Puslapio vaizdai

Kent. What a brazen-fac'd varlet art thou to deny thou knoweft me! is it two days fince I tript up thy heels, and beat thee before the King? draw, you rogue; for tho' it be night, yet the moon fhines; I'll make a fop o' th' moonshine of you, you whorfon, cullionly barbermonger, draw. [Drawing his fword. Stew. Away, I have nothing to do with thee. Kent. Draw, you rafcal; you come with letters against the King, and take Vanity the puppet's part, against the royalty of her father; draw, you rogue, or I'll fo carbonado your thanks draw, you rascal, come your


Stew. Help, ho! murther! help!

Kent. Strike, you flave; ftand, rogue, ftand, you neatflave, ftrike!

Stew. Help, ho! murther! murther!


[Beating him.

Enter Baftard, Cornwall, Regan, Glo'fter, and Servants.

Baft. How now, what's the matter? Part

Kent. With you, goodman boy, if you pleafe; come, I'll flesh ye; come on, young master.

Glo. Weapons? arms? what's the matter here?

Corn. Keep peace, upon your lives; he dies that ftrikes again; what's the matter?

Reg. The meffengers from our fifter and the King?
Corn. What is your difference? fpeak.

Stew. I am scarce in breath, my Lord.

Kent. No marvel, you have fo beftir'd your valour; you cowardly rafcal, nature difclaims all fhare in thee: a tailor made thee.

Corn. Thou art a strange fellow; a tailor make a man? Kent. A tailor, Sir? a ftone-cutter, or a painter could not have made him fo ill, tho' they had been but two hours o' th' trade.

Corn. Speak you, how grew your quarrel?


Stew. This ancient ruffian, Sir, whofe life I have fpar'd at fuit of his grey beard

Kent. Thou whorfon zed! thou unneceffary letter! my Lord, if you will give me leave, I will tread this un bolted villain into mortar, and daub the wall of a jakes with him. Spare my grey beard? you wag-tail!

Corn. Peace, Sirrah!

You beaftly knave, know you no reverence?

Kent. Yes, Sir, but anger hath a privilege.
Corn. Why art thou angry?

Kent. That fuch a flave as this fhou'd wear a fword,
Who wears no honefty: fuch fmiling + 'rogues
Like rats oft bite the holy cords in twain

Too s'intrinfick t' unloofe: footh ev'ry paffion
That in the nature of their Lords rebels;
Bring oil to fire, fnow to their colder moods;
Renege, affirm, and turn their halcyon beaks
With ev'ry gale and vary of their mafters,
As knowing nought, like dogs, but following.
A plague upon your epileptick vifage!
Smile you my fpeeches, as I were a fool?
Goofe, if I had you upon Sarum plain,
I'd drive ye cackling home to Camelot, a
Corn. What, art thou mad, old fellow?
Glo. How fell you out? fay that.

Kent. No contraries hold more antipathy,
Than I and fuch a knave.

Corn. Why doft thou call him knave? what is his fault? Kent. His countenance likes me not.

Corn. No more perchance does mine, nor his, nor hers. Kent, Sir, 'tis my occupation to be plain;

I have seen better faces in my time,

Than ftand on any fhoulders that I fee

Before me at this inftant.

C 4


(a) In the parts of Somersetshire near Camelot there are many large Moors upon which great numbers of Geefe are bred, fo that many other places in England are from thence supplied with quills and feathers.

4 rogues as these,

5 intricate or intrinficate

Corn. This is fome fellow,

Who having been prais'd for bluntness, doth affect
A fawcy roughness, and conftrains the garb
Quite from his nature. He can't flatter, he;
An honeft mind and plain, he muft fpeak truth;
An they will take it, fo; if not, he's plain.
These kind of knaves I know, which in this plainness
Harbour more craft, and far corrupter ends,
Than twenty filky ducking obfervants,
That stretch their duties nicely.

Kent. Sir, in good faith, in fincere verity,
Under th' allowance of your grand afpect,
Whose influence, like the wreath of radiant fire
On flickering Phœbus' front-

Corn. What mean❜st by this?

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

Corn. What was th' offence you gave him?
Stew. 7'Never any:`

It pleas'd the King his mafter very lately
To strike at me upon his misconstruction;
When he conjunct, and flatt'ring his displeasure,
Tript me behind; being down, insulted, rail'd,
And put upon
him fuch a deal of man,

That worthied him, got praises of the King,
For him attempting who was felf-fubdu'd,
And in the fleshment of this dread exploit

Drew on me here again.

Kent. None of thefe rogues and cowards, But Ajax is their foil,`

Corn. Fetch forth the Stocks.

You ftubborn ancient knave, you rev'rend braggart,

We'll teach you.

6 he

7 I never gave him any: * fool..., old edit. Warb. emend,


Kent. Sir, I am too old to learn:

Call not your Stocks for me, I ferve the King;
On whofe imployment I was fent to you.
You fhall do fmall refpect, fhew too bold malice
Against the grace and perfon of my master,
Stocking his meffenger.

Corn. Fetch forth the Stocks;

As I have 'life, there fhall he fit 'till noon.

Reg. 'Till noon! 'till night, my Lord, and all night too, Kent. Why, Madam, if I were your father's dog,

You could not use me fo.

Reg. Sir, being his knave, I will. [Stocks brought out.
Corn. This is a fellow of the felf-fame nature
Our fifter speaks of. Bring away the Stocks.

Glo. Let me befeech your Grace not to do fo;
His fault is much, and the good King his mafter
Will check him for't; your purpos'd low correction.
Is fuch, as baseft and the meaneft wretches
For pilf'rings, and moft common trefpaffes,
Are punish'd with. The King muft take it ill
That he's fo flightly valued in his messenger,
To have him thus reftrain'd.

Corn. I'll answer that.

Reg. My fifter may receive it ''yet much worse,` To have her Gentleman abus'd, affaulted

Put in his legs.

For following her affairs.

Come, my Lord, away.


[Kent is put in the Stocks. [Exeunt Regan and Cornwall.



Glo. I'm forry for thee, friend; 'tis the Duke's pleasure, Whofe difpofition all the world well knows

Will not be rubb'd nor ftop'd. I'll intreat for thee.
Kent. Pray, do not, Sir. I've watch'd and travell'd hard,
Some time I shall fleep out, the reft I'll whistle:
A good man's fortune may grow out at heels;

9 life and honour, I much more worse,


Give you good morrow.

Glo. The Duke's to blame in this, 'twill be ill taken.


Kent. Good King, that must approve the common faw, Thou out of heaven's benediction com'ft

To the warm fun. All weary and o'er-watch'd,
Take vantage, heavy eyes, not to behold

This fhameful lodging.

Fortune, good night, fmile once more, turn thy wheel!

[He fleeps.

[blocks in formation]

SCENE changes to a part of a Heath.
Enter Edgar.

Edg. I'VE heard my felf proclaim'd,

And by the happy hollow of a tree
Efcap'd the hunt. No port is free, no place
That guard and moft unusual vigilance
Does not attend my taking. Whiles I may 'scape
I will preferve my felf: and am bethought
To take the baseft and the pooreft fhape
That every penury in contempt of man

Brought near to beaft: my face I'll grime with filth,
Blanket my loins, elfe all my hair in knots,


(a) An old proverbial faying applied to those who are turn'd out of house and home, deprived of all the comforts of life excepting the common benefits of the Air and Sun.

warm fun.

Approach thou beacon to this under globe, [Looking up to the moon.
That by thy comfortable beams I may

Perufe this letter. Nothing almost fees miracles-
But mifery. I know 'tis from Cordelia,
Who hath most fortunately been inform'd
Of my obfcured courfe. I fhall find time
From this enormous ftate, and feek to give
Loffes their remedies. All weary, &c.

« AnkstesnisTęsti »