Le. You nimble Lightnings, dart your blinding flames Into her scornfull eyes: Infect her Beauty, You Fen-suck'd Fogges, drawne by the powrfull Sunne, To fall, and blister

Reg. O the blest Gods! So will you wish on me, when the rash moode is on

Lear. No Regan, thou shalt neuer haue my curse: Thy tender-hefted Nature shall not giue Thee o're to harshnesse: Her eyes are fierce, but thine Do comfort, and not burne. 'Tis not in thee To grudge my pleasures, to cut off my Traine, To bandy hasty words, to scant my sizes, And in conclusion, to oppose the bolt Against my comming in. Thou better know'st The Offices of Nature, bond of Childhood, Effects of Curtesie, dues of Gratitude: Thy halfe o'th' Kingdome hast thou not forgot, Wherein I thee endow'd

Reg. Good Sir, to'th' purpose.

Tucket within.

Lear. Who put my man i'th' Stockes? Enter Steward.

Corn. What Trumpet's that? Reg. I know't, my Sisters: this approues her Letter, That she would soone be heere. Is your Lady come? Lear. This is a Slaue, whose easie borrowed pride Dwels in the sickly grace of her he followes. Out Varlet, from my sight

Corn. What meanes your Grace? Enter Gonerill.

Lear. Who stockt my Seruant? Regan, I haue good hope Thou did'st not know on't. Who comes here? O Heauens! If you do loue old men; if your sweet sway Allow Obedience; if you your selues are old, Make it your cause: Send downe, and take my part. Art not asham'd to looke vpon this Beard? O Regan, will you take her by the hand? Gon. Why not by'th' hand Sir? How haue I offended? All's not offence that indiscretion findes, And dotage termes so

Lear. O sides, you are too tough! Will you yet hold? How came my man i'th' Stockes? Corn. I set him there, Sir: but his owne Disorders Deseru'd much lesse aduancement

Lear. You? Did you? Reg. I pray you Father being weake, seeme so. If till the expiration of your Moneth You will returne and soiourne with my Sister, Dismissing halfe your traine, come then to me, I am now from home, and out of that prouision Which shall be needfull for your entertainement

Lear. Returne to her? and fifty men dismiss'd? No, rather I abiure all roofes, and chuse To wage against the enmity oth' ayre, To be a Comrade with the Wolfe, and Owle, Necessities sharpe pinch. Returne with her? Why the hot-bloodied France, that dowerlesse tooke Our yongest borne, I could as well be brought To knee his Throne, and Squire-like pension beg, To keepe base life a foote; returne with her? Perswade me rather to be slaue and sumpter To this detested groome

Gon. At your choice Sir

Lear. I prythee Daughter do not make me mad, I will not trouble thee my Child; farewell: Wee'l no more meete, no more see one another. But yet thou art my flesh, my blood, my Daughter, Or rather a disease that's in my flesh, Which I must needs call mine. Thou art a Byle, A plague sore, or imbossed Carbuncle In my corrupted blood. But Ile not chide thee, Let shame come when it will, I do not call it, I do not bid the Thunder-bearer shoote, Nor tell tales of thee to high-iudging Ioue, Mend when thou can'st, be better at thy leisure, I can be patient, I can stay with Regan, I and my hundred Knights

Reg. Not altogether so, I look'd not for you yet, nor am prouided For your fit welcome, giue eare Sir to my Sister, For those that mingle reason with your passion, Must be content to thinke you old, and so, But she knowes what she doe's

Lear. Is this well spoken? Reg. I dare auouch it Sir, what fifty Followers? Is it not well? What should you need of more? Yea, or so many? Sith that both charge and danger, Speake 'gainst so great a number? How in one house Should many people, vnder two commands Hold amity? 'Tis hard, almost impossible

William Shakespeare
Classic Literature Library

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