Summaries and Critical Commentary
Duped by their proclamations of love, Lear divides his kingdom between Goneril and Regan, his elder daughters, and disinherits Cordelia – the youngest and his favourite – for refusing to mouth similar flattery. Lear banishes Kent for supporting Cordelia, and announces that he will live in turn with Goneril and Regan. The King of France takes Cordelia as his wife and they depart. Edmund, Gloucester’s bastard son, plans to oust Edgar, his legitimate brother, by persuading Gloucester that Edgar is plotting against him. Meanwhile, Lear has moved in with Goneril, where the disguised Kent joins him as a manservant. Goneril is furious at the wayward behaviour of Lear, his Fool and his knights, and insists that he should dismiss half his retinue. The enraged Lear leaves for Regan’s castle.
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