There are many well-known quotes in King Lear - here we've listed a few of them, in order of appearance in the play.

Production image of Edmund (Philip Winchester) in King Lear.
Philip Winchester as Edmund. King Lear (2007), directed by Trevor Nunn
Photo by Manuel Harlan © RSC – Image Licensing

Cordelia: Nothing.
Lear: Nothing can come of nothing, speak again. 
(Act 1 Scene 1)

Now, gods, stand up for bastards! 
(Edmund, Act 1 Scene 2)

How sharper than a serpent's tooth it is 
To have a thankless child! 
(Lear, Act 1 Scene 4)

Thou shouldst not have been old till thou hadst been wise. 
(Fool, Act, 1 Scene 5)

Blow winds and crack your cheeks! Rage, blow, 
You cataracts and hurricanoes. 
(Lear, Act 3 Scene 2)

I am a man 
More sinned against than sinning.
(Lear, Act 3 Scene 2)

As flies to wanton boys are we to th' gods: 
They kill us for their sport. 
(Gloucester, Act 4 Scene 1)

So distribution should undo excess, 
And each man have enough.
(Gloucester, Act 4 Scene 1)

They told me I was everything: 'tis a lie, I am no ague-proof.
(Lear, Act 4 Scene 5)

Get thee glass eyes, 
And like a scurvy politician seem 
To see the things thou dost not. 
(Lear, Act 4 Scene 5)

When we are born, we cry that we are come 
To this great stage of fools. 
(Lear, Act 4 Scene 5)

Men must endure 
Their going hence, even as their coming hither. 
(Edgar, Act 5 Scene 2)

When thou dost ask me blessing, I'll kneel down 
And ask of thee forgiveness. 
(Lear, Act 5 Scene 3)

Why should a dog, a horse, a rat have life, 
And thou no breath at all? 
(Lear, Act 5 Scene 3)

We that are young 
Shall never see so much, nor live so long. 
(Edgar, Act 5 Scene 3)

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