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Gloster. O my follies! Then Edgar was abus'd. Kind gods, forgive me that, and prosper' him!

Regan. Go, thrust him out at gates, and let him smell His .way to Dover. How is ’t, my lord? How look you ?

Cornwall. I have receiv'd à hurt. Follow me, lady. Turn out that eyeless villain: throw this slave Upon the dunghill. Regan, I bleed apace: Untimely comes this hurt. Give me your arm.

Exit CORNWALL, led by REGAN; Servants unbind

GLOSTER, and lead him out. 2 Serv. I'll never care what wickedness I do, If this man comes to good. 3 Serv.

If she live long, And in the end meet the old course of death, Women will all turn monsters.

2 Serv. Let 's follow the old earl, and get the Bedlam To lead him where he would :: his roguish madness Allows itself to any thing.

3 Serv. Go thou: I'll fetch some flax, and whites of eggs, To apply to his bleeding face. Now, heaven help him!

[Exeunt severally.


SCENE I. The Heath.

Enter EDGAR.
Edgar. Yet better thus, and known to be contemn'd
Than still 5 contemn'd and flatter'd. To be worst,
The lowest and most dejected thing of fortune,
Stands still in esperance, lives not in fear:
The lamentable change is from the best;
The worst returns to laughter. 6 Welcome, then,
Thou unsubstantial air, that I embrace:

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1. To prosper is not

6. He who has experienced the worst monly used as a verb active. blows of fortune, who has become the

2. i. e. the 'usual manner of death, lowest and most dejected thing upon die a natural death.

the face of the earth, may always 3. i.e. and get the Bedlam beggar to hope for an improvement in his conlead him to where ever he wishes to go. dition, has nothing to fear: the depress

4. It is common to say whites or ing change is from the best to the yokes of eggs, when the white or worst; the change back again from the yoke of more eggs than one is meant. worst to better, is to return to the en5. Still, ever, continually:

joyment of life.

The wretch, that thou hast blown unto the worst,
Owes nothing to thy blasts. But who comes here?

Enter GLOSTER, led by an old Man.
My father, poorly led ? - World, world, O world!
But that thy strange mutations make us hate thee,
Life would not yield to age.

Old Man. O my good lord! I have been your tenant, and your father's tenant, these fourscore years.

Glos. Away, get thee away; good friend, be gone: Thy comforts can do me no good at all; Thee they may hurt.

Old Man. Alack, Sir! you cannot see your way.

Glos. I have no way, and therefore want no eyes: I stumbled when I saw.2 Full oft 't is seen, Our means secure us; and our mere defects Prove our commodities. 3 Ah! dear son Edgar, The food of thy abused 4 father's wrath, Might I but live to see thee in my touch, I'd say I had eyes again! old Man,

How now! Who 's there? Edgar. (Aside.] O gods! Who is 't can say, “I am at the

worst?" I am worse than e'er I was. Old Man.

’T is poor mad Tom. Edg. [Aside.] And worse I may be yet: the worst is not So long as we can say, “This is the worst.”

oid Man. Fellow, where goest?

Is it a beggar-man?
Old Man. Madman, and beggar too.

Glos. He has some reason, else he could not beg. I' the last night's storm I such a fellow saw, Which made me think a man a worm: my son Came then into my mind; and yet my mind Was then scarce friends with him: I have heard more since.

1. O world! if reverses of fortune 2. I fell into error when I had eyes and changes such as I now see and to see my way clear. feel, from ease and affluence to pov 3. Very often it is seen that our erty and misery, did not show us the means, i. e. the faculties with which we little value of life, we should never are gifted, make us over-confident; and submit with any kind of resignation to our deficiencies prove to our advantage. the weight of years, and its necessary

4. To abuse, to deceive, to impose consequence, infirmity and death.


As flies to wanton boys, are we to the gods ;
They kill us for their sport.

[Aside.] How should this be? Bad is the trade that must play fool to sorrow, Angering itself and others. [To him.] Bless thee, master!

Gloster. Is that the naked fellow?
Old Man.

Ay, my lord.
Glos. Then, pr’ythee, get thee gone. If, for my sake,
Thou wilt o’ertake us, hence a mile or twain, 1
I' the way toward Dover, do it for ancient love;
And bring some covering for this naked soul,
Whom I 'll entreat to lead me.
Old Man.

Alack, Sir! he is mad. Glos. ’T is the times' plague, when madmen lead the

blind. Do as I bid thee, or rather do thy pleasure; Above the rest, be gone.

Old Man. I 'll bring him the best 'parel 2 that I have, Come on 't 3 what will!

[Exit. Glos. Sirrah; naked fellow. Edg. Poor Tom 's a-cold. - [Aside.] I cannot daub it

farther.4 Glos. Come hither, fellow. Edg. (Aside.] And yet I must. [To him.] Bless thy

sweet eyes, they bleed. Glos. Know'st thou the way to Dover ?

Edg. Both stile and gate,5 horse-way and foot - path. Poor Tom hath been scared out of his good wits: bless thee, good man's son, from the foul fiend! Five fiends have been in poor Tom at once; of lust, as Obidicut; Hobbididance, prince of dumbness; Mahu, of stealing; Modo, of murder; and Flibbertigibbet, of mopping and mowing, ó who since pos

1. Twain, two. Now but seldom different fields are separated by hedges ; used.

where a foot-path conducts over several 2. i. e. apparel, clothing.

fields, styles are placed in the gaps of the 3. Come on 't, for come of it. hedges where these are crossed by the

4 To daub signifies literally, to path, and over the styles, which are smear; the idea here is in this sense, convenient for the purpose, the footas a thing smeared over with any sub- passenger climbs; where carts are instance is disguised: I cannot farther tended to pass to and from the fields keep up the disguise, or support the gates are placed. false character which I have adopted. 6. Mopping and mowing, making

5. In the country in England the grimaces.

sesses chamber-maids and waiting-women. So, bless thee, master! Glos. Here, take this purse, thou whom the heaven's

plagues Have humbled to all strokes: that I am wretched, Makes thee the happier : - Heavens, deal so still ! 1 Let the superfluous, and lust - dieted man, That slaves your ordinance, 2 that will not see Because he doth not feel, feel your power quickly; So distribution should undo excess, And each man have enough. Dost thou know Dover?

Edgar. Ay, máster.

Glos. There is a cliff, whose high and bending head Looks fearfully in the confined deep: Bring me but to the very brim of it, And I 'll repair the misery thou dost bear, With something rich about me: from that place I shall no leading need. Edg.

Give me thy arm: Poor Tom shall lead thee.


SCENE II. Before the DUKE OF ALBANY's Palace. Enter GONERIL and EDMUND; OSWALD mecting them. Goneril. Welcome, my lord: I marvel, our mild husband Not met us on the way. Now, where 's your master?

Oswald. Madam, within; but never man so chang'd.
I told him of the army that was landed;
He smil'd at it: I told him, you were coming;
His answer was, “The worse: of Gloster's treachery,
And of the loyal service of his son,
When I inform'd him, then he call'd me sot,
And told me I had turn'd the wrong side out.
What most he should dislike, seems pleasant to him;
What like,

Then, shall you go no farther.



1. Still, ever, always.

ject to him (instead of acting in obe2. i. 6. Let the man who lives in dience to it), etc. superfluity and according to his own 3. i. e. What most he should like. lusts, who makes your ordinance sub



It is the cowish · terror of his spirit,
That dares not undertake: he 'll not feel wrongs,
Which tie him to an answer.

Our wishes on the way
May prove effects. 3 Back, Edmund, to my brother;
Hasten his musters, and conduct his powers:
I must change arms at home, and give the distaff
Into my husband's hands. This trusty servant
Shall pass between us: ere long you are like to hear,
If you dare venture in your own behalf,
A mistress's command. "Wear this; spare speech;

[Giving a favour.
Decline your head:4 this kiss, if it durst speak,
Would stretch thy spirits up into the air. —
Conceive, 5 and fare thee well,

Edmund. Yours in the ranks of death.

My most dear Gloster!

[Exit EDMUND. O, the difference of man, and man! To thee a woman's services are due: My fool usurps my body.. Osw. Madam, here comes my


[Exit Oswald.
Goneril. I have been worth the whistle.?

O Goneril!
You are not worth the dust which the rude wind
Blows in your face. - I fear your disposition:
That nature, which contemns its origin,
Cannot be border'd certain in itself;8
She that herself will sliver and disbranch

1. Cowish, timorous, cowardly. The 5. i. e. imagine what I dare not verb only is now in use: to cow, to speak. oppress with fear.

6. By my fool she alludes to her 2. He affects not to feel wrongs husband Albany, who in her eyes is a which would force him to active oppo- weak fool. sition.

7. There was a time when you 3. What we wish, before our march thought me worth the calling to you, is at an end, may be brought to hap- or whistling for: reproaching him for pen: i. e. the murder of her husband. not having summoned her to consult

4. She bids him decline his head, with on the present critical occasion. that she might give him a kiss (the 8. A child who treats her father steward being present), and that it with contempt, must be utterly without might appear to bim only as a whisper. character.

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