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He may approve our eyes', and speak to it. So nightly toils the subject of the land?
And why such daily cast of brazen cannon,
And foreign mart for implements of war? And let us once again assail your ears,
Why such impress of snip-wrights, whose sore task That are so fortified against our story,
5 Does not divide the Sunday from the week? What we two nights have seen.
What inight be toward, that this sweaty haste Hór. Well, sit we down,
Doth make the night joint-labourer with the day; And let us hear Bernardo speak of this.
Who is't that can inforın me? Ber. Last night of all,
[pole, Hor. That can I ; When yon same star, that's westward from the 10 At least the whisper goes so. Our last king, Had made his course to illume that part of heaven W liose image even but now appear'd to us, Where now it burns, Marcellus, and myself, Was, as you know, by Fortinbras of Norway, The bell then beating one,
Thereto prick'd on by a most einulate pride, Mar. Peace, break thee off; look where it Dar'dto the combat; in which our valiant Hamlet cones again!
15 (For so this side of our known world esteem'd bim) Enter Ghost.
Did slay this Fortinbras; who, by a scaldcompact, Ber. In the same figure,like the kingthat's dead. Well ratify'd by law, and heraldry, Alar. Thou art a scholar, speak to it, Horatio. Did forfeit, with his life, all those his lands, Ber. Looks it not like the king? mark it, Ho- Which he stood seis'd of, to the conqueror : ratio.
[wonder. 20 Against the which, a moiety competent Hor. Most like: it harrows me with fear and
Vas gaged by our king; which had return'd Ber. It would be spoke to.
To the inheritance of Fortinbras, Mar. Speak to it, Horatio.
[night, Had he been vanquisher; as, by that covenant, Hor. What art thou, that usurp'st this time of And carriage of the articles design'd', Together with that fair and warlike form 25 His fell to Hamlet: Now, sir, young Fortinbras, In which the majesty of bury'd Denmark [speak. lofunimproved' mettle hot and full, Did sometime march? By heaven I charge thee, Ilath in the skirts of Norway, here and there, Mar. It is offended.
Shark'd up a list of landless resolutes, Ber. Sec! it stalks away.
For food and diet, to some enterprise Hor. Stay; speak; I charge thee, speak. 301 That hath a stomach in't; which is no other
As it doth well appear unto our state) Alar. 'Tis gone, and will not answer.
But to recover of us, by strong hand, Ber. How now, Horatio ? you tremble, and And terms compulsatory, those foresaid lands
So by his father lost : And this, I take it, Is not this something more than phantasy? 35 Is the main motive of our preparations ; What think you of it?
The source of this our watch; and the chief head Hor. Before my God, I might not this believe, Of this post-haste and romage in the land. Without the sensible and true avouch
Ber. I think, it be no other, but even so: Of mine own eyes.
Well may it sort, that this portentous figure Mar. Is it not like the king?
40 Comes armed through our watch; so like the king Hor. As thou art to thyself:
That was, and is the question of these wars. Such was the very armour he had on,
Hor. A mote it is, to trouble the mind's eye. When he the ambitious Norway combated; In the most high and palmy" state of Rome, So frown'd he once, when, in an angry parle, A little ere the mightiest Julius fell, Hesmote the sledded Polack 3 on the ice. 45 The graves stood tenantless, and the sheeted dead
Did squeak and gibber in the Roman streets; Mar. Thus, twice before, and just at this dead Stars shone with trains of fire; dews of blood fell; With inartial stalk he hath gone by our watch. Disasters 12 veil'd the sun; and the moist star, lor. In what particular thought to work, 11 pon whose influence Neptune's empire stands,
Was sick almost to doonis-day with eclipse. But, in the gross and scope of mine opinion, And even the like precurse of fierce is events, This bodes some strange eruption to our state. As harbingers preceding still the fates, Mar. Good now, sit down, and tell me, be Ind prologue to the omen'* coming on,that knows,
Have heaven and earth together demonstrated Why this same strict and most observant watch 155 Unto our climatures and countrymen.
'i. e. add a new testimony to that of our eyes. * To harrow is to conquer, to subdue. The word is of Saxon origin. He speaks of a prince in Poland whom he slew in battle. Polack was, in that age, the term for an inhabitant of Poland: Polaque, French. A sled, or sledge, is a carriage made use of in the cold countries. * i.e. what particular train of thinking to follow. i.e. general thoughts, and tendency at large. • Carringe is import: design'd, is formed, drawn up between them.
Unimprozel, for unrefined. & To skark up may mean to pick up without distinction, as the sharkfish collects his prey. Stomach, in the time of our author, was used for constancy, resolution. 20 j.e. tumultuous hurry. 11 Palmy for victorious, flourishing. 12 Disasters is here finely used in its original signification of evil conjunction of stars. !' Fierce, for conspicuous, glaring. jor falc.
A Roon of State.
En!er the King, Queen, Hamlet, Polonius, Laertes Speak to ine:
5 Voltimand, Cornelius, Lords and stiendanis. If there be any good thing to be done,
king. Though yet of Hamlet our dear brother's That may to thte do ease, and grace to me,
death Speak to me:
The memory be green; and that it us befitted It thou art privy to thy country's fate,
To bear our hearts in grief, and our whole kingWhich, haply, foreknowing may avoid,
10 To be contracted in one brow of woe; [dom O, speak !
Yet so far hath discretion fought with nature, Or, if thou hast uphoarded in thy life
That we with wisest sorrow think on him, Extorted treasure in the womb of earth,
Together with remembrance of ourselves. For which, they say, you spirits oft walk in death, Therefore our sometime sister, now our qucen,
[Cock crows. 15 The imperial jointress of this warlike state, Speak of it:-stay,and speak.--Stop it, Marcellus. Have we, as 'twere, with a defeated jov,Mar. Shall I strike at it with my partizan? With one anspicious, and one dropping eye; Hor. Do, if it will not stand.
With mirth in funeral, and with dirge in marriage, Ber. 'Tis here!
In equal scale weighing delight and dole,Hor. 'Tis here!
120 Taken to wife: nor have we herein barr'd Mur. 'Tis gone!
[Exit Ghost. Your better wisdoms, which have freely gone We do it wrong, being so majestical,
With this aftair so long :-For all, our thanks. To offer it the show of violence;
Now follows, that you know, young FortinFor it is, as the air, invulnerable,
Holding a weak supposal of our worth ; [bras, And our vain blows malicious mockery. 25 Or thinking, by our late dear brother's death,
Ber. It was about to speah, when the cock crew. Our state to be disjoint and out of frame,
Hor. And then it started like a guilty thing Colleagued with this dream of his advantage, Upon a fearíul summons. i have heard, He hath not fail'd to pester us with message The cock, that is the trumpet to the inorn, importing the surrender of those lands Doth with his lofty and shrill-sounding throat 30 Lost by his father, with all bands of law, Awake the god of day; an at his warning, To our most valiant brother.-So much for him. Whether in sea or fire, in earth or air',
Now for ourself, and for this time of meeting: The extravagant ? and erring spirit hies
Thus much the business is: We have here writ To his contine :: and of the truth herein
To Norway, uncle of young Fortinbras,This present object made probation.
35 who, impotent and bed-rid, scarcely hears Mar. It faded on the crowing of the cock *. Of this his nephew's purpose, -to suppress Some say, that ever 'gainst that season comes Llis turther gait' herein; in that the levies, Wherein our Saviour's birth is celebrated, The lists, and full proportions, are all made This bird of dawning singeth all night long: Out of his subject :-and we here dispatch And then, they say, no spirit dares stir abroad; 40 You, good Cornelius, and you, Voltímand, The nights are wholesome; then no planets strike, For bearers of this greeting to old Norway; No fairy takes ', nor witch hath power to charm, Giving to you no further personal power So hallow'd and so gracious is the time.
To business with the king, more than the scope Hor. So have I heard, and do in part believe it. of these dilated articles * allows. But, look, the morn, in russet mantle clad, 45 Farewell; and let your baste commend your duty. Walks o'er the dew of yon high eastern bill: Vol. In that and all things will we shew our Break we our watch up; and, by my advice,
duty: Let us impart what we have seen to-night
King. We doubt it nothing; heartily farewell. Unto young Hamlet; for, upon my lite,
[Exeunt Voltimand, and Cornelius. This spirit, dumb to us, will speak to him : 50 And now, Laertes, what's the news with you? Do you consent we shall acquaint him with it, You told us of soine suit; What is't, Laertes ? As needful in our loves, fitting our duty?
You cannot speak of reason to the Dane, Mar. Let's do’t, I pray; and I this morning And lose your voice : What would'st thou beg, know
Laertes, Where we shall find him mostconvenient,[Exeunt.55 That shall not be my offer, not thy asking?
According to the pneumatology of that time, every element was inhabited by its peculiar order of spirits, who had dispositions different, according to their various places of abode. 'i.e. got out of its bounds. Bourne of Newcastle, in his Antiquities of the Common People, informs us, " It is a received tradition among the vulgar, that at the time of cock-crowing the midnight spirits forsake these lower regions, and go to their proper places.” * This is a very ancient superstition. strikes with lameness or diseases. • The meaning is, He goes to war so indiscreetly, and unprepared, that he has no allies to support him but a dream, with which he is colleagued or confederated. Gatc or gait is here used in the northern sense, for proceeding, passage. i. e. the articles when dilated,
The head is not inore native to the heart, But, you must know, your father lost a father ; The hand more instrumental to the mouth, That father lost, lost his 5; and the survivor Than is the throne of Denmark to thy father'. In filial obligation, for some term [bound, What would'st thou have, Laertes ?
To do obsequious sorrow : but to persever Laer. My dread lord,
5 In obstinate condolement', is a course Your leave and favourto return to France: [mark, Of impious stubbornness: 'tis unmanly grief: From whence though willingly I came to Den- It shews a will most incorrect to heaven; To shew my duty in your coronation ;
A heart unfortify'd, or mind impatient; Yet now, I'must confess, that duty done, An understanding simple and unschool'd; Mythoughts andwishes bend again toward France, 10 For what, we know, must be, and is as common And bow them to your gracious leave and pardon. As any the most vulgar thing to sense, King. Have you your father's leave What Why should we, in our peevish opposition, says Polonius ?
[slow leave, Take it to heart? Fie! 'tis a fault to heaven, Pol. He hath, my lord, wrung from me my A fault against the dead, a fault to nature, By laboursome petition: and, at last,
15 To reason most absurd, whose common theme Upon his will I seal'd my hard consent:
Is death of fathers, and who still hath cry?d, I do beseech you, give him leave to go.
From the first corse, 'till he that died to-day, King. Take thy fair hour, Laertes; time be This must be so.
We pray you throw to earth thine,
This unprevailing woe; and think of us And thy best graces spend it at thy will.- 20 As of a father : for, let the world take note, But now, my cousin Hamlet, and my son,- You are the most immediate to our throne; Ham. A little more than kin,and less than kind? And, with no less nobility of love
[ Aside. Than that which dearest father bears his son, King. How is it that the clouds still hang on Do I impart 10 toward you. For your intent you?
[sun : 25 In going back to school in Wittenberg, Ham. Not so, my lord, I am too much i' the It is most retrograde to our desire : Queen. Good Hamlet, cast thy nighted colour And, we beseech you, bend you to remain off,
Here, in the chear and comfort of our eye, And let thine eye look like a friend on Denmark. Our chiefest courtier, cousin, and our son. Do not, for ever, with thy vailed * lids 30 Qucen. Let not thy mother lose her prayers, Seek for thy noble father in the dust : [die,
Hanilet; Thou know'st, 'tis common: all, that live, inusi II pray thee, stay with us, go not to Wittenberg. Passing through nature to eternity.
Ham. I shall in all my best obey you, madam. Ham. Ay, madam, it is common.
King. Why, 'tis a loving and a fair reply ; Queen. If it be,
35 Be as ourself in Denmark. Madam, come; Why seems it so particular with thee? [seems. This gentle and unforc'd accord of Hamlet
Ham. Seems, madam! nay, it is; I know not Sits smiling to my heart : in grace whereof, 'Tis not alone ny inky cloak, good inother, No jocund health, that Denmark drinks to-day, Nor customary suits of solemn black,
But the great cannon to the clouds shall tell ; Nor windy suspiration of forc'd breath, 40 And the king's rouze the heaven shall bruit again, No, nor the fruitful river in the eye,
Re-speaking earthly thunder. Come, away. Nor the dejected haviour of the visage,
[Ereunt, Together with all forms, modes, shows of grief,
Manet Hamlet. That can denote me truly: Thesc, indeed, seem, Ham.O, that this too too solid flesh would melt, For they are actions that a man might play: 45 Thaw, and resolve" itself into a dew! But I have that within, which passeth show; Or that the Everlasting had not fix'd [God! These, but the trappings and the suits of woe.
12 'gainst self-slaughter! O God! 0 King. 'Tis sweet and commendable in your How weary, stale, flat, and unprofitable nature, Hamlet,
Seem to me all the uses of this world!
· The sense is, The head is not formed to be more useful to the heart, the hand is not more at the service of the mouth, than my power is at your father's service. · Hanmer observes, It is not unreasonable to suppose that this was a proverbial expression, known in former times for a relation so confused and blended, that it was hard to define it. Dr, Johnson asserts kind to be the Teutonick word for child: Hamlet therefore, he adds, answers with propriety, to the titles of cousin, and son, which the king had given him, that he was somewhat more than cousin, and less thanson.--Mr. Steevens says that a jingle of the same sort is found in another old play, and seems to have been proverbial, as he has met with it more than once. Mr. Farmer questions whether a quibble between sun and son be not here intended. * With lorvering eyes, cast-down eyes. That is, Your father lost a father, i. e. your grandfather, which lost grandfather also lost his father. • Obsequious is here from obsequies or funeral ceremonies. · Condolement, for sorrow, * Incorrect, for untutord. 'Nobility here means generosity. 19 i. e. communicate whatever I can bestow. " Resolve means the same as dissoloe. 12 i. e. that he had not restrained suicide by his express law and peremptory prohibition.
That grows to seed; things rank, and gross in na- Hor. I saw him once, he was a goodly king. ture,
Ham. He was a man, take him for all in all, Possess it merely. That it should come to this! i 'shall not look upon his like again. But two months dead !--Nay, not so much, not Hor. My lord, I think I saw him yesternight.” So excellent a king; that was to this, [two: 5 Ham. Saw! who? Hyperion'to a satyr': so loving to my mother, Hor. My lord, the king your father. That he might not let e'en the winds of heaven Hum. The king my father! Visit her face too roughly. Heaven and earth! Hor. Season your admiration for a while Must I remember? Why, she would hang on him, With an attent car; 'till I may deliver, As if increase of appetite had grown
10 Upon the witness of these gentlemen, By what it fed on: And yet, within a montlı,- This marvel to you. Let me not think on't:- Frailty, thy name is Ham. For heaven's love, let me hear. woman!
Hor. Two nights together had these gentlemen, A little month ; or ere those shoes were old, Marcellus and Bernardo, on their watch, With which she follow'd my poor father's body, 15 In the dead waste and middle of the night, Like Niobé, all tears:—why she, even she - Been thus encounter'd. A figure like your father, O heaven! a beast, that wants discourse of reason Arın'd at all points, exactly cap-à-pé, Would have mourn'd longer,--marry'd with my Appears before them, and, with solemn march, uncle,
Goes slow and stately by them: thrice he walk'd My father's brother; but no more like my father,20 By their opprest and fear-surprized eyes, (tillid Than I to Hercules : Within a month;
Within his truncheon's length; whilst they, disEre yet the salt of most unrighteous tears Almost to jelly, with the act of fear, Had left the flushing in her galled eyes,
stand dumb and speak not to him. This to me She marry'd.-O most wicked speed, to post in dreadful secresy impart they did: With such dexterity to incestuous sheets! 25 And I with them, the third night, kept the watch; It is not, nor it cannot come to good:
Where, as they had deliver'd, both in time, But break, my heart; for I must hold my tongue! Form of the tbing, each word made true and good,
Enter Horatio, Bernardo, and Marcellus. The apparition comes: I knew your father ; Hor. Hail to your lordship!
These hands are not more like. Ham. I am glad to see you well:
30 Ham. But where was this? (watch'd. Horatio,or do I forget myself?
Mar. My lord, upon the platform where we Hor. The same, my lord, and your poor servant Ham. Did you not speak to it? Ham. Sir, my good friend : "I'll change that Hor. My lord, I did; name with you.
But answer made it none : yet once, methought, And what make you from Wittenberg, Horatio?-35 lt lifted up its head, and did address Marcellus?
litself to notion, like as it would speak : Mar. My good lord,
[sir.- But, even then, the morning cock crew loud; Ham. I am very glad to see you; good even, And at the sound it shrunk in haste away, But what, in faith, make you from Wittenberg ? And vanish'd from our sight.
Hor. A truant disposition, good my lord. 40! Ham. 'Tis very strange.
Ham. I would not hear your enemy say so ; Hor. As I do live, my honour'd lord, 'tis true; Nor shall you do mine ear that violence, And we did think it writ down in our duty, To make it truster of your own report
To let you know of it.
[me. Against yourself: I know you are no truant. Ham. Indeed, indeed, sirs, but this troubles But what is your affair in Elsinour?
45 Hold you the watch to-night? We'll teach you to drink deep, ere you depart. All. We do, my lord. Hor. My lord, I came to see your father's Ham. Arm’d, say you? funeral. (student ; All. Arm’d, niy
lord. Ham. I pray thee, do not mock me, fellow- Ham. From top to toe? I think it was to see my mother's wedding. 50 All. My lord, from head to foot.
Hor. Indeed, my lord, it follow'd hard upon. Ham. T'hen saw you not his face?
Hum. What, look'd he frowningly?
Ham. Pale, or red :
Hor. Nay, very pale. Hor. where, my lord ?
Ham. And fix'd his eyes upon you? Ham. In my mind's eye, Horatio.
Hor. Most constantly. ! By the Satyr is meant Pan; as by Hyperion, Apollo.--Pan and Apollo were brothers; and the allusion is to the contention between those gods for the preference in music.
ai. e. I'll be your servant, you
shall be my friend. It was ancientiy the general custom to give a cold entertainment to mourners at a funeral. In distant counties, this practice is continued among the yeomanry. * Dearest is most immediate, consequential, important. Eye is certainly more worthy of Shakspeare. : That is, temper it.
Ham. I would I had been there.
His greatness weigh’d, bis will is not his own; Hor. It would have much amaz'd you. For he himself is subject to his birth : Ham. Very like,
He may not, as unvalued persons do, Very like: Stay'd it long?
Carve for himself; for on his choice depends Hor. While one with moderate haste 5 The safety and the health of the whole state; Might tell a hundred.
And therefore must his choice be circumscrib'd Both. Longer, longer.
Unto the voice and yielding of that body, Hor. Not when I saw it.
Whereof he is the head: Then if he says, he Ham. His beard was grizzl'd? no?
loves you, Hor. It was, as I have seen it in his life, 10 It fits your wisdom so far to believe it, A sable silver'd.
As he in his particular act and place Ham. I will watch to-night;
May give his saying deed; which is no further, Perchance, 'twill walk again.
Than the main voice of Denmark goes withal. Hor. I warrant, it will.
Then weigh what loss your honour may sustain, Ham. If it assume my noble father's
15 If with too credent ear you list his songs; I'll speak to it, though hell itself should gape, Or lose your heart; or your chaste treasure open And bid me hold my peace. I pray you all,
To his unmaster'd' importunity.
And keep you in the rear of your affection,
The chariest maid is prodigal enough, I will requite your loves: So, fare you well: If she unmask her beauty to the moon : Upon the platform, 'twixt eleven and twelve, Virtue itself 'scapes not calumnious strokes : I'll visit you,
The canker galls the infants of the spring All. Our duty to your honour.
125 Too oft before their buttons be disclos'd; Ham. Your loves, as mine to you: Farewell. And in the morn and liquid dew of youth
[Exeunt. Contagious blastments are most imminent. My father's spirit in arms! all is not well; Be wary then : best safety lies in fear; I doubt some foul play: 'would, the night were Youth to itself rebels, though none else near. come!
30. Oph. I shall the effect of this good lesson keep, 'Till then sit still, my soul : Foul deeds will rise As watchian to my heart: but, good my brother, (Though all the earth o'erwhelm them) to men's Do not, as some ungracious pastors do, eyes.
[Exit.) Shew me the steep and thorny way to heaven;
Whilst, like a puft and reckless libertine,
35 Himself the primrose path of dalliance treads, An Apartment in Polonius' House.
And recks not his own read'.
Laer. O, fear me not.
I stay too long ;—But here my father comes. Laer. My necessaries are embark’d; farewell:
Enter Polonius. And, sister, as the winds give benefit,
40 A double blessing is a double grace ; And convoy is assistant, do not sleep,
Occasion smiles upon a second leave. But let me hear from you.
Pol. Yet here, Laertes! aboard, 'aboard, for Oph. Do you doubt that?
shame; Luer, For Hamlet, and the trifling of his fa- The wind sits in the shoulder of your sail, Hold it a fashion, and a toy in blood; 45 And you are staid for: There,-my blessings with A violet in the youth of príıny nature,
you ; [Laying his hand on Laertes' heud. Forward, not permanent, sweet, not lasting, And these few precepts in thy memory The perfume and suppliance of a minute ; Look thou character. Givethythoughts notongue, No more.
Nor any unproportion'd thought his act. Oph. No more but so?
50|Be thou familiar, but by no means vulgar. Laer. Think it no more:
The friends thou hast, and their adoption try'd, For nature, crescent, does not grow alone Grapple them to thy soul with hoops of steel; In thews ?, and bulk: but, as this temple waxes, But do not dull thy palm with entertainment The inward service of the mind and soul
Of each new-hatch'd unfledg'd comrade!. BeGrows wide withal. Perhaps, he loves you now; 55 Of entrance to a quarrel; but, being in, (ware And now no soil, nor cautel', doth besmirch Bear it that the opposer may beware of thee. The virtue * of his will : but, you must fear, Give every man thine ear, but few thy voice:
"j. e. what is supplied to us for a minute. The idea seems to be taken from the short duration of vegetable perfumes. ? i. e. in sinews, muscular strength. *j. e. no fraud, deceit. * Virtue seems here to comprise both excellence and power, and may be explained the pure etfect. Si. e. licentious. • Chary is cautious. ? That is, heeds not his own lessons. The literal sense is, Do not make thy palm callous by shaking every man by the hand. The figurative meaning may be, Do not by promiscuous conversation make thy mind insensible to the difference of characters.