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In, boy; go first.—[To the Fool.] You houseless | Couldst thou save nothing ? Didst * thou give poverty,
'em all ? Nay, get thee in. I'll pray, and then I 'll sleep.- Foot. Nay, he reserved a blanket, else we had
[Fool goes in. been all shamed. Poor naked wretches, wheresoe'er you are,
LEAR. Now, all the plagues that in the penThat bide the pelting of this pitiless storm,
dulous air How shall your houseless heads and unfed sides, Hang fated o'er men's faults, light on thy Your loop'd and window'd raggedness, defend you
daughters ! From seasons such as these? 0, I have ta’en
KENT. He hath no daughters, sir. Too little care of this ! Take physic, pomp ;
LEAR. Death, traitor! nothing could have Expose thyself to feel what wretches feel,
subdu'd nature That thou mayst shake the superflux to them, To such a lowness, but his unkind daughters.And show the heavens more just.
Is it the fashion, that discarded fathers EDG. [Within.] Fathom and half, fathom and Should have thus little mercy on their flesh ? half! poor Tom !
Judicious punishment ! 'twas this flesh begot [The Fool runs out from the hovel. | Those pelican daughters. Fool. Come not in here, nuncle, here's a spirit. Edg. Pillicock sat on Pillicock-hill ;Help me, help me!
Halloo, halloo, loo, loo ! KENT. Give me thy hand.—Who's there?
Fool. This cold night will turn us all to fools FOOL. A spirit, a spirit; he says his name's poor and madmen. Tom.
Edg. Take heed o’the foul fiend : obey thy KENT. What art thou that dost grumble there parents; keep thy word justly; † swear not ; i' the straw? Come forth.
commit not with man's sworn spouse ; set not thy
sweet heart on proud array. Tom's a-cold. Enter EDGAR, disguised as a Madman.
LEAR. What hast thou been ?
Eng. A serving-man, proud in hcart and mind; Eng. Away! the foul fiend follows me !
that curled my hair ; wore gloves in my cap, (2) Through the sharp hawthorn blows the cold served the lust of my mistress' heart, and did the wind,*
act of darkness with her; swore as many oaths as
I spake words, and broke them in the sweet face Hum! go to thy cold bed, and warm thee. of heaven: one, that slept in the contriving of
LEAK. Hast thou given all to thy two daughters ? | lust, and waked to do it. Wine loved I decply; I And art thou come to this?
dice dearly; and in woman, out-paramoured the EDG. Who gives anything to poor Tom ? whom Turk : false of heart, light of ear, bloody of hand; the foul fiend hath led through fire and through hog in sloth, fox in stealth, wolf in greediness, flame, through ford † and whirlpool, o'er bog dog in madness, lion in prey. Let not the and quagmire ; that hath laid knives under his creaking of shoes, nor the rustling of silks, betray pillow,(1) and halters in his pew; set ratsbane thy poor heart to woman: keep thy foot out of by his porridge ; made him proud of heart, to ride | brothels, thy hand out of plackets, thy pen from on a bay trotting-horse over four-inched bridges ; | lenders' books, and defy the foul fiend.— to course his own shadow for a traitor.— Bless thy five wits! Tom's a-cold.—0, do de, do de, do de.
Still through the hawthorn blows the cold wind : -Bless thee from whirlwinds, star-blasting, and
Says suum, mun, ha no nonny. taking! Do poor Tom some charity, whom the foul Dolphin my boy, my boy, sessa ; let him trot by. fiend vexes. There could I have him now,-and
Storm continues. there,—and there again,--and there.
LEAR. Why, $ thou were better in thy || grave,
Storm continues. than to answer with thy uncovered body this exLEAR. What,have his daughters brought him tremity of the skies.—Is man no more than this ? to this pass ?
Consider him well. Thou owest the worm no silk,
(*) First folio, blow the windes.
ww.ine windes...... (t) First folio, Sword.
(*) First folio, Wouldst.
(+) First folio, words Iustice. (1) First folio, deerely.
(8) First folio omits, Why. (ll) First folio, a.
a- go to thy cold bed, and warm thee. The commentators, with admirable unanimity, persist in declaring this line to be a ridicule on one in “The Spanish Trajedy," Act II.
" What outcries pluck me from my naked bed !"
from bed, and to say one lay on a sick bed (a form of expression far from uncommon even now) implied merely that he was lying sick a-bed. It is to be observed that the folio, probably by accident, as it gives the line correctly in " The Taming of the Shrew," omits the word "cold."
b Hast thou given all to thy two daughters?] So the quarto; the folio reads, "Did'st thou give all to thy daughters l'
c - taking!) See note (b), p. 80.
But to an audience of Shakespeare's age there was nothing risible in either line. The phrase to go to a cold bed meant only to go cold to bed; to rise from a naked bed signified to get up naked
the beast no hide, the sheep no wool, the cat no | Eng. Poor Tom's a-cold. perfume.—Ha! here's three on's are sophisticated! Glo. Go in with me; my duty cannot suffer --Thou art the thing itself: unaccommodated man To obey in all your daughters' hard commands : is no more but such a poor, bare, forked animal as Though their injunction be to bar my doors, thou art.-Off, off, you lendings !--come, unbutton And let this tyrannous night take hold upon you, here. —
[T'earing off his clothes. Yet have I ventur’d to come seek you out, Fool. Prythee, nuncle, be contented ; 't is a And bring you where both fire and food is naughty night to swim in.—Now a little fire in a
ready. wild field were like an old lecher's heart,-a small LEAR. First let me talk with this philosopher. spark, all the rest op's body cold.—Look, here What is the cause of thunder ? comes a walking fire.
KENT. Good my lord, take his offer; go into Edg. This is the foul fiend * Flibbertigibbet : the house. be begins at curfew, and walks till the f first cock ; | LEAR. I'll talk a word with this same learned be gives the web and the pin, squints the eye,
Theban.and makes the hare-lip; mildews the white wheat, What is your study ? and hurts the poor creature of earth.
Edg. How to prevent the fiend, and to kill Saint Withold footed thrice the wold;c
vermin. He met the night-mare, and her nine-fold ;
LEAR. Let me ask you one word in private. Bid her alight,
Kent. Importune him once more to go, my And her troth plight,
lord, And, aroint thee, witch, aroint thee !
His wits begin to unsettle.
Canst thou blame him ? Kext. How fares your grace ?
His daughters seek his death :-ah, that good
He said it would be thus,-poor banish'd man !LEAR. What's he?
Thou say'st the king grows mad; I'll tell thee, Kent. Who's there? What is 't you seek ?
friend, Glo. What are you there? Your names ? I am almost mad myself: I had a son,
EDG. Poor Tom ; that eats the swimming frog, | Now outlaw'd from my blood; he sought my life, the toad, the tadpole, the wall-newt and the But latey, very late : I lov'd him, friend, water ; that in the fury of his heart, when the No father his son dearer : true to tell thee, foul fiend rages, eats cow-dung for sallets ; swallows
[Storm continues. the old rat, and the ditch-dog; drinks the green The grief hath craz'd my wits.—What a night's Gantle of the standing pool ; who is whipped from
this ! tything to tything, and stocked, punished, and I do beseech your grace,imprisoned; who hath had I three suits to his back, LEAR.
O, cry you mercy, sir.six shirts to his body, horse to ride, and weapon to Noble philosopher, your company. Fear,
EDG. Tom's a-cold. But mice and rats, and such small deer,
Glo. In, fellow, there, into the hovel : keep
thee warm. Have been Tom's food for seven long year.
LEAR. Come, let's in all. Beware my follower.—Peace, Smulkin ; peace, KENT.
This way, my lord. thou fiend!
With him ; Glo. What, hath your grace no better company? | I will keep still with my philosopher.
Edg. The prince of darkness is a gentleman; KENT. Good my lord, soothe him ; let him take Modo he's call'd, and Mahu.(3)
the fellow. Glo. Our flesh and blood, my lord, is grown Glo. Take him you on. so vile,
Kent. Sirrah, come on ; go along with us. That it doth hate what gets it.
LEAR. Come, good Athenian.
First folio omits. send.
(1) First folio, walkes at. (1) First folio omits, had. * - Flibbertigibbet :) See quotation from Harsnet, in the strative Comments to this Act.
- the web and the pin,-) The cataract. One of the se ning to Cataratta in Florio's Dictionary is, “A dimnesse of nghus occasioned by humores hardned in the eies called a Cataract
instead of "wold.” Withold was the Saint popularly invoked against the nightmare.
But mice and rats, and such small deer,
Have been Tom's food for seven long year.]
" Rattes and myce and such smal dere
Sig. F. iij.
Saint Withold footed thrice the wold:1 The old copies have Settle for * Saint Withold," and old at the end of the line
No words, no words : hush. | Eng. Frateretto a calls me ; and tells me Nero Eng. Child Rowland to the dark tower came, is an angler in the lake of darkness. Pray,
His word was still,—Fie, foh, and fum, innocent, and beware the foul fiend.
[Exeunt. madman be a gentleman or a yeoman ?
LEAR. A king, a king!
Fool. No, he's a yeoman that has a gentleSCENE V.-A Room in Gloucester's Castle. man to his son ; for he's a mad yeoman, that sees
his son a gentleman before him.
spits Enter CORNWALL and EDMUND.
LEAR. To have a thousand with red burning Corn. I will have my revenge, ere I depart
| Come hissing in upon 'em : his house.
Eng. The foul fiend bites my back. Edm. How, my lord, I may be censured, that | Fool. He's mad, that trusts in the tameness of nature thus gives way to loyalty, something fears a wolf, a horse's health, a boy's love, or a whore's me to think of.
oath. Corn. I now perceive, it was not altogether LEAR. It shall be done; I will arraign them your brother's evil disposition made him seek his
straight.death ; but a provoking merit, set a-work by a | Come, sit thou here, most learned justicer ;* reproveable badness in himself.
[To EDGAR. Edm. How malicious is my fortune, that I must Thou, sapient sir, sit here. [To the Fool.]—Now, repent to be just! This is the letter * he spoke of,
you she-foxes ! which approves him an intelligent party to the
Eng. Look, where he stands and glares ! advantages of France. O heavens! that this Wantest thou eyes at trial, madam ? treason were not, or not I the detector!
Come o'er the bourn,+ Bessy, to me :Corn. Go with me to the duchess.
Fool. Her boat hath a leak, Edm. If the matter of this paper be certain,
And she must not speak you have mighty business in hand.
Why she dares not come over to thee.
Edg. The foul fiend haunts poor Tom in the may be ready for our apprehension.
voice of a nightingale. Hopdance cries in Tom's Edn. [ Aside.) If I find him comforting the belly for two white herring. Croak nut, black king, it will stuff his suspicion more fully.-I will angel; I have no food for thee. persever in my course of loyalty, though the Kent. How do you, sir ? Stand you not so conflict be sore between that and my blood.
amaz'd: Corn. I will lay trust upon thee; and thou Will you lie down and rest upon the cushions ? shalt find a dearer † father in my love. [Exeunt, LEAR. I'll see their trial first.—Bring in the
Thou robed man of justice, take thy place ;SCENE VI.-A Chamber in a Farm-house,
[To EDGAR. adjoining the Castle.
And thou, his roke-fellow of equity, [To the Fool.
, Bench by his side.—You are o' the commission, Enter GlorCESTER, LEAR, KENT, Fool, and!
" Sit you too.
[To KENT. EDGAR,
I Eng. Let us deal justly. Glo. Here is better than the open air ; take it
Sleepest, or mkest thou, jolly shepherd ? thankfully. I will piece out the comfort with what
Thy sheep be in the corn ; addition I can: I will not be long from you.
Anel for one blast of thy minikin mouth, Kext. All the power of his wits have giren
Thy sheep shall take no harm.' way to his impatience :-the grands rewand rour Lindness!
Art GlorCESTER.' Pur! the cat is grer.
(*) First folo inserts, die
p. Od tert, mustace; altered by Theobald. a Frateretto e as we! Seite quotation frem Harsnet, in the
| 1 0:& teni, daupme.
(1) Old text, their. Tlustrative Comments to this Act.
Prar, innan, The term * in* ** though ** Erst I Wantest .mu a trialmadam !] Seward, plausibly diren only to idats, came in time to barwta pr fonful t
muad," wastesist thou eyes, * &c. e Fool No; he sa yaman, s iis see is not in the
si sa te mu horn! AS "the foul fiend haunts
* Tan te rice of a nightingale," the representative The foul send Nites my le This with the whole of what I was sur intended by Shakespeare to sing these follows, down to elusive
n ts and not ta nely recite them after the
met of the weders stare is omitted in the air
LEAR. Arraign her first ; 'tis Goneril.—I here take my oath before this honourable assembly, she kicked the poor king her father. Fool. Come hither, mistress. Is your name
Goneril ? LEAR. She cannot deny it. Fool. Cry you mercy, I took you for a jointstool.
[proclaim LEAR. And here's another, whose warp'd looks
What store her heart is made on. — Stop her
there ! Arms, arms, sword, fire ! — Corruption in the
EDG. Bless thy five wits !