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Pol. (Aside.] Though this be mădnèss, yět there's method in it. [To HAMLET.] Will you walk out of the air, my lord ?

Ham. Into my grave?

Pol. Indeed, that is out o'the air. (Aside.] How pregnant sometimes his replies are! a happiness that often madness hits on, which reason and sanity could not so prosperously be delivered of. [To HAMLET.) My honorable lord, I will most humbly take my leave of you.

Ham. You can not, sir, take from me anything that I will more willingly part withal ; except my life, except my life, except my life. Pol. Fare you well, my lord.

[Exit. Enter ROSENCRANTZ and GUILDENSTERN. Guil. My honored lord !Ros. My most dear lord !-

Ham My excellent good friends! How dost thou, Guildenstern ? Ah, Rosencrantz! Good lads, how do ye both? What news ?

Ros. None, my lord, but that the world 's grown honest.

Ham. Then is dooms-day near. But your news is not true. Let me question more in particular. What have you, my good friends, deserved at the hands of fortune, that she sends you to prison hither?

Guil. Prison, my lord !
Ham. Denmark's a prison.
Ros. Then is the world one.

Ham. A goodly one ; in which there are many con'fines, wards, and dungeons ; Denmark being one of the worst.

Ros. We think not so, my lord.

Ham. Why, then, 't is none (nŭn) to you; for there is nothing (nŭth'ing) either good or bad, but thinking makes it so : to me it is a prison.

Ros. Why, then your ambition makes it one : 't is too nărrow for your

mind. Ham. O, I could be bounded in a nutshell, and count mysell a king of infinite space, were it not that I have bad dreams. But, in the beaten way of friendship, what make you at Elsinore?

Ros. To visit you, my lord ; no other occasion.

Ham. Beggar that I am, I am even poor in thanks ; but I thank you. Were you not sent for? Is it your own inclining?

Is it a free visitation ? Come, come ; deal justly with me: come, come; nay, speak.

Guil. What should we say, my lord ?

Ham. Any thing—but to the purpose. You were sent for ; and there is a kind of confession in your looks, which your modesties have not craft enough to color; I know the good king and queen have sent for you.

Rós. To what end, my lord ?

Ham. That you must teach me. But let me conjure' you, by the rights of our fellowship, by the consonancy of our youth, by the obligation of our ever-preserved love, and by what more dear a better proposer could charge you withal, be even and direct with me, whether ye were sent for, or no ?

Ros. [To GUILDENSTERN.) What say you?

Ham. [Aside.] Nay, then I have an eye of you. [To them.] If you love me, hold not off.

Guil. My lord, we were sent for.

Ham. I will tell you why; so shall my anticipation prevent your discovery, and your secrecy to the king and queen moult no feather. I have of late (but, wherefore, I know not,) lost all my mirth, foregone all custom of exercises : and, indeed, it goes so heavily with my disposition, that this goodly frame, the earth, seems to me a stěrile prom'ontory ; this most excellent canopy, the air, look you, this brave o'erhanging firmament, this majestical roof, fretted with golden fire, why, it appears no other thing to me than a foul and pestilent congregation of vapors. What a piece of work is a man! How noble in reason! how infinite in faculties! in form, and moving, how express and admirable! in action, how like an angel! in apprehension, how like a god! the beauty of the world! the păragon of animals! And yet, to me, what is this quintessence of dust ?—Gentlemen, you are welcome to Elsinore. Your hands. You are welcome ; but my

uncle-father and aunt-mother are deceived. Guil. In what, my dear lord ?

Ham. I am but mad north-north-west : when the wind is southerly, I know a hawk from a hand-saw.

Reënter POLONIUS. Pol. My lord, the queen would speak with you, and presently.

Ham. Do you see yonder cloud, that's almost in shape of a eamel ?

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Pol. By the mass, and t is like a camel, indeed.
Ham. Methinks, it is like a weasel.
Pol. It is backed like a weasel.
Ham. Or, like a whale.
Pol. Věry like a whale.

Ham. Then will I come to my mother by and by.—They fool
me to the top of my bent.— I will come by and by.
Pol. I will say so.

[Exit POLONIUS. Ham. By and by is easily said.—Leave me, friends.

[Exeunt Ros. and Guil.
"Tis now the very witching time of night;
When churchyards yawn, and hell itself breathes out
Contagion to this world : now could I drink hot blood,
And do such bitter business as the day
Would quake to look on. Soft ; now to my mother
O heart, lose not thy nature ; let not ever
The soul of Nero enter this firm bosom ;
Let me be cruel, not unnatural :
I will speak daggers to her, but use none.




CAMLET. Now, mother, what's the matter?

Queen. Hamlet, thou hast thy father much offended.
Ham. Mother, you have my father much offended.
Queen. Come, come, you answer with an idle tongue.
Ham. Go, go, you question with a wicked tongue.
Queen. Why, how now, Hamlet ?

What's the matter now?
Queen. Have you forgot me?

No, by the rood,' not so:
*Hamlet, doubtful of the relation the plot, and he becomes fully con-
of the ghost, and fearful that it vinced that his uncle was the mur
might be only the tale of a wicked derer of his father.
spirit, laid a plot to convince himself Rood, (rød), the cross, or an im-
of his uncle's participation in the age of Christ on the cross, with the
murder ; and the scene here given Virgin Mary and a saint, or St.
occurs after the successful issue of John, on each side of it.

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You are the queen, your husband's brother's wife;
And—would it were not so !-you are my mother.

Queen. Nay, then I'll set those to you that can speak.

Ham. Come, come, and sit you down ; you shall not budge ; You


not till I set you up a glass Where you may see the inmost part of you.

Queen. What wilt thou do?—thou wilt not murder me?

Ham. Leave wringing of your hands : peace; sit you down, And let me wring your heart: for so I shall, If it be made of penetrable stuff ; If damned custom have not brazed it so, That it is proof and bulwark against sense.

Queen. What have I done, that thou darest wag thy tongue
In noise so rude against me?

Such an act,
That blurs the grace and blush of modesty ;
Calls virtue, hypocrite; takes off the rose
From the fair forehead of an innocent love,
And sets a blister there ; makes marriage vows
As false as dicer's oath! oh, such a deed
As from the body of contraction plucks
The very soul; and sweet religion makes
A rhapsody of words. Heaven's face doth glow;
Yea, this solidity and compound mass,
With tristful visage, as against the doom,
Is thought-sick at the act.

Ah me! what act,
That roars so loud, and thunders in the index?

Ham. Look here, upon this picture, and on this ;
The counterfeit presentment of two brothers.
See what a grace was seated on this brow :
Hyperion's curls; the front of Jove himself ;
An eye like Mars,' to threaten and command;
A station like the herald Mercury,"
New-lighted on a heaven-kissing hill;

Mars, an ancient Roman god, est honors at Rome; also, a planet. who, at an early period, was iden- * Mer'cury, in mythology, the mes tified with the Greek Ares, or the senger and interpreter of the gods, god delighting in bloody war. Next and the god of eloquence and of comto Jupiter, Mars enjoyed the high. merce, called Hermes by the Greeks.

A combination, and a form, indeed,
Where every god did seem to set his seal,
To give the world assurance of a man :
This was your husband.—Look you, now, what follows:
Here is


like a mildewed ear,
Blasting his wholesome brother. Have you eyes ?
Could you on this fair mountain leave to feed,
And batten on this moor? Ha! have you eyes ?
You can not call it love ; for at your age
The heyday in the blood is tame, it's humble,.
And waits upon the judgment; and what judgment
Would step from this to this?

Oh, speak no more!
Thou turn'st mine eyes into my věry soul;
And there I see such black and grainèd spots,
As will not leave their tinct.' Oh, speak to me no more!
These words, like daggers, enter in mine ears :
No more, sweet Hamlet!

A murderer and a villain :
A slave that is not twentieth part the tifhe
Of your precēdent lord :-a vice of kings :
A cut-purse of the empire and the rule ;
That from a shelf the precious diädem stole,
And put it in his pocket!

No more!

A king Of shreds and patches ;

[Enter Ghost. Save me and hover o'er me with your wings, You heavenly guards !—What would your gracious figure ?

Queen. Alas, he's mad!

Ham. Do you not come your tardy son to chide,
That, lapsed in time and passion, lets go by
The important acting of your dread command ?
O, say!

Ghost. Do not forget : this visitation
Is but to whet thy almost blunted purpose.
But look! amazement on thy mother sits :
O, step between her and her fighting soul :

* Tinct, (tingkt), spot; stain ; color.

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