King Lear

by: William Shakespeare

Original Text

Modern Text

(plucks out GLOUCESTER’s other eye)
Where is thy luster now?
(he gouges out GLOUCESTER’s other eye)
Where’s your sparkle now?

GLOUCESTER

All dark and comfortless. Where’s my son Edmund?
90Edmund, enkindle all the sparks of nature
To quit this horrid act.

GLOUCESTER

Nothing but darkness and horror. Where’s my son Edmund? Edmund, let your love for me ignite your bloodlust to avenge this horrible crime!

REGAN

   Out, treacherous villain!
Thou call’st on him that hates thee. It was he
That made the overture of thy treasons to us,
Who is too good to pity thee.

REGAN

Wrong, evil traitor. You’re appealing to a son who hates you. He was the one who revealed your treason to us. He’s too good to have any compassion for you.

GLOUCESTER

95O my follies! Then Edgar was abused.
Kind gods, forgive me that, and prosper him!

GLOUCESTER

What a fool I’ve been! This means I’ve mistreated Edgar. Dear God, forgive me. Let him be well!

REGAN

Go thrust him out at gates, and let him smell
His way to Dover.

REGAN

Kick him out of the gate. He can sniff his way to Dover.
Exeunt some servants with GLOUCESTER
Some servants exit with GLOUCESTER.
(to CORNWALL) How is ’t, my lord? How look you?
(to CORNWALL) What is it, my lord? Why do you look like that?

CORNWALL

100I have received a hurt. Follow me, lady.—
Turn out that eyeless villain. Throw this slave
Upon the dunghill.—Regan, I bleed apace.
Untimely comes this hurt. Give me your arm.

CORNWALL

I’m wounded. Follow me, madam.—Throw the blind traitor outside. And throw this dead peasant into the manure pit.—Regan, I’m bleeding. It’s a bad time for such an injury. Give me your arm.
Exit CORNWALL with REGAN
CORNWALL and REGAN exit.

SECOND SERVANT

I’ll never care what wickedness I do,
105If this man come to good.

SECOND SERVANT

If our criminal master gets off free, I won’t care what happens to me anymore.

THIRD SERVANT

If she live long,
And in the end meet the old course of death,
Women will all turn monsters.

THIRD SERVANT

If she lives a long and happy life, then all women may as well turn into monsters.