King Lear

by: William Shakespeare

  Act 3 Scene 7

page Act 3 Scene 7 Page 3

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REGAN

   Hard, hard.—O filthy traitor!

REGAN

Tie him up harder.—You filthy traitor!

GLOUCESTER

Unmerciful lady as you are, I’m none.

GLOUCESTER

I’m not a traitor, unfair lady.

CORNWALL

To this chair bind him.—Villain, thou shalt find—

CORNWALL

Tie him to this chair.—You’ll see, criminal—
REGAN plucks GLOUCESTER’s beard
REGAN pulls GLOUCESTER’s beard.

GLOUCESTER

By the kind gods, ’tis most ignobly done
To pluck me by the beard.

GLOUCESTER

By the gods, it’s disgraceful for you to pull my beard.

REGAN

35So white, and such a traitor?

REGAN

As old and white-haired as you are, and you’re such a traitor?

GLOUCESTER

Naughty lady,
These hairs which thou dost ravish from my chin
Will quicken and accuse thee. I am your host.
With robbers' hands my hospitable favors
40You should not ruffle thus. What will you do?

GLOUCESTER

Wicked woman, these white hairs you’re pulling off my chin will come to life and accuse you of wrong-doing. You are my guests. This is no way to treat a host who has welcomed you into his house. What do you think you’re doing?

CORNWALL

Come, sir, what letters had you late from France?

CORNWALL

Tell us about the letters that you got from France.

REGAN

Be simple-answered, for we know the truth.

REGAN

Get to the point, since we already know the truth.

CORNWALL

And what confederacy have you with the traitors
Late footed in the kingdom?

CORNWALL

And what’s your connection with the traitors who landed in our kingdom recently?

REGAN

     To whose hands
45You have sent the lunatic king. Speak.

REGAN

The ones you’ve sent our lunatic king to. Tell us.

GLOUCESTER

I have a letter guessingly set down,
Which came from one that’s of a neutral heart,
And not from one opposed.

GLOUCESTER

I got a letter that made some guesses about what was going on, without any proof. It came from a neutral party, not from someone opposed to you.

CORNWALL

   Cunning.

CORNWALL

How clever of you.