Speeches (Lines) for Edmund
in "King Lear"

Total: 79

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# Act, Scene, Line
(Click to see in context)
Speech text

1

I,1,23

[comes forward] No, my lord.

2

I,1,26

My services to your lordship.

3

I,1,28

Sir, I shall study deserving.

4

I,2,334

Thou, Nature, art my goddess; to thy law
My services are bound. Wherefore should I
Stand in the plague of custom, and permit
The curiosity of nations to deprive me,
For that I am some twelve or fourteen moonshines
Lag of a brother? Why bastard? wherefore base?
When my dimensions are as well compact,
My mind as generous, and my shape as true,
As honest madam's issue? Why brand they us
With base? with baseness? bastardy? base, base?
Who, in the lusty stealth of nature, take
More composition and fierce quality
Than doth, within a dull, stale, tired bed,
Go to th' creating a whole tribe of fops
Got 'tween asleep and wake? Well then,
Legitimate Edgar, I must have your land.
Our father's love is to the bastard Edmund
As to th' legitimate. Fine word- 'legitimate'!
Well, my legitimate, if this letter speed,
And my invention thrive, Edmund the base
Shall top th' legitimate. I grow; I prosper.
Now, gods, stand up for bastards!

5

I,2,361

So please your lordship, none.

6

I,2,364

I know no news, my lord.

7

I,2,366

Nothing, my lord.

8

I,2,371

I beseech you, sir, pardon me. It is a letter from my brother
that I have not all o'er-read; and for so much as I have
perus'd, I find it not fit for your o'erlooking.

9

I,2,375

I shall offend, either to detain or give it. The contents, as
in part I understand them, are to blame.

10

I,2,378

I hope, for my brother's justification, he wrote this but as
an essay or taste of my virtue.

11

I,2,392

It was not brought me, my lord: there's the cunning of it. I
found it thrown in at the casement of my closet.

12

I,2,395

If the matter were good, my lord, I durst swear it were his;
but in respect of that, I would fain think it were not.

13

I,2,398

It is his hand, my lord; but I hope his heart is not in the
contents.

14

I,2,401

Never, my lord. But I have heard him oft maintain it to be fit
that, sons at perfect age, and fathers declining, the father
should be as ward to the son, and the son manage his revenue.

15

I,2,408

I do not well know, my lord. If it shall please you to suspend
your indignation against my brother till you can derive from him
better testimony of his intent, you should run a certain course;
where, if you violently proceed against him, mistaking his
purpose, it would make a great gap in your own honour and shake
in pieces the heart of his obedience. I dare pawn down my life
for him that he hath writ this to feel my affection to your
honour, and to no other pretence of danger.

16

I,2,417

If your honour judge it meet, I will place you where you shall
hear us confer of this and by an auricular assurance have your
satisfaction, and that without any further delay than this very
evening.

17

I,2,422

Nor is not, sure.

18

I,2,427

I will seek him, sir, presently; convey the business as I
shall find means, and acquaint you withal.

19

I,2,442

This is the excellent foppery of the world, that, when we are
sick in fortune, often the surfeit of our own behaviour, we make
guilty of our disasters the sun, the moon, and the stars; as if
we were villains on necessity; fools by heavenly compulsion;
knaves, thieves, and treachers by spherical pre-dominance;
drunkards, liars, and adulterers by an enforc'd obedience of
planetary influence; and all that we are evil in, by a divine
thrusting on. An admirable evasion of whore-master man, to lay
his goatish disposition to the charge of a star! My father
compounded with my mother under the Dragon's Tail, and my
nativity was under Ursa Major, so that it follows I am rough and
lecherous. Fut! I should have been that I am, had the
maidenliest star in the firmament twinkled on my bastardizing.
Edgar-
[Enter Edgar.]
and pat! he comes, like the catastrophe of the old comedy. My
cue is villainous melancholy, with a sigh like Tom o' Bedlam.
O, these eclipses do portend these divisions! Fa, sol, la, mi.

20

I,2,462

I am thinking, brother, of a prediction I read this other day,
what should follow these eclipses.

21

I,2,465

I promise you, the effects he writes of succeed unhappily: as
of unnaturalness between the child and the parent; death,
dearth, dissolutions of ancient amities; divisions in state,
menaces and maledictions against king and nobles; needless
diffidences, banishment of friends, dissipation of cohorts,
nuptial breaches, and I know not what.

22

I,2,472

Come, come! When saw you my father last?

23

I,2,474

Spake you with him?

24

I,2,476

Parted you in good terms? Found you no displeasure in him by
word or countenance

25

I,2,479

Bethink yourself wherein you may have offended him; and at my
entreaty forbear his presence until some little time hath
qualified the heat of his displeasure, which at this instant so
rageth in him that with the mischief of your person it would
scarcely allay.

26

I,2,485

That's my fear. I pray you have a continent forbearance till
the speed of his rage goes slower; and, as I say, retire with me
to my lodging, from whence I will fitly bring you to hear my
lord speak. Pray ye, go! There's my key. If you do stir abroad,
go arm'd.

27

I,2,491

Brother, I advise you to the best. Go arm'd. I am no honest man
if there be any good meaning toward you. I have told you what I
have seen and heard; but faintly, nothing like the image and
horror of it. Pray you, away!

28

I,2,496

I do serve you in this business.
[Exit Edgar.]
A credulous father! and a brother noble,
Whose nature is so far from doing harms
That he suspects none; on whose foolish honesty
My practices ride easy! I see the business.
Let me, if not by birth, have lands by wit;
All with me's meet that I can fashion fit. Exit.

29

II,1,927

Save thee, Curan.

30

II,1,931

How comes that?

31

II,1,934

Not I. Pray you, what are they?

32

II,1,937

Not a word.

33

II,1,939

The Duke be here to-night? The better! best!
This weaves itself perforce into my business.
My father hath set guard to take my brother;
And I have one thing, of a queasy question,
Which I must act. Briefness and fortune, work!
Brother, a word! Descend! Brother, I say!
[Enter Edgar.]
My father watches. O sir, fly this place!
Intelligence is given where you are hid.
You have now the good advantage of the night.
Have you not spoken 'gainst the Duke of Cornwall?
He's coming hither; now, i' th' night, i' th' haste,
And Regan with him. Have you nothing said
Upon his party 'gainst the Duke of Albany?
Advise yourself.

34

II,1,955

I hear my father coming. Pardon me!
In cunning I must draw my sword upon you.
Draw, seem to defend yourself; now quit you well.-
Yield! Come before my father. Light, ho, here!
Fly, brother.- Torches, torches!- So farewell.
[Exit Edgar.]
Some blood drawn on me would beget opinion
Of my more fierce endeavour. [Stabs his arm.] I have seen
drunkards
Do more than this in sport.- Father, father!-
Stop, stop! No help?

35

II,1,968

Here stood he in the dark, his sharp sword out,
Mumbling of wicked charms, conjuring the moon
To stand 's auspicious mistress.

36

II,1,972

Look, sir, I bleed.

37

II,1,974

Fled this way, sir. When by no means he could-

38

II,1,977

Persuade me to the murther of your lordship;
But that I told him the revenging gods
'Gainst parricides did all their thunders bend;
Spoke with how manifold and strong a bond
The child was bound to th' father- sir, in fine,
Seeing how loathly opposite I stood
To his unnatural purpose, in fell motion
With his prepared sword he charges home
My unprovided body, lanch'd mine arm;
But when he saw my best alarum'd spirits,
Bold in the quarrel's right, rous'd to th' encounter,
Or whether gasted by the noise I made,
Full suddenly he fled.

39

II,1,998

When I dissuaded him from his intent
And found him pight to do it, with curst speech
I threaten'd to discover him. He replied,
'Thou unpossessing bastard, dost thou think,
If I would stand against thee, would the reposal
Of any trust, virtue, or worth in thee
Make thy words faith'd? No. What I should deny
(As this I would; ay, though thou didst produce
My very character), I'ld turn it all
To thy suggestion, plot, and damned practice;
And thou must make a dullard of the world,
If they not thought the profits of my death
Were very pregnant and potential spurs
To make thee seek it.'

40

II,1,1034

Yes, madam, he was of that consort.

41

II,1,1045

'Twas my duty, sir.

42

II,1,1057

I shall serve you, sir,
Truly, however else.

43

II,2,1114

How now? What's the matter? Parts [them].

44

III,3,1783

Most savage and unnatural!

45

III,3,1795

This courtesy, forbid thee, shall the Duke
Instantly know, and of that letter too.
This seems a fair deserving, and must draw me
That which my father loses- no less than all.
The younger rises when the old doth fall. Exit.

46

III,5,1985

How, my lord, I may be censured, that nature thus gives way to
loyalty, something fears me to think of.

47

III,5,1990

How malicious is my fortune that I must repent to be just!
This is the letter he spoke of, which approves him an
intelligent party to the advantages of France. O heavens! that
this treason were not- or not I the detector!

48

III,5,1995

If the matter of this paper be certain, you have mighty
business in hand.

49

III,5,2000

[aside] If I find him comforting the King, it will stuff his
suspicion more fully.- I will persever in my course of loyalty,
though the conflict be sore between that and my blood.

50

IV,2,2365

Yours in the ranks of death! Exit.

51

V,1,3022

Know of the Duke if his last purpose hold,
Or whether since he is advis'd by aught
To change the course. He's full of alteration
And self-reproving. Bring his constant pleasure.

52

V,1,3028

Tis to be doubted, madam.

53

V,1,3033

In honour'd love.

54

V,1,3036

That thought abuses you.

55

V,1,3039

No, by mine honour, madam.

56

V,1,3042

Fear me not.
She and the Duke her husband!
Enter, with Drum and Colours, Albany, Goneril, Soldiers.

57

V,1,3055

Sir, you speak nobly.

58

V,1,3062

I shall attend you presently at your tent.

59

V,1,3086

The enemy 's in view; draw up your powers.
Here is the guess of their true strength and forces
By diligent discovery; but your haste
Is now urg'd on you.

60

V,1,3091

To both these sisters have I sworn my love;
Each jealous of the other, as the stung
Are of the adder. Which of them shall I take?
Both? one? or neither? Neither can be enjoy'd,
If both remain alive. To take the widow
Exasperates, makes mad her sister Goneril;
And hardly shall I carry out my side,
Her husband being alive. Now then, we'll use
His countenance for the battle, which being done,
Let her who would be rid of him devise
His speedy taking off. As for the mercy
Which he intends to Lear and to Cordelia-
The battle done, and they within our power,
Shall never see his pardon; for my state
Stands on me to defend, not to debate. Exit.

61

V,3,3123

Some officers take them away. Good guard
Until their greater pleasures first be known
That are to censure them.

62

V,3,3143

Take them away.

63

V,3,3151

Come hither, Captain; hark.
Take thou this note [gives a paper]. Go follow them to prison.
One step I have advanc'd thee. If thou dost
As this instructs thee, thou dost make thy way
To noble fortunes. Know thou this, that men
Are as the time is. To be tender-minded
Does not become a sword. Thy great employment
Will not bear question. Either say thou'lt do't,
Or thrive by other means.

64

V,3,3161

About it! and write happy when th' hast done.
Mark- I say, instantly; and carry it so
As I have set it down.

65

V,3,3173

Sir, I thought it fit
To send the old and miserable King
To some retention and appointed guard;
Whose age has charms in it, whose title more,
To pluck the common bosom on his side
And turn our impress'd lances in our eyes
Which do command them. With him I sent the Queen,
My reason all the same; and they are ready
To-morrow, or at further space, t' appear
Where you shall hold your session. At this time
We sweat and bleed: the friend hath lost his friend;
And the best quarrels, in the heat, are curs'd
By those that feel their sharpness.
The question of Cordelia and her father
Requires a fitter place.

66

V,3,3214

Nor in thine, lord.

67

V,3,3236

There's my exchange [throws down a glove]. What in the world
he is
That names me traitor, villain-like he lies.
Call by thy trumpet. He that dares approach,
On him, on you, who not? I will maintain
My truth and honour firmly.

68

V,3,3243

A herald, ho, a herald!

69

V,3,3257

Sound! First trumpet.

70

V,3,3273

Himself. What say'st thou to him?

71

V,3,3290

In wisdom I should ask thy name;
But since thy outside looks so fair and warlike,
And that thy tongue some say of breeding breathes,
What safe and nicely I might well delay
By rule of knighthood, I disdain and spurn.
Back do I toss those treasons to thy head;
With the hell-hated lie o'erwhelm thy heart;
Which- for they yet glance by and scarcely bruise-
This sword of mine shall give them instant way
Where they shall rest for ever. Trumpets, speak!

72

V,3,3318

What, you have charg'd me with, that have I done,
And more, much more. The time will bring it out.
'Tis past, and so am I.- But what art thou
That hast this fortune on me? If thou'rt noble,
I do forgive thee.

73

V,3,3331

Th' hast spoken right; 'tis true.
The wheel is come full circle; I am here.

74

V,3,3359

This speech of yours hath mov'd me,
And shall perchance do good; but speak you on;
You look as you had something more to say.

75

V,3,3394

I was contracted to them both. All three
Now marry in an instant.

76

V,3,3412

Yet Edmund was belov'd.
The one the other poisoned for my sake,
And after slew herself.

77

V,3,3416

I pant for life. Some good I mean to do,
Despite of mine own nature. Quickly send
(Be brief in't) to the castle; for my writ
Is on the life of Lear and on Cordelia.
Nay, send in time.

78

V,3,3424

Well thought on. Take my sword;
Give it the Captain.

79

V,3,3427

He hath commission from thy wife and me
To hang Cordelia in the prison and
To lay the blame upon her own despair
That she fordid herself.

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