King Lear


Text
Act I
Act II
Act III
Act IV
Act V
Storm still. Enter Kent and a Gentleman by opposite

doors


KENT

Who's there besides foul weather?
still (adv.) 2 ever, now [as before]


GENTLEMAN

One minded like the weather, most unquietly.
unquietly (adv.) restlessly, uneasily, with great disquiet


KENT

I know you. Where's the King?


GENTLEMAN

Contending with the fretful elements:
contend (v.) 1 fight, engage in combat, struggle
element (n.) 3 (plural) forces of nature, atmospheric powers
fretful (adj.) 1 angry, irritated, ill-tempered

Bids the wind blow the earth into the sea,

Or swell the curled waters 'bove the main,
main (n.) 2 mainland

That things might change or cease; tears his white hair,

Which the impetuous blasts with eyeless rage
eyeless (adj.) blind, sightless, unseeing

Catch in their fury and make nothing of:
make nothing of treat as worthless, deal with contemptuously

Strives in his little world of man to out-storm
out-storm (v.) rage more violently than a storm

The to-and-fro conflicting wind and rain.

This night, wherein the cub-drawn bear would couch,
couch (v.) 4 go to a lair, find shelter
cub-drawn (adj.) drained of milk by cubs, ravenous

The lion and the belly-pinched wolf
belly-pinched (adj.) pinched with hunger, starving

Keep their fur dry, unbonneted he runs
unbonneted (adv.) 1 bare-headed; recklessly

And bids what will take all.


KENT

                         But who is with him?


GENTLEMAN

None but the Fool, who labours to out-jest
out-jest (v.) overcome with the force of jokes

His heart-struck injuries.


KENT

                         Sir, I do know you,

And dare upon the warrant of my note
note (n.) 1 attention, notice, regard
warrant (n.) 1 assurance, pledge, guarantee

Commend a dear thing to you. There is division –
commend (v.) 2 commit, entrust, hand over
dear (adj.) 2 important, major, significant

Although as yet the face of it is covered
face (n.) 1 appearance, outward show, look

With mutual cunning – 'twixt Albany and Cornwall;

Who have – as who have not that their great stars
star (n.) 3 fate, fortune, destiny [as determined by the stars] See Topics: Cosmos

Throned and set high – servants, who seem no less,

Which are to France the spies and speculations
speculation (n.) 4 observer, watcher, agent

Intelligent of our state. What hath been seen,
intelligent (adj.) 1 bearing intelligence, giving inside information

Either in snuffs and packings of the Dukes,
packing (n.) plotting, contriving, underhand dealing
snuff (n.) 1 resentment, huff, pique

Or the hard rein which both of them have borne
rein (n.) 1 control, restraint, curb

Against the old kind King, or something deeper,

Whereof, perchance, these are but furnishings –
furnishing (n.) decoration, surface factor, window-dressing
perchance (adv.) 1 perhaps, maybe See Topics: Frequency count

But true it is, from France there comes a power

Into this scattered kingdom, who already,
power (n.) 1 armed force, troops, host, army See Topics: Frequency count
scattered (adj.) 2 disunited, distracted, divided

Wise in our negligence, have secret feet
foot (n.) 3 foothold, position, presence

In some of our best ports and are at point
point, at / at a in readiness, prepared, armed

To show their open banner. Now to you:
open (adj.) 4 displayed, made visible

If on my credit you dare build so far
credit (n.) 2 trust, faith, belief

To make your speed to Dover, you shall find

Some that will thank you making just report
just (adj.) 1 accurate, exact, precise

Of how unnatural and bemadding sorrow
bemadding (adj.) making mad, maddening
unnatural (adj.) 1 against natural feeling, not in accord with kinship

The King hath cause to plain.
plain (v.) 1 complain, lament, bewail

I am a gentleman of blood and breeding,
blood (n.) 7 nobility, breeding, gentility, good parentage

And from some knowledge and assurance offer
assurance (n.) 1 security, certainty, confidence

This office to you.
office (n.) 1 task, service, duty, responsibility See Topics: Frequency count


GENTLEMAN

I will talk further with you.


KENT

                         No, do not.

For confirmation that I am much more

Than my out-wall, open this purse and take
out-wall (n.) external appearance, outer clothing

What it contains. If you shall see Cordelia –

As fear not but you shall – show her this ring,

And she will tell you who that fellow is
fellow (n.) 1 companion, associate

That yet you do not know. Fie on this storm!

I will go seek the King.


GENTLEMAN

Give me your hand. Have you no more to say?


KENT

Few words, but to effect more than all yet:
effect (n.) 4 drift, tenor, import

That when we have found the King – in which your pain
pain (n.) effort, endeavour, exertion, labour

That way, I'll this – he that first lights on him
light on (v.) come across, meet with, chance upon

Holla the other.
holla, holloa (v.) halloo, shout, call out [to]

Exeunt by opposite doors

 
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