Puslapio vaizdai

Ang'ring itself and others. [Aside.] Bless thee,


Glo. Is that the naked fellow?

Old Man.


Ay, my lord.

Glo. Then, pr'ythee, get thee gone: If, for my sake, Thou wilt o'ertake us, hence a mile or twain, I'the way to 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's mad.

Glo. 'Tis the times' plague, when madmen lead the


Do as I bid thee, or rather do thy pleasure;

Above the rest, be gone.

Old Man. I'll bring him the best 'parrel that I have, Come on't what will.

Glo. Sirrah, naked fellow.


Edg. Poor Tom's a-cold. I cannot daub it further.

Glo. Come hither, fellow.


Edg. [aside.] And yet I must. - Bless thy sweet eyes, they bleed.

Glo. Know'st thou the way to Dover?

Edg. Both stile and gate, horse-way, and foot-path. Poor Tom hath been scared out of his good wits: Bless the good man 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; who since possesses chamber-maids and waiting-women. So, bless thee, master!

Glo. Here, take this purse, thou whom the heaven's

Have humbled to all strokes: that I am wretched,
Makes thee the happier :- Heavens, deal so still!
Let the superfluous, and lust-dieted man,

I cannot daub it-] i. e disguise.

That slaves your ordinance, 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? Edg. Ay, master.

Glo. 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

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Gon. Welcome, my lord: I marvel, our mild husband Not met us on the way: Now, where's master? your Stew. 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 side out; wrong What most he should dislike, seems pleasant to him; What like, offensive.

8 That slaves your ordinance, &c.] The language of Shakspeare is very licentious, and his words have often meanings remote from the proper and original use. To slave or beslave another is to treat him with terms of indignity: in a kindred sense, to slave the ordinance, may be, to slight or ridicule it. JOHNSON.

To slave an ordinance, is to treat it as a slave, to make it subject to us, instead of acting in obedience to it.


Then shall you go no further.

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 9. 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

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': this kiss, if it durst speak, Would stretch thy spirits up into the air;

Conceive, and fare thee well.

Edm. Yours in the ranks of death.


My most dear Gloster!


O, the difference of man, and man! To thee
A woman's services are due; my fool

Usurps my bed.


Madam, here comes my lord.

[Exit Steward.


Gon. I have been worth the whistle.2

9 Our wishes, on the way,

May prove effects.] What we wish, before our march is at an end, may be brought to happen, i. e. the murder or despatch of her husband.

1 Decline your head: &c.] She bids him decline his head, that she might give him a kiss (the steward being present), and that it might appear only to him as a whisper.

2 I have been worth the whistle.] Goneril's meaning seems to be -There was a time when you would have thought me worth the calling to you; reproaching him for not having summoned her to consult with on the present critical occasion.


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;
She that herself will sliver and disbranch
From her material sap3, perforce must wither,
And come to deadly use.

Gon. No more; the text is foolish.

Alb. Wisdom and goodness to the vile seem vile :
Filths savour but themselves. What have you done?
Tigers, not daughters, what have you perform'd?
A father, and a gracious aged man,

Whose reverence the head-lugg'd bear would lick,
Most barbarous, most degenerate! have you madded.
Could my good brother suffer you to do it?
A man, a prince, by him so benefited?

If that the heavens do not their visible spirits
Send quickly down to tame these vile offences,
"Twill come,

Humanity must perforce prey on itself,

Like monsters of the deep.


Milk-liver'd man!

That bear'st a cheek for blows, a head for wrongs;
Who hast not in thy brows an eye discerning
Thine honour from thy suffering; that not know'st,
Fools do those villains pity, who are punish'd

Ere they have done their mischief. Where's thy drum?
France spreads his banners in our noiseless land;
With plumed helm thy slayer begins threats;
Whilst thou, a moral fool, sit'st still, and cry'st,
Alack! why does he so?

3 She that herself will sliver and disbranch

From her material sap,] She who breaks the bonds of filial duty, and becomes wholly alienated from her father, must wither and perish, like a branch separated from that sap which supplies it with nourishment, and gives life to the matter of which it is composed.


See thyself, devil!

Proper deformity seems not in the fiend

So horrid, as in woman.

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Alb. Thou changed and self-cover'd thing, for shame, Be-monster not thy feature. Were it

Were it my fitness

To let these hands obey my blood,

They are apt enough to dislocate and tear

Thy flesh and bones :- Howe'er thou art a fiend,

A woman's shape doth shield thee.

Gon. Marry, your manhood now!

Enter a Messenger.

Alb. What news?

Mess. O, my good lord, the duke of Cornwall's dead : Slain by his servant, going to put out

The other eye of Gloster.


Gloster's eyes!

Mess. A servant that he bred, thrill'd with remorse, Oppos'd against the act, bending his sword

To his great master; who, thereat enrag'd,
Flew on him, and amongst them fell'd him dead : 4
But not without that harmful stroke, which since
Hath pluck'd him after.


This shows you are above, You justicers, that these our nether crimes So speedily can venge! - But, O, poor Gloster!

Lost he his other eye!


Both, both, my lord. This letter, madam, craves a speedy answer;

"Tis from your sister.

Gon. [aside.] One way I like this well; But being widow, and my Gloster with her, May all the building in my fancy pluck

4 amongst them fell'd him dead:] i. e. they fell'd.

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