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Enter Cornwall, Regan, Gonerill, Baftard, and Servants. Corn. Poft fpeedily to my Lord your husband, fhew him this letter, the army of France is landed; feek out the traitor Glofter.

Reg. Hang him inftantly.
Gon. Pluck out his eyes.

Corn. Leave him to my difpleasure. Edmund, keep you our fifter company; the revenges we are bound to take upon your traiterous father are not fit for your beholding. Advise the Duke, where you are going, to a most feftinate preparation; we are bound to the like. Our posts shall be fwift, and intelligent betwixt us. Farewel, dear sister; farewel, my Lord of Glofter.

Enter Steward.

How now? where's the King?

Stew. My Lord of Glofter hath convey'd him hence. Some five or fix and thirty of his Knights,

Hot quefters after, met him at gate,

Who, with fome other of the Lord's dependants,
Are gone with him tow'rd Dover; where they boast
To have well-armed friends.

Corn. Get horfes for your mistress.

Gon. Farewel, fweet Lord, and fifter.

[Exeunt Gon. and Baft. Corn. Edmund, farewel:— go feek the traitor Glofter, [To the Servants. Pinion him like a thief, bring him before us : Though well we may not pafs upon his life Without the form of juftice; yet our pow'r Shall do a court'fie to our wrath, which men May blame, but not control.


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Enter Glo'fter Prifoner, and Servants.

Who's there? the traitor?

Reg. Ingrateful fox! 'tis he.

Corn. Bind faft his corky arms.

Glo. What mean your Graces? Good

You are my guests: do me no foul play,
Corn. Bind him, I say.

Reg. Hard, hard: O filthy traitor!


my friends, con


[They bind him.

Glo. Unmerciful Lady as you are! I'm none.

Corn. To this chair bind him. Villain, thou fhalt find ---Glo. By the kind Gods 2, 'tis most ignobly done

To pluck me by the beard.

Reg. So white, and fuch a traitor?

Glo. Naughty Lady,

These hairs which thou doft ravish from my chin
Will quicken and accufe thee. I'm your hoft;
With robber's hands, my hofpitable 'favour
You should not ruffle thus. What will you do?

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Corn. Come, Sir, what letters had you late from France? Reg. Be fimple-anfwer'd, for we know the truth. Corn. And what confed'racy have you with the traitors Late footed in the kingdom?

Reg. To whofe hands have you fent the lunatick King? Speak.

Glo. I've a letter gueffingly fet down,

Which came from one that's of a neutral heart,

And not from one oppos'd.

Corn. Cunning

Reg. And falfe.

Corn. Where haft thou sent the King?

E 3


(a) By the kind Gods is not here meant a general title given to all the Gods, but this is intended as a particular appeal to those which were diftinguifb'd by the name of the Dii hofpitales. Warburton. 9 favours. . . old edit. Warb. emend. i. e. visage.

i fimple answerer,

Glo. /To Dover, Sir.`

Reg. Wherefore to Dover?

Waft thou not charg'd, at peril

Corn. Wherefore to Dover? let him anfwer that.
Glo. I am ty'd to th' fiake, and I muft ftand the course.

Reg. Wherefore to Dover?

Glo. Because I would not fee thy cruel nails Pluck out his poor old eyes; nor thy fierce fifter In his anointed flesh stick boarifh phangs.

The fea, with fuch a ftorm as his bare head

In hell-black night indur'd, would have buoy'd up
And quench'd the 'ftellar fires:


Yet poor old heart, he help'd the heav'ns to rain.
If wolves had at thy gate howl'd that ftern time,
Thou should't have faid, good porter, turn the key;
All cruels elfe fubfcribe; but I fhall fee

The winged vengeance overtake fuch children.

Corn. See't fhalt thou never. Fellows, hold the chair. Upon these eyes of thine I'll fet my foot.

[Glo'fter is held down while Cornwall treads out one of his eyes.

Glo. He that will think to live 'till he be old, Give me some help. -O cruel! O you Gods! Reg. One fide will mock another; th' other too. Corn. If you fee vengeance

Serv. Hold your hand, my Lord:

I've ferv'd you ever fince I was a child;

But better fervice have I never done you,

Than now to bid you hold.

Reg. How now, you dog?

Serv. If you did wear a beard upon your chin,

I'd shake it on this quarrel. What do

Corn. My villain!



Serv. Nay then come on, and take the chance of anger. [Fight, in the fcuffle Cornwall is wounded. Reg. Give me thy fword. A peafant ftand up thus?

[Kills him.

2 To Dover,

3 fteeled or ftelled


Serv. Oh, I am flain--- my Lord, you have one eye left To fee fome mifchief on him. Oh[Dies. Corn. Left it fee more, prevent it; out, vile gelly!

Where is thy luftre now?

[Treads out the other eye.

Glo. All dark and comfortless -- where's my fon Edmund? Edmund, enkindle all the sparks of nature

To quit this horrid act.

Reg. Out, treacherous villain!

Thou call'ft on him that hates thee: It was he
That made the overture of thy treasons to us:
Who is too good to pity thee.

Glo. O my follies!

Then Edgar was abus'd. Kind Gods, forgive
Me that, and profper him.

Reg. Go thruft him out

At th' gates, and let him fmell his way to Dover.

How is't, my Lord? how look you?


[Ex. with Glo'fter.

Corn. I have receiv'd a hurt; follow me, Lady. Turn out that eyelefs villain; throw this flave

Upon the dunghill.

Regan, I bleed apace.

Untimely comes this hurt.

Give me your arm. [Exeunt.



SCENE An open Country.

Enter Edgar.


ET better thus, and known to be contemn'd, Than ftill contemn'd and flatter'd. To be worst, (The lowest, most dejected thing of fortune) Stands ftill in efperance, lives not in fear.

The lamentable change is from the best;


The worst returns to laughter. Welcome then,
Thou unfubftantial air that I embrace!

The wretch that thou haft blown unto the worst,
Owes nothing to thy blasts.

Enter Glo'fter, led by an old man.

But who comes here?

My father poorly led? World, world, O world!
But that thy ftrange mutations make us hate thee,
Life would not yield to age.

Old Man. O my good Lord, I have been your tenant, And your father's tenant, thefe fourfcore years.

Glo. Away, get thee away: good friend, be gone; Thy comforts can do me no good at all,

Thee they may hurt,

Old Man. You cannot fee your way.

Glo. I have no way, and therefore want no eyes: I ftumbled when I faw.

'Meannefs fecures us,

Full oft 'tis feen,

and our meer defects
Prove our commodities. O dear fon Edgar,
The food of thy abused father's wrath;
Might I but live to see thee in my touch,

I'd lay I had eyes again.

Old Man. How now? who's there?

Edg O Gods! who is't can fay I'm at the worst? I'm worse than e'er I was.

Old Man. 'Tis poor mad Tom.

Edg. And worfe I may be yet: the worst is not, So long as we can fay, this is the worst.

Old Man. Fellow, where goeft?

Glo. Is it a beggar-man?

Old Man. Madman, and beggar too.

Glo. He has fome reason, elfe he could not beg.

I' th' laft night's ftorm I fuch a fellow faw;
Which made me think a man, a worm. My fon


(a) Yield to fignifies no more than give way to, fink under, in oppofition to the struggling with, bearing up against the infirmities of Warburton.


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