QueenʼsMen Editions

About this text

  • Title: The History of King Leir (Modern)
  • Editor: Andrew Griffin

  • Copyright Queen's Men Editions. This text may be freely used for educational, non-profit purposes; for all other uses contact the Editor.
    Author: Anonymous
    Editor: Andrew Griffin
    Peer Reviewed

    The History of King Leir (Modern)

    1060.1[Scene 13] [Video Sc.13]
    Enter Cordella alone
    I have been over-negligent today
    In going to the temple of my God
    To render thanks for all his benefits
    1065Which he miraculously hath bestowed on me
    In raising me out of my mean estate
    Whenas I was devoid of worldly friends
    And placing me in such a sweet content
    As far exceeds the reach of my deserts.
    1070My kingly husband, mirror of his time
    For zeal, for justice, kindness, and for care
    To God, his subjects, me, and common weal,
    By His appointment was ordained for me.
    I cannot wish the thing that I do want,
    1075I cannot want the thing but I may have,
    Save only this which I shall ne'er obtain:
    My father's love. Oh, this I ne'er shall gain.
    I would abstain from any nutriment
    And pine my body to the very bones;
    1080Barefoot, I would on pilgrimage set forth
    Unto the furthest quarters of the earth,
    And all my lifetime would I sackcloth wear,
    And mourning-wise pour dust upon my head,
    So he but to forgive me once would please,
    1085That his grey hairs might go to heaven in peace.
    And yet I know not how I him offended,
    Or wherein justly I have deserved blame.
    O sisters! You are much to blame in this:
    It was not he but you that did me wrong.
    1090Yet God forgive both him and you and me,
    Eʼen as I do in perfect charity.
    I will to church and pray unto my savior
    That, ere I die, I may obtain his favor.