Page images

Glo. Then, pr’ythee, get thee gone: If, for my

sake, Thou wilt o'ertake us, hence a mile or twain, l'the way to Dover, do it for ancient love; And bring some covering for this naked soul, Whom I'll entreat to lead me. Old Man.

Alack, sir, he's mad. Glo. 'Tis the times' plague, when madmen lead

the blind: Do as I bid thee, or rather do thy pleasure; Above the rest, be gone. Old Man. I'll bring him the best 'parrel that I

have, Come on't what will.

[Exit. Glo. Sirrah! naked fellow! Edg. Poor Tom's a-cold.-I cannot daub it further.

[Aside. Glo. Come hither, fellow. Edg. [Aside.] And yet I must.—Bless thy sweet

eyes, they bleed. Glo. Know'st thou the way to Dover?

Edg. Both stile and gate, horse-way, and footpath. Poor Tom hath been scared out of his good wits: Bless the good man from the foul fiend! Five fiends have been in poor Tom at once; of lust, as Obidicut; Hobbididance, prince of dumbness: Mahu, of stealing; Modo, of murder; and Flibbertigibbet, of mopping and mowing; who since possesses chamber-maids and waiting-women. So, bless thee, master! Glo. Here, take this purse, thou whom the hea

ven's plagues

Have humbled to all strokes: that I am wretched,
Makes thee the happier:—Heavens, deal so still!
Let the superfluous, and lust-dieted man,
That slaves your ordinance, that will not see
Because he doth not feel, feel your power quickly;
So distribution should undo excess,
And each man have enough.-Dost thou know

Edg. Ay, master.
Glo. There is a cliff, whose high and bending

head Looks fearfully in the confined deep: Bring me but to the very brim of it, And I'll repair the misery thou dost bear, With something rich about me: from that place I shall no leading need. Edg.

Give me thy arm; Poor Tom shall lead thee.




Enter Goneril and Edmund; Steward meeting them. Gon. Welcome, my lord: I marvel, our mild

husband Not met us on the way:-Now, where's your mas

ter: Stew. Madam, within; but never man so chang'd: I told him of the army that was landed; He smild at it: I told him, you were coming;

His answer was, The worse: of Glo'ster's treachery,
And of the loyal service of his son,
When I inform'd him, then he call’d me sot;
And told me, I had turn’d the wrong side out:-
What most he should dislike, seems pleasant to him;
What like, offensive.
Then shall you go no further.

[To Edmund.
It is the cowish terror of his spirit,
That dares not undertake: he'll not feel wrongs,
Which tie him to an answer: Our wishes, on the

way, May prove effects. Back, Edmund, to my brother; Hasten his musters, and conduct his powers: I must change arms at home, and give the distaff Into my husband's hands. This trusty servant Shall pass between us: ere long you are like to

hear, If you dare venture in your own behalf, A mistresses command. Wear this; spare speech;

[giving a favour. Decline your head: this kiss, if it durst speak, Would stretch thy spirits up into the air;Conceive, and fare thee well.

Edm. Yours in the ranks of death.

My most dear Glo'ster!

[Erit Edmund O, the difference of man, and man! To thee A woman's services are due; my fool Usurps my bed. Stew. Madam, here comes my lord.

[Exit Steward.

Enter Albany.
Gon. I have been worth the whistle.

O Goneril!
You are not worth the dust which the rude wind
Blows in your face.—I fear your disposition:
That nature, which contemns its origin,
Cannot be border'd certain in itself;
She that herself will sliver and disbranch
From her material sap, perforce must wither,
And come to deadly use.

Gon. No more; the text is foolish.

Alb. Wisdom and goodness to the vile seem vile: Filths savour but themselves. What have


done? Tigers, not daughters, what have you perform’d? A father, and a gracious aged man, Whose reverence the head-lugg'd bear would lick, Most barbarous, most degenerate! have you madded. Could my good brother suffer you to do it? A man, a prince, by him so benefited? If that the heavens do not their visible spirits Send quickly down to tame these vile offences, 'Twill come, Humanity must perforce prey on itself, Like monsters of the deep. Gon.

Milk-liver'd man! That bear'st a cheek for blows, a head for wrongs; Who hast not in thy brows an eye discerning Thine honour from thy suffering; that not know'st, Fools do those villains pity, who are punish'd Ere they have done their mischief. Where's thy


France spreads his banners in our noiseless land;
With plumed helm thy slayer begins threats;
Whilst thou, a moral fool, sit'st still, and cry'st,
Alack! why does he so?

See thyself, devil!
Proper deformity seems not in the fiend
So horrid, as in woman.

O vain fool!
Alb. Thou changed and self-cover'd thing, for

shame, Be-monster not thy feature. Were it my

fitness To let these hands obey my blood, They are apt enough to dislocate and tear Thy flesh and bones :—Howe'er thou art a fiend, A woman's shape doth shield thee.

Gon. Marry, your manhood now!

Enter a Messenger.
Alb. What news?
Mes. O, my good lord, the duke of Cornwall's

Slain by his servant, going to put out
The other eye of Glo'ster.

Glo'ster's eyes!
Mes. A servant that he bred, thrill'd with re-

morse, Oppos'd against the act, bending his sword To his great master; who, thereat enrag'd, Flew on him, and amongst them felld him dead: But not without that harmful stroke, which since Hath pluck'd him after. Alb.

This shows you are above,


« PreviousContinue »