| Quote #1
LEAR […] O heavens!
After Goneril and Regan betray him, King Lear calls upon the heavens to take his side and send down a punishing storm. As if in answer to his prayer, Lear, and not his daughters, suffers in the ensuing storm when Lear becomes homeless and wanders the heath. Does Lear deserve this?
| Quote #2
Rumble thy bellyful! Spit, fire! spout, rain!
Lear sees himself as a victim of injustice – his daughters have betrayed him and now he's caught out on the heath during a terrible storm. What's interesting about this passage is the way Lear literally accuses the storm of being his daughters' agent ("servile minister"). For Lear, it seems the whole world is against him.
| Quote #3
Poor naked wretches, whereso'er you are,
This is an important moment for King Lear, who has never before contemplated the plight of homelessness. Here, he realizes that he hasn't done enough to solve the homeless problem in his kingdom as he acknowledges that, as king, he had the power and authority to do something about it. This is pretty extraordinary because it suggests that the acts of human beings are the things that prove "the heavens [to be] more just." In other words, there can only be justice in the world when human beings behave justly toward each other.