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Knights attending on the King, Officers, Messengers, Soldiers, and Attendants.
SCENE lies in Britain.
Of this Play the Editions are,
I. Quarto, 1608, by Nathaniel Butler.
II. In the folio of 1623. III. Quarto, by Jane Bell, 1655. This edition is of no value, for, neglecting the better copy in the folio, it follows the
first quarto, even in the errours of the prefs.
This edition, like all the other, except Bell's, is given from the folio. The variations are fometimes noted.
KING LE AR.
The KING'S PALACE.
Enter Kent, Glo'fter, and Edmund the Baftard.
Thought, the King had more affected the Duke of
Glo. It did always feem fo to us, but now, in the Divifion of the Kingdom, it appears not, which of the dukes he values moft; for qualities are fo weigh'd, that curiofity in neither can make choice of either's moiety.
Kent. Is not this your fon, my Lord?
Glo. His Breeding, Sir, hath been at my charge. I
in the divifion of the king dom] There is fomething of obfcurity or inaccuracy in this preparatory scene. The King has already divided his kingdom, and yet when he enters he examines his daughters, to difcover in what proportions he fhould divide it. Perhaps Kent and Gloucefter only were privy to his defign, which he still kept in his own hands, to be changed or
performed as fubfequent reafons
3 that curiofity in neither] Curiofity, for exacteft fcrutiny. The fenfe of the whole fentence is, The qualities and properties of the feveral divifions are fo weighed and balanced against one another, that the exacteft fcrutiny could not determine in preferring one share to the other. WARBURTON.
have so often biufh'd to acknowledge him, that now I am braz'd to't.
Kent. I cannot conceive you.
Glo. Sir, this young fellow's mother could, whereupon fhe grew round-womb'd; and had, indeed, Sir, a fon for her cradle, ere fhe had a husband for her bed. Do you fmell a fault?
Kent. I cannot wifh the fault undone, the issue of it being fo proper.
Glo. But I have a fon, Sir, by order of law, 4 fome year elder than this, who yet is no dearer in my account. Though this knave came fomewhat faucily to the world before he was fent for, yet was his mother fair, there was good fport at his making, and the whorefon must be acknowledged. Do you know this Nobleman, Edmund ?
Edm. No, my Lord.
Remember him hereafter as my honourable friend. Edm. My fervices to your Lordship.
Kent. I muft love you, and fue to know you better. Edm. Sir, I fhall ftudy your deferving.
Glo. He hath been out nine years, and away he shall [Trumpet founds within.
-The King is coming.
4 fome year elder than this,] The Oxford Editor, not underftanding the common phrafe, alters year to years. He did not confider the Baftard fays,
For that I am fome twelve or