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Dismifling half your train, come then to me!
I'm now from home, and out of that provision
Which shall be needful for your entertainment.

Lear. Return to her? and fifty men dismiss’d?
No; rather I abjure all roofs, and chuse
To be a comrade with the wolf and owl,
Than have my smallest wants supplied by her.

Gon. At your choice, Sir.

Lear. I pr’ythee, daughter, do not make me mad!
I will not trouble thee, my child. Farewell!
We'll no more meet, no more see one another.
Let shame come when it will, I do not call it ;
I do not bid the thunder-bearer shoot,
Nor tell tales of thee to high-judging Jove.
Mend when thou canst; be better, at thy leisure.
I can be patient, I can stay with Regan ;
I, and my hundred knights.

Regan. Not altogether fo:
I look'd not for you yet, nor am provided
For your fit welcome.

Lear. Is this well spoken?

Regan. I dareavouch it, Sir: what, fifty followers! Is it not well? what should you need of more? Yea, or so many? since both charge and danger Speak'gainst so great a number : how in one house Should many people under two commands


Hold amity ? 'Tis hard, almost impossible.
Gon. Why might not you, my lord, receive

attendance From those that she calls fervants, or from mine? Regan. Why not, my lord ? if then they chanc'd

to slack ye, We could controul them. If you'll come to me, (For now I spy a danger) I entreat you To bring but five-and-twenty; to no more Will I give place or notice.

Lear. I gave you all !
Regan. And in good time you gave it.
Lear. Oh, let me not be mad, not mad, sweet

Keep me in temper! I would not be mad!

Gon. Hear me, my lord;
What need you five-and-twenty, ten, or five,
To follow in a house, where twice so many
Have a command to tend you?

Regan. What needs one?

Lear. Oh,reason not the need : our baseft beggars Are in the poorest things superfluous; Allow not nature more than nature needs, Man's life is cheap as beasts. But for true need, You Heav'ns, give me that patience which I need! You see me here, you gods, a poor old man,


As full of grief as years; wretched in both ;
If it be you that stir these daughters' hearts
Against their father, fool me not so much
To bear it tamely; touch me with noble anger;
Oh, let not womens' weapons, water-drops,
Stain my man's cheeks ! No, you unnat'ral hags,
I will have such revenges on you both,
That all the world shall-I will do such things
What they are, yet I know not; but they shall be
The terrors of the earth! you think, I'll weep;
No, I'll not weep. I have full cause of weeping:
This heart shall break into a thousand flaws,
Or ere I weep. Oh, gods, I shall

I shall go mad! [Exeunt.

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LOW winds, and crack your cheeks; rage,

blow ! You cataracts, and hurricanoes, spout Till you have drench'd our steeples, drown’d the cocks !


You fulph'rous and thought-executing fires,
Vaunt-couriers of oak-cleaving thunder-bolts,
Singe my white head! And thou, all-shaking

Strike flat the thick rotundity o’th' world ;
Crack nature's mould, all germins spill at once
That make ungrateful man !

Kent. Not all my best entreaties can persuade him
Into fome needful shelter, or to 'bide
This poor flight cov'ring on his aged head,
Expos'd to this wild war of earth and Heav'n.

[Thunder. Lear. Rumble thy belly full, fpit fire, spout rain; Nor rain, wind, thunder, fire, are my daughters : I tax not you, you elements, with unkindness; I never gave you kingdom, calld you children; You owe me no subscription. Then let fall Your horrible pleasure ;-here I stand your slave; A poor, infirm, weak, and despis'd old man ! But yet I call you servile ministers, That have with two pernicious daughters join'd Your high-engender'd battles, 'gainst a head So old and white as this. Oh ! oh! 'tis foul.

Kent. Hard by, Sir, is a hovel that will lend Some shelter from this tempeft.

Lear. No, I will be the pattern of all patience: I will say nothing.



Kent. Alas, Sir! things that love night, Love not such nights as these : the wrathful skies Gallow the very wand'rers of the dark, And make them keep their caves : since I was man, Such sheets of fire, such bursts of horrid thunder, Such groans of roaring wind and rain, I never Remember to have heard.

Lear. Let the great gods, That keep this dreadful pother o'er our heads, Find out their enemies now! Tremble, thou wretch, That haft within thee undivulged crimes, Unwhipt of justice. Hide thee, thou bloody hand) Thou perjure, and thou simular of virtue, That art incestuous ! caitiff, shake to pieces, That under covert and convenient seeming, Hast practis'd on man’s life !~Clofe pent-up guilts, Rive your concealing continents, and ask These dreadful summoners grace !-I am a man, More finn'd against, than finning.

Kent. Good Sir, to the hovel!

Lear. My wits begin to turn. Come on, my boy. How dost, my boy? art cold? I'm cold myself. Where is the straw, my fellow? The art of our neceflities is strange, That can make vile things precious. Come, your hovel!


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