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That names me traitor, villain-like he lies.
Alb. A herald, ho!
Edm. A herald, ho, a herald !
Alb. Trust to thy single virtue; for thy soldiers, All levied in my name, have in my name Took their discharge.
Reg. This sickness grows upon me
Enter a Herald.
Alb. She is not well; convey her to my tent. [Evit REGAN, led Come hither, herald.—Let the trumpet sound,And read out this. Off. Sound, trumpet. [A trumpet sounds.
If any man of quality, or degree, within the lists of the army, will maintain upon Edmund, supposed earl of Gloster, that he is a manifold traitor, le. him appear at the third sound of the trumpet. He is bold in his
[Trumpet answers within.
Enter EDGAR, armed, preceded by a trumpet.
Alb. Ask him his purposes, why he appears
Your name, your quality P And why you answer
1 i.e. valor; a Roman sense of the word.
Edg. Know, my name is lost;
Alb. Which is that adversary?
Edg. What's he that speaks for Edmund, earl of Gloster f
Edm. Himself;--what say'st thou to him P
Edg. Draw thy sword;
That if my speech offend a noble heart,
Edm. In wisdom, I should ask thy name ; "
[Alarums. They fight; EDMUND falls. Alb. O, save him, save him ''
I Because, if his adversary was not of equal rank, Edmund might have declined the combat.
2 Say, or assay, is a sample, a taste.
3 This seems to mean “What I might sqfely well delay, if I acted punctiliously.” This line is omitted in the quartos.
4 To that place where they shall rest forever, i. e. thy heart.
Gon. This is mere practice, Gloster By the law of arms, thou wast not bound to answer An unknown opposite ; thou art not vanquished, But cozened and beguiled.
Alb. Shut your mouth, dame, Or with this paper shall I stop it.—Hold, sir;-Thou worse than any name, read thine own evil. No tearing, lady; I perceive you know it.
[Gives the letter to EDMUND
Gon. Say, if I do ; the laws are mine, not thine.
Who shall arraign me for’t?
Alb. Most monstrous ! Know'st thou this paper ?” Gon. Ask me not what I know.
[Evit Go NERIL. Alb. Go after her; she's desperate ; govern her. [To an Officer, who goes out. Edm. What you have charged me with, that have I done : * And more, much more. The time will bring it out; 'Tis past, and so am I. But what art thou, That hast this fortune on me? If thou art noble, I do forgive thee. Edg. Let’s exchange charity. I am no less in blood than thou art, Edmund; If more, the more thou hast wronged me. My name is Edgar, and thy father’s son. The gods are just, and of our pleasant vices Make instruments to scourge us.” The dark and vicious place where thee he got, Cost him his eyes. Edm. Thou hast spoken right; 'tis true : The wheel is come full circle : I am here.
1 Albany desires that Edmund’s life may be spared at present, only to obtain his confession, and to convict him openly by his own letter.
2 * Knowest thou these letters?” says Leir to Regan, in the old anonymous play, when he shows her both her own and her sister's letters, which were written to procure his death; upon which she snatches the letters and tears them.
3 The folio reads “to plague us.”
Alb. Methought thy very gait did prophesy
Edg. Worthy prince, I know’t
Alb. Where have you hid yourself?
Edg. By nursing them, my lord.-List a brief
And, when 'tis told, O that my heart would burst
Edm. This speech of yours hath moved me, And shall, perchance, do good. But speak you on ; You look as you had something more to say.
Alb. If there be more, more woful, hold it in ;
* [Edg. This would have seemed a period To such as love not sorrow ; but another, To amplify too much, would make much more,
1 The quartos read:—
And top extremity."
Alb. But who was this P
Edg, Kent, sir, the banished Kent; who in disguise Followed his enemy king, and did him service Improper for a slave.]
Enter a Gentleman, hastily, with a bloody knife.
Edg. What kind of help ?
Alb. Speak, man.
Edg. What means that bloody knife P
Gent. 'Tis hot, it smokes; It came even from the heart of
Alb. Who, man P speak.
1 Of this difficult passage, which is probably corrupt, Steevens gives the following explanation:-" This would have seemed a period to such as love not sorrow, but—another, i.e. but I must add another, i. e. another period, another kind of conclusion to my story, such as will increase the horrors of what has been already told.” It will be necessary, if we admit this interpretation, to point the passage thus:—
* — but another:-
Malone's explanation is:—“This would have seemed the utmost comple-