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Ham. So long? Nay, then, let the devil wear black, for I'll have a suit of sables.(51) O heavens ! die two months ago, and not forgotten yet? Then there's hope a great man's memory may outlive his life half a year: but, by’r lady, he must build churches, then ; or else shall he suffer not thinking on, with the hobby-horse, whose epitaph is, “For, 0, for, o, the hobby-horse is forgot."
Hautboys play. The dumb-show enters. Enter a King and a Queen very lovingly; the Queen embracing
him, and he her. She kneels, and makes show of protestation unto him. He takes her up, and declines his head upon her neck : lays him down upon a bank of flowers : she, seeing him asleep, leaves him. Anon comes in a fellow, takes off his crown, kisses it, and pours poison in the King's ears, and exit. The Queen returns ; finds the King dead, and makes passionate action. The Poisoner, with some two or three Mutes, comes in again, seeming to lament with her. The dead body is carried away. The Poisoner wooes the Queen with gifts : she seems loth and unwilling awhile, but in the end accepts his love.
[Exeunt. Oph. What means this, my lord ?
Ham. Marry, this is miching mallecho; it means mischief.
Oph. Belike this show imports the argument of the play.
Enter Prologue. Ham. We shall know by this fellow: the players cannot keep counsel; they'll tell all.
Oph. Will he tell us what this show meant?
Ham. Ay, or any show that you'll show him: be not you ashamed to show, he'll not shame to tell you what it means.
Oph. You are naught, you are naught: I'll mark the play. Pro. For us, and for our tragedy,
Here stooping to your clemency,
We beg your hearing patiently.
Enter a King and a Queen.
P. Queen. So many journeys may the sun and moon
O, confound the rest !
None wed the second but who kill'd the first.
P. Queen. The instances that second marriage move
P. King. I do believe you think what now you speak;
Most necessary 'tis that we forget
pay ourselves what to ourselves is debt:
P. Queen. Nor earth to me give food, nor heaven light!
If, once a widow, ever I be wife! Ham. If she should break it now!
P. King. "Tis deeply sworn. Sweet, leave me here awhile; My spirits grow dull, and fain I would beguile The tedious day with sleep.
[Sleeps. P. Queen.
Sleep rock thy brain; And never come mischance between us twain ! [Exit. Ham. Madam, how like you this play? Queen. The lady protests too much, methinks.
Ham. O, but she'll keep her word.
King. Have you heard the argument? Is there no offence in 't ?
Ham. No, no, they do but jest, poison in jest; no offence i'the world.
King. What do you call the play?
Ham. The Mouse-trap. Marry, how? Tropically. This play is the image of a murder done in Vienna: Gonzago is the duke's name; his wife, Baptista : you shall see anon; 'tis a knavish piece of work: but what o' that? your majesty, and we that have free souls, it touches us not: let the galled jade wince, our withers are unwrung.
Enter LUCIANUS. This is one Lucianus, nephew to the king.
Oph. You are a good chorus, my lord.
Ham. I could interpret between you and your love, if I could see the puppets dallying.
Oph. You are keen, my lord, you are keen.
Ham. So you must take(52) your husbands.—Begin, murderer; pox, (53) leave thy damnable faces, and begin. Come:the croaking raven doth bellow for revenge.(5) Luc. Thoughts black, hands apt, drugs fit, and time
[Pours the poison into the sleeper's ears. Ham. He poisons him i' the garden for 's estate. His name's Gonzago : the story is extant, and writ in choice Italian : you shall see anon how the murderer gets the love of Gonzago's wife.
Oph. The king rises.
Pol. Give o'er the play.
[Exeunt all except Hamlet and Horatio. Ham. Why, let the strucken deer go weep,(55)
The hart ungallèd play ;
So runs the world away.Would not this, sir, and a forest of feathers (if the rest of my fortunes turn Turk with me), with two Provincial roses on my razed shoes, get me a fellowship in a cry of players, sir ?
Hor. Half a share.
For thou dost know, O Damon dear,
This realm dismantled was
A very, very—pajock.(56)
Ham. O good Horatio, I'll take the ghost's word for a thousand pound. Didst perceive ?
Hor. Very well, my lord.
Ham. Ah, ha!--Come, some music! come, the recorders !
For if the king like not the comedy,(57)
Why, then, belike,-he likes it not, perdy.Come, some music!
Re-enter ROSENCRANTZ and GUILDENSTERN.