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Nothingness

Lear: Act One Scene One

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King Lear’s first scene is notable in its length and structure. At over 300 lines, with more characters on stage than in all but the last scene of the play, and being divided into three sub-scenes, this first scene is almost a play in itself.

It begins, as do so many of Shakespeare’s plays,
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Now, our joy, Although our last and least

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King Lear
Now, our joy,
Although our last and least, to whose young love
The vines of France and milk of Burgundy
Strive to be interessed, what can you say to draw
A third more opulent than your sisters’? Speak.
Cordelia
Nothing, my lord.
King Lear
Nothing?
Cordelia
Nothing.
… continue reading this quote

Source:
Act 1
Scene 1
Line 91

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, , ,

Edmund, how now? What news?

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Gloucester
Edmund, how now? What news?
Edmund
So please your Lordship, none.
He puts a paper in his pocket.
Gloucester
Why so earnestly seek you to put up that letter?
Edmund
I know no news, my lord.
Gloucester
What paper were you reading?
… continue reading this quote

Source:
Act 1
Scene 2
Line 27

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,

Sirrah, I’ll teach thee a speech

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Fool
Sirrah, I’ll teach thee a speech.
King Lear
Do.
Fool
Mark it, nuncle:

Have more than thou showest.
Speak less than thou knowest,
Lend less than thou owest,
Ride more than thou goest,
Learn more than thou trowest,
Set less than thou throwest;
Leave thy drink and thy whore
And keep in-a-door,
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Source:
Act 1
Scene 4
Line 119

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How now, daughter? What makes that frontlet on?

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King Lear
How now, daughter? What makes that frontlet on?
Methinks you are too much of late i’ th’ frown.
Fool
Thou wast a pretty fellow when thou hadst no
need to care for her frowning. Now thou art an O
without a figure. I am better than thou art now. I
am a Fool.
… continue reading this quote

Source:
Act 1
Scene 4
Line 194

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