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BEFORE GLO'STER'S CASTLE.
Enter Kent and Steward, severally. Stew. Good dawning to thee, friend: Art of the
Stew. Where may we set our horses?
Kent. If I had thee in Lipsbury pinfold, I would make thee care for me.
Stew. Why dost thou use me thus? I know thee not.
Kent. Fellow, I know thee.
Kent. A knave; a rascal, an eater of broken meats; a base, proud, shallow, beggarly, threesuited, hundred-pound, filthy worsted-stocking knave; a lily-liver'd, action-taking knave; a whorson, glass-gazing, superserviceable, finical rogue; one-trunk-inheriting slave; one that would'st be a bawd, in way of good service, and art nothing but the composition of a knave, beggar, coward, pandar, and the son and heir of a mongrel bitch: one whom I will beat into clamorous whining, if thou deny'st the least syllable of thy addition
Stew. Why, what a monstrous fellow art thou, thus to rail on one, that is neither known of thee, nor knows thee?
Kent. What a brazen-faced varlet art thou, to deny thou know’st me? Is it two days ago, since I tripp'd up thy heels, and beat thee, before the king? Draw, you 'rogue: for, though it be night, the moon shines; I'll make a sop o' the moonshine of you: Draw, you whorson cullionly barbermonger, draw.
[drawing his sword. Stew. Away; I have nothing to do with thee.
Kent. Draw, you rascal: 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 so carbonado your shanks:-draw, you rascal; come your ways.
Stew. Help, ho! murder! help!
Kent. Strike, you slave; stand, rogue, stand; you neat slave, strike.
[beating him. Stew. Help, ho! murder! murder!
Enter Edmund, Cornwall, Regan, Glo'ster, and
Kent. With you, goodman boy, if you please; come, I'll flesh you; come on, young master.
Glo. Weapons! arms! What's the matter here?
Corr. Keep peace, upon your lives; He dies, that strikes again: What is the matter?
Reg. The messengers from our sister and the king
Corn. What is your difference? speak.
Stew. I am scarce in breath, my lord.
Kent. No marvel, you have so bestirr'd your valour. You cowardly rascal, nature disclaims in thee; a tailor made thee.
Corn. Thou art a strange fellow: a tailor make a man?
Kent. Ay, a tailor, sir: a stone-cutter, or a painter, could not have made him so ill, though they had been but two hours at the trade.
Corn. Speak yet, how grew your quarrel?
Kent. Thou whorson zed! thou unnecessary letter!—My lord, if you will give me leave, I will tread this unbolted villain into mortar, and daub the wall of a jakes with him.-Spare my grey beard, you wagtail?
Corn. Peace, sirrah!
Kent. Yes, sir; but anger has a privilege.
sword, Who wears no honesty. Such smiling rogues as
these, Like rats, oft bite the holy cords in twain Which are too intrinse t'unloose: smooth every
That in the natures of their lords rebels;
With every gale and vary of their masters,
Corn. What, art thou mad, old fellow?
How fell you out? Say that.
Kent. No contraries hold more antipathy, Than I and such a knave. Corn. Why dost thou call him knave? What's
his offence? Kent. His countenance likes me not. Corn. No more, perchauce, does mine, or his,
This is some fellow,
Kent. Sir, in good sooth, in sincere verity,
Under the allowance of your grand aspéct,
What mean'st by this? Kent. To go out of my dialect, which you discommend so much. I know, sir, I am no flatterer: he that beguiled you, in a plain accent, was a plain knave; which, for my part, I will not be, though I should win your displeasure to entreat me to it.
Corn. What was the offence you gave him?
Stew. It pleas’d the king his master, very late, To strike at me, upon his misconstruction; When he, conjunct, and flattering his displeasure, Tripp'd me behind; being down, insulted, rail'd, And put upon him such a deal of man, That worthy'd him, got praises of the king For him attempting who was self-subdu'd; And, in the fleshment of this dread exploit, Drew on me here.
Kent. None of these rogues, and cowards, But Ajax is their fool. Corn.
Fetch forth the stocks, ho! You stubborn ancient knave, you reverend brag
gart, We'll teach youKent.
Sir, I am too old to learn: Call not your stocks for me: I serve the king; On whose employment I was sent to you: You shall do small respect, show too bold malice Against the grace and person of my master, Stocking his messenger.