Puslapio vaizdai

Edm. So please your lordship, none. [Putting up the letter.

Glo. Why fo earnestly feek you to put up that letter?

Edm. I know no news, my lord.

Glo. What paper were you reading?

Edm. Nothing, my lord.


Glo. No! what needed then that terrible dispatch of it into your pocket? the quality of nothing hath not fuch need to hide itfelf. Let's fee; come: if it be nothing, I fhall not need fpectacles.


Edm. I beseech you, fir, pardon me, it is a letter from my brother, that I have not all o'er-read; d and for fo much as I have perus'd, I find it not fit for your overlooking.

Glo. Give me the letter, fir.


Edm. I fhall offend, either to detain, or give it. The contents, as in part I understand them, are to blame.

Glo. Let's fee, let's fee.

Edm. I hope, for my brother's juftification, he wrote this but as an effay, or f taste of my virtue.

Glo. reads.] This policy & and reverence of h age makes the


The qu's read needs.

The ft q. reads terribe.

b St. reads had for bath.

CR. reads bid.

d The qu's omit and.

eThe qu's read liking for over-looking.

f 7. proposes teft for taste.

The qu's omit and reverence.

h So the qu's, fo's, R. P.'s q. H. and J.; P.'s duodecimo (by mistake of the prefs, I fuppofe) reads ages; followed by T. and W. and the last gives the following note.

Ages fignifies former times. So that the fenfe of the words is this, what between the policy of fome, and the fuperftitious reverence of others to old



world bitter to the beft of our times; keeps our fortunes from us, till our oldness cannot relish them. I begin to find an idle and fond bondage in the oppreffion of aged týranny; k who fways, not as it hath power, but as it is fuffered. Come to me, that of this I may speak more. If our father would fleep till I wak'd him, you should enjoy half his revenue for ever, and live the beloved of your brother EDGAR. Hum-Confpiracy!

fleep till I wak'd him—you My fon Edgar! had he a hand to write this! a heart and brain to breed it in!

fhould enjoy half his revenue.

"When came this to you? who brought it?

Edm. It was not brought me, my lord; there's the cunning of it. I found it thrown in at the casement of my clofet.

Glo. You know the character to be your brother's?

Edm. If the matter were good, my lord, I durft fwear it were his; but in refpect of that, I would fain think, it were


Glo. It is his.

Edm. It is his hand, my lord; but I hope his heart is not in the contents,

customs, it is now become an established rule, that fathers shall keep all they have till they die. W.

By this W. feems to think ages an emendation of P.'s, or not to have confulted the editions before.

ì The three laft fo's omit the.

So all before R. who alters it to which; followed by all after.

1. The qu's read flept.

So the qu's; the rest wake.

m R. P.'s q. and H. before brain infert a.

n The 1st and 2d fo's read when came you to this?

So the qu's, and ift f. all the rest omit but,



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Glo. P Hath he never heretofore founded you in this buffnefs?

Edm. Never, my lord. But I have often heard him maintain it to be fit, that sons at perfect age, and fathers


declining, the father should be as ward to the fon, and the fon manage his revenue.

Glo. O villain, villain! his very opinion in the letter. Abhorred villain! unnatural, detefted, brutish villain! worfe than brutish! Go, firrah, feek him; I'll apprehend him. Abominable villain! where is he?

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Edm. I do not well know, my lord. If it fhall please you to fufpend your indignation against my brother, till you can derive from him better teftimony of his intent, you should run a certain courfe; where, if you violently proceed against him, mistaking his purpose, it would make a great gap in your own honour, and fháke in pieces the heart of his obedience. I dare pawn down my life for him, that he hath writ this to feel my affection to your honour, and to no other pretence of danger.

Glo. Think you fo?

Edm. If your honour judge it meet, I will place you where you fhall hear us confer of this, and by an auricular affurance

P So the qu's; all the rest has he never before founded, &c.

So the qu's; the rest heard him oft maintain it, &c.

The fo's and R. read declin'd.

• The qu's read his father, &c.

P. and all after, infert a before ward.

The qu's read the revenue.

u The qu's read fir for firrah.

The qu's read I apprehend, &c.

The qu's read this for his.

The 2d, 3d, and 4th fo's, R. P. and H. omit own.

have your fatisfaction, and that without any further delay than this very evening.

Glo. He cannot be fuch a monster.

Edm. Nor is not, fure.

Glo. To his father, that fo tenderly and entirely loves him— Heav'n and earth! Edmund, feek him out; wind me into him, I pray you. Frame the bufinefs after your own wifdom; I would unftate myself, to be in a due refolution.


Edm. I will feek him, fir, presently, convey the business as I fhall b fee means, and acquaint you withal.

Glo. These late eclipfes in the fun and moon portend no good to us; though the wisdom of nature can reafon it thus and thus, yet nature finds itself scourg'd by the fequent effects. Love cools, friendship falls off, brothers divide. In cities, mutinies; in countries, difcords; fin palaces, treafon; and the bond crack'd 8'twixt fon and father. h This villain of mine comes under the prediction, there's fon against father; the king falls from biafs of nature, there's father against child. We have feen the best of our time. Machinations, hollowness, treachery, and all ruinous diforders follow us difquietly to our graves! Find out this villain, Edmund; it fhall lofe thee nothing, do it carefully-and the noble and

2 What is in italic, viz. from the word nor to earth inclusively, are omitted in the fo's, R. P. and H.

a The qu's read your for the.

So the qu's; the reft read find for fee.

The qu's omit it.

d T.'s octavo reads frequent for fequent. So the qu's; all the rest discord.

f The qu's omit in.

The qu's read between for 'twixt.
What is in italic is not in the qu'e.



true-hearted Kent banish'd! i his offence, honefty. 'Tis






Manet Edmund.


Edm. This is the excellent foppery of the world, that, when we are fick in fortune (often the * furfeit of our own behaviour) we make guilty of our difafters, the fun, the moon, and the stars; as if we were villains by neceffity; fools, by heavenly compulsion; knaves, thieves, and a treachers, by fpherical predominance; drunkards, lyars, and adulterers, by an inforc'd obedience of planetary influence; and all that we are evil in, by a divine thrusting on. An admirable evasion of whore-master man, to lay his goatifh disposition to the 9 charge of ftars! My father compounded with my mother under the dragon's tail, and my nativity was under Urfa major; fo that it follows, I am rough and leacherous. Tut, I should have been that I am, had the maidenliest star in the firmament twinkled on my " bastardizing.


i The qu's read his offence honest, strange strange!

So the qu's; all the reft furfeits.

All but the qu's omit the.

So the qu's; all the rest on for by.

n The qu's read treacherers; P. and all after, treacherous. Chaucer has, the falfe treacher, Rom. of the Rose, 7168, p. 265. Ur.

• The qu's read fpiritual for spherical.

P So the qu's; all the reft on for to.
W. reads change for charge.

So the qu's; the rest of a star.

The qu's read fut, the t being changed into an ƒ; all the reft omit it. Tut is an expreffion of contempt. Jul. Caf. act s. Ant. Tut! I am in

their hofoms.

alters that to what; followed by the reft.

The qu's read baftardy.


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