From 1681 until the early 19th century, if you went to the theater to see King Lear, you would have seen the version adapted by Nahum Tate from Shakespeare's original. With its happy ending, Tate's play is often mocked as a terrible travesty of Shakespeare's. This lecture will show that Tate's play is first quite a brilliant reading of Shakespeare's, and second that knowing Tate's play makes us better readers of Shakespeare's.