Cor. Then poore Cordelia, And yet not so, since I am sure my loue's More ponderous then my tongue

Lear. To thee, and thine hereditarie euer, Remaine this ample third of our faire Kingdome, No lesse in space, validitie, and pleasure Then that conferr'd on Gonerill. Now our Ioy, Although our last and least; to whose yong loue, The Vines of France, and Milke of Burgundie, Striue to be interest. What can you say, to draw A third, more opilent then your Sisters? speake

Cor. Nothing my Lord

Lear. Nothing? Cor. Nothing

Lear. Nothing will come of nothing, speake againe

Cor. Vnhappie that I am, I cannot heaue My heart into my mouth: I loue your Maiesty According to my bond, no more nor lesse

Lear. How, how Cordelia? Mend your speech a little, Least you may marre your Fortunes

Cor. Good my Lord, You haue begot me, bred me, lou'd me. I returne those duties backe as are right fit, Obey you, Loue you, and most Honour you. Why haue my Sisters Husbands, if they say They loue you all? Happily when I shall wed, That Lord, whose hand must take my plight, shall carry Halfe my loue with him, halfe my Care, and Dutie, Sure I shall neuer marry like my Sisters

Lear. But goes thy heart with this? Cor. I my good Lord

Lear. So young, and so vntender? Cor. So young my Lord, and true

Lear. Let it be so, thy truth then be thy dowre: For by the sacred radience of the Sunne, The misteries of Heccat and the night: By all the operation of the Orbes, From whom we do exist, and cease to be, Heere I disclaime all my Paternall care, Propinquity and property of blood, And as a stranger to my heart and me, Hold thee from this for euer. The barbarous Scythian, Or he that makes his generation messes To gorge his appetite, shall to my bosome Be as well neighbour'd, pittied, and releeu'd, As thou my sometime Daughter

Kent. Good my Liege

Lear. Peace Kent, Come not betweene the Dragon and his wrath, I lou'd her most, and thought to set my rest On her kind nursery. Hence and avoid my sight: So be my graue my peace, as here I giue Her Fathers heart from her; call France, who stirres? Call Burgundy, Cornwall, and Albanie, With my two Daughters Dowres, digest the third, Let pride, which she cals plainnesse, marry her: I doe inuest you ioyntly with my power, Preheminence, and all the large effects That troope with Maiesty. Our selfe by Monthly course, With reseruation of an hundred Knights, By you to be sustain'd, shall our abode Make with you by due turne, onely we shall retaine The name, and all th' addition to a King: the Sway, Reuennew, Execution of the rest, Beloued Sonnes be yours, which to confirme, This Coronet part betweene you

Kent. Royall Lear, Whom I haue euer honor'd as my King, Lou'd as my Father, as my Master follow'd, As my great Patron thought on in my praiers

Le. The bow is bent & drawne, make from the shaft

Kent. Let it fall rather, though the forke inuade The region of my heart, be Kent vnmannerly, When Lear is mad, what wouldest thou do old man? Think'st thou that dutie shall haue dread to speake, When power to flattery bowes? To plainnesse honour's bound, When Maiesty falls to folly, reserue thy state, And in thy best consideration checke This hideous rashnesse, answere my life, my iudgement: Thy yongest Daughter do's not loue thee least, Nor are those empty hearted, whose low sounds Reuerbe no hollownesse

Lear. Kent, on thy life no more

William Shakespeare
Classic Literature Library

All Pages of This Book
A Yorkshire Tragedy
The Tragedie of Romeo and Juliet
The Lamentable Tragedy of Locrine
The Tragedie of Anthonie and Cleopatra
The Tragedie of Coriolanus
The Tragedie of Cymbeline
The Tragedie of Hamlet
The Tragedie of Julius Caesar
The Tragedie of King Lear
The Tragedie of Macbeth
The Tragedie of Othello
The Tragedie of Richard the Third
The Tragedie of Titus Andronicus
The life and death of King Richard the Second