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Lear. How's that.
Fool. 'Thou should'it not have been old, 'till thou hadit been wise.
Lear. O, let me not be mad, not mad, sweet heav'n! Keep me in temper, I would not be mad.
How now, are the horses ready?
Gent. Ready, my lord.
Lear. Come, boy.
(ture, Fool. She that's a maid now, and laughs at my deparShall not be a maid long, unless things be cut shorter.
SCENE, A Castle belonging to the Earl of Glofer,
Enter Edmund and Curan, severally.
ED M-UN D.
Curan. Cur. And you, Sir. I have been with your father, and given him notice that the Duke of Cornwall, and Regan his Dutchess, will be here with him this night.
Edm. How comes that?
Cur. Nay, I know not; you have heard of the news abroad; I mean, the whisper'd ones ; for they are yet but ear-kissing arguments.
Edm. Not I; pray you what are they?
Cur. Have you heard of no likely wars toward, ?twixt the Dukes of Cornwall and Albany ?
Edm. Not a word.
Cur. You may do then in time. Fare you well, Sir.
[Exit. Edm. The Duke be here to-night! the better! beft! This weaves itself-perforce into my businefs ;
My father hath fet guard to take my brother,
And I have one thing of a queazy question
Which I must act : briefness, and fortune work!
Brother, a word; descend ; Brother, I say ;-
: To bim, Enter Edgar.
My father watches; O Sir, fly this place,
Intelligence is giv'n. where you are hid;
You've now the good advantage of the night-
Have you not spoken 'gainst the Duke of Cornwall ?
He's coming hither, now i' th' night, i' th' haste,
And Regan, with him ; have you nothing said
Upon his Party against the Duke of Albany?
Edg. I'm sure on't, not a word.
Edm. I hear my father coming. Pardon me In cunning, I must draw my sword upon you-Draw, seem to defend yourfelf. Now quit you wellYield-come before my father-light hoa, here ! Fly, brother-Torches !- lo farewel [Ex. Edga Some blood, drawn on me, would beget opinion
[Wounds his arma
Of my more fierce endeavour. I've seen drunkards.
Do more than this in sport. Father !- father.!.
Stop, stop, no help?
To him, Enter Glo'ster, and servants with torches.
Glo. Now, Edmund, where's the villain?
Edm. Here stood he in the dark, his fharp sword outs,
Mumbling of wicked charms, conj'ring the moon
To ftand's auspicious mistress.,
Glo. But where is he?
Edm, Look, Sir, I bleed.
Glo. Where is the villain, Edmund ?
Edm. Fled this way, Sir, when by no means he could
Glo: Pursue him, ho!. go after. By no means, what?
Edm. Persuade me to the murder of your lordship;
But that, I told him, the revenging Gods
'Gainst Parricides did all the thunder bend,
Spoke with how manifold and strong a bond
The child was bound to th’ father. -Sir, in fine,
Seeing how lothly oppofite I stood
To his unnat'ral purpose, in fell motion
With his prepared sword he charges home
My unprovided body, lanc'd my arm;
And when he saw my beft alarmed spirits,
Bold in the quarrel's right, rous'd to th' encounterg,
Or whether gafted by the noise I made,
Full suddenly he fled.
Glo. Let him fly far ;
Not in this land shall he remain uncaught
And found; dispatch-the noble Duke my master,
My worthy and arch-patron, comes to-night; (13)
By his authority I will proclaim it,
That he, which finds him, shall deserve our thanks,,
Bringing the murd'rous coward to the stake :.
He that conceals him, death..
Edm, When I dissuaded him from his intent,
And found him pight to do it, with curft speech
I threaten'd to discover him ; he replied,
Thou un poffeffing Bastard ! do't thou think,
If I would stand against thee, would the reposal
Of any trust, virtue, or worth in thee
Make thy words faith'd ? no ;. what I should deny,
(As this I would, although thou did'It produce
My very character) I'd turn it all:
To thy suggestion, plot, and damned practice;,
And thou must make a dullard of the world,
If they not thought the profits of my death
Were very pregnant and potential spurs.
To make thee seek it:
[Trumpets withino Glo. O ftrange, faften'divillain! Would he deny his letter? I never got him.
(13) My wortby.arch and patron:) I can meet with no authority of this word used in this manner, to signify, my prince, my chief; but always as an epitatic particle prefix'd and annex'd to another noun : and therefore I have ventured to suppose a transposition of the copula. t've, and that we ought to read, arcb-patron, as arcb:duke, „ercb-angel, arcb-bifhop, &c.
Hark, the Duke's trumpets! I know not why he comes
All Ports I'll bar; the villain fhall not "scape;
The Duke maft grant me that; besides, his picture
I will send far and near, that all the Kingdom
May have due note of him; and of my land,
(Loyal and natural Boy!) l'll work the means
To make thee capable.
Enter Cornwall, Regan, and Attendants.
Corn. How now, my noble friend? since I came hither,
Which I can call but now, I have heard strange news.
Reg. If it be true, all vengeance comes too short, Which can pursue th' offender ; how does my
lord? Glo. O Madam, my old heart is crack’d, its 'crack'd.
Reg. What, did my father’s godson feek your life? He whom my father nam'd, your Edgar?
Glo. O lady, lady, Shame would have it hid.
Reg. Was he not companion with the riotous Knights,
That tend upon my father ?
Glo. I know not, Madam : 'tis too bad, too bad.
Edm. Yes, Madam, he was of that confort.
Reg. Ņo marvel then, though he were ill affected ;
'Tis they have put him on the old man's death,
To have th' expence and waste of his revenues.
I have this present evening from my sister
Been well inform’d of them; and with such cautions,
That if they come to sojourn at my house,
I'll not be there.
Corn. Nor I, assure thee, Regan ;
Edmund, I hear, that
you have thewn your father A child-like office. Edm. 'Twas my duty, Sir.
Glo. He did bewray his practice, and receivid
This hurt you fee, ftriving to apprehend him.
Corn. Is he pursued !
Glo. Ay, my good ford.
Corn. If he be taken, he shall never more
Be feard of doing harm : make your own purpose,
How in my strength you please. As for you, Edmund,
Whose virtue and obedience doth this instant
So much commend itself, you shall be ours;
Natures of such deep Truft we fall much need :
You we first seize on.
Edm. I shall ferve you, Sir,'
Truly, however else.
Glo. I thank your Grace.
Corn. You know not why we came to visit you-
Reg. Thus out of feason threading dark-ey'd night; (14)
Occafions, noble Glo'fler, of fome prize,
Wherein we muft have use of
Our father he hath writ, so hath our sister,
Of diff'rences, which I best thought it fit
To answer from our home': the fev'ral meffengers
From hence attend dispatch. Our good old friend,
Lay comforts to your bosom; and bestow
Your needful counsel to our busineffes,
Which crave the instant ufe.
Glo. I serve
you, Madam :
Your Graces are right welcome.
Enter Kent, and Steward, severally.
Stew. Good evening to thee, friend ; art of this house?
Stew. Where may we set our horses ?
Kent. I th' mire.
Stew. Pr’ythee, if thou lov'it me, tell me.
Kent. I love thee not.
Stew. Why then I care not for thee.
Kent. If I had thee in Lipsbury pinfold, I would make thee care for me.
Stew. Why dost thou use me thus? I know thee nota
Kent. Fellow, I know thee.
Stew. What doft thou know me for?
(14) -threading dark-ey'd nigbt.) I have not ventured to displace this reading, tho' I have great suspicion that the poet wrote,
treading dark-ey'd night. i. e. travelling in it. The other carries too obfcure, and mean an allufion. It must either be borrow'd from the cant-phrase of threada ing of alleys, i. e. going through bye-passages to avoid the high Streets ; or tu ibreading a needle in the dark.