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That make ungrateful man! spit, fire! spout, rain!
Nor rain, wind, thunder, fire, are my daughters;
I tax not you, ye elements, with unkindness,
I never gave you kingdom, called you children :
You owe me no subscription: why, then let fall
Your horrible displeasure : here I stand, your slave;
A poor, infirm, weak, and despised old man:
But yet I call you servile ministers,
That have with two pernicious daughters joined
Your high engendered battles, 'gainst a head
So old and white as this. 0! 0! 'tis foul !

Let the great gods,
That keep this dreadful pother o’er our heads,
Find out their enemies now. Tremble, thou wretch,
That hast within thee undivulged crimes,
Unwhipped of justice: caitiff, to pieces shake,
That under covert and convenient seeming,
Hast practiced on man's life. Close pent-up guilt,
Rive your concealing continents, and cry
These dreadful summoners grace. I am a man
More sinned against, than sinning.

Kent. Gracious, my lord, hard by here is a hovel;
Some friendship will it lend you 'gainst the tempest;
Repose you here.

Lear. My wits begin to turn.

Kent. Here is the place, my lord; good, my lord, enter.
The tyranny of the open night's too much
For nature to endure.
Lear.

Let me alone.
Kent. Good, my lord, enter here.
Lear.

Wilt break my heart ?
Kent. I'd rather break mine own: good, my lord, enter.

Lear. Thou think'st 'tis much, that this contentious storm
Invades us to the skin : so 'tis to thee:
But where the greater malady is fixed,
The less is scarcely felt. Thou’dst shun a bear;
But if thy flight lay toward the raging sea,
Thou’dst meet the bear i' the mouth. When the mind's free,
The body's delicate; the tempest in my mind
Doth from my senses take all feeling else,
Save what beats there. Filial ingratitude !
Is it not as this mouth should tear this hand
For lifting food to 't? But I will punish home.
No, I will weep no more. In such a night
To shut me out! Pour on; I will endure.

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In such a night as this ! O Regan! Goneril !
Your old kind father, whose frank heart gave all !
0, that way madness lies ; let me shun that ;
No more of that.

SHAKSPEARE.

LESSON XXXIII

FILIAL AFFECTION,

Present. King Lear, Cordelia, and Physician.
Cor. O my dear father! Restoration hang
Her medicine on my lips, and let this kiss
Repair those violent harms, that my two sisters
Have in thy reverence made!
Had you not been their father, these white flakes
Did challenge pity of them. Was this a face
To he exposed against the warring winds?
To stand against the deep, dread-bolted thunder?
In the most terrible and nimble stroke
Of quick, cross-lightning? My enemy's dog,
Though he had bit me, should have stood that night
Against my fire: and wast thou fain, poor father,
To hovel thee with swine, and rogues forlorn,
In short and musty straw ? Alack, alack !
'Tis wonder, that thy life and wits, at once,
Had not concluded all.—He wakes ; speak to him.

Phys. Madam, do you; 'tis fittest.
Cor. How does my royal lord? How fares your majesty?

Leur. You do me wrong to take me out o'th' grave;
Thou art a soul in bliss, but I am bound
Upon a wheel of fire, that mine own tears
Do scald like molten lead.

Cor. Sir, do you know me?
Lear. You are a spirit, I know; when did you

die?
Cor. Still, still far wide-
Phys. He's scarce awake; let him alone awhile.

Lear. Where have I been? where am I ? fair day light?
I'm mightily abused; I should even die with pity
To see another thus. I know not what to say ;
I will not swear, these are my hands : let's seem
I feel this pin prick : would I were assured
Of my condition.

Cor. Oh! look upon me, sir,
And hold your hand in benediction o'er me;
Nay, you must not kneel,

Lear, Pray, do not mock me;
I am a very foolish, fond, old man,
Fourscore and upward; and, to deal plainly,
I fear I am not in my perfect mind.
Methinks I should know you, and know this man;
Yet I am doubtful: for I'm mainly ignorant
What place this is; and all the skill I have
Remembers not these garments; nay, I know not
Where I did lodge last night. Pray, do not mock me!
For, as I am a man, I think this lady
To be my child Cordelia.

Cor. And so I am; I am.

Lear. Be your tears wet? Yes. I pray you, weep not.
If

you have poison for me, I will drink it.
I know you do not love me; for your sisters
Have, as I do remember, done me wrong.
You have some cause; they have not.

Cor. No cause, no cause.
Lear. Am I in France ?
Cor. In your own kingdom, sir.
Lear. Do not abuse me.

Phys. Be comforted, good madam;
Desire him to go in; trouble him no more
Till further settling.

Cor. Will't please your highness walk ?

Lear. You must bear with me;
Pray you now forget and forgive :
I am old and foolish.

SHÁKSPEARE.

LESSON X X XIV.

THE DEFORMED CHILD.

In my school-boy days, there lived an aged widow near the church-yard. She had an only child. I have often observed, that the delicate and the weak receive more than a common share of affection from a mother. Such a feeling was shown by this widow toward her sickly and unshapely boy. There are faces and forms which, once seen, are impressed upon our brain ; and they will come, again and again, upon the tablet of our memory in the quiet of night, and even flit around us in our daily walks. Many years have gone by since I first saw this boy; and his delicate form, and quiet manner, and his gentle and virtuous conduct, are often before me.

I shall never forget—in the sauciness of youth, and fancying it would give importance to my bluff outside,swearing in his presence. The boy was sitting in a high-backed easy chair, reading his Bible. He turned round, as if a signal for dying had sounded in his ear, and fixed upon me his clear gray eye: that look! it made my little heart almost choke me. I gave some foolish excuse for getting out of the cottage ; and, as I met a playmate on the road, who jeered me for

my

blank countenance, I rushed past him, hid myself in an adjoining cornfield, and cried bitterly. I tried to conciliate the widow's son, and show my sorrow for having so far forgotten the innocence of boyhood, as to have my Maker's name sounded in an unhallowed manner from my lips. My spring flowers he accepted; but, when my back was turned, he flung them away. The toys and books I offered to him were put aside for his Bible. His only occupations were, the feeding of a favorite hen, which would come to his chair and look up for the crums that he would let fall, with a noiseless action, from his thin fingers, watching the pendulum and hands of the wooden clock, and reading.

Although I could not, at that time, fully appreciate the beauty of a mother's love, still I venerated the widow for the unobtrusive, but intense attention she displayed to her son. I never entered her dwelling without seeing her engaged in some kind offices toward him. If the sunbeam came through the leaves of the geraniums placed in the window, with too strong a glare, she moved the high-backed chair with as much care as if she had been putting aside a crystal temple. When he slept, she festooned her silk handkerchief around his place of rest. She placed the earliest violets upon her mantel-piece for him to look at; and the roughness of her own meal, and the delicacy of the child's, sufficiently displayed her sacrifices. Easy and satisfied, the widow moved about. I never saw her but once unhappy. She was then walking thoughtfully in her garden. I beheld a tear. I did not dare to intrude upon her grief, and ask her the cause of it; but I found the reason in her cottage: her boy had been spitting blood.

I have often envied him these endearments ; for I was away

from a parent who humored me, even when I was stubborn and unkind. My poor mother is in her grave. I have often regretted having been her pet, her favorite; for the coldness of the world makes me wretched; and, perhaps, if I had not drank at the very spring of a mother's affection, I might have let scorn and contumely pass by me as the idle wind. Yet 1 have afterward asked myself, what I, a thoughtless, though not a heartless boy should have come to, if I had not had such a comforter. I have asked myself this, felt satisfied and grateful, and wished that her spirit might watch around her child, who often met her kindness with passion, and received her gifts as if he expected homage from her.

Every body experiences how quickly school years pass away. My father's residence was not situated in the village where I was educated; so that when I left school, I left its scenes also. After several years had passed away, accident took me again to the well-known place. The stable, into which I led my horse, was dear to me; for I had often listened to the echo that danced within it, when the bells were ringing. The face of the landlord was strange; but I could not forget the in-kneed, red-whiskered hostler: he had given me a hearty thrashing as a return for a hearty jest.

I had reserved a broad piece of silver for the old widow. But I first ran toward the river, and walked upon the millbank. I was surprised at the apparent narrowness of the stream; and, although the willows still fringed the margin, and appeared to stoop in homage to the water lilies, yet they were diminutive. Every thing was but a miniature of the picture in my mind. It proved to me that my faculties had grown with my growth, and strengthened with my strength. With something like disappointment, I left the river side and strolled toward the church. My hand was in my pocket, grasping the broad piece of silver. I imagined to myself the kind look of recognition I should receive. I determined on the way in which I should press the money into the widow's hand. But I felt my nerves slightly tremble, as I thought on the look her son had given, and again might give me.

Ah, there is the cottage ! but the honey-suckle is older, and it has lost many of its branches ! The door was closed. A pet lamb was fastened to a loose cord under the window, and

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