King Lear

by: William Shakespeare

  Act 1 Scene 4

page Act 1 Scene 4 Page 14

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And cast you, with the waters that you loose,
300To temper clay. Yea, is ’t come to this?
Ha? Let it be so. I have another daughter,
Who I am sure is kind and comfortable.
When she shall hear this of thee, with her nails
She’ll flay thy wolvish visage. Thou shalt find
305That I’ll resume the shape which thou dost think
I have cast off for ever. Thou shalt, I warrant thee.
she hears what you’ve done to me, she’ll tear up your wolflike face with her fingernails. And then you’ll see that despite what you thought, I’ll be as powerful as I was before. You’ll see, I promise you.
Exit LEAR
LEAR exits.

GONERIL

Do you mark that, my lord?

GONERIL

Did you hear that?

ALBANY

I cannot be so partial, Goneril,
To the great love I bear you—

ALBANY

Goneril, you know how much I love you, but still I have to say—

GONERIL

     Pray you, content.
310Come, sire, no more.—What, Oswald, ho!
(to FOOL) You, sir, more knave than fool, after your master.

GONERIL

Shush, please. Come, sir, no more.—Oswald, come here! (to FOOL) And you, sir, you’re more of a rascal than a fool. Go follow your master.

FOOL

Nuncle Lear, nuncle Lear, tarry and take the fool with thee.
A fox when one has caught her
And such a daughter
315Should sure to the slaughter,
If my cap would buy a halter.
So the fool follows after.

FOOL

Uncle Lear, uncle Lear, wait. Take your fool with you.
A fox you’ve trapped
And such a daughter
Should both be slaughtered,
If my fool’s cap is worth a rope to bind them.
So the fool follows you.
Exit FOOL
The FOOL exits.

GONERIL

This man hath had good counsel—a hundred knights!
'Tis politic and safe to let him keep
320At point a hundred knights, yes, that on every dream,
Each buzz, each fancy, each complaint, dislike,
He may enguard his dotage with their powers
And hold our lives in mercy?—Oswald, I say!

GONERIL

My father can’t think straight—a hundred knights! Just imagine the risk we run in letting him keep a hundred knights around! He could use them to strong-arm us into bowing to every little whim of his, and keep us at his mercy.—Oswald, where are you?