King Lear

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Edgar’s “Welcome”: Act 4, Scene 1


In his soliloquy at the beginning of Act 4, Scene 1, Edgar says:

Welcome, then,
Thou unsubstantial air that I embrace!

What is the cause of this happy acceptance of the winds?


Edgar realizes he has nothing to fear from the weather, since he has already experienced the worst.


Edgar realizes that Gloucester has yet to experience the worst before he reveals himself as Gloucester's son; and so the storm must go on.


Edgar reasons that the worse the storm gets, the more likely Regan and Goneril are to open their doors to Lear again.


Edgar recognizes the metaphoric power of the storm to “wash away” and “cleanse” the recent corruption in the kingdom.


Edgar recognizes the literal power of the storm to cleanse the recent corruption in the kingdom.