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Alb. Our very loving sister, well be met:
Where I could not be honest,
Edm. Sir, you speak nobly.
Gon. Combine together 'gainst the enemy:
Edm. I shall attend you presently at your tent.
Alb. Let's then determine with th' ancient of war On our proceeding,
Reg. Sifter, you'll go with us?
As they are going out, Enter Edgar disguis'd.
[Exeunt Edm. Reg. Gon, and Attendants. Edg. Before you fight the battle, ope this letter. If you have vict'ry, let the trumpet found For him that brought it: wretched though I seem, I can produce a champion, that will prove.
for this bufiness, It touches us, as France invades our land, Not holds the King, with others whom I fear Mot just and heavy causes make oppose,] I have made a light variation in these lines, which are added from the cld 4to. Albany's speech seems interrupted, before finishid: and this I take to be the purport of what he was going to say. 6. Before we fight this battle, Sir, it “ concerns me, (tho' not the King, and the discontented party;) to question about your interest
our fifter, and the event of the “ war.”---And Regan and Gonerill, in their replies, both seem apprehensive that this subject was coming into debate.
What is avouched there. If you miscarry,
Alb. Stay, 'till I've read the letter.
Edg. I was forbid it.
[Exit. Alb. Why, fare thee well; I will o'erlook thy paper,
Re-enter Edmund. Edm. The enemy's in view, draw up your powers. Hard is the guess of their true strength and forces, By diligent discovery; but your halte Is now urg'd on you. Alb. We will greet the time.
(Exito Edm. To both these fifters have I sworn my love: Each jealous of the other, as the ftung Are of the adder. Which of them shall I take ? Both? one? or neither? neither can be enjoy'd, If both remain alive: to take the widow, Exasperates, makes mad her fifter Gonerill; And hardly shall I carry out my side, Her husband being alive. Now then, we'll use His countenance for the battle; which being done, Let her, who would be rid of him, devise His speedy taking off. As for the mercy Which he intends to Lear and to Cordelia, The battle done, and they within our power, Shall never see his pardon: for my state Stands on me to defend, not to debate. [Exit.
SCENE, another open Field. Alarum within. Enter with drum and colours, Lear, Core delia, and soldiers over the stage, and exeunt.
Enter Edgar and Glo'ster.
Ere, father, take the shadow of this tree
If ever I return to you again,
[Alarum, and retreat, within.
Re-enter Edgar. Edg. Away, old man; give me thy hand, away; King Lear hath lost, he and his daughter ta’en, Give me thy hand. Come on.
Glo. No further, Sir; a man may rot even here. Edg. What, in ill thoughts again? men must endure Their going hence, ev'n as their coming hither: Ripeness is all ; come on. Glo. And that's true too.
[ Exeunt. Enter in conqueft, with Drum and Colours, Edmund; Lear
and Cordelia, as prisoners; Soldiers, Captain.
Cor. We're not the first,
Lear. No, no, no, no; come, let's away to prison;
Edm. Take them away.
Lear. Upon such sacrifices, my Cordelia, The gods themselves throw incense. Have I caught thee?
He that parts us, shall bring a brand from heav'n,
(Ex. Lear and Cordelia guarded.
Capt. I'll do't, my Lord. Edm. About it, and write happy, when thou'st done. Mark, I say, instantly; and carry it so, As I have set it down.
[Exit Captain. Flourish. Enter Albany, Gonerill, Regan, and Soldiers.
Alb. Sir, you have thew'd to day your valiant strain,
Edm. Sir, I thought it fit
has charms in it, whose title more, To pluck the common bosoms on his fide; And turn our impreit launces in our eyes, Which do command them. With him I sent the Queen ;
(58) - -thy great employment Will not bear question ;] All the copies concur in reading thus; but, without doubt, erroneously.- The person, whom Edmund is here speaking to, was of no higher degree than a captain; and therefore,.' certainly, accountable to his superiors. Edmund, 'tis plain, must mean; “ I leading one of the conquerors' forces, and having em* ploy'd'thee in this business, will be thy sufficient warrant, and “ will secure thee from being question’d about iti"
My reason all the fame; and they are ready
To-morrow, or at further fpace, t'appear
feffion. At this time,
Álb. Sir, by your patience,
him. Methinks, our pleasure might have been demanded, . Ere
you had spoke so far. He led our pow'rs;
Gon. Not fo hot:
Reg. In my right,
Aib. That were the most, if he should husband you.
Gon. Holla, holla!
Reg. Lady, I am not well, else I should answer
Gon. Mean you to enjoy him?
(59) at this time 17e [zveat and bleed; &c.] These very necessary lines I have restor'd from the old 4to. and they were, certainly, first left out by the indifcretion of the players, merely for the sake of shortning. But with. out them, as Edmund's speech is made to end, 'tis plain, he does not "Dietend to advise, but fubmits the whole process to Albany. How absurdly then does the other reply, that be bolds Edmund but a subject of the war