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Or whether gasted' by the noise I made,

Full suddenly he fled.


Let him fly far:

Not in this land shall he remain uncaught;

And found-Despatch.-The noble duke my master,
My worthy arch' and patron, comes to-night:

By his authority I will proclaim it,

That he, which finds him, shall deserve our thanks,
Bringing the murderous coward to the stake;
He, that conceals him, death.

Edm. When I dissuaded him from his intent,
And found him pight to do it, with curst speech
I threaten'd to discover him: He replied,
Thou unpossessing bastard! dost thou think,
If I would stand against thee, would the reposal
Of any trust, virtue, or worth, in thee

Make thy words faith'd? No: what I should deny,
(As this I would; ay, though thou didst produce
My very character,) I'd turn it all

To thy suggestion, plot, and damned practice:
And thou must make a dullard of the world,
If they not thought the profits of my death
Were very pregnant and potential spurs
To make thee seek it.


Strongd and fasten'd villain! Would he deny his letter?-I never got him.

[Trumpets within. Hark, the duke's trumpets! I know not why he comes: All ports I'll bar; the villain shall not 'scape; The duke must grant me that: besides, his picture I will send far and near, that all the kingdom May have due note of him; and of my land,


gasted-] i. e. Frighted.

arch] i. e. Chief; a word now used only in composition as archangel, arch-duke.-STEEVENS.

And fought him pight to do it, with curst speech-]_Pight is pitched, fixed, settled. Curst is severe, harsh, vehemently angry.-JOHNSON.


·would the reposal-] i. e. Would any opinion that men have reposed in thy trust, virtue, &c.-WARBUrton.

My very character,] i. e. My very handwriting.
Strong-] i. e. Determined.

Loyal and natural boy, I'll work the means

To make thee capable.

Enter CORNWALL, REGAN, and Attendants.

Corn. How now, my noble friend? since I came hither, (Which I can call but now,) I have heard strange news. Reg. If it be true, all vengeance comes, too short, Which can pursue the offender. How dost, my lord? Glo. O, madam, my old heart is crack'd, is crack'd! Reg. What id may father's godson seek your life! He whom my father nam'd? your Edgar?

Glo. O, lady, lady, shame would have it hid!

Reg. Was he not companion with the riotous knights That tend upon my father?


It is too bad, too bad.


I know not, madam :

Yes, madam, he was.

Reg. No marvel then, though he were ill affected; 'Tis they have put him on the old man's death, To have the waste and spoil of his revenues.

I have this present evening from my sister

Been well inform'd of them; and with such cautions,
That, if they come to sojourn at my house,

I'll not be there.


Nor I, assure thee, Regan.

Edmund, I hear that you have shown your father
A child-like office.


'Twas my duty, sir.

Glo. He did bewray his practice;' and receiv'd This hurt you see, striving to apprehend him. Corn. Is he pursued?


Ay, my good lord, he is.

Corn. If he be taken, he shall never more

Be fear'd of doing harm: make your own purpose,
How in my strength you please.-For you, Edmund,

of my land,

To make thee capable.] i. e. Capable of succeeding to my land, notwithstanding the legal bar of thy illegitimacy.-STEEVENS.

bewray his practice ;] i. e. Betray his treachery. Practice is always used. by Shakspeare for insidious mischief.

Whose virtue and obedience doth this instant
So much commend itself, you shall be ours;
Natures of such deep trust we shall much need;
You we first seize on.


Truly, however else.


I shall serve you, sir,

For him I thank your grace.

Corn. You know not why we came to visit you,— Reg. Thus out of season; threading dark-ey'd night. Occasions, noble Gloster, of some poize,

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Wherein we must have use of your advice:-
Our father he hath writ, so hath our sister,
Of differences, which I best thought it fit
To answer from our home;h the several messengers
From hence attend despatch. Our good old friend,
Lay comforts to your bosom; and bestow

Your needful counsel to our business,

Which craves the instant use.


I serve you, madam:

Your graces are right welcome.



Before Gloster's Castle.

Enter KENT and Steward, severally.

Stew. Good dawning to thee, friend: Art of the house? Kent. Ay.

Stew. Where may we set our horses?

Kent. I'the mire.

Stew. Pr'ythee, if thou love me, tell me.

Kent. I love thee not.

Stew. Why, then I care not for thee.

Kent. If I had thee in Lipsbury pinfold, I would make thee care for me.


of some poise,] i. e. Of some weight or moment.
from our home ;] i. e. Not at home.

Scene II.] It is clear from various passages in this scene, that the morning is now just beginning to dawn, though the moon is still up, and though Kent early in the scene, calls it still night. Towards the close of it, he wishes Gloster good morrow, as the latter goes out, and immediately after calls on the sun to shine, that he may read a letter.-MALONE.

* Lipsbury pinfold,] The real origin of this phrase has escaped the inquiries

Stew. Why dost thou use me thus? I know thee not. Kent. Fellow, I know thee.

Stew. What dost thou know me for?

Kent. A kn ave; a rascal, an eater of broken meat; a base, proud, shallow, beggarly, three-suited,' hundredpound, filthy worsted-stocking knave; a lily-liver'd," action-taking knave;" a whoreson, 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, pander, 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 whoreson cullionly barber-monger,* 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

of the commentators. Mr. Capel conjectures," that it was some village famed for boxing, that the boxers fought in a ring or enclosed circle, and that this ring was called Lipsbury pinfold.”—Unfortunately for this conjecture there is no such place as Lipsbury.

three suited,] i. e. One who has been thrice-sued at law, who has three suits for debt standing out against him.-STEEVENS.

- lily-liver'd,] i. e. Cowardly, as white-liver'd is still vulgarly used.—


- action-taking knave ;] i. e. A fellow, who, if you beat him, would bring an action for the assault.-M. MASON.

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glass-gazing,] i. e. One enamoured of himself; who gazes often at his own person in a glass.-MALONE.

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one-trunk-inheriting,] i. e. Whose possessions are confined to one coffer, and that too inherited from his father, who was no better provided, or had nothing more to bequeath to his successor in poverty.-STEEVENS.



addition,] i. e. Titles.

· I'll make a sop o'the moonshine of you,] Probably alluding to some dish so called. There was a way of dressing eggs called "Eggs in moonshine;" and a sop of moonshine may have been a sippet in the above dish.-NARES. barber-monger,] i. e. A fop who deals much with barbers to adjust his hair and beard.-M. MASON.

- vanity the puppet's part,] Alluding to the old moralities, or allegorical shows, in which vanity, iniquity, and other vices, were personified.-JOHNSON.

royalty of her father: Draw, you rogue, or I'll so carbonado your shanks :-draw, you rascal: come your


Stew. Help, ho! murder! help!

Kent. Strike, you slave; stand, rogue, stand; you neat slave, strike.

Stew. Help, ho! murder! murder!

[Beating him.


Edm. How now? What's the matter?


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?
Corn. 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?

Stew. This ancient ruffian, sir, whose life I have spar'd, At suit of his grey beard,

Kent. Thou whoreson 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?

zed, thou unnecessary letter!] So called because its place may be supplied by S, and the Roman alphabet has it not; neither is it read in any word originally Teutonick. In Barret's Alvearie, or Quadruple Dictionary, 1580, it is quite omitted, as the author affirms it to be rather a syllable than a letter. STEEVENS.

x - this unbolted villain—] Unbolted mortar is mortar made of unsifted lime, and therefore to break the lumps it is necessary to tread it by men in wooden shoes. This unbolted villain is therefore this coarse rascal.-TOLLET.

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