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Free Study Guide-King Lear by William Shakespeare-Free Online Book Notes
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ACT III, SCENE 3

Summary

Back at his castle, Gloucester reveals his disapproval of the treatment given to Lear by his daughters. He condemns them for their disloyalty and declares his own loyalty to the king. His plan is to search for Lear and offer him aid, in the hope of relieving his suffering. A hypocritical Edmund also expresses his sympathy for Lear.

Gloucester then talks to Edmund about the latest developments in the kingdom. He has received a secret letter containing information about the French invasion of Britain. He also expresses his concern about the hostility between the dukes. Before he departs, Gloucester warns Edmund to be wary. After his father's departure, Edmund reveals his secret plan to supplant his father.


Notes

Shakespeare alternates the scenes of Lear's agony with the story of Gloucester, maintaining a skillful balance in the dramatic structure of the play. This scene returns to Gloucester Castle, where Edmund and his father engage in conversation. Gloucester expresses his horror over the "unnatural dealing" of Lear's daughters and his concern for the King. He resolves to resort secretly to doing all that he can to right the wrongs done to Lear. Gloucester's feelings reveal that he is a truly decent human being; he is just too easily duped by the deceitful Edmund, who is now planning to overcome his father.

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Free Study Guide-King Lear by William Shakespeare-Free Online Synopsis
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