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Lear. Then let them anatomize Regan, see what breeds about her heart: Is there any cause in nature, that makes these hard hearts !-- You, sir, I entertain you for one of my hundred: only I do not like the fashion of your garments: you will say, they are Persian attire! but let them be changed.
[To EDGAR. Kent. Now, good my lord, lie here, and rest awhile16.
Lear. Make no noise, make no noise; draw the curtains: So, so, so: We'll go to supper i' the morning: So, so, so.
Fool. And I'll go to bed at noon. )
Re-enter GLOSTER. Glo. Come hither, friend: Where is the king my
master? Kent. Here, sir; but trouble him not, his wits
are gone. Glo. Good friend, I pr’ythee take him in thy arms; I have o’erheard a plot of death upon him: There is a litter ready; lay him in't, And drive towards Dover, friend, where thou shalt
meet Both welcome and protection. Take up thy master: If thou should'st dally half an hour, his life, With thine, and all that offer to defend him, Stand in assured loss : Take up, take up17; And follow me, that will to some provision Give thee quick conduct. , crime away fol )
of the character he assumes, to supplicate that it may be filled with drink. See A Pleasant Dispute between a Coach and a Sedan, 410. 1636 :- I have observed when a coach is appendant but two or three hundred pounds a yeere, marke it, the dogges are as leane as rakes ; you may tell all their ribbes lying be ihe fire; and Tom a Bedlam may sooner eate his horne than get it filled with small drinke, and for bis old almes of bacon there is no hope in the world.
16 i. e. on the cushiops to which he points.
17 One of the quartos reads, Take up the king;' the other, Take up to keep,' &c.
Oppress'd nature sleeps18:-
[To the Fool. Glo.
Come, come, away,
of the King.
SCENE VII. A Room in Gloster's Castle. Enter CORNWALL, REGAN, GONERIL, EDMUND, and
Servants. Corn. Post speedily to my lord your husband; show him this letter:—the army of France is landimg ed :-Seek out the villain Gloster.
[Exeunt some of the Servants.
18 . These two concluding speeches, by Kent and Edgar, are restored from the quarto. The soliloquy of Edgar is extremely fine ; and the sentiments of it are drawn equally from nature and the subject. Besides, with regard to the stage, it is absolutely necessary: for as Edgar is not designed, in the constitution of the play, to attend the king to Dover, how absurd would it look for a character of his importance to quit the scene without one word said, or the least intimation what we are to expect from him.'Theobald.
19 The great events that are approaching, the loud tumult of ap. proaching war.
20 Betray, discover.
Reg. Hang him instantly.
Corn. Leave him to my displeasure.-Edmund, keep you our sister company; the revenges we are bound to take upon your traitorous father, are not fit for your beholding. Advise the duke, where you are going, to a most festinate preparation; we are bound to the like. Our post shall be swift, and intelligent betwixt us. Farewell, dear sister;farewell, my lord of Glosterl.
Enter Steward. How now? Where's the king? Stew. My lord of Gloster hath convey'd him
hence: Some five or six and thirty of his knights, Hot questrists after him, met him at gate;
with some other of the lord's dependants, Are gone with him towards Dover; where they boast To have well armed friends. Corn.
Get horses for your mistress. Gon. Farewell, sweet lord, and sister.
[Ereunt GONERIL and EDMUND. Corn. Edmund, farewell.-Go, seek the traitor
[ Exeunt other Servants.
I Meaning Edmund invested with his father's titles. The Steward, speaking immediately after, mentions the old earl by the same title.
2 A questrist is one who goes in quest or search of another.
3. Do a courtesy to our wrath,' simply means bend to our wrath, as a courtesy is made by bending the body. To pass on any one may be traced from Magna Charta :-Neque super eum ibimus, visi per legale judicium parium suorum.' It is common to most of our early writer- A jury of devils inpanneled and deeply sworne 10 pass on all villains in hell.'—If this be not a Good Play the Devil is in it. 1612.
Re-enter Servants, with GLOSTER. Reg. Ingrateful fox! 'tis he. Corn. Bind fast his corky4 arms. Glo. What mean your graces ?--Good my friends,
consider You are my guests: do me no foul play, friends. Corn. Bind him, I say.
(Servants bind him. Reg.
Hard, hard :-O filthy traitor. Glo. Unmerciful lady as you are, I am none. Corn. To this chair bind him :-Villain, thou shalt find
[REGAN plucks his Beard. Glo. By the kind gods, 'tis most ignobly done, To pluck me by the beard.
Reg. So white, and such a traitor!
France ? Reg. Be simple answer'd, for we know the truth. Corn. And what confederacy have you with the
traitors Late footed in the kingdom? Reg. To whose hands have you sent the lunatic
Glo. I have a letter guessingly set down,
4 i. e. dry wither'd husky arms. This epithet was perhaps borrowed from Harsenet :-It would pose all the cunning exorciste that are this day to be found, to teach an old corkie woman to writhe, tumble, carvet, and fetch her morice gambols as Martha Bressier did.'
5 i. e. quicken into life. 6 Favours mean the same as features; that is, the different parts of which a face is composed.
Corn. Where hast thou sent the king ?
Wherefore To Dover? Wast thou not charg'd at peril-
Corn. Wherefore to Dover ? Let him first answer that. Glo. I am tied to the stake, and I must stand the
course, Reg. Wherefore to Dover?
Glo. Because I would not see thy cruel nails Pluck out his poor old eyes; nor thy fierce sister In his anointed flesh stick8 boarish fangs. The sea, with such a storm as his bare head In hell-black night endur'd, would have buoy'd up, And quench'd the stelled' fires: yet, poor old heart, He holp the heavens to rain. If wolves had at thy gate howld that stern10 time, Thou should'st have said, Good porter, turn the key; All cruels else subscrib'd11;-But I shall see inscribe The winged vengeance overtake such children. Corn. See it shalt thou never:--Fellows, hold
the chair: Upon these eyes of thine I'll set my foot12.
[GLOSTER is held down in his Chair, while
CORNWALL plucks out one of his Eyes, and sets his Foot on it.
So in Macbeth :
• They have chain'd me to a stake; I cannot fly,
But, bear-like, I must fight the course.' 8 The quarto reads, rash boarish fangs.' To rash is the old hunting term for the stroke made by a wild boar with his fangs.
10 Thus the folio. The quartos read, that dearn time.' Dearn is dreary. The reading in the text is countenanced by Chapman's version of the 24th Iliad:
in this so sterne a time
of night and danger.' 11 i. e. yielded, submitted to the necessity of the occasion.'
12 This horrible exhibition is not more sanguinary than that of some contemporary dramas. In Selimas, Emperor of the Turks, one of the sons of Bajazet, pulls out the eyes of an Aga on the stage, and says:
Yes, thou shalt live, but never see that day,
[ Pulls out his eyes.' Iinmediately after his hands are cut off on the stage. In Marston's Antonio's Revenge, 1602, Piero's tongue is torn out on the stage.