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Word Count: 955
Lear King of England The tired ruler of England his plan to divide his kingdom between his three daughters and then place his welfare in their trust leads to his humiliation and total loss of power at the hands of his cruel daughters Regan and Goneril He misjudges all those around him in the first act banishing those who care for him the most whilst rewarding those whose kind words prove false Only after enduring multiple humiliations and betrayals does Lear gain true wisdom and insight only to die soon thereafter Goneril wife to The Duke of Albany Lears selfish ruthless daughter When Lear asks her to profess her love for him before he gives her part of his kingdom she professes great love for Lear Sir I love you more than words can wield the matter Act I Scene I Line 57 Yet once Lear has given her half his kingdom she shirks her obligations to host King Lear by making life so miserable at her castle that King Lear has no choice but to disown her The famous expression of the pain of thankless children originates in King Lears comments of Goneril when he exclaims How sharper than a serpents tooth it is To have a thankless child Act I Scene IV Line 312 Regan wife to The Duke of Cornwall The second of King Lears daughters to falsely profess her love then betray Lear She professes that she is made of that self metal as my sister adding that I profess Myself an enemy to all other joys Which the most precious square of sense possesses In your dear highness love Act I Scene I Lines 71-78 She too betrays Lear denying him her castle on the terms obliged by her as a loyal daughter Cordelia Lears youngest daughter she refuses to profess blinding love for her father instead offering only that which is true
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