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King Lear once rnled in this land,
With princely power and peace; And had all things with heart's content
That 'might his joys increase. Amongst those things that nature gave,
Three daughters fair had he, So princely seeming beautiful,
As fairer could not be.
So on a time it pleas'd the king
A question thus to move,
Could show the dearest love :
• For to my age you bring content,
Quoth he,' then let me hear,
The kindest will appear.'
• Dear father, mind,' quoth she,
My blood shall render'd be:
Shall here be cut in twain,
The smallest grief sustain.'
* Dear father, for your sakė, The worst of all extremities
I'll gently undertake:
With diligence and love;
Discomforts may remove.'
The aged king reply'd; • But what say'st thou, my youngest girl,
How is thy love ally'd?'
" Which to your grace I owe, Shall be the duty of a child,
And that is all I'll show.'
• Than doth thy duty bind ?
When as no more I find.