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Bur.

Pardon me, royal sir ; Election makes not up on such conditions.

Lear. Then leave her, sir; for, by the power that made me,
I tell you all her wealth.–For you, great king, [To France,
I would not from your love make such a stray,
To match you where I hate ; therefore beseech you
To avert your liking a more worthier way,
Than on a wretch whom nature is asham'd .
Almost to acknowledge hers.
France.

This is most strange!
That she, that even but now was your best object,
The argument of your praise, balm of your age,
Most best, most dearest, should in this trice of time
Commit a thing so monstrous, to dismantle
So many folds of favor! Sure, her offence
Must be of such unnatural degree,
That monsters it, or your fore-vouch'd affection
Fall into taint: which to believe of her,
Must be a faith, that reason without miracle
Could never plant in me.
Cor.

I yet beseech your majesty,
(If for I want that glib and oily art,
To speak, and purpose not; since what I well intend,
I'll do't before I speak,) that you make known
It is no vicious blot, murder, or foulness,
No unchaste action, or dishonor'd step,
l'hat hath deprived me of your grace and favor :
But even for want of that, for which I am richer;
A still soliciting eye, and such a tongue
That I am glad I have not, though not to have it,
Hath lost me in your liking.
Lear.

Better thou
Hadst not been born, than not to have pleas'd me better.

France. Is it but this ? a tardiness in nature,
Which often leaves the history unspoke,
That it intends to do?-My lord of Burgundy,
What say you to the lady ? Love is not love
When it is mingled with respects, that stand
Aloof from the entire point. Will you have her ?
She is herself a dowry.
Bur.

Royal Lear,
Give but that portion which yourself propos’d,
And here I take Cordelia by the hand,
Duchess of Burgundy

Lear. Nothing: I have sworn; I am firm.

Bur. I am sorry then, you have so lost a father, That you must lose a husband.

Peace be with Burgundy!

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Since that respects of fortune are his love,
I shall not be his wife.

France. Fairest Cordelia, that art most rich, being poor;
Most choice, forsaken; and most lov’d, despis'd!
Thee and thy virtues here I seize upon :
Be it lawful, I take up what's cast away.
Gods, gods ! 'tis strange, that from their cold'st neglect
My love should kindle to inflam'd respect.-
Thy dowerless daughter, king, thrown to my chance,
Is queen of us, of ours, and our fair France :
Not all the dukes of waterish Burgundy
Shall buy this unpriz'd precious maid of me.-
Bid them farewell, Cordelia, though unkind;
Thou losest here, a better where to find.

Lear. Thou hast her, France: let her be thine ; for we
Have no such daughter, nor shall ever see
That face of hers again :--Therefore be gone,
Without our grace, our love, our benison.
Come, noble Burgundy.
[Flourish. Exeunt LEAR, BURGUNDY, CORNWALL, ALBANY,

GLOSTER, and Attendants. France. Bid farewell to your sisters.

Cor. The jewels of our father, with wash'd eyes
Cordelia leaves you: I know you what you are;
And, like a sister, am most loath to call
Your faults as they are nam’d. Use well our father :
To your professed bosoms I commit him:
But yet, alas ! stood I within his grace,
I would prefer him to a better place.
So farewell to you both.

Gon. Prescribe not us our duties.
Reg.

Let your study
Be, to content your lord; who hath receiv'd you
At fortune's alms. You have obedience scanted,
And well are worth the want that you have wanted.

Cor. Time shall unfold what plaited cunning hides;
Who covers faults, at last shame them derides.
Well may you prosper!
France.

Come, my fair Cordelia.

[Exeunt FRANCE and CORDELIA. Confining ourselves to the main incidents connected with the story of Lear,-his wrongs and sufferings,-we are necessarily compelled to omit much of the under plot of this Play, in which Shakspeare introduces, as a counterpart to Lear suffering under the ingratitude of his children, Edgar, the son of Gloster, as a pattern of filial piety and love, unjustly persecuted by his father. Gloster is persuaded by the machinations of Edmund, to believe that Edgar seeks his life.

The next scene we extract, introduces Kent in the disguise of a Peasant, under the name of Carus, seeking to engage himself in the service of the King, whom he fears will be improperly treated by Regan and Goneril.

SCENE IV.-A Hall in the Duke of Albany's Palace.

Enter Kent, disguised.
Kent. If but as well I other accents borrow,
That can my speech diffuse, my good intent
May carry through itself to that full issue
For which I raz'd my likeness.--Now, banish'd Kent,
If thou canst serve where thou dost stand condemn'd,
(So may it come !) thy master, whom thou loy’st,
Shall find thee full of labors.

Horns within. Enter LEAR, Knights, and Attendants. Lear. Let me not stay a jot for dinner ; go, get it ready.-[Excit an Attendant.]-How now, what art thou ?

Kent. A man, sir.
Lear. What dost thou profess? What would'st thou with us ?

Kent. I do profess to be no less than I seem ; to serve him truly, that will put me in trust; to love him that is honest; to converse with him that is wise, and says little; to fear judgment; to fight, when I cannot choose ; and to eat no fish.

Lear. What art thou ?
Kent. A very honest-hearted fellow, and as poor as the king.

Lear. If thou be as poor for a subject, as he is for a king, thou art poor enough. What would'st thou ?

Kent. Service,
Lear. Who would'st thou serve ?
Kent. You.
Lear. Dost thou know me, fellow ?

Kent. No, sir ; but you have that in your countenance, which I would fain call master.

Lear. What's that?
Kent. Authority.
Lear. What services canst thou do?

Kent. I can keep honest counsel, ride, run, mar a curious tale in telling it, and deliver a plain message bluntly; that which ordinary men are fit for, I am qualified in: and the best of me is diligence.

Lear. How old art thou ?

Kent. Not so young, sir, to love a woman for singing ; nor so old to dote on her for any thing: I have years on my back forty-eight.

Lear. Follow me; thou shalt serve me; If I like thee no worse after dinner, I will not part from thee yet.—Dinner, ho, dinner.Where's my knave ? my fool ? Go you, and call my fool hither;

- Enter Steward. You, you, sirrah, where's my daughter ? Stew. So please you,

(Exit. Lear. What says the fellow there ? Call the clodpoll back. Where's my fool, ho?-I think the world's asleep.-How now? where's that mongrel ?

Knight. He says, my lord, your daughter is not well.

Lear. Why came not the slave back to me when I called him ?

Knight. Sir, he answer'd me in the roundest manner, he would Dot.

Lear. He would not !

Knight. My lord, I know not what the matter is ; but, to my judgment, your highness is not entertain'd with that ceremonious affection as you were wont; there's a great abatement of kindness appears, as well in the general dependants, as in the duke himself also, and your daughter.

Lear. Ha! say'st thou so?

Knight. I beseech you, pardon me, my lord, if I be mistaken: for my duty cannot be silent, when I think your highness is wrong’d.

Lear. Thou but remember'st me of mine own conception; I have perceived a most faint neglect of late; which I have rather blamed as mine own jealous curiosity, than as a very pretence and purpose of unkindness: I will further into't.—But where's my fool? 'I have not seen him this two days.

Knight. Since my young lady's going into France, sir, the fool hath much pined away.

Lear. No more of that; I have noted it well.-Go you, and tell my daughter I would speak with her.-Go you, call hither my fool.

Re-enter Steward.
O, you sir, you sir, come you hither : Who am I, sir ?

Stew. My lady's father.

Lear. My lady's father ! my lord's knave : you dog! you slave! you cur!

Stew. I am none of this, my lord; I beseech you, pardon me.
Lear. Do you bandy looks with me, you rascal ?' ' [Striking him.
Stew. I'll not be struck, my lord.
Kent. Nor tripped neither; you base foot-ball player.

[Tripping up his heels. · Lear. I thank thee, fellow; thou servest me, and I'll love thee.

Kent. Come, sir, arise, away; I'll teach you differences; away, away: If you will measure your lubber's length again, tarry : but away : go to; Have you wisdom ? so. [Pushes the Steward out.

Lear. Now, my friendly knave, I thank thee: there's earnest of thy service.

[Giving KENT money.

Enter Fool.
Fool. Let me hire him too ;--Here's my coxcomb.'

. [Giving Kent his cap.
Lear. How now, my pretty knave ? how dost thou ?
Fool. Sirrah, you were best take my coxcomb.
Kent. Why, fool ?

Fool. Why? For taking one's part that is out of favor : Nay, an thou canst not smile as the wind sits, thou'lt catch cold shortly : There, take my coxcomb: Why, this fellow has banish'd two of his daughters, and did the third a blessing against his will; if thou folluw him, thou must needs wear my coxcomb.--How now, nuncle ? 'Would I had two coxcombs, and two daughters !

Lear. Why, my boy?

Fool. If I gave them all my living, I'd keep my coxcombs myself: There's mine ; beg another of thy daughters.

Lear. Take heed, sirrah; the whip.

Fool. Truth's a dog that must to kennel; he must be whipp'd out, when Lady, the brach, may stand by the fire.

Lear. A pestilent gall to me!
Fool. Sirrah, I'll teach thee a speech.
Lear. Do.
Fool. Mark it, nuncle :

Have more than thou showest,
Speak less than thou knowests
Lend less than thou owest,
Ride more than thou goest,
Learn more than thou trowest,
Set less than thou throwest;
And thou shalt have more

Than two tens to a score.
Lear. This is nothing, fool.

Fool. Then 'tis like the breath of an unfee'd lawyer; you gave me nothing for 't: Can you make no use of nothing, nuncle ?

Lear. Why, no, boy, nothing can be made out of nothing.

Fool. Pr’ythee, tell him, so much the rent of his land comes to; he will not believe thee.

[To KENT. Lear. A bitter fool!

Fool. Dost thou know the difference, my boy, between a bitter fool and a sweet one?

Lear. No, lad ; teach me.
Fool. That lord, that counsell’d thee

To give away thy land,
Come place him here by me,

Or do thou for him stand:
The sweet and bitter fool

Will presently appear ;
The one in motley here,

The other found out there.
Lear. Dost thou call me a fool, boy?

Fool. All thy other titles thou hast given away; that thou wast born with.

Kent. This is not altogether fool, my lord.

Fool. Thou hadst little wit in thy bald crown, when thou gavest thy golden one away. If I speak like myself in this, let him be whipp'd that first finds it so.

Fools had ne'er less grace in a year; [Singing

For wise men are grown foppish;
And know not how their wils to wear,

Their manners are so apish.

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