Note to King Lear, 2.4.67: "We'll set thee to school to an ant,
to teach thee / there's no labouring i' the winter"


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King Lear,
Act 2, Scene 4, line 67

We'll set thee to school to an ant, to teach thee / there's no labouring i' the winter: In the fable of The Ant and the Grasshopper, the grasshopper learns the hard way that "there's no labouring i' the winter" because there's no food to be found in the winter, except what has been stored away by the ant. The Fool thinks this should be obvious, and that likewise it should be obvious to Kent why the King "comes with so small a train." In the winter of his life, King Lear is no longer king, and no longer has gifts to give, and therefore no longer commands a following.

The Grasshopper Learns his Lesson
Ant School
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