The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 8.0778. Sunday, 20 July 1997.
From: Hardy M. Cook <
Date: Sunday, July 20, 1997
Subject: New on the SHAKSPER Fileserver: LEAR QUARTO1
As of today, SHAKSPEReans may retrieve Thomas Dale Keever's text of the
1608 "Pied Bull" Quarto of *King Lear* (LEAR QUARTO1) from the SHAKSPER
To retrieve "LEAR QUARTO1", send a one-line mail message (without a
subject line) to
, reading "GET LEAR QUARTO1".
Should you have difficulty receiving this or any of the files on the
SHAKSPER file server, please contact the editor at
> or <
The Historie of King Lear
Quarto Version, 1608
Etext Editor's note:
This is an electronic text transcription of the 1608 First Quarto, or
Bull Quarto," of KING LEAR. It reproduces the text of the "corrected"
formes, that is the text as it appeared on the invariant formes or
that were corrected during the printing process. No extant version
contains only invariant and corrected formes so this is not a
any one existing text. I have consulted several of the published photo
facsimiles of the First Quarto, but must confess I have never had the
opportunity to examine any of the twelve extant specimens of the First
Quarto. I am particularly indebted to Michael Warren's _The Complete
Lear: 1608-1623_ and urge anyone whose interest is aroused by this
transcription to consult his remarkable edition, an outstanding
in Shakespeare textual studies.
I have sought to recreate all spelling, lineation, stage directions, and
line assignments just as they appear in the Quarto. The forme
that were printed in the Quarto are preserved along with the key words
indicate the first word of the next page. Alert readers will note that
of the key words is misspelled, as it is in the original.
My only additions to the text appear at the end of each quarto page.
have inserted the forme number in brackets, act, scene, and line
from the Riverside Shakespeare in parentheses and three dashes, " - -
to indicate the page division. At the top of each page I have repeated
Quarto's page heading: "The Historie of King Lear. " just as it appears
The conversion to ASCII necessitated some sacrifices. I could not
the text that was set in italic in the Quarto. I considered using some
sort of identification as I did in my etext transcription of Colly
RICHARD III, but decided that the page would be too cluttered. I
convert this text, and my Collly Cibber transcription, to HTML and
then be able to restore the italics. The HTML edition will also
links to the uncorrected versions of variant lines. These uncorrected
lines are listed at the end of the text.
The diacritical marks that usually indicate an omitted "n" or "m"
another problem. I could not enter a tilde (~) over any vowel but "o"
where that is used in the original to indicate an "m" or "n" after an
"e", or "u" it is indicated by a circumflex (^). The three instances
the circumflex appears over an "o" it indicates a stressed "o" and
as a circumflex in the original.
This project grew out of my work on my Masters Essay at Columbia
under the supervision of Professor David Scott Kastan. I gratefully
acknowledge his encouragement to closely examine original printed texts
his exacting academic standards and absolve him of any blame for my own
errors and misjudgments.
I invite any suggestions or corrections from SHAKESPERians. Please
- - -
M. William Shak-speare:
True Chronicle Historie of the Life and
death of King LEAR and his three
With the unfortunate life of Edgar, sonne
and heire to the Earle of Gloster, and his
sullen and assumed humor of
TOM of Bedlam:
As it was played before the Kings Maiestie at Whitehall upon
S. Stephans night in Christmas Hollidayes.
By his Maiesties seruants playing vsually at the Gloabe
on the Bancke-side.
Printed for Nathaniel Butter, and are to be sold at his shop in Pauls
Church-yard at the signe of the Pide Bull neere
St. Austins Gate. 1608
- - -
M. William Shak-speare
Historie, of King Lear.
Enter Kent, Gloster, and Bastard.
I thought the King had more affected the Duke of Al-
bany then Cornwell.
Glost. It did allwaies seeme so to vs, but now in the
diuision of the kingdomes, it appeares not which of
the Dukes he values most, for equalities are so weighed, that cu-
riositie in neither, can make choice of eithers moytie.
Kent. Isn t this your sonne my Lord?
Glost. His breeding sir hath beene at my charge, I haue so of-
ten blusht to acknowledge him, that now I am braz'd to it.
Kent. I cannot conceiue you.
Glost. Sir, this young fellowes mother Could, wherupon she
grew round wombed, and had indeed Sir a sonne for her cradle,
ere she had a husband for her bed, doe you smell a fault?
Kent. I cannot wish the fault vndone, the issue of it being so
Glost. But I have sir a sonne by order of Law, some yeare el-
der then this, who yet is no deerer in my account , though this
knaue came something sawcely into the world before hee was
sent for, yet was his mother faire, there was good sport at his
makeing &the whoreson must be acknowledged,do you know
this noble gentleman Edmund?