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Upon the foul disease. Revoke thy gift;
Or, whilst I can vent clamour from my throat,
I'll tell thee, thou dost evil.

Hear me, recreant !
On thine allegiance hear me!-
Since thou hast sought to make us break our vow,
(Which we durst never yet,) and, with strain'd pride,
To come betwixt our sentence and our power ;
(Which nor our nature nor our place can bear,)
Our potency made good', take thy reward.
Five days we do allot thee, for provision
To shield thee from diseases of the world;
And, on the sixth, to turn thy hated back
Upon our kingdom: if, on the tenth day following,
Thy banish'd trunk be found in our dominions,
The moment is thy death : Away! by Jupiter, ?
This shall not be revok'd.
Kent. Fare thee well, king: since thus thou wilt

appear, Freedom lives hence, and banishment is here. The gods to their dear shelter take thee, maid,

[TO CORDELIA. That justly think'st, and hast most rightly said ! And your large speeches may your deeds approve,

[TO REGAN and GONERIL. That good effects may spring from words of love. — Thus Kent, O princes, bids you all adieu ; He'll shape his old course in a country new.


(Which nor our nature nor our place can bear,)

Our potency made good,] i.e. They to whom I have yielded my power and authority, yielding me the ability to dispense it in this instance, take thy reward.

By Jupiter,] Shakspeare makes his Lear too much a mythologist: he had Hecate and Apollo before. Johnson.

3 He'll shape his old course -] He will follow his old maxims; he will continue to act upon the same principles.


Re-enter GLOSTER; with FRANCE, BURGUNDY, and


Glo. Here's France and Burgundy, my noble lord.

Lear. My lord of Burgundy,
We first address towards you, who with this king
Hath rivalld for our daughter; What, in the least,
Will you require in present dower with her,
Or cease your quest of love ? 4

Most royal majesty,
I crave no more than hath your highness offer'd,
Nor will you tender less.

Right noble Burgundy,
When she was dear to us, we did hold her so;
But now her price is fall’n: Sir, there she stands;
If aught within that little, seemings substance,
Or all of it, with our displeasure piec'd,
And nothing more, may fitly like your grace,
She's there, and she is yours.

I know no answer.
Lear. Sir,

with those infirmities she owes,
Unfriended, new-adopted to our hate,
Dower'd with our curse, and stranger'd with our oath,
Take her, or leave her?

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

Lear. Then leave her, sir; for, by the power that


made me,


quest of love?] Quest of love is amorous expedition. The term originated from Romance. A quest was the expedition in which a knight was engaged.

seeming —) is beautiful, or rather, specious. 6 owes,] i. e. is possessed of.

? Election makes not up on such conditions.] Election comes not to a decision; in the same sense as when we say, “I have made up my mind on that subject.”

I tell you all her wealth. - For you, great king,

[T. 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 favour ! Sure, her offence Must be of such unnatural degree, That monsters it, or your fore-vouch'd affection Fall into taint8: which to believe of her, Must be a faith, that reason without miracle Could never plant in me. Cor.

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 dishonour'd step, That hath depriv'd me of your grace and favour : 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 Had'st not been born, than not to have pleas'd me better.


or your fore-vouch'd affection Fall into taint:) Either her offence must be monstrous, or, if she has not committed any such offence, the affection which you always professed to have for her must be tainted and decayed, and is now without reason alienated from her.

9 If for I want, &c.] If this be my offence, that I want the glib and oily art, &c.

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.

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!
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, despisd!
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,

of ours, and our fair France :
Not all the dukes of wat'rish Burgundy
Shall buy this unpriz'd precious maid of me. -
Bid them farewell, Cordelia, though unkind:
Thou losest here', a better where to find,

us, of

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+ “ It is no more but this ?” - Malone.

with respects,] i. e. with cautious and prudential considerations.

from the entire point.] Single, unmixed with other consi, derations.

3 Thou losest here,] Here and where have the power of nouns. Thou losest this residence to find a better residence in another place.

Lear. Thou hast her, France; let her be thine;

for we

Have no such daughter, nor shall ever see
That face of her's again : - Therefore be gone,
Without our grace, our love, our benizon.
Come, noble Burgundy.

(Flourish. Exeunt LEAR, BURGUNDY, CORN

WALL, 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.

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


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. Gon. Sister, it is not a little I have to say, of what most nearly appertains to us both.' I think, our father will hence to-night.

Reg. That's most certain, and with you; next month

with us.

Gon. You see how full of changes his age is; the observation we have made of it hath not been little: he always loved our sister most; and with what poor

* -plaited cunning - ] i.e. complicated, involved cunning.

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