King Lear quotes Act 5

I never shall endure her…Be not familiar with her Reg tells Edmond she won’t ‘endure’ Gon…
Neither can be enjoyed / If both remain alive Edmond says if he’s to enjoy either sister, one must die; his pragmatism typified
my state / Stands on me to defend, not to debate Edmond; my state… showing typical Machiavellian qualities and thirst for power
a man may rot even here G; ‘a man may…’ lapses into ‘ill thoughts’ (despair) again
Men must endure / Their going hence even as their coming hither: / Ripeness is all Men must…is all; Edgar tells G importance of ripeness
with best meaning have incurred the worst C: with best…worst; C’s attempt to be virtuous and uphold justice have been futile
Come, let’s away to prison. / We two alone will sing like birds i’th’cage…and laugh / At gilded butterflies, and hear poor rogues / Talk of court news…Who loses and who wins L: come, let’s…court news, envisioning future in prison w. Cordelia (butterflies = lavishly adorned courtiers), true entrapment is w/n court life, subversion of C’s lang. as the ‘rogues’ are in face the ones trapped at court, mere material pretence that they are better than ‘wretched creatures’, court comp. to a capricious game/trivial spectacle, not to be taken seriously
I’ll kneel down / And ask of thee forgiveness L: I’ll kneel…. again subversion of kingly authority image, comp. to Regan
packs and sects of great ones / That ebb and flow by th’moon L believes in prison C will be better off protected from the vicissitudes of court life, ever-shifting power and positions
to be tender-minded / Does not become a sword Edmond Machiavellian brutality, tells Captain not to be tender….
Jesters do oft prove prophets Reg: Jesters…prophets
Half-blooded fellow Alb calls Edmond half…fellow
gilded serpent Alb calls Gon a gilded…
What in the world he is / That names me traitor, villain-like he lies…I will maintain / My truth and honour firmly Edmond maintains to Alb that he is not a traitor; what in the…he lies…I will…firmly; blurring of distinctions b/w honesty and deceit highlighted through Ed’s use of lang., claims to be virtuous to the last
my name is lost Edgar steps forward to speak against Edmond; ‘my name…’
toad-spotted traitor Edgar calls Edmond a traitor
Conspirant ‘gainst this high illustrious prince Edgar calls Edmond ‘conspirant’ against Albany, we see how far his ambitions for power reach
If thou’rt noble, / I do forgive thee If…thee; ‘Edmond implicitly repudiates his stance…and reverts to traditional concepts of nobility and breeding’ Hunter
The gods are just, and of our pleasant vices / Make instruments to plague us Edgar: The gods…plague us; believes gods are implementing justice
The wheel is come full circle; I am here Edmond: ‘The wheel…’; wheel of fortune, Ed has fallen
Methought thy very gait did prophesy / A royal nobleness ‘Methought…nobleness’; Alb says he recognises nobility in Edgar’s ‘gait’
saved him from despair Edgar ‘saved…despair’; his father
his flawed heart…’Twixt two extremes of passion, joy and grief, / Burst smilingly ‘his flawed…smilingly’; G dies
I am almost ready to dissolve Alb: ‘I…dissolve’; theme of dissolution & disintegration
her sister / By her is poisoned G poisoned Reg before killing herself (Alb had ordered for both her and Edmond’s arrest, has recognised she will lose all)
This judgement of the heavens…Touches us not with pity This…pity; Alb r.e. deaths of Gon and Reg; believing in prov. justice
Great thing of us forgot! Alb: Great…forgot!; darkly farcical, tragedy enhanced by mistiming
Yet Edmond was beloved Ed’s final boast
Some good I mean to do, / Despite of mine own nature Ed’s final act of good
The gods defend her Alb asks gods to defend C after Edmond tells him of his orders to hang her (and blame it on suicide); irony, one line before L enters howling that Cordelia has died
Howl, howl, howl, howl! L’s howls; bestial self
She’s dead as earth C dead
Is this the promised end? / Or image of that horror? / Fall and cease K / E / Alb; allusion to Judgement Day
A plague upon you murderers, traitors all A plague… L sees whole world as corrupted
He’s dead and rotten L says servant Caius (Kent) is dead…; theme of decay etc.
from your first of difference and decay / Have followed your sad steps ‘from your…steps; Kent’s unbending loyalty, and L’s decline of fortune; futile attempts to uphold L
All’s cheerless, dark, and deadly. / Your eldest daughters have fordone themselves / And desperately are dead Kent: ‘All’s….’ dental alliteration emph. death
He knows not what he says, and vain is it / That we present us to him Very bootless Alb recognising futility of attempts to reconcile L to sanity; He knows not…Edgar reaffirms; very useless
That’s but a trifle here When informed by Messenger that Edmond is dead, Alb says…
know our intent. / What comfort to this great decay may come / Shall be applied…we will resign / During the life of this old majesty / To him our absolute power Alb: ‘know…power’, ‘intent’; ‘Again the wheel comes full circle’ Halio; just as we may be able to glean sight of ‘comfort’, L is about to die, emph. tragedy; still trying to restore L, his death ironically straight after this highlights futility
All friends shall taste / The wages of their virtue, and all foes / The cup of their deservings Alb believing in implementation of justice; All…deservings
Never As L holds C, he repeats this word 5 times, underlining arguable sense of nihilism in the play
undo this button L asks Kent to undo…; reminds us of ‘Come, unbutton here’
Look on her! Look, her lips. / Look there, look there ‘In 1.1, Lear, egocentric, demanded that everyone’s attention be focused upon himself’ and daughters to proclaim their love for him, in his final words he directs attention onto Cordelia; ‘finally, he directs attention not to himself, but to the Other, to Cordelia, now more precious to him than his own life’
Vex not his ghost. O, let him pass. He hates him / That would upon the rack of this tough world / Stretch him out longer Kent after L dies ‘Vex….longer’; ‘rack’ = torture machine on which victim was bound and stretched, ref. to L’s suffering; K finally recognises futility of trying to prolong L’s life
Our present business / Is general woe Alb: Our…woe, ending on note of despair/pessimism
the gored state sustain the…sustain
I have a journey, sir, shortly to go: / My master calls me; I must not say no Kent’s final lines, chooses not to futilely ‘sustain’ state
The weight of this sad time we must obey, / Speak what we feel, not what we ought to say. / The oldest hath borne most; we that are young / Shall never see so much, nor live so long Edgar’s final speech, ending play; ‘we’ could be royal plural as Edgar puts on crown
dead march in stage directions play ends w. a… music played at funeral procession