Notes on Act III. scene vi

impatience: rage, unable to endure more

The gods reward your kindness: a very ironic statement considering that Gloucester will be "rewarded" with blindness

Frateretto: a demon

Nero: in Chaucer's "Monk's Tale" the Roman emperor Nero is depicted as fishing in the Tiber (more nonsense by Tom)

yeoman: property owner below the rank of gentleman (the fool's next line suggests that the yeoman has indulged his son, to raise him to higher status than himself). In some productions the Fool indicates with this line that he refers to Edgar and sees through his disguise.

thousand: Lear imagines an army (of demons?) tormenting his daughters with firebrands

arraign: bring his daughters to trial

straight: immediately

justicer: in his madness Lear thinks the fool is a judge, and Poor Tom a wise man, as he puts his daughters on trial (F cuts this entire business)

he: Lear? or one of the demons?

eyes: witnesses?

Come ... to me: popular song

leak: suggesting she's in her period

nightingale: the fool's singing

Hoppedance: another demon

yoke-fellow of equity: partner in justice

minikin: shrill, possibly referring to his pipe with which he calls the sheep.

gray: devils took the shape of gray cats

joint-stool: a stage prop that Lear thinks is his daughter

another: Lear next imagines Regan stands before him on trial

store: stuff

Corruption: bribery

'scape: in Lawrence Olivier's performance, he thinks Regan a chicken who flies away

five wits: common sense, imagination, fantasy, estimation, memory (Edgar can't help but take pity on the mad king)

mar my counterfeiting: ruin my disguise as a madman

Avaunt: away!

brach: bitch

lym: bloodhound

wakes: funerals

horn: madmen usually carried horns for begging; Edgar implies that he tires of his role and cannot maintain it much longer.

anatomize: dissect

Persian: exotic (speaking ironically of Tom's rags)

curtains: supposedly on his bed

noon: the fool's last line, he is not seen again (no explanation given).

litter: stretcher

dally: delay

provision: means of providing for safety

balmed: soothed

stand in hard cure: will be hard to cure

our woes: woes similar to ours

free: carefree

o'er skip: it's easier to overlook our own suffering when we see that we do not suffer alone.

portable: bearable

childed as I fathered: he suffers from his children as I do my father.

Mark the high noises: take heed of the rumors of strife between those in power?

bewray: reveal yourself

repeals: when I am proved innocent of these false charges and reconcile with my father

What will hap: whatever happens

Lurk: hide


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