daughter.
Why, good sir? Kent. A sovereign shame so elbows him: his own
unkindness, That stripp'd her from his benediction, turn'd her To foreign casualties, gave her dear rights To his dog-hearted daughters,—these things sting His mind so venomously, that burning shaine Detains him from Cordelia. Gent.
Alack, poor gentleman ! Kent. Of Albany's and Cornwall's powers4 jou
heard not? (1) Discourse, conversation. (2) i. e. Let not pity be supposed to exist. (3) Dispositions. (4) Forces.
Gent. 'Tis so; they are afoot.
Kent. Well, sir, I'll bring you to our master Lear,
And leave you to attend him: some dear cause!
Will in concealment wrap me up a while;
When I am known aright, you shall not grieve
Leoding me this acquaintance. I pray you, go
Along with me.
(Exeunt. SCENE IV.-The same. A tent. Enter Cor
delia, Physician, and Soldiers.
Cor. Alack, 'tis he; why, he was met even now
As mad as the vex'd sea: singing aloud;
Crown'd with rank fumiter,2 and furrow-weeds,
With harlocks, hemlock, nettles, cuckoo-flowers,
Darnel, and all the idle weeds that grow
In our sustaining corn.-A century send forth;
Search every acre in the high grown field,
And bring him to our eye. [Exit an Officer.)
What can man's wisdom do,
In the restoring his bereaved sense ?
He, that helps him, take all my outward worth.
Phy. There is means, madam:
Our foster-nurse of nature is repose,
The which he lacks; that to provoke in him,
Are many simples operative, whose power
Will close the eye of anguish.
All bless'd secrets,
All you unpublish'd virtues of the earth,
Spring with my tears! be aidant, and remediate,
In the good man's distress Seek, seek for him;
Lest his ungovern'd rage dissolve the life
That wants the means to lead it.4
Enter a Messenger.
The British powers are marching hitherward.
(1) Important business. (2) Fumitory.
(4) i. e. The reason which should guide it.