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Word Count: 1,065
King Lears speech in Act IV Scene 6 marks the point in the play where Lear reaches a revelation Although he is mad in his madness he finally realizes the truth about life and about his daughters The themes that emerge through the use of imagery sound and diction are mainly social justice and appearance versus reality This scene shows Lear as a different person One with compassion for the poor but spite for those with authority He does not speak in an enraged tone but his anger can be detected nonetheless As Edgar says in the following lines Lears words are matter and impertinency mixed reason in madness What Lear says is not sane but it contains a great amount of insight In the first part of his speech Lear uses animal imagery to show that all is not natural in the chain of beings The creature runs from the cur -where creature can also mean a beggar and cur can be either a mongrel dog or a despicable person- implies that the two words are interchangeable and it is difficult to distinguish humans from beasts According to Lear a dog can be obeyed in office and placed in a higher social standing than the common person despite the lack of human intellect This ties in with the themes of social justice and appearance versus reality Any fool will be obeyed as long as he has a title of authority A person in office has the illusion of greatness but in reality they can be beasts The clothing imagery in these lines also contributes to these themes Clothing is a means to hide ones sins and the richer the garments the greater the vices hidden beneath them Small vices appear when a person is wearing rags but these same vices are plated with gold on the rich so that nothing can harm them A strong lance could not break the shield
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