“Sir, I love you more than words can wield the matter;
Dearer than eye-sight, space, and liberty;”
Goneril is expressing her false love for her father. her speech is unnatural. She compares her love for her father to eye-sight, a commodity that should not have a set value. shows that Goneril is malicious, malignant, malevolent, deceitful, manic, manipulative and beastly
Come not between a dragon and his wrath.” …
“hence, and avoid my sight!”
Lear disowns Cordelia and orders her to get out of his sight. Later in the play Cordelia is literally out of his sight when his madness means he can no longer recognise her. Audacious action. Shows that Lear is volatile and rash. this decision is pernicious to his own mental stability. Lear is blinded to the true motives of those around him when he wrathfully sends Cordelia into exile and carelessly gives everything he has away. Lear is ignorant to the fact that only retaining his title as a king is powerless without any land or authority to support him
“See better, Lear; and let me still remain
The true blank of thine eye”
Loyal and noble Kent is trying to help Lear see that Cordelia is merely being integral unlike her sisters. He tells Lear her has been blinded by his stubbornness. Quote shows Kent’s outstanding quality is his loyalty to those who are in disfavour with those who wield power. Kent is admonishing Lear to see his wrong and notice the mistake he is about to make, Lear still continues to split his kingdom between his two disloyal daughters. Lear’s resolution to divide his kingdom is based solely on the level of flattery his daughters display before him. This shows that Lear is foolish because he places his country into the hands of those who show affection through empty words rather than meaningful actions
“doth any here know me? This is not Lear:
Doth Lear walk thus? speak thus?
Where are his eyes?”
Lear is realising his own madness and does not even recognise himself.
“O villain, villain! His very opinion in the letter!
Abhorred villain! Unnatural, detested, brutish villain!
Gloucester becomes enraged when he reads the false letter. He believes Edmund immediately without investigating further into the situation. He saw his sons intentions as the complete opposite due to his lack of sight and gullibility
(About Edgar): ‘Whose nature is so far from doing harms that he suspects none’
Edmund manages to manipulate his father and brother who are blinded by gullibility and goodness. Edmund easily manipulates his ‘noble brother’ into thinking his father, Gloucester, wants him dead, while simultaneously convincing his father that Edgar is plotting against him. He is even able to assure them is is doing them a favour. This scene sets off a chain of events that leads to Edgar’s adaptation of a new persona (Poor Tom), and ultimately Edmund’s demise and Edgar’s redemption. this wrote distinguishes the two brothers in nature and character.
“I have no way and therefore want no eyes;
I stumbled when i saw:”
Gloucester thinks he has lost everything and begs the old man to leave him even though he is blind. He believes he has lost his direction in life. He doesn’t need any eyes because when he had them he could not distinguish between good and evil.
“O dear son Edgar,
The food of thy abused father’s wrath,
Might i but live to see thee in my touch,
I’d say i had eyes again!”
Eyes spoiled Gloucester as he could not see clearly with them. Now he knows the truth and realises he was wrong the whole time (anagnorisis)
“How far your eyes may pierce I cannot tell”
Albany is a weak docile character who is blinded by his love for Goneril. He is completely unaware of Goneril’s greed and malicious nature but also to her plot to kill him. He is passive “I cannot be so partial, GonerilTo the love i bear you”
You are not worth the dust which the rude wind
Blows in your face!”
Albany’s blindness doesn’t cost him his life or his literal sight. He survives his period of blindness and stands up to Goneril.