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In the restoring his bereaved sense P
Phy. There is means, madam.
Cor. All blessed secrets,
Enter a Messenger.
Mess. Madam, news; The British powers are marching hitherward.
Cor. 'Tis known before ; our preparation stands In expectation of them.—O dear father, It is thy business that I go about; Therefore great France My mourning, and important* tears hath pitied. No blown " ambition doth our arms incite, But love, dear love, and our aged father’s right. Soon may I hear and see him. [Eveunt
SCENE W. A Room in Gloster’s Castle.
Enter REGAN and Steward.
Reg. But are my brother's powers set forth
Stew. Ay, madam.
Reg. Himself In person there P
Stew. Madam, with much ado;
Your sister is the better soldier.
1 i. e. the reason which should guide it
Reg. Lord Edmund spake not with your lord at home f Stew. No, madam. Reg. What might import my sister's letter to him P Stew. I know not, lady. Reg. 'Faith, he is posted hence on serious matter. It was great ignorance, Gloster’s eyes being out, To let him live ; where he arrives, he moves All hearts against us. Edmund, I think, is gone, In pity of his misery, to despatch His mighted life; moreover, to descry The strength o' the enemy. Stew. I must needs after him, madam, with my letter. Reg. Our troops set forth to-morrow; stay with us; The ways are dangerous. Stew. I may not, madam : My lady charged my duty in this business. Reg. Why should she write to Edmund f Might not you Transport her purposes by word P Belike, Something—I know not what.—I’ll love thee much, Let me unseal the letter. Stew. Madam, I had rather Reg. I know your lady does not love her husband; I am sure of that ; and, at her late being here, She gave strange oeiliads," and most speaking looks To noble Edmund. I know you are of her bosom. Stew. I, madam P Reg. I speak in understanding; you are, I know it; Therefore, I do advise you, take this note.” My lord is dead; Edmund and I have talked; And more convenient is he for my hand, Than for your lady’s –you may gather more.” If you do find him, pray you, give him this;"
1 CEillade (Fr.), a cast or significant glance of the eye.
2 That is, observe what I am saying.
3 You may infer more than I have directly told you.
4 Perhaps a ring, or some token, is given to the steward by Regan to be conveyed to Edmund.
And when your mistress hears thus much from you,
show What party I do follow. Reg. Fare thee well. [Eveunt.
SCENE WI. The Country near Dover.
Enter GLosTER and EDGAR, dressed like a Peasant.
Glo. When shall we come to the top of that same hill P
Edg. You do climb up it now; look, how we labor.
Glo. Methinks the ground is even.
Edg. Horrible steep. Hark, do you hear the seaf Glo. No, truly.”
Edg. Why, then your other senses grow imperfect By your eyes' anguish. lo. So may it be, indeed. Methinks thy voice is altered;’ and thou speak'st In better phrase, and matter, than thou didst. Edg. You are much deceived; in nothing am I changed But in my garments. . Glo. Methinks you are better spoken. Edg. Come on, sir; here’s the place; stand still. —How fearful
1 This scene, and the stratagem by which Gloster is cured of his desperation, are wholly borrowed from Sidney's Arcadia, book ii.
* Something to complete the measure seems wanting in this or the foregoing hemistich. The quartos read, as one line:—
“Horrible steep: hark, do you hear the sea?”
3. Edgar alters his voice in order to pass afterwards for a malignant spirit.
And dizzy 'tis, to cast one’s eyes so low
1 “Samphire grows in great plenty on most of the sea-cliffs in this country: it is terrible to see how people gather it, hanging by a rope several fathom from the top of the impending rocks, as it were in the air.”—Smith's History of Waterford, p.315, edit. 1774.—Doyer cliff was particularly resorted to for this plant. It is still eaten as a pickle in those parts of England bordering on the southern coast.
2 i.e. her cock-boat. Hence the term cockswain.
Burn itself out. If Edgar live, O, bless him —
1 That is, “when life is willing to be destroyed.” 2 “Thus might he die in reality.” 3 i. e. drawn out, at length, or each added to the other. “IEche, exp. draw out, ab Anglo-Saxon elcan, elcian, Diferre, vel a verb. to eak.” Skinner, Etymolog. Skinner is right in his last derivation; it is from the Anglo-Saxon eacan, to add. Pope changed this to attacht; Johnson would read on end; Steevens proposes at reach. 4 i. e. this chalky boundary of England.