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Deep, till I wak'd him, you should enjoy half his revenue for ever, and live the beloved of your brother Edgar.--Hum

Conspiracy!- fleep, 'till I wake him-you hould enjoy half his revenue-My son Edgar! had he a hand to write this! a heart and brain to breed it in ! When came this to you? who brought it?

Edm. It was not brought me, my lord; there's the cunning of it. I found it thrown in at the casement of my closet. Glo. You know the character to be

your brother's ? Edm. If the matter were good, my lord, I durft swear, it were his; but in respect of that, I would fain think, it were not.

Glo. It is his.

Edm. It is his hand, my lord; I hope, his heart is not in the contents.

Glo. Has he never before sounded you in this business?

Edm. Never, my lord. But I have heard him oft maintain it to be fit, that sons at perfect age, and fathers - declining, the father should be as a ward to the son, and the son manage his revenue.

Glo. O villain, villain! his very opinion in the letter. Abhorred villain! unnatural, detested, brutish villain ! worse than brutish! Go, firrah, seek him; I'll apprehend him. Abominable villain! where is he?

Edm. I do not well know, my lord; if it Mall please you to suspend your indignation against my brother, 'till you can derive from him better testimony of his intent, you should run a certain course; where, if you violently proceed against him, mistaking his purpose, it would make a great gap in your own honour, and Thake in pieces the heart of his obedience. . I dare pawn down my life for him, that he hath writ this to feel my affection to your Honour, and to no other pretence of danger. Glo. Think


so? Edm. If your Honour judge it meet, I will place you where

you shall hear us confer of this, and by an auricular assurance have your satisfaction: and that, with. out any further delay than this very evening.


Glo. He cannot be such a monster.
Edm. Nor is not, sure.

Glo. To his Father, that so tenderly and entirely loves him-Heav'n and Earth! Edmund, seek him out; wind me into him, I pray you; frame the business after your own wisdom. I would unftate myself, to be in a due resolution.

Edm. I will seek him, Sir, presently: convey the bu. siness as I shall find means, and acquaint you withal.

Glo. These late eclipses in the sun and moon portend no good to us; tho' the wisdom of nature can reason it thus and thus, yet nature finds itself scourg'd by the frequent effects. Love cools, friendship falls off, trothers divide. In cities, mutinies; in countries, difcord; in Palaces, treason; and the bond crack'd 'twixt son and father. This villain of mine comes under the prediction, there's son against father; the King falls from bias of nature, there's father against child. We have seen the best of our time. Machinations, hollowness, treachery, and all ruinous disorders follow us disquietly to our graves! Find out this villain, Edmund; it shall lose thee nothing, do it carefully---and the noble and true-hearted Kent banish'd! his offence, Honesty. 'Tis strange.

(Exit. Manet Edmund. Edm. This is the excellent foppery of the world, that, when we are fick in fortune, (often the surfeits of our own behaviour) we make guilty of our disasters, the sun, the moon and stars (7); as if we were villains on necessity; fools, by heavenly compulsion; knaves,

(7) We make guilty of our disasters, the sun, the moon, and fars:) It was the opinion of judicial afrologers, that whatsoever good dispofitions the infant, unborn, might be endow'd with, either from nature or traductively from its parents; yet if, at the hour of birth, its delivery was by any casual accident fo accelerated, or retarded, that it fell in with the predominancy of a malignant constellation ; that momentary influence would entirely change its nature, and bias it to all the contrary ill qualities. This was so wretched and monstrous an opinion, that it well deserved and was well fitted for the lash of satire.

Mr. Warburton.


thieves, and treacherous, by spherical predominance; drunkards, lyars, and adulterers, by an inforc'd obedience of planetary influence; and all that we are evil in, by a divine thrusting on. An admirable evasion of whore-master Man, to lay his goatih difpofition on the charge of a star! my father compounded with my mo. ther under the Dragon's tail, and my nativity was under Urfa major; so that it follows, I am rough and lecherous. I should have been what I am, had the maidenliest star in the firmament twinkled on my bartardizing.

To bim, Enter Edgar. Pat! che comes, like the Catastrophe of the old comedy; my cue is villanous Melancholy, with a figh like Tom O' Bedlam-O, these eclipses portend these divifions! fa, sol, la, me

Edg. How now, brother Edmund, what serious contemplation are you in?

Edm. I am thinking, brother, of a prediction I read this other day, what should follow these eclipses.

Edg. Do you busy your self with that?

Edm. I promise you, the effects, he writes of, succeed unhappily. When saw you my father last ?

Edg. The night gone by. Edm. Spake you with him? Edg. Ay, two hours together. Edm. Parted you in good terms, found you no difpleasure in him, by word or countenance ?

Edg. None at all.

Edm. Bethink yourself, wherein you have offended him: and, at my intreaty, forbear his presence, until some little time hath qualified the heat of his displeafure; which at this instant so rageth in him, that with the mischief of your person it would scarcely allay.

Edg. Some villain hath done me wrong.
Edm. That's my fear; I

pray you, have a continent forbearance 'till the speed of his rage goes flower: and as I say, retire with me to my lodging, from whence I will fitly bring you to hear my lord speak: pray you,


go, there's my key: if you do ftir abroad, go arm'd.

Edg. Arın'd, brother !

Edm. Brother, I advise you to the best; I am no ho-
nelt man, if there be any good meaning ioward you: I
have told you what I have seen and heard, but faintly;
nothing like the image and horror of it; pray you,
Edg. Shall I hear from you anon?

Edm. I do serve you in this business.
A credulous father, and a brother noble,
Whofe nature is so far from doing harms,
That he suspects none; on whose foolish honesty
My practices ride easy: I see the business.
Let me, if not by birth, have lands by wit;
All with me's meet, that I can fashion fit. [Exit.

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SCE N E, the Duke of Albany's Palace.


Enter Gonerill, and Steward.
Gon ID my father strike my gentleman for chiding

of his fool ? Stew. Ay, madam.

Gon. By day and night, he wrongs me; every hour
He flashes into one gross crime or other,
That sets us all at odds; I'll not endure it:
His Knights grow riotous, and himself upbraids us
On ev'ry trife. When he returns from hunting,
I will not speak with him; say, I am fick.
If you come flack of former services,
You shall do well; the fault of it I'll answer.

Stew. He's coming, madam, I hear him.

Gon. Put on what weary negligence you please.
You and your fellows: I'd have it come to question.
If he distaste it, let him to my sister,
Whose mind and mine, I know, in that are one,
Not to be over-rul'd: Idle old Man, (8)


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(8) Idle old Man,] The following lines, as they are fine in themfelves, and very much in character for Gonerill, I have restor’d from


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That still would manage those Authorities,
That he hath giv'n away!-Now, by my Life,
Old Fools are Babes again; and must be used
With checks, like flatt'rers when they're seen t'abuse us.
Remember, what I have said.

Stew. Very well, madam.

Gon. And let his Knights have colder looks among you: what grows of it, no matter; advise your fellows so: I'll write ftrait to my sister to hold my course: prepare for dinner.


SCENE changes to an open Place before

the Palace.

Enter Kent disguis’d.
F but as well I other accents borrow,


I (g)

May carry thro’ itself to that full issue,
For which I raz’d my likeness. Now, baninh'd Kent,
If thou can't serve where thou dost stand condemn'd,
So may it come, thy master, whom thou lov'ft,
Shall find thee full of labours.

the old 4to. The Jaft verse, which I have ventur’d to amend, is there printed thus;

With Checks, like Flatt'ries when they are feen abus’d. (9) And can my Speecb disuse,] This reading we deriv'd first from Mr. Rozve's edition; and from thence it has taken pofTefsion the two impressions given us by Mr. Pope. But the poet's word was certainly, diffuse: And Kent would say, “ If I can but so spreads out my " accents," (de telle forte espandre, as the French term it ;)“ vary my “ tone, and utterance, so widely from what it used to be as to disguise it; &c.” And diffused in this sense of obsolete, disguised, our poet has more than once employ’d.

Let them from forth a law-pit rush at once,
With some diffused song: Merry Wives of Windsor,
To swearing, and stern looks, diffus’d attire,

King Henry Vth,
Vouchsafe, diffus’d infection of a man,

Kinz Richard IIId.


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