King Lear by William Shakespeare (Part I)



Author: Once upon a time there lived a king whose name was Lear. He was the king of Britain. He had three daughters: Goneril, Regan and Cordelia.
One day King Lear called his daughters and said to them:
King Lear: I am very old and tired. I want to divide Britain into three parts and give one part to each of you. But first you must tell me how much you love me.
Author: Goneril and Regan were not good daughters. They did not love their father. But they were very greedy. They wanted to become queens very much. So Goneril said:
Goneril: Dear father, I love you very much. I love you more than my eyes, more than my beauty, more than my life. No child loves his father more than I love you.
Author: Then Regan spoke:
Regan: Dear father, I love you so much that I will give my life for you, I will care for you. I love you more than anything else in the world.
Author: King Lear was very glad. Then he asked his youngest daughter Cordelia to speak. She was his favourite daughter.
Cordelia loved her father very much, but she didn’t want to repeat the words of her sisters. So, she said nothing. Only when King Lear told her angrily that she must speak, she said:
Cordelia: I don’t understand why my sisters say that they love you more than anything else. They are married. Don’t they love their husbands? You are my father, and of course, I love you. But when I marry, I’ll love my husband, too.
Author: King Lear did not like Cordelia’s words. He shouted at her and said:
King Lear: Get out. I don’t want to have such a daughter. You won’t get anything.
Author: So, he divided the country between Regan and Goneril and gave Cordelia nothing.