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LEAR, King of Britain.
KING OF FRANCE.
DUKE OF BURGUNDY.
DUKE OF CORNWALL.
DUKE OF ALBANY.
EARL OF KENT.
EARL OF GLOUCESTER,
EDGAR, Son to Gloucester.
EDMUND, Bastard Son to Gloucester. CURAN, A Courtier.
OSWALD, Steward to Goneril.
Old Man, Tenant to Gloucester.
An Officer, employed by Edmund.
Servants to Cornwall.
REGAN, -Daughters to Lear.
Knights of Lear's train, Officers, Messengers, Soldiers, and Attendants.
SCENE I. A Room of State in King LEAR'S Palace.
Enter KENT, GLOUCESTER, and EDMUND.
Kent. I thought the king had more affected the Duke of Albany than Cornwall.
Glou. It did always seem so to us; but now, in the division of the kingdom, it appears not which of the dukes he values most; for equalities are so weighed that curiosity in
neither can make choice of either's moiety.
Kent. Is not this your son, my lord?
Glou. His breeding, sir, hath been at my charge: I have so often blushed to acknowledge him, that now !
am brazed to it.
Kent. Leannot conceive you. Glou Sir, this young fellow's mother could; whereupon she grew round-wombed, and had, indeed, sir, a son for her cradle ere she had a husband for her bed. Do you smell a fault?
Kent. I cannot wish the
fault undone, the issue of it
being so proper. Glou. But I have a son, by order of law, some year elder than this, who yet is no dearer in my account: though this knave came something saucily into the world before he was sent for, yet was his mother fair; there was good sport at his making, and the whoreson must be acknowledged. Do you know this noble gentleman, Edmund ? Edm. No, my lord.
Glou. My Lord of Kent: remember him hereafter as my honourable friend.