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Home > King Lear > ACT III - SCENE VI. A chamber in a farmhouse adjoining the castle.

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ACT III - SCENE VI. A chamber in a farmhouse adjoining the castle.
Enter GLOUCESTER, KING LEAR, KENT, Fool, and EDGAR

GLOUCESTER
1    Here is better than the open air; take it
2    thankfully. I will piece out the comfort with what
3    addition I can: I will not be long from you.
KENT
4    All the power of his wits have given way to his
5    impatience: the gods reward your kindness!
Exit GLOUCESTER

EDGAR
6    Frateretto calls me; and tells me
7    Nero is an angler in the lake of darkness.
8    Pray, innocent, and beware the foul fiend.
Fool
9    Prithee, nuncle, tell me whether a madman be a
10   gentleman or a yeoman?
KING LEAR
11   A king, a king!
Fool
12   No, he's a yeoman that has a gentleman to his son;
13   for he's a mad yeoman that sees his son a gentleman
14   before him.
KING LEAR
15   To have a thousand with red burning spits
16   Come hissing in upon 'em,--
EDGAR
17   The foul fiend bites my back.
Fool
18   He's mad that trusts in the tameness of a wolf, a
19   horse's health, a boy's love, or a whore's oath.
KING LEAR
20   It shall be done; I will arraign them straight.
To EDGAR
21   Come, sit thou here, most learned justicer;
To the Fool
22   Thou, sapient sir, sit here. Now, you she foxes!
EDGAR
23   Look, where he stands and glares!
24   Wantest thou eyes at trial, madam?
25   Come o'er the bourn, Bessy, to me,--
Fool
26   Her boat hath a leak,
27   And she must not speak
28   Why she dares not come over to thee.
EDGAR
29   The foul fiend haunts poor Tom in the voice of a
30   nightingale. Hopdance cries in Tom's belly for two
31   white herring. Croak not, black angel; I have no
32   food for thee.
KENT
33   How do you, sir? Stand you not so amazed:
34   Will you lie down and rest upon the cushions?
KING LEAR
35   I'll see their trial first. Bring in the evidence.
To EDGAR
36   Thou robed man of justice, take thy place;
To the Fool
37   And thou, his yoke-fellow of equity,
38   Bench by his side:
To KENT
39   you are o' the commission,
40   Sit you too.
EDGAR
41   Let us deal justly.
42   Sleepest or wakest thou, jolly shepherd?
43   Thy sheep be in the corn;
44   And for one blast of thy minikin mouth,
45   Thy sheep shall take no harm.
46   Pur! the cat is gray.
KING LEAR
47   Arraign her first; 'tis Goneril. I here take my
48   oath before this honourable assembly, she kicked the
49   poor king her father.
Fool
50   Come hither, mistress. Is your name Goneril?
KING LEAR
51   She cannot deny it.
Fool
52   Cry you mercy, I took you for a joint-stool.
KING LEAR
53   And here's another, whose warp'd looks proclaim
54   What store her heart is made on. Stop her there!
55   Arms, arms, sword, fire! Corruption in the place!
56   False justicer, why hast thou let her 'scape?
EDGAR
57   Bless thy five wits!
KENT
58   O pity! Sir, where is the patience now,
59   That thou so oft have boasted to retain?
EDGAR
Aside
60    My tears begin to take his part so much,
61   They'll mar my counterfeiting.
KING LEAR
62   The little dogs and all, Tray, Blanch, and
63   Sweet-heart, see, they bark at me.
EDGAR
64   Tom will throw his head at them. Avaunt, you curs!
65   Be thy mouth or black or white,
66   Tooth that poisons if it bite;
67   Mastiff, grey-hound, mongrel grim,
68   Hound or spaniel, brach or lym,
69   Or bobtail tike or trundle-tail,
70   Tom will make them weep and wail:
71   For, with throwing thus my head,
72   Dogs leap the hatch, and all are fled.
73   Do de, de, de. Sessa! Come, march to wakes and
74   fairs and market-towns. Poor Tom, thy horn is dry.
KING LEAR
75   Then let them anatomize Regan; see what breeds
76   about her heart. Is there any cause in nature that
77   makes these hard hearts?
To EDGAR
78   You, sir, I entertain for one of my hundred; only I
79   do not like the fashion of your garments: you will
80   say they are Persian attire: but let them be changed.
KENT
81   Now, good my lord, lie here and rest awhile.
KING LEAR
82   Make no noise, make no noise; draw the curtains:
83   so, so, so. We'll go to supper i' he morning. So, so, so.
Fool
84   And I'll go to bed at noon.
Re-enter GLOUCESTER

GLOUCESTER
85   Come hither, friend: where is the king my master?
KENT
86   Here, sir; but trouble him not, his wits are gone.
GLOUCESTER
87   Good friend, I prithee, take him in thy arms;
88   I have o'erheard a plot of death upon him:
89   There is a litter ready; lay him in 't,
90   And drive towards Dover, friend, where thou shalt meet
91   Both welcome and protection. Take up thy master:
92   If thou shouldst dally half an hour, his life,
93   With thine, and all that offer to defend him,
94   Stand in assured loss: take up, take up;
95   And follow me, that will to some provision
96   Give thee quick conduct.
KENT
97   Oppressed nature sleeps:
98   This rest might yet have balm'd thy broken senses,
99   Which, if convenience will not allow,
100  Stand in hard cure.
To the Fool
101  Come, help to bear thy master;
102  Thou must not stay behind.
GLOUCESTER
103  Come, come, away.
Exeunt all but EDGAR

EDGAR
104  When we our betters see bearing our woes,
105  We scarcely think our miseries our foes.
106  Who alone suffers suffers most i' the mind,
107  Leaving free things and happy shows behind:
108  But then the mind much sufferance doth o'er skip,
109  When grief hath mates, and bearing fellowship.
110  How light and portable my pain seems now,
111  When that which makes me bend makes the king bow,
112  He childed as I father'd! Tom, away!
113  Mark the high noises; and thyself bewray,
114  When false opinion, whose wrong thought defiles thee,
115  In thy just proof, repeals and reconciles thee.
116  What will hap more to-night, safe 'scape the king!
117  Lurk, lurk.
Exit

< (Previous) ACT III, SCENE VACT III, SCENE VII (Next) >
Scene Index
ACT I
  • SCENE I
  • SCENE II
  • SCENE III
  • SCENE IV
  • SCENE V


  • ACT II
  • SCENE I
  • SCENE II
  • SCENE III
  • SCENE IV


  • ACT III
  • SCENE I
  • SCENE II
  • SCENE III
  • SCENE IV
  • SCENE V
  • SCENE VI
  • SCENE VII


  • ACT IV
  • SCENE I
  • SCENE II
  • SCENE III
  • SCENE IV
  • SCENE V
  • SCENE VI
  • SCENE VII


  • ACT V
  • SCENE I
  • SCENE II
  • SCENE III

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