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My naked head expos’d to th' merciless air,
Than have my smallest wants supply'd by her.

Gon. At your choice, sir.
Lear. Now, I pr’ythee, daughter, do not make me

I will not trouble thee, my child; farewell;
Let shame come when it will, I do not call it;
I do not bid the thunder bearer strike,
Nor tell tales of thee to avenging Heaven.
Mend when thou canst ; be better at thy leisure;-
I can be patient, I can stay with Regan,
1, and my hundred knights.

Reg. Your pardon, sir;
I look'd not for you yet, nor am provided
For your fit welcome.

Lear, Is this well spoken, now?
Reg. My sister treats you fair. What!

What! fifty fol-
lowers ?
Is it not well? What should you need of more ?

Gon. Why might not you, my lord, receive attend-
From those whom she calls servants, or from mine?

Reg. Why not, my lord ? If then they chance to
We could control them.- If you come to me,
For now I see the danger, I intreat you
To bring but five and twenty; to no more
Will I give place.

Lear. I gave you all!
Reg. And in good time you gave it.
Lear. Hold, now, my temper! stand this bolt un-

And I am thunder proof.
The wicked, when compar'd with the more wicked,
Seem beautiful; and not to be the worst,
Stands in some rank of praise. Now, Goneril,
Thou art innocent again, I'll go

with thee;
Thy fifty yet does double five and twenty,
And thou art twice her love,



slack you,

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Osw. What dost thou know me for?

Kent. For a base, proud, beggarly, white-livered, glass-gazing, super-serviceable, finical rogue; one that would be a pimp in way of good service, and art nothing but a composition of knave, beggar, coward, pander,

Osw. What a monstrous fellow art thou, to rail at one that is neither known of thee, nor knows thee!

Kent. Impudent slave! not know me, who but two days since tripped up thy heels before the king! Draw, miscreant, or I'll make the moon shine through thee.

[Drawing his Sword. Osw. What means the fellow? I tell thee, I have nothing to do with thee.

Kent. Draw, you rascal. I know your rogueship's office; you come with letters against the king, taking my young lady Vanity's part against her royal father: Draw, rascal. Osw. Murder! murder! help!

[E.xit, Kent after him.

Flourish of Trumpets.

that your


The GUARD, and ATTENDANTS; Gloster and
Glost. All welcome to your gracés ; you do me

Corn. Gloster, we have heard with sorrow,

life Has been attempted by your impious son: But Edmund here has paid you strictest duty:

Glost. He did bewray his practice, and receiv'd
The hurt you see, striving to apprehend him.

Corn. Is he pursued ?
Glost. He is, my lord.

Reg. Use our authority to apprehend The traitor, and do justice on his head. For you, Edmund, that have signaliz’d Your virtue, you from henceforth shall be ours; Natures of such firm trust we much shall need. A charming youth, and worth my farther thought!

Corn. Lay comfort, noble Gloster, to your breast, As we to ours. This night be spent in revels. We chuse you, Gloster, for our host to-night, A troublesome expression of our love. On, to the sports before us. [Noise within.]—Who

are these?

Enter OSWALD, pursued by Kent.
Glost. Now, what's the matter?
Corn. Keep peace upon your lives; he dies that

Whence, and what are ye?

Reg. The messengers from our sister, and the king.
Corn. Your difference? speak.
Osw. I'm scarce in breath, my lord.

Kent. No marvel, you have so bestir'd your valour. Nature disclaims the dastard; a tailor made him.

Corn. Speak yet, how grew your quarrel ?

Osw. Sir, this old ruffian here, whose life I spar'd In pity to his beard,

Kent. Thou essence bottle!
In pity to my beard!—Your leave, my lord,
And I will tread the musk-cat into mortar.

Corn. Know'st thou our presence?
Kent. Yes, sir, but anger has a privilege.
Corn. Why art thou angry?

Kent. That such a slave as this should wear a sword
And have no courage; office, and' no honesty;
Not frost and fire hold more antipathy
Than I and such a knave.

Glost. Why dost thou call him knave ?
Kent. His countenance likes 'me not.


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Corn. No more, perhaps, does mine, nor his, or hers.
Kent. Plain dealing is my trade; and, to be plain,

I have seen better faces in my time,
Than stand on any shoulders now before me.
Reg. This is some fellow, that having once been

For bluntness, since affects a saucy rudeness;
But I have known one of these surly knaves,
That in his plainness harbour'd more design
Than twenty cringing complimenting minions.

Corn. What's the offence you gave him?

Osw. Never any, sir;
It pleas'd the king, his master, lately
To strike me on a slender misconstruction;
Whilst, watching his advantage, this old lurcher
Tripp'd nie behind, for which the king extolld him;
And, Aush'd with the honour of this bold exploit,
Drew on me here again.
Corn. Bring forth the stocks; we'll teach you.

Kent. Sir, I'm too old to learn;
Call not the stocks for me; I serve the king,
On whose employment I was sent to you:
You'll show too small respect, and too bold malice
Against the person of my royal master,
Stocking his messenger.

[ATTENDANTS bring forth the Stocks. Corn. Bring forth the stocks; as I have life and

honour, There shall he sit till noon.

[Attendants seize Kent. Reg. Till noon, my lord! Till night, and all night

Kent. Why, madam, if I were your father's dog,
You would not use me so.
Reg. Sir, being his knave, I will.

[ATTENDANTS put Kent into the Stocks. Glost. Let me beseech your graces to forbear him;

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His fault is much, and the good king, his master,
Will check him fort; but needs must take it ill
To be thus slighted in his messenger.

Corn. We'll answer that;
Our sister may receive it worse to have
Her gentleman assaulted. To our business, lead.

[Exeunt all but Gloster into the Castle. Glost. I am sorry for thee, friend; 'tis the duke's

pleasure, Whose disposition will not be controllid; But I'll intreat 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 • Farewell t'ye, sir. [Exit Gloster into the Castle. Good king, that must approve the common saw ! Thou out of Heaven's benediction com'st To the warm sun.-All weary and o’erwatch'd, I feel the drowsy guest steal on me; take Advantage, heavy eyes, of this kind slumber, Not to behold this vile and shameful lodging.



A Forest.

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Enter EDGAR. Edg. I heard myself proclaim'd, And by the friendly hollow of a tree, Escap'd the hunt. No port is free, no place, Where guards and most unusal vigilance Do not attend to take me, -How easy now Twere to defeat the malice of my trail, And leave my griefs on my sword's reeking point; But love detains me from death's peaceful cell, Still whispering me, Cordelia's in distress :

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