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Stew. Help ho! murder! murder - [Exeunt. Flourish. Enter Cornwall and Regan, attended;

meeting Glocester and Edmund. Gloc. You graces are right welcome. Cornw. How now, my noble friend? since I

came hither, Which I can call but now, I have heard strange news. Regan. If it be true, all vengeance comes top

short, Which can pursue th'offender: How does


lord ? Gloc. Oh, madam, my old heart is crack', 'tis

crack'd. Regan. What, did my father's godfon seek your

life? He whom my father nam'd ? your Edgar?

Gloc. Oh, lady, lady, shame would have it hid. Regan. Was he not companion with the riotous

knights That tend upon my father?

Gloc. I know not, madam: 'Tis too bad, too bad. Edm. Yes, madanı, he was of that consort.

Regan. No marvel then, tho' he were ill affected; 'Tis they have put him on the old man's death, To have th’expence and waste of his revenues. I have this present evening from my fifter


Been well inform'dof them; and with such cautions,
That if they come to sojourn at my house,
I'll not be there.

Cornw. Nor I, affure thee, Regan.
Edmund, I hear, that you have shewn your

father A child-like office.

Edm. 'Twas my duty, Sir.

Gloc. He did reveal his practice, and receiv'd
This hurt you see, striving to apprehend him.

Cornw. Is he pursu'd ?
Gloc. Ay, my good lord.

Cornw. If he be taken, he shall never more
Be fear'd of doing harm. As for you, Edmund,
Whofe virtue and obedience doth this instant
So much commend itself, you

shall be ours: Natures of such deep trust we shall much need.

Edm. I shall serve you, Sir, truly, however else.
Gloc. I thank your grace.

Regan. Our father he hath writ, so hath our sister,
Of diff'rences, which I best thought it fit
To answer from our home: The fev'ral messengers
From hence attend dispatch. Our good old friend,
Lay comforts to your bosom; and bestow
Your needful counsel to our businesses,
Which crave the instant use.
Gloc. Į serve you, madam.


Enter Steward and Kent, with swords drawn.
Gloc. Weapons ? arms? what's the matter here?

Cornw. Keep peace, upon your lives; he dies,
that strikes again ; what's the matter?
Regan. The messengers from our fifter and the

king! Cornw. What is your difference? speak. Stew. I am scarce in breath, my lord.

Kent. No marvel, you have so bestirr'd your valour; you cowardly rascal! nature disclaims all share in thee: A tailor made thee.

Cornw. Thou art a strange fellow; a tailor make a man ?

Kent. Ay, a tailor, Sir; a stone-cutter, or a painter could not have made him so ill, though they had been but two hours o'th' trade.

Cornw. Speak yet, how grew your quarrel?

Stew. This antient ruffian, Sir, whofe life I have spar'd at suit of his grey beard

Kent. Thou whorson zed! thou unnecessary letter! my lord, if you will give me leave, I will tread this unbolted villain into mortar, and daub the wall of a jakes with him. Spare my grey beard? you wagtail !

Cornw. Peace, firrah! know you no reverence?
Kent. Yes, Sir, but anger hath a privilege.


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Cornw. Why art thou angry?
Kent. That fuch a llave as this fhould wear a

2.b fword,

Who wears no honesty: Suchsmilingroguesas these,
Like rats, oft bite the holy cords in twain
Too intricate to unloose; footh every passion,
That in the nature of their lords rebels;
Bring oil to fire, snow to their colder moods;
Forswear, affirm, and turn their halcyon beaks
With ev'ry gale and vary of their masters;
As knowing nought, like dogs, but following.
A plague upon your epileptick visage !
Smile you my speeches, as I were a fool?
Goofe, if I had you upon Sarum plain,
På drive ye cackling home to Camelot.

Cornw. What, art thou mad, old fellow ?
Gloc. How fell you out? say that.

Kent. No contraries hold' more antipathy;"
Than I and such a knave.
Cornw. Why doft thou call him knave? what is

his fault? Kent. His countenance likes me not. Cornw. No more, perchance, does minė, nor his,

nor hers. Kent. Sir, 'tis my occupation to be plain ; I have seen better faces in my time,


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Than stand on any shou ders that I see
Before me at this inftant.

Cornw. This is some fellow,
Who having been prais'd for bluntness, doth affect
A faucy roughness; and constrains the garb,
Quite from his nature. He can't flatter, he,
An honest mind and plain, he must speak truth;
An they will take it, fo; if not, he's plain.
These kind of knaves Iknow, which in this plainness
Harbour more craft, and more corrupt design,
Than twenty filly ducking minions,
That stretch their duties nicely.

Kent. Sir, in good faith, in sincere verity, Under th' allowance of your grand aspect, Whose influence, like the wreath of radiant fire On flickering Phoebus' front

Cornw. What mean'lt by this ?

Kent. To go out of my dialect, which you difcommend so much : I know, Sir, I am no flatterer; he, that beguil'd you in a plain accent, was a plain knave; which for my part I will not be, though I should win your displeasure to intreat me to't.

Cornw. What was th' offence you gave him?

Stew. I never gave him any i
It pleas'd the king his master very lately
To strike at me upon his misconstruction;


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