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About this text

  • Title: The History of King Leir (Quarto, 1605)
  • 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
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    The History of King Leir (Quarto, 1605)

    and his three daughters.
    Ah, good my Lord, condemne not all for one:
    You haue two daughters left, to whom I know
    910You shall be welcome, if you please to go.
    Leir. Oh, how thy words adde sorrow to my soule,
    To thinke of my vnkindnesse to Cordella!
    Whom causelesse I did dispossesse of all,
    Vpon th'vnkind suggesstions of her sisters:
    915And for her sake, I thinke this heauy doome
    Is falne on me, and not without desert:
    Yet vnto Ragan was I alwayes kinde,
    And gaue to her the halfe of all I had:
    It may be, if I should to her repayre,
    920She would be kinder, and intreat me fayre.
    Per. No doubt she would, & practise ere't be long,
    By force of Armes for to redresse your wrong.
    Leir. Well, since thou doest aduise me for to go,
    I am resolu'd to try the worst of wo. Exeunt.
    925Enter Ragan solus.
    Rag. How may I blesse the howre of my natiuity,
    Which bodeth vnto me such happy Starres!
    How may I thank kind fortune, that vouchsafes
    To all my actions, such desir'd euent!
    930I rule the King of Cambria as I please:
    The States are all obedient to my will;
    And looke what ere I say, it shall be so;
    Not any one, that dareth answere no.
    My eldest sister liues in royall state,
    935And wanteth nothing fitting her degree:
    Yet hath she such a cooling card withall,
    As that her hony sauoureth much of gall.
    My father with her is quarter-master still,
    And many times restraynes her of her will:
    940But if he were with me, and seru'd me so,
    Ide send him packing some where else to go.
    Ide entertayne him with such slender cost,
    That he should quickly wish to change his host. Exit.
    Enter Cornwall, Gonorill, and attendants.
    945Corn. Ah, Gonorill, what dire vnhappy chaunce
    D2 Hath