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The Tragedie of Hamlet by William Shakespeare

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Ham. 'Tis well, Ile haue thee speake out the rest,
soone. Good my Lord, will you see the Players wel bestow'd.
Do ye heare, let them be well vs'd: for they are
the Abstracts and breefe Chronicles of the time. After
your death, you were better haue a bad Epitaph, then
their ill report while you liued

Pol. My Lord, I will vse them according to their desart

Ham. Gods bodykins man, better. Vse euerie man
after his desart, and who should scape whipping: vse
them after your own Honor and Dignity. The lesse they
deserue, the more merit is in your bountie. Take them

Pol. Come sirs.

Exit Polon.

Ham. Follow him Friends: wee'l heare a play to morrow.
Dost thou heare me old Friend, can you play the
murther of Gonzago?
Play. I my Lord

Ham. Wee'l ha't to morrow night. You could for a
need study a speech of some dosen or sixteene lines, which
I would set downe, and insert in't? Could ye not?
Play. I my Lord

Ham. Very well. Follow that Lord, and looke you
mock him not. My good Friends, Ile leaue you til night
you are welcome to Elsonower?
Rosin. Good my Lord.


Manet Hamlet.

Ham. I so, God buy'ye: Now I am alone.
Oh what a Rogue and Pesant slaue am I?
Is it not monstrous that this Player heere,
But in a Fixion, in a dreame of Passion,
Could force his soule so to his whole conceit,
That from her working, all his visage warm'd;
Teares in his eyes, distraction in's Aspect,
A broken voyce, and his whole Function suiting
With Formes, to his Conceit? And all for nothing?
For Hecuba?
What's Hecuba to him, or he to Hecuba,
That he should weepe for her? What would he doe,
Had he the Motiue and the Cue for passion
That I haue? He would drowne the Stage with teares,
And cleaue the generall eare with horrid speech:
Make mad the guilty, and apale the free,
Confound the ignorant, and amaze indeed,
The very faculty of Eyes and Eares. Yet I,
A dull and muddy-metled Rascall, peake
Like Iohn a-dreames, vnpregnant of my cause,
And can say nothing: No, not for a King,
Vpon whose property, and most deere life,
A damn'd defeate was made. Am I a Coward?
Who calles me Villaine? breakes my pate a-crosse?
Pluckes off my Beard, and blowes it in my face?
Tweakes me by'th' Nose? giues me the Lye i'th' Throate,
As deepe as to the Lungs? Who does me this?
Ha? Why I should take it: for it cannot be,
But I am Pigeon-Liuer'd, and lacke Gall
To make Oppression bitter, or ere this,
I should haue fatted all the Region Kites
With this Slaues Offall, bloudy: a Bawdy villaine,
Remorselesse, Treacherous, Letcherous, kindles villaine!
Oh Vengeance!
Who? What an Asse am I? I sure, this is most braue,
That I, the Sonne of the Deere murthered,
Prompted to my Reuenge by Heauen, and Hell,
Must (like a Whore) vnpacke my heart with words,
And fall a Cursing like a very Drab.
A Scullion? Fye vpon't: Foh. About my Braine.
I haue heard, that guilty Creatures sitting at a Play,
Haue by the very cunning of the Scoene,
Bene strooke so to the soule, that presently
They haue proclaim'd their Malefactions.
For Murther, though it haue no tongue, will speake
With most myraculous Organ. Ile haue these Players,
Play something like the murder of my Father,
Before mine Vnkle. Ile obserue his lookes,
Ile rent him to the quicke: If he but blench
I know my course. The Spirit that I haue seene
May be the Diuell, and the Diuel hath power
T' assume a pleasing shape, yea and perhaps
Out of my Weaknesse, and my Melancholly,
As he is very potent with such Spirits,
Abuses me to damne me. Ile haue grounds
More Relatiue then this: The Play's the thing,
Wherein Ile catch the Conscience of the King.


Enter King, Queene, Polonius, Ophelia, Rosincrance,
Guildenstern, and

King. And can you by no drift of circumstance
Get from him why he puts on this Confusion:
Grating so harshly all his dayes of quiet
With turbulent and dangerous Lunacy

Rosin. He does confesse he feeles himselfe distracted,
But from what cause he will by no meanes speake

Guil. Nor do we finde him forward to be sounded,
But with a crafty Madnesse keepes aloofe:
When we would bring him on to some Confession
Of his true state

Qu. Did he receiue you well?
Rosin. Most like a Gentleman

Guild. But with much forcing of his disposition

Rosin. Niggard of question, but of our demands
Most free in his reply

Qu. Did you assay him to any pastime?
Rosin. Madam, it so fell out, that certaine Players
We ore-wrought on the way: of these we told him,
And there did seeme in him a kinde of ioy
To heare of it: They are about the Court,
And (as I thinke) they haue already order
This night to play before him

Pol. 'Tis most true:
And he beseech'd me to intreate your Maiesties
To heare, and see the matter

King. With all my heart, and it doth much content me
To heare him so inclin'd. Good Gentlemen,
Giue him a further edge, and driue his purpose on
To these delights

Rosin. We shall my Lord.


King. Sweet Gertrude leaue vs too,
For we haue closely sent for Hamlet hither,
That he, as 'twere by accident, may there
Affront Ophelia. Her Father, and my selfe (lawful espials)
Will so bestow our selues, that seeing vnseene
We may of their encounter frankely iudge,
And gather by him, as he is behaued,
If't be th' affliction of his loue, or no.
That thus he suffers for

Qu. I shall obey you,
And for your part Ophelia, I do wish
That your good Beauties be the happy cause
Of Hamlets wildenesse: so shall I hope your Vertues
Will bring him to his wonted way againe,
To both your Honors

Ophe. Madam, I wish it may

Pol. Ophelia, walke you heere. Gracious so please ye
We will bestow our selues: Reade on this booke,
That shew of such an exercise may colour
Your lonelinesse. We are oft too blame in this,
'Tis too much prou'd, that with Deuotions visage,
And pious Action, we do surge o're
The diuell himselfe

King. Oh 'tis true:
How smart a lash that speech doth giue my Conscience?
The Harlots Cheeke beautied with plaist'ring Art
Is not more vgly to the thing that helpes it,
Then is my deede, to my most painted word.
Oh heauie burthen!
Pol. I heare him comming, let's withdraw my Lord.


Enter Hamlet.

Ham. To be, or not to be, that is the Question:
Whether 'tis Nobler in the minde to suffer
The Slings and Arrowes of outragious Fortune,
Or to take Armes against a Sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them: to dye, to sleepe
No more; and by a sleepe, to say we end
The Heart-ake, and the thousand Naturall shockes
That Flesh is heyre too? 'Tis a consummation
Deuoutly to be wish'd. To dye to sleepe,
To sleepe, perchance to Dreame; I, there's the rub,
For in that sleepe of death, what dreames may come,
When we haue shuffel'd off this mortall coile,
Must giue vs pawse. There's the respect
That makes Calamity of so long life:
For who would beare the Whips and Scornes of time,
The Oppressors wrong, the poore mans Contumely,
The pangs of dispriz'd Loue, the Lawes delay,
The insolence of Office, and the Spurnes
That patient merit of the vnworthy takes,
When he himselfe might his Quietus make
With a bare Bodkin? Who would these Fardles beare
To grunt and sweat vnder a weary life,
But that the dread of something after death,
The vndiscouered Countrey, from whose Borne
No Traueller returnes, Puzels the will,
And makes vs rather beare those illes we haue,
Then flye to others that we know not of.
Thus Conscience does make Cowards of vs all,
And thus the Natiue hew of Resolution
Is sicklied o're, with the pale cast of Thought,
And enterprizes of great pith and moment,
With this regard their Currants turne away,
And loose the name of Action. Soft you now,
The faire Ophelia? Nimph, in thy Orizons
Be all my sinnes remembred

Ophe. Good my Lord,
How does your Honor for this many a day?
Ham. I humbly thanke you: well, well, well

Ophe. My Lord, I haue Remembrances of yours,
That I haue longed long to re-deliuer.
I pray you now, receiue them

Ham. No, no, I neuer gaue you ought

Ophe. My honor'd Lord, I know right well you did,
And with them words of so sweet breath compos'd,
As made the things more rich, then perfume left:
Take these againe, for to the Noble minde
Rich gifts wax poore, when giuers proue vnkinde.
There my Lord

Ham. Ha, ha: Are you honest?
Ophe. My Lord

Ham. Are you faire?
Ophe. What meanes your Lordship?
Ham. That if you be honest and faire, your Honesty
should admit no discourse to your Beautie

Ophe. Could Beautie my Lord, haue better Comerce
then your Honestie?
Ham. I trulie: for the power of Beautie, will sooner
transforme Honestie from what is, to a Bawd, then the
force of Honestie can translate Beautie into his likenesse.
This was sometime a Paradox, but now the time giues it
proofe. I did loue you once

Ophe. Indeed my Lord, you made me beleeue so

Ham. You should not haue beleeued me. For vertue
cannot so innocculate our old stocke, but we shall rellish
of it. I loued you not

Ophe. I was the more deceiued

Ham. Get thee to a Nunnerie. Why would'st thou
be a breeder of Sinners? I am my selfe indifferent honest,
but yet I could accuse me of such things, that it were better
my Mother had not borne me. I am very prowd, reuengefull,
Ambitious, with more offences at my becke,
then I haue thoughts to put them in imagination, to giue
them shape, or time to acte them in. What should such
Fellowes as I do, crawling betweene Heauen and Earth.
We are arrant Knaues all, beleeue none of vs. Goe thy
wayes to a Nunnery. Where's your Father?
Ophe. At home, my Lord

Ham. Let the doores be shut vpon him, that he may
play the Foole no way, but in's owne house. Farewell

Ophe. O helpe him, you sweet Heauens

Ham. If thou doest Marry, Ile giue thee this Plague
for thy Dowrie. Be thou as chast as Ice, as pure as Snow,
thou shalt not escape Calumny. Get thee to a Nunnery.
Go, Farewell. Or if thou wilt needs Marry, marry a fool:
for Wise men know well enough, what monsters you
make of them. To a Nunnery go, and quickly too. Farwell

Ophe. O heauenly Powers, restore him

Ham. I haue heard of your pratlings too wel enough.
God has giuen you one pace, and you make your selfe another:
you gidge, you amble, and you lispe, and nickname
Gods creatures, and make your Wantonnesse, your Ignorance.
Go too, Ile no more on't, it hath made me mad.
I say, we will haue no more Marriages. Those that are
married already, all but one shall liue, the rest shall keep
as they are. To a Nunnery, go.

Exit Hamlet.

Ophe. O what a Noble minde is heere o're-throwne?
The Courtiers, Soldiers, Schollers: Eye, tongue, sword,
Th' expectansie and Rose of the faire State,
The glasse of Fashion, and the mould of Forme,
Th' obseru'd of all Obseruers, quite, quite downe.
Haue I of Ladies most deiect and wretched,
That suck'd the Honie of his Musicke Vowes:
Now see that Noble, and most Soueraigne Reason,
Like sweet Bels iangled out of tune, and harsh,
That vnmatch'd Forme and Feature of blowne youth,
Blasted with extasie. Oh woe is me,
T'haue seene what I haue seene: see what I see.
Enter King, and Polonius.

King. Loue? His affections do not that way tend,
Nor what he spake, though it lack'd Forme a little,
Was not like Madnesse. There's something in his soule?
O're which his Melancholly sits on brood,
And I do doubt the hatch, and the disclose
Will be some danger, which to preuent
I haue in quicke determination
Thus set it downe. He shall with speed to England
For the demand of our neglected Tribute:
Haply the Seas and Countries different
With variable Obiects, shall expell
This something setled matter in his heart:
Whereon his Braines still beating, puts him thus
From fashion of himselfe. What thinke you on't?
Pol. It shall do well. But yet do I beleeue
The Origin and Commencement of this greefe
Sprung from neglected loue. How now Ophelia?
You neede not tell vs, what Lord Hamlet saide,
We heard it all. My Lord, do as you please,
But if you hold it fit after the Play,
Let his Queene Mother all alone intreat him
To shew his Greefes: let her be round with him,
And Ile be plac'd so, please you in the eare
Of all their Conference. If she finde him not,
To England send him: Or confine him where
Your wisedome best shall thinke

King. It shall be so:
Madnesse in great Ones, must not vnwatch'd go.


Enter Hamlet, and two or three of the Players.

Ham. Speake the Speech I pray you, as I pronounc'd
it to you trippingly on the Tongue: But if you mouth it,
as many of your Players do, I had as liue the Town-Cryer
had spoke my Lines: Nor do not saw the Ayre too much
your hand thus, but vse all gently; for in the verie Torrent,
Tempest, and (as I say) the Whirle-winde of
Passion, you must acquire and beget a Temperance that
may giue it Smoothnesse. O it offends mee to the Soule,
to see a robustious Pery-wig-pated Fellow, teare a Passion
to tatters, to verie ragges, to split the eares of the
Groundlings: who (for the most part) are capeable of
nothing, but inexplicable dumbe shewes, & noise: I could
haue such a Fellow whipt for o're-doing Termagant: it
outHerod's Herod. Pray you auoid it

Player. I warrant your Honor

Ham. Be not too tame neyther: but let your owne
Discretion be your Tutor. Sute the Action to the Word,
the Word to the Action, with this speciall obseruance:
That you ore-stop not the modestie of Nature; for any
thing so ouer-done, is fro[m] the purpose of Playing, whose
end both at the first and now, was and is, to hold as 'twer
the Mirrour vp to Nature; to shew Vertue her owne
Feature, Scorne her owne Image, and the verie Age and
Bodie of the Time, his forme and pressure. Now, this
ouer-done, or come tardie off, though it make the vnskilfull
laugh, cannot but make the Iudicious greeue; The
censure of the which One, must in your allowance o'reway
a whole Theater of Others. Oh, there bee Players
that I haue seene Play, and heard others praise, and that
highly (not to speake it prophanely) that neyther hauing
the accent of Christians, nor the gate of Christian, Pagan,
or Norman, haue so strutted and bellowed, that I haue
thought some of Natures Iouerney-men had made men,
and not made them well, they imitated Humanity so abhominably

Play. I hope we haue reform'd that indifferently with
vs, Sir

Ham. O reforme it altogether. And let those that
play your Clownes, speake no more then is set downe for
them. For there be of them, that will themselues laugh,
to set on some quantitie of barren Spectators to laugh
too, though in the meane time, some necessary Question
of the Play be then to be considered: that's Villanous, &
shewes a most pittifull Ambition in the Foole that vses
it. Go make you readie.

Exit Players.

Enter Polonius, Rosincrance, and Guildensterne.

How now my Lord,
Will the King heare this peece of Worke?
Pol. And the Queene too, and that presently

Ham. Bid the Players make hast.

Exit Polonius.

Will you two helpe to hasten them?
Both. We will my Lord.


Enter Horatio.

Ham. What hoa, Horatio?
Hora. Heere sweet Lord, at your Seruice

Ham. Horatio, thou art eene as iust a man
As ere my Conuersation coap'd withall

Hora. O my deere Lord

Ham. Nay, do not thinke I flatter:
For what aduancement may I hope from thee,
That no Reuennew hast, but thy good spirits
To feed & cloath thee. Why shold the poor be flatter'd?
No, let the Candied tongue, like absurd pompe,
And crooke the pregnant Hindges of the knee,
Where thrift may follow faining? Dost thou heare,
Since my deere Soule was Mistris of my choyse,
And could of men distinguish, her election
Hath seal'd thee for her selfe. For thou hast bene
As one in suffering all, that suffers nothing.
A man that Fortunes buffets, and Rewards
Hath 'tane with equall Thankes. And blest are those,
Whose Blood and Iudgement are so well co-mingled,
That they are not a Pipe for Fortunes finger.
To sound what stop she please. Giue me that man,
That is not Passions Slaue, and I will weare him
In my hearts Core. I, in my Heart of heart,
As I do thee. Something too much of this.
There is a Play to night to before the King.
One Scoene of it comes neere the Circumstance
Which I haue told thee, of my Fathers death.
I prythee, when thou see'st that Acte a-foot,
Euen with the verie Comment of my Soule
Obserue mine Vnkle: If his occulted guilt,
Do not it selfe vnkennell in one speech,
It is a damned Ghost that we haue seene:
And my Imaginations are as foule
As Vulcans Stythe. Giue him needfull note,
For I mine eyes will riuet to his Face:
And after we will both our iudgements ioyne,
To censure of his seeming

Hora. Well my Lord.
If he steale ought the whil'st this Play is Playing,
And scape detecting, I will pay the Theft.
Enter King, Queene, Polonius, Ophelia, Rosincrance,
Guildensterne, and
other Lords attendant with his Guard carrying Torches. Danish
March. Sound
a Flourish.

Ham. They are comming to the Play: I must be idle.
Get you a place

King. How fares our Cosin Hamlet?
Ham. Excellent Ifaith, of the Camelions dish: I eate
the Ayre promise-cramm'd, you cannot feed Capons so

King. I haue nothing with this answer Hamlet, these
words are not mine

Ham. No, nor mine. Now my Lord, you plaid once
i'th' Vniuersity, you say?
Polon. That I did my Lord, and was accounted a good

Ham. And what did you enact?
Pol. I did enact Iulius Caesar, I was kill'd i'th' Capitol:
Brutus kill'd me

Ham. It was a bruite part of him, to kill so Capitall a
Calfe there. Be the Players ready?
Rosin. I my Lord, they stay vpon your patience

Qu. Come hither my good Hamlet, sit by me

Ha. No good Mother, here's Mettle more attractiue

Pol. Oh ho, do you marke that?
Ham. Ladie, shall I lye in your Lap?
Ophe. No my Lord

Ham. I meane, my Head vpon your Lap?
Ophe. I my Lord

Ham. Do you thinke I meant Country matters?
Ophe. I thinke nothing, my Lord

Ham. That's a faire thought to ly betweene Maids legs
Ophe. What is my Lord?
Ham. Nothing

Ophe. You are merrie, my Lord?
Ham. Who I?
Ophe. I my Lord

Ham. Oh God, your onely Iigge-maker: what should
a man do, but be merrie. For looke you how cheerefully
my Mother lookes, and my Father dyed within's two

Ophe. Nay, 'tis twice two moneths, my Lord

Ham. So long? Nay then let the Diuel weare blacke,
for Ile haue a suite of Sables. Oh Heauens! dye two moneths
ago, and not forgotten yet? Then there's hope, a
great mans Memorie, may out-liue his life halfe a yeare:
But byrlady he must builde Churches then: or else shall
he suffer not thinking on, with the Hoby-horsse, whose
Epitaph is, For o, For o, the Hoby-horse is forgot.

Hoboyes play. The dumbe shew enters.

Enter a King and Queene, very louingly; the Queene embracing
him. She
kneeles, and makes shew of Protestation vnto him. He takes her
vp, and
declines his head vpon her neck. Layes him downe vpon a Banke
of Flowers.
She seeing him a-sleepe, leaues him. Anon comes in a Fellow,
takes off his
Crowne, kisses it, and powres poyson in the Kings eares, and
Exits. The
Queene returnes, findes the King dead, and makes passionate
Action. The
Poysoner, with some two or three Mutes comes in againe, seeming
to lament
with her. The dead body is carried away: The Poysoner Wooes the
Queene with
Gifts, she seemes loath and vnwilling awhile, but in the end,
accepts his


Ophe. What meanes this, my Lord?
Ham. Marry this is Miching Malicho, that meanes

Ophe. Belike this shew imports the Argument of the
Ham. We shall know by these Fellowes: the Players
cannot keepe counsell, they'l tell all

Ophe. Will they tell vs what this shew meant?
Ham. I, or any shew that you'l shew him. Bee not
you asham'd to shew, hee'l not shame to tell you what it

Ophe. You are naught, you are naught, Ile marke the
Enter Prologue.

For vs, and for our Tragedie,
Heere stooping to your Clemencie:
We begge your hearing Patientlie

Ham. Is this a Prologue, or the Poesie of a Ring?
Ophe. 'Tis briefe my Lord

Ham. As Womans loue.
Enter King and his Queene.

King. Full thirtie times hath Phoebus Cart gon round,
Neptunes salt Wash, and Tellus Orbed ground:
And thirtie dozen Moones with borrowed sheene,
About the World haue times twelue thirties beene,
Since loue our hearts, and Hymen did our hands
Vnite comutuall, in most sacred Bands

Bap. So many iournies may the Sunne and Moone
Make vs againe count o're, ere loue be done.
But woe is me, you are so sicke of late,
So farre from cheere, and from your former state,
That I distrust you: yet though I distrust,
Discomfort you (my Lord) it nothing must:
For womens Feare and Loue, holds quantitie,
In neither ought, or in extremity:
Now what my loue is, proofe hath made you know,
And as my Loue is siz'd, my Feare is so

King. Faith I must leaue thee Loue, and shortly too:
My operant Powers my Functions leaue to do:
And thou shalt liue in this faire world behinde,
Honour'd, belou'd, and haply, one as kinde.
For Husband shalt thou-
Bap. Oh confound the rest:
Such Loue, must needs be Treason in my brest:
In second Husband, let me be accurst,
None wed the second, but who kill'd the first

Ham. Wormwood, Wormwood

Bapt. The instances that second Marriage moue,
Are base respects of Thrift, but none of Loue.
A second time, I kill my Husband dead,
When second Husband kisses me in Bed

King. I do beleeue you. Think what now you speak:
But what we do determine, oft we breake:
Purpose is but the slaue to Memorie,
Of violent Birth, but poore validitie:
Which now like Fruite vnripe stickes on the Tree,
But fall vnshaken, when they mellow bee.
Most necessary 'tis, that we forget
To pay our selues, what to our selues is debt:
What to our selues in passion we propose,
The passion ending, doth the purpose lose.
The violence of other Greefe or Ioy,
Their owne ennactors with themselues destroy:
Where Ioy most Reuels, Greefe doth most lament;
Greefe ioyes, Ioy greeues on slender accident.
This world is not for aye, nor 'tis not strange
That euen our Loues should with our Fortunes change.
For 'tis a question left vs yet to proue,
Whether Loue lead Fortune, or else Fortune Loue.
The great man downe, you marke his fauourites flies,
The poore aduanc'd, makes Friends of Enemies:
And hitherto doth Loue on Fortune tend,
For who not needs, shall neuer lacke a Frend:
And who in want a hollow Friend doth try,
Directly seasons him his Enemie.
But orderly to end, where I begun,
Our Willes and Fates do so contrary run,
That our Deuices still are ouerthrowne,
Our thoughts are ours, their ends none of our owne.
So thinke thou wilt no second Husband wed.
But die thy thoughts, when thy first Lord is dead

Bap. Nor Earth to giue me food, nor Heauen light,
Sport and repose locke from me day and night:
Each opposite that blankes the face of ioy,
Meet what I would haue well, and it destroy:
Both heere, and hence, pursue me lasting strife,
If once a Widdow, euer I be Wife

Ham. If she should breake it now

King. 'Tis deepely sworne:
Sweet, leaue me heere a while,
My spirits grow dull, and faine I would beguile
The tedious day with sleepe

Qu. Sleepe rocke thy Braine,


And neuer come mischance betweene vs twaine.


Ham. Madam, how like you this Play?
Qu. The Lady protests to much me thinkes

Ham. Oh but shee'l keepe her word

King. Haue you heard the Argument, is there no Offence
Ham. No, no, they do but iest, poyson in iest, no Offence
i'th' 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 Dukes name, his wife Baptista: you shall see
anon: 'tis a knauish peece of worke: But what o'that?
Your Maiestie, and wee that haue free soules, it touches
vs not: let the gall'd iade winch: our withers are vnrung.
Enter Lucianus.

This is one Lucianus nephew to the King

Ophe. You are a good Chorus, my Lord

Ham. I could interpret betweene you and your loue:
if I could see the Puppets dallying

Ophe. You are keene my Lord, you are keene

Ham. It would cost you a groaning, to take off my

Ophe. Still better and worse

Ham. So you mistake Husbands.
Begin Murderer. Pox, leaue thy damnable Faces, and
begin. Come, the croaking Rauen doth bellow for Reuenge

Lucian. Thoughts blacke, hands apt,
Drugges fit, and Time agreeing:
Confederate season, else, no Creature seeing:
Thou mixture ranke, of Midnight Weeds collected,
With Hecats Ban, thrice blasted, thrice infected,
Thy naturall Magicke, and dire propertie,
On wholsome life, vsurpe immediately.

Powres the poyson in his eares.

Ham. He poysons him i'th' Garden for's estate: His
name's Gonzago: the Story is extant and writ in choyce
Italian. You shall see anon how the Murtherer gets the
loue of Gonzago's wife

Ophe. The King rises

Ham. What, frighted with false fire

Qu. How fares my Lord?
Pol. Giue o're the Play

King. Giue me some Light. Away

All. Lights, Lights, Lights.


Manet Hamlet & Horatio.

Ham. Why let the strucken Deere go weepe,
The Hart vngalled play:
For some must watch, while some must sleepe;
So runnes the world away.
Would not this Sir, and a Forrest of Feathers, if the rest of
my Fortunes turne Turke with me; with two Prouinciall
Roses on my rac'd Shooes, get me a Fellowship in a crie
of Players sir

Hor. Halfe a share

Ham. A whole one I,
For thou dost know: Oh Damon deere,
This Realme dismantled was of Ioue himselfe,
And now reignes heere.
A verie verie Paiocke

Hora. You might haue Rim'd

Ham. Oh good Horatio, Ile take the Ghosts word for
a thousand pound. Did'st perceiue?
Hora. Verie well my Lord

Ham. Vpon the talke of the poysoning?
Hora. I did verie well note him.
Enter Rosincrance and Guildensterne.

Ham. Oh, ha? Come some Musick. Come y Recorders:
For if the King like not the Comedie,
Why then belike he likes it not perdie.
Come some Musicke

Guild. Good my Lord, vouchsafe me a word with you

Ham. Sir, a whole History

Guild. The King, sir

Ham. I sir, what of him?
Guild. Is in his retyrement, maruellous distemper'd

Ham. With drinke Sir?
Guild. No my Lord, rather with choller

Ham. Your wisedome should shew it selfe more richer,
to signifie this to his Doctor: for for me to put him
to his Purgation, would perhaps plundge him into farre
more Choller

Guild. Good my Lord put your discourse into some
frame, and start not so wildely from my affayre

Ham. I am tame Sir, pronounce

Guild. The Queene your Mother, in most great affliction
of spirit, hath sent me to you

Ham. You are welcome

Guild. Nay, good my Lord, this courtesie is not of
the right breed. If it shall please you to make me a wholsome
answer, I will doe your Mothers command'ment:
if not, your pardon, and my returne shall bee the end of
my Businesse

Ham. Sir, I cannot

Guild. What, my Lord?
Ham. Make you a wholsome answere: my wits diseas'd.
But sir, such answers as I can make, you shal command:
or rather you say, my Mother: therfore no more
but to the matter. My Mother you say

Rosin. Then thus she sayes: your behauior hath stroke
her into amazement, and admiration

Ham. Oh wonderfull Sonne, that can so astonish a
Mother. But is there no sequell at the heeles of this Mothers
Rosin. She desires to speake with you in her Closset,
ere you go to bed

Ham. We shall obey, were she ten times our Mother.
Haue you any further Trade with vs?
Rosin. My Lord, you once did loue me

Ham. So I do still, by these pickers and stealers

Rosin. Good my Lord, what is your cause of distemper?
You do freely barre the doore of your owne Libertie,
if you deny your greefes to your Friend

Ham. Sir I lacke Aduancement

Rosin. How can that be, when you haue the voyce of
the King himselfe, for your Succession in Denmarke?
Ham. I, but while the grasse growes, the Prouerbe is
something musty.
Enter one with a Recorder.

O the Recorder. Let me see, to withdraw with you, why
do you go about to recouer the winde of mee, as if you
would driue me into a toyle?
Guild. O my Lord, if my Dutie be too bold, my loue
is too vnmannerly

Ham. I do not well vnderstand that. Will you play
vpon this Pipe?
Guild. My Lord, I cannot

Ham. I pray you

Guild. Beleeue me, I cannot

Ham. I do beseech you

Guild. I know no touch of it, my Lord

Ham. 'Tis as easie as lying: gouerne these Ventiges
with your finger and thumbe, giue it breath with your
mouth, and it will discourse most excellent Musicke.
Looke you, these are the stoppes

Guild. But these cannot I command to any vtterance
of hermony, I haue not the skill

Ham. Why looke you now, how vnworthy a thing
you make of me: you would play vpon mee; you would
seeme to know my stops: you would pluck out the heart
of my Mysterie; you would sound mee from my lowest
Note, to the top of my Compasse: and there is much Musicke,
excellent Voice, in this little Organe, yet cannot
you make it. Why do you thinke, that I am easier to bee
plaid on, then a Pipe? Call me what Instrument you will,
though you can fret me, you cannot play vpon me. God
blesse you Sir.
Enter Polonius.

Polon. My Lord; the Queene would speak with you,
and presently

Ham. Do you see that Clowd? that's almost in shape
like a Camell

Polon. By'th' Masse, and it's like a Camell indeed

Ham. Me thinkes it is like a Weazell

Polon. It is back'd like a Weazell

Ham. Or like a Whale?
Polon. Verie like a Whale

Ham. Then will I come to my Mother, by and by:
They foole me to the top of my bent.
I will come by and by

Polon. I will say so.

Ham. By and by, is easily said. Leaue me Friends:
'Tis now the verie witching time of night,
When Churchyards yawne, and Hell it selfe breaths out
Contagion to this world. Now could I drink hot blood,
And do such bitter businesse as the day
Would quake to looke on. Soft now, to my Mother:
Oh Heart, loose not thy Nature; let not euer
The Soule of Nero, enter this firme bosome:
Let me be cruell, not vnnaturall,
I will speake Daggers to her, but vse none:
My Tongue and Soule in this be Hypocrites.
How in my words someuer she be shent,
To giue them Seales, neuer my Soule consent.
Enter King, Rosincrance, and Guildensterne.

King. I like him not, nor stands it safe with vs,
To let his madnesse range. Therefore prepare you,
I your Commission will forthwith dispatch,
And he to England shall along with you:
The termes of our estate, may not endure
Hazard so dangerous as doth hourely grow
Out of his Lunacies

Guild. We will our selues prouide:
Most holie and Religious feare it is
To keepe those many many bodies safe
That liue and feede vpon your Maiestie

Rosin. The single
And peculiar life is bound
With all the strength and Armour of the minde,
To keepe it selfe from noyance: but much more,
That Spirit, vpon whose spirit depends and rests
The liues of many, the cease of Maiestie
Dies not alone; but like a Gulfe doth draw
What's neere it, with it. It is a massie wheele
Fixt on the Somnet of the highest Mount.
To whose huge Spoakes, ten thousand lesser things
Are mortiz'd and adioyn'd: which when it falles,
Each small annexment, pettie consequence
Attends the boystrous Ruine. Neuer alone
Did the King sighe, but with a generall grone

King. Arme you, I pray you to this speedie Voyage;
For we will Fetters put vpon this feare,
Which now goes too free-footed

Both. We will haste vs.

Exeunt. Gent.

Enter Polonius.

Pol. My Lord, he's going to his Mothers Closset:
Behinde the Arras Ile conuey my selfe
To heare the Processe. Ile warrant shee'l tax him home,
And as you said, and wisely was it said,
'Tis meete that some more audience then a Mother,
Since Nature makes them partiall, should o're-heare
The speech of vantage. Fare you well my Liege,
Ile call vpon you ere you go to bed,
And tell you what I know

King. Thankes deere my Lord.
Oh my offence is ranke, it smels to heauen,
It hath the primall eldest curse vpon't,
A Brothers murther. Pray can I not,
Though inclination be as sharpe as will:
My stronger guilt, defeats my strong intent,
And like a man to double businesse bound,
I stand in pause where I shall first begin,
And both neglect; what if this cursed hand
Were thicker then it selfe with Brothers blood,
Is there not Raine enough in the sweet Heauens
To wash it white as Snow? Whereto serues mercy,
But to confront the visage of Offence?
And what's in Prayer, but this two-fold force,
To be fore-stalled ere we come to fall,
Or pardon'd being downe? Then Ile looke vp,
My fault is past. But oh, what forme of Prayer
Can serue my turne? Forgiue me my foule Murther:
That cannot be, since I am still possest
Of those effects for which I did the Murther.
My Crowne, mine owne Ambition, and my Queene:
May one be pardon'd, and retaine th' offence?
In the corrupted currants of this world,
Offences gilded hand may shoue by Iustice,
And oft 'tis seene, the wicked prize it selfe
Buyes out the Law; but 'tis not so aboue,
There is no shuffling, there the Action lyes
In his true Nature, and we our selues compell'd
Euen to the teeth and forehead of our faults,
To giue in euidence. What then? What rests?
Try what Repentance can. What can it not?
Yet what can it, when one cannot repent?
Oh wretched state! Oh bosome, blacke as death!
Oh limed soule, that strugling to be free,
Art more ingag'd: Helpe Angels, make assay:
Bow stubborne knees, and heart with strings of Steele,
Be soft as sinewes of the new-borne Babe,
All may be well.
Enter Hamlet.

Ham. Now might I do it pat, now he is praying,
And now Ile doo't, and so he goes to Heauen,
And so am I reueng'd: that would be scann'd,
A Villaine killes my Father, and for that
I his foule Sonne, do this same Villaine send
To heauen. Oh this is hyre and Sallery, not Reuenge.
He tooke my Father grossely, full of bread,
With all his Crimes broad blowne, as fresh as May,
And how his Audit stands, who knowes, saue Heauen:
But in our circumstance and course of thought
'Tis heauie with him: and am I then reueng'd,
To take him in the purging of his Soule,
When he is fit and season'd for his passage? No.
Vp Sword, and know thou a more horrid hent
When he is drunke asleepe: or in his Rage,
Or in th' incestuous pleasure of his bed,
At gaming, swearing, or about some acte
That ha's no rellish of Saluation in't,
Then trip him, that his heeles may kicke at Heauen,
And that his Soule may be as damn'd and blacke
As Hell, whereto it goes. My Mother stayes,
This Physicke but prolongs thy sickly dayes.

King. My words flye vp, my thoughts remain below,
Words without thoughts, neuer to Heauen go.

Enter Queene and Polonius.

Pol. He will come straight:
Looke you lay home to him,
Tell him his prankes haue been too broad to beare with,
And that your Grace hath screen'd, and stoode betweene
Much heate, and him. Ile silence me e'ene heere:
Pray you be round with him

Ham. within. Mother, mother, mother

Qu. Ile warrant you, feare me not.
Withdraw, I heare him coming.
Enter Hamlet.

Ham. Now Mother, what's the matter?
Qu. Hamlet, thou hast thy Father much offended

Ham. Mother, you haue my Father much offended

Qu. Come, come, you answer with an idle tongue

Ham. Go, go, you question with an idle tongue

Qu. Why how now Hamlet?
Ham. Whats the matter now?
Qu. Haue you forgot me?
Ham. No by the Rood, not so:
You are the Queene, your Husbands Brothers wife,
But would you were not so. You are my Mother

Qu. Nay, then Ile set those to you that can speake

Ham. Come, come, and sit you downe, you shall not
You go not till I set you vp a glasse,
Where you may see the inmost part of you?
Qu. What wilt thou do? thou wilt not murther me?
Helpe, helpe, hoa

Pol. What hoa, helpe, helpe, helpe

Ham. How now, a Rat? dead for a Ducate, dead

Pol. Oh I am slaine.

Killes Polonius

Qu. Oh me, what hast thou done?
Ham. Nay I know not, is it the King?
Qu. Oh what a rash, and bloody deed is this?
Ham. A bloody deed, almost as bad good Mother,
As kill a King, and marrie with his Brother

Qu. As kill a King?
Ham. I Lady, 'twas my word.
Thou wretched, rash, intruding foole farewell,
I tooke thee for thy Betters, take thy Fortune,
Thou find'st to be too busie, is some danger.
Leaue wringing of your hands, peace, sit you downe,
And let me wring your heart, for so I shall
If it be made of penetrable stuffe;
If damned Custome haue not braz'd it so,
That it is proofe and bulwarke against Sense

Qu. What haue I done, that thou dar'st wag thy tong,
In noise so rude against me?
Ham. Such an Act
That blurres the grace and blush of Modestie,
Cals Vertue Hypocrite, takes off the Rose
From the faire forehead of an innocent loue,
And makes a blister there. Makes marriage vowes
As false as Dicers Oathes. Oh such a deed,
As from the body of Contraction pluckes
The very soule, and sweete Religion makes
A rapsidie of words. Heauens face doth glow,
Yea this solidity and compound masse,
With tristfull visage as against the doome,
Is thought-sicke at the act

Qu. Aye me; what act, that roares so lowd, & thunders
in the Index

Ham. Looke heere vpon this Picture, and on this,
The counterfet presentment of two Brothers:
See what a grace was seated on his Brow,
Hyperions curles, the front of Ioue himselfe,
An eye like Mars, to threaten or command
A Station, like the Herald Mercurie
New lighted on a heauen-kissing hill:
A Combination, and a forme indeed,
Where euery God did seeme to set his Seale,
To giue the world assurance of a man.
This was your Husband. Looke you now what followes.
Heere is your Husband, like a Mildew'd eare
Blasting his wholsom breath. Haue you eyes?
Could you on this faire Mountaine leaue to feed,
And batten on this Moore? Ha? Haue you eyes?
You cannot call it Loue: For at your age,
The hey-day in the blood is tame, it's humble,
And waites vpon the Iudgement: and what Iudgement
Would step from this, to this? What diuell was't,
That thus hath cousend you at hoodman-blinde?
O Shame! where is thy Blush? Rebellious Hell,
If thou canst mutine in a Matrons bones,
To flaming youth, let Vertue be as waxe.
And melt in her owne fire. Proclaime no shame,
When the compulsiue Ardure giues the charge,
Since Frost it selfe, as actiuely doth burne,
As Reason panders Will

Qu. O Hamlet, speake no more.
Thou turn'st mine eyes into my very soule,
And there I see such blacke and grained spots,
As will not leaue their Tinct

Ham. Nay, but to liue
In the ranke sweat of an enseamed bed,
Stew'd in Corruption; honying and making loue
Ouer the nasty Stye

Qu. Oh speake to me, no more,
These words like Daggers enter in mine eares.
No more sweet Hamlet

Ham. A Murderer, and a Villaine:
A Slaue, that is not twentieth part the tythe
Of your precedent Lord. A vice of Kings,
A Cutpurse of the Empire and the Rule.
That from a shelfe, the precious Diadem stole,
And put it in his Pocket

Qu. No more.
Enter Ghost.

Ham. A King of shreds and patches.
Saue me; and houer o're me with your wings
You heauenly Guards. What would your gracious figure?
Qu. Alas he's mad

Ham. Do you not come your tardy Sonne to chide,
That laps't in Time and Passion, lets go by
Th' important acting of your dread command? Oh say

Ghost. Do not forget: this Visitation
Is but to whet thy almost blunted purpose.
But looke, Amazement on thy Mother sits;
O step betweene her, and her fighting Soule,
Conceit in weakest bodies, strongest workes.
Speake to her Hamlet

Ham. How is it with you Lady?
Qu. Alas, how is't with you?
That you bend your eye on vacancie,
And with their corporall ayre do hold discourse.
Forth at your eyes, your spirits wildely peepe,
And as the sleeping Soldiours in th' Alarme,
Your bedded haire, like life in excrements,
Start vp, and stand an end. Oh gentle Sonne,
Vpon the heate and flame of thy distemper
Sprinkle coole patience. Whereon do you looke?
Ham. On him, on him: look you how pale he glares,
His forme and cause conioyn'd, preaching to stones,
Would make them capeable. Do not looke vpon me,
Least with this pitteous action you conuert
My sterne effects: then what I haue to do,
Will want true colour; teares perchance for blood

Qu. To who do you speake this?
Ham. Do you see nothing there?
Qu. Nothing at all, yet all that is I see

Ham. Nor did you nothing heare?
Qu. No, nothing but our selues

Ham. Why look you there: looke how it steals away:
My Father in his habite, as he liued,
Looke where he goes euen now out at the Portall.

Qu. This is the very coynage of your Braine,
This bodilesse Creation extasie is very cunning in

Ham. Extasie?
My Pulse as yours doth temperately keepe time,
And makes as healthfull Musicke. It is not madnesse
That I haue vttered; bring me to the Test
And I the matter will re-word: which madnesse
Would gamboll from. Mother, for loue of Grace,
Lay not a flattering Vnction to your soule,
That not your trespasse, but my madnesse speakes:
It will but skin and filme the Vlcerous place,
Whil'st ranke Corruption mining all within,
Infects vnseene. Confesse your selfe to Heauen,
Repent what's past, auoyd what is to come,
And do not spred the Compost on the Weedes,
To make them ranke. Forgiue me this my Vertue,
For in the fatnesse of this pursie times,
Vertue it selfe, of Vice must pardon begge,
Yea courb, and woe, for leaue to do him good

Qu. Oh Hamlet,
Thou hast cleft my heart in twaine

Ham. O throw away the worser part of it,
And liue the purer with the other halfe.
Good night, but go not to mine Vnkles bed,
Assume a Vertue, if you haue it not, refraine to night,
And that shall lend a kinde of easinesse
To the next abstinence. Once more goodnight,
And when you are desirous to be blest,
Ile blessing begge of you. For this same Lord,
I do repent: but heauen hath pleas'd it so,
To punish me with this, and this with me,
That I must be their Scourge and Minister.
I will bestow him, and will answer well
The death I gaue him: so againe, good night.
I must be cruell, onely to be kinde;
Thus bad begins and worse remaines behinde

Qu. What shall I do?
Ham. Not this by no meanes that I bid you do:
Let the blunt King tempt you againe to bed,
Pinch Wanton on your cheeke, call you his Mouse,
And let him for a paire of reechie kisses,
Or padling in your necke with his damn'd Fingers,
Make you to rauell all this matter out,
That I essentially am not in madnesse,
But made in craft. 'Twere good you let him know,
For who that's but a Queene, faire, sober, wise,
Would from a Paddocke, from a Bat, a Gibbe,
Such deere concernings hide, Who would do so,
No in despight of Sense and Secrecie,
Vnpegge the Basket on the houses top:
Let the Birds flye, and like the famous Ape
To try Conclusions in the Basket, creepe
And breake your owne necke downe

Qu. Be thou assur'd, if words be made of breath,
And breath of life: I haue no life to breath
What thou hast saide to me

Ham. I must to England, you know that?
Qu. Alacke I had forgot: 'Tis so concluded on

Ham. This man shall set me packing:
Ile lugge the Guts into the Neighbor roome,
Mother goodnight. Indeede this Counsellor
Is now most still, most secret, and most graue,
Who was in life, a foolish prating Knaue.
Come sir, to draw toward an end with you.
Good night Mother.
Exit Hamlet tugging in Polonius.

Enter King.

King. There's matters in these sighes.
These profound heaues
You must translate; Tis fit we vnderstand them.
Where is your Sonne?
Qu. Ah my good Lord, what haue I seene to night?
King. What Gertrude? How do's Hamlet?
Qu. Mad as the Seas, and winde, when both contend
Which is the Mightier, in his lawlesse fit
Behinde the Arras, hearing something stirre,
He whips his Rapier out, and cries a Rat, a Rat,
And in his brainish apprehension killes
The vnseene good old man

King. Oh heauy deed:
It had bin so with vs had we beene there:
His Liberty is full of threats to all,
To you your selfe, to vs, to euery one.
Alas, how shall this bloody deede be answered?
It will be laide to vs, whose prouidence
Should haue kept short, restrain'd, and out of haunt,
This mad yong man. But so much was our loue,
We would not vnderstand what was most fit,
But like the Owner of a foule disease,
To keepe it from divulging, let's it feede
Euen on the pith of life. Where is he gone?
Qu. To draw apart the body he hath kild,
O're whom his very madnesse like some Oare
Among a Minerall of Mettels base
Shewes it selfe pure. He weepes for what is done

King. Oh Gertrude, come away:
The Sun no sooner shall the Mountaines touch,
But we will ship him hence, and this vilde deed,
We must with all our Maiesty and Skill
Both countenance, and excuse.
Enter Ros. & Guild.

Ho Guildenstern:
Friends both go ioyne you with some further ayde:
Hamlet in madnesse hath Polonius slaine,
And from his Mother Clossets hath he drag'd him.
Go seeke him out, speake faire, and bring the body
Into the Chappell. I pray you hast in this.
Exit Gent.

Come Gertrude, wee'l call vp our wisest friends,
To let them know both what we meane to do,
And what's vntimely done. Oh come away,
My soule is full of discord and dismay.


Enter Hamlet.

Ham. Safely stowed

Gentlemen within. Hamlet, Lord Hamlet

Ham. What noise? Who cals on Hamlet?
Oh heere they come.
Enter Ros. and Guildensterne.

Ro. What haue you done my Lord with the dead body?
Ham. Compounded it with dust, whereto 'tis Kinne

Rosin. Tell vs where 'tis, that we may take it thence,
And beare it to the Chappell

Ham. Do not beleeue it

Rosin. Beleeue what?
Ham. That I can keepe your counsell, and not mine
owne. Besides, to be demanded of a Spundge, what replication
should be made by the Sonne of a King

Rosin. Take you me for a Spundge, my Lord?
Ham. I sir, that sokes vp the Kings Countenance, his
Rewards, his Authorities (but such Officers do the King
best seruice in the end. He keepes them like an Ape in
the corner of his iaw, first mouth'd to be last swallowed,
when he needes what you haue glean'd, it is but squeezing
you, and Spundge you shall be dry againe

Rosin. I vnderstand you not my Lord

Ham. I am glad of it: a knauish speech sleepes in a
foolish eare

Rosin. My Lord, you must tell vs where the body is,
and go with vs to the King

Ham. The body is with the King, but the King is not
with the body. The King, is a thing-
Guild. A thing my Lord?
Ham. Of nothing: bring me to him, hide Fox, and all


Enter King.

King. I haue sent to seeke him, and to find the bodie:
How dangerous is it that this man goes loose:
Yet must not we put the strong Law on him:
Hee's loued of the distracted multitude,
Who like not in their iudgement, but their eyes:
And where 'tis so, th' Offenders scourge is weigh'd
But neerer the offence: to beare all smooth, and euen,
This sodaine sending him away, must seeme
Deliberate pause, diseases desperate growne,
By desperate appliance are releeued,
Or not at all.
Enter Rosincrane.

How now? What hath befalne?
Rosin. Where the dead body is bestow'd my Lord,
We cannot get from him

King. But where is he?
Rosin. Without my Lord, guarded to know your

King. Bring him before vs

Rosin. Hoa, Guildensterne? Bring in my Lord.
Enter Hamlet and Guildensterne.

King. Now Hamlet, where's Polonius?
Ham. At Supper

King. At Supper? Where?
Ham. Not where he eats, but where he is eaten, a certaine
conuocation of wormes are e'ne at him. Your worm
is your onely Emperor for diet. We fat all creatures else
to fat vs, and we fat our selfe for Magots. Your fat King,
and your leane Begger is but variable seruice to dishes,
but to one Table that's the end

King. What dost thou meane by this?
Ham. Nothing but to shew you how a King may go
a Progresse through the guts of a Begger

King. Where is Polonius

Ham. In heauen, send thither to see. If your Messenger
finde him not there, seeke him i'th other place your
selfe: but indeed, if you finde him not this moneth, you
shall nose him as you go vp the staires into the Lobby

King. Go seeke him there

Ham. He will stay till ye come

K. Hamlet, this deed of thine, for thine especial safety
Which we do tender, as we deerely greeue
For that which thou hast done, must send thee hence
With fierie Quicknesse. Therefore prepare thy selfe,
The Barke is readie, and the winde at helpe,
Th' Associates tend, and euery thing at bent
For England

Ham. For England?
King. I Hamlet

Ham. Good

King. So is it, if thou knew'st our purposes

Ham. I see a Cherube that see's him: but come, for
England. Farewell deere Mother

King. Thy louing Father Hamlet

Hamlet. My Mother: Father and Mother is man and
wife: man & wife is one flesh, and so my mother. Come,
for England.


King. Follow him at foote,
Tempt him with speed aboord:
Delay it not, Ile haue him hence to night.
Away, for euery thing is Seal'd and done
That else leanes on th' Affaire, pray you make hast.
And England, if my loue thou holdst at ought,
As my great power thereof may giue thee sense,
Since yet thy Cicatrice lookes raw and red
After the Danish Sword, and thy free awe
Payes homage to vs; thou maist not coldly set
Our Soueraigne Processe, which imports at full
By Letters coniuring to that effect
The present death of Hamlet. Do it England,
For like the Hecticke in my blood he rages,
And thou must cure me: Till I know 'tis done,
How ere my happes, my ioyes were ne're begun.


Enter Fortinbras with an Armie.

For. Go Captaine, from me greet the Danish King,
Tell him that by his license, Fortinbras
Claimes the conueyance of a promis'd March
Ouer his Kingdome. You know the Rendeuous:
If that his Maiesty would ought with vs,
We shall expresse our dutie in his eye,
And let him know so

Cap. I will doo't, my Lord

For. Go safely on.

Enter Queene and Horatio.

Qu. I will not speake with her

Hor. She is importunate, indeed distract, her moode
will needs be pittied

Qu. What would she haue?
Hor. She speakes much of her Father; saies she heares
There's trickes i'th' world, and hems, and beats her heart,
Spurnes enuiously at Strawes, speakes things in doubt,
That carry but halfe sense: Her speech is nothing,
Yet the vnshaped vse of it doth moue
The hearers to Collection; they ayme at it,
And botch the words vp fit to their owne thoughts,
Which as her winkes, and nods, and gestures yeeld them,
Indeed would make one thinke there would be thought,
Though nothing sure, yet much vnhappily

Qu. 'Twere good she were spoken with,
For she may strew dangerous coniectures
In ill breeding minds. Let her come in.
To my sicke soule (as sinnes true Nature is)
Each toy seemes Prologue, to some great amisse,
So full of Artlesse iealousie is guilt,
It spill's it selfe, in fearing to be spilt.
Enter Ophelia distracted.

Ophe. Where is the beauteous Maiesty of Denmark

Qu. How now Ophelia?
Ophe. How should I your true loue know from another one?
By his Cockle hat and staffe, and his Sandal shoone

Qu. Alas sweet Lady: what imports this Song?
Ophe. Say you? Nay pray you marke.
He is dead and gone Lady, he is dead and gone,
At his head a grasse-greene Turfe, at his heeles a stone.
Enter King.

Qu. Nay but Ophelia

Ophe. Pray you marke.
White his Shrow'd as the Mountaine Snow

Qu. Alas, looke heere my Lord

Ophe. Larded with sweet Flowers:
Which bewept to the graue did not go,
With true-loue showres

King. How do ye, pretty Lady?
Ophe. Well, God dil'd you. They say the Owle was
a Bakers daughter. Lord, wee know what we are, but
know not what we may be. God be at your Table

King. Conceit vpon her Father

Ophe. Pray you let's haue no words of this: but when
they aske you what it meanes, say you this:
To morrow is S[aint]. Valentines day, all in the morning betime,
And I a Maid at your Window, to be your Valentine.
Then vp he rose, & don'd his clothes, & dupt the chamber dore,
Let in the Maid, that out a Maid, neuer departed more

King. Pretty Ophelia

Ophe. Indeed la? without an oath Ile make an end ont.
By gis, and by S[aint]. Charity,
Alacke, and fie for shame:
Yong men wil doo't, if they come too't,
By Cocke they are too blame.
Quoth she before you tumbled me,
You promis'd me to Wed:
So would I ha done by yonder Sunne,
And thou hadst not come to my bed

King. How long hath she bin thus?
Ophe. I hope all will be well. We must bee patient,
but I cannot choose but weepe, to thinke they should
lay him i'th' cold ground: My brother shall knowe of it,
and so I thanke you for your good counsell. Come, my
Coach: Goodnight Ladies: Goodnight sweet Ladies:
Goodnight, goodnight.

King. Follow her close,
Giue her good watch I pray you:
Oh this is the poyson of deepe greefe, it springs
All from her Fathers death. Oh Gertrude, Gertrude,
When sorrowes comes, they come not single spies,
But in Battalians. First, her Father slaine,
Next your Sonne gone, and he most violent Author
Of his owne iust remoue: the people muddied,
Thicke and vnwholsome in their thoughts, and whispers
For good Polonius death; and we haue done but greenly
In hugger mugger to interre him. Poore Ophelia
Diuided from her selfe, and her faire Iudgement,
Without the which we are Pictures, or meere Beasts.
Last, and as much containing as all these,
Her Brother is in secret come from France,
Keepes on his wonder, keepes himselfe in clouds,
And wants not Buzzers to infect his eare
With pestilent Speeches of his Fathers death,
Where in necessitie of matter Beggard,
Will nothing sticke our persons to Arraigne
In eare and eare. O my deere Gertrude, this,
Like to a murdering Peece in many places,
Giues me superfluous death.

A Noise within.

Enter a Messenger.

Qu. Alacke, what noyse is this?
King. Where are my Switzers?
Let them guard the doore. What is the matter?
Mes. Saue your selfe, my Lord.
The Ocean (ouer-peering of his List)
Eates not the Flats with more impittious haste
Then young Laertes, in a Riotous head,
Ore-beares your Officers, the rabble call him Lord,
And as the world were now but to begin,
Antiquity forgot, Custome not knowne,
The Ratifiers and props of euery word,
They cry choose we? Laertes shall be King,
Caps, hands, and tongues, applaud it to the clouds,
Laertes shall be King, Laertes King

Qu. How cheerefully on the false Traile they cry,
Oh this is Counter you false Danish Dogges.

Noise within. Enter Laertes.

King. The doores are broke

Laer. Where is the King, sirs? Stand you all without

All. No, let's come in

Laer. I pray you giue me leaue

Al. We will, we will

Laer. I thanke you: Keepe the doore.
Oh thou vilde King, giue me my Father

Qu. Calmely good Laertes

Laer. That drop of blood, that calmes
Proclaimes me Bastard:
Cries Cuckold to my Father, brands the Harlot
Euen heere betweene the chaste vnsmirched brow
Of my true Mother

King. What is the cause Laertes,
That thy Rebellion lookes so Gyant-like?
Let him go Gertrude: Do not feare our person:
There's such Diuinity doth hedge a King,
That Treason can but peepe to what it would,
Acts little of his will. Tell me Laertes,
Why thou art thus Incenst? Let him go Gertrude.
Speake man

Laer. Where's my Father?
King. Dead

Qu. But not by him

King. Let him demand his fill

Laer. How came he dead? Ile not be Iuggel'd with.
To hell Allegeance: Vowes, to the blackest diuell.
Conscience and Grace, to the profoundest Pit.
I dare Damnation: to this point I stand,
That both the worlds I giue to negligence,
Let come what comes: onely Ile be reueng'd
Most throughly for my Father

King. Who shall stay you?
Laer. My Will, not all the world,
And for my meanes, Ile husband them so well,
They shall go farre with little

King. Good Laertes:
If you desire to know the certaintie
Of your deere Fathers death, if writ in your reuenge,
That Soop-stake you will draw both Friend and Foe,
Winner and Looser

Laer. None but his Enemies

King. Will you know them then

La. To his good Friends, thus wide Ile ope my Armes:
And like the kinde Life-rend'ring Politician,
Repast them with my blood

King. Why now you speake
Like a good Childe, and a true Gentleman.
That I am guiltlesse of your Fathers death,
And am most sensible in greefe for it,
It shall as leuell to your Iudgement pierce
As day do's to your eye.

A noise within. Let her come in.

Enter Ophelia.

Laer. How now? what noise is that?
Oh heate drie vp my Braines, teares seuen times salt,
Burne out the Sence and Vertue of mine eye.
By Heauen, thy madnesse shall be payed by waight,
Till our Scale turnes the beame. Oh Rose of May,
Deere Maid, kinde Sister, sweet Ophelia:
Oh Heauens, is't possible, a yong Maids wits,
Should be as mortall as an old mans life?
Nature is fine in Loue, and where 'tis fine,
It sends some precious instance of it selfe
After the thing it loues

Ophe. They bore him bare fac'd on the Beer,
Hey non nony, nony, hey nony:
And on his graue raines many a teare,
Fare you well my Doue

Laer. Had'st thou thy wits, and did'st perswade Reuenge,
it could not moue thus

Ophe. You must sing downe a-downe, and you call
him a-downe-a. Oh, how the wheele becomes it? It is
the false Steward that stole his masters daughter

Laer. This nothings more then matter

Ophe. There's Rosemary, that's for Remembraunce.
Pray loue remember: and there is Paconcies, that's for

Laer. A document in madnesse, thoughts & remembrance

Ophe. There's Fennell for you, and Columbines: ther's
Rew for you, and heere's some for me. Wee may call it
Herbe-Grace a Sundaies: Oh you must weare your Rew
with a difference. There's a Daysie, I would giue you
some Violets, but they wither'd all when my Father dyed:
They say, he made a good end;
For bonny sweet Robin is all my ioy

Laer. Thought, and Affliction, Passion, Hell it selfe:
She turnes to Fauour, and to prettinesse

Ophe. And will he not come againe,
And will he not come againe:
No, no, he is dead, go to thy Death-bed,
He neuer wil come againe.
His Beard as white as Snow,
All Flaxen was his Pole:
He is gone, he is gone, and we cast away mone,
Gramercy on his Soule.
And of all Christian Soules, I pray God.
God buy ye.

Exeunt. Ophelia

Laer. Do you see this, you Gods?
King. Laertes, I must common with your greefe,
Or you deny me right: go but apart,
Make choice of whom your wisest Friends you will,
And they shall heare and iudge 'twixt you and me;
If by direct or by Colaterall hand
They finde vs touch'd, we will our Kingdome giue,
Our Crowne, our Life, and all that we call Ours
To you in satisfaction. But if not,
Be you content to lend your patience to vs,
And we shall ioyntly labour with your soule
To giue it due content

Laer. Let this be so:
His meanes of death, his obscure buriall;
No Trophee, Sword, nor Hatchment o're his bones,
No Noble rite, nor formall ostentation,
Cry to be heard, as 'twere from Heauen to Earth,
That I must call in question

King. So you shall:
And where th' offence is, let the great Axe fall.
I pray you go with me.


Enter Horatio, with an Attendant.

Hora. What are they that would speake with me?
Ser. Saylors sir, they say they haue Letters for you

Hor. Let them come in,
I do not know from what part of the world
I should be greeted, if not from Lord Hamlet.
Enter Saylor.

Say. God blesse you Sir

Hor. Let him blesse thee too

Say. Hee shall Sir, and't please him. There's a Letter
for you Sir: It comes from th' Ambassadours that was
bound for England, if your name be Horatio, as I am let
to know it is.

Reads the Letter.

Horatio, When thou shalt haue ouerlook'd this, giue these
Fellowes some meanes to the King: They haue Letters
for him. Ere we were two dayes old at Sea, a Pyrate of very
Warlicke appointment gaue vs Chace. Finding our selues too
slow of Saile, we put on a compelled Valour. In the Grapple, I
boorded them: On the instant they got cleare of our Shippe, so
I alone became their Prisoner. They haue dealt with mee, like
Theeues of Mercy, but they knew what they did. I am to doe
a good turne for them. Let the King haue the Letters I haue
sent, and repaire thou to me with as much hast as thou wouldest
flye death. I haue words to speake in your eare, will make thee
dumbe, yet are they much too light for the bore of the Matter.
These good Fellowes will bring thee where I am. Rosincrance
and Guildensterne, hold their course for England. Of them
I haue much to tell thee, Farewell.
He that thou knowest thine,
Come, I will giue you way for these your Letters,
And do't the speedier, that you may direct me
To him from whom you brought them.

Enter King and Laertes.

King. Now must your conscience my acquittance seal,
And you must put me in your heart for Friend,
Sith you haue heard, and with a knowing eare,
That he which hath your Noble Father slaine,
Pursued my life

Laer. It well appeares. But tell me,
Why you proceeded not against these feates,
So crimefull, and so Capitall in Nature,
As by your Safety, Wisedome, all things else,
You mainly were stirr'd vp?
King. O for two speciall Reasons,
Which may to you (perhaps) seeme much vnsinnowed,
And yet to me they are strong. The Queen his Mother,
Liues almost by his lookes: and for my selfe,
My Vertue or my Plague, be it either which,
She's so coniunctiue to my life, and soule;
That as the Starre moues not but in his Sphere,
I could not but by her. The other Motiue,
Why to a publike count I might not go,
Is the great loue the generall gender beare him,
Who dipping all his Faults in their affection,
Would like the Spring that turneth Wood to Stone,
Conuert his Gyues to Graces. So that my Arrowes
Too slightly timbred for so loud a Winde,
Would haue reuerted to my Bow againe,
And not where I had arm'd them

Laer. And so haue I a Noble Father lost,
A Sister driuen into desperate tearmes,
Who was (if praises may go backe againe)
Stood Challenger on mount of all the Age
For her perfections. But my reuenge will come

King. Breake not your sleepes for that,
You must not thinke
That we are made of stuffe, so flat, and dull,
That we can let our Beard be shooke with danger,
And thinke it pastime. You shortly shall heare more,
I lou'd your Father, and we loue our Selfe,
And that I hope will teach you to imagine-
Enter a Messenger.

How now? What Newes?
Mes. Letters my Lord from Hamlet, This to your
Maiesty: this to the Queene

King. From Hamlet? Who brought them?
Mes. Saylors my Lord they say, I saw them not:
They were giuen me by Claudio, he receiu'd them

King. Laertes you shall heare them:
Leaue vs.

Exit Messenger

High and Mighty, you shall know I am set naked on your
Kingdome. To morrow shall I begge leaue to see your Kingly
Eyes. When I shall (first asking your Pardon thereunto) recount
th' Occasions of my sodaine, and more strange returne.
What should this meane? Are all the rest come backe?
Or is it some abuse? Or no such thing?
Laer. Know you the hand?
Kin. 'Tis Hamlets Character, naked and in a Postscript
here he sayes alone: Can you aduise me?
Laer. I'm lost in it my Lord; but let him come,
It warmes the very sicknesse in my heart,
That I shall liue and tell him to his teeth;
Thus diddest thou

Kin. If it be so Laertes, as how should it be so:
How otherwise will you be rul'd by me?
Laer. If so you'l not o'rerule me to a peace

Kin. To thine owne peace: if he be now return'd,
As checking at his Voyage, and that he meanes
No more to vndertake it; I will worke him
To an exployt now ripe in my Deuice,
Vnder the which he shall not choose but fall;
And for his death no winde of blame shall breath,
But euen his Mother shall vncharge the practice,
And call it accident: Some two Monthes hence
Here was a Gentleman of Normandy,
I'ue seene my selfe, and seru'd against the French,
And they ran well on Horsebacke; but this Gallant
Had witchcraft in't; he grew into his Seat,
And to such wondrous doing brought his Horse,
As had he beene encorps't and demy-Natur'd
With the braue Beast, so farre he past my thought,
That I in forgery of shapes and trickes,
Come short of what he did

Laer. A Norman was't?
Kin. A Norman

Laer. Vpon my life Lamound

Kin. The very same

Laer. I know him well, he is the Brooch indeed,
And Iemme of all our Nation

Kin. Hee mad confession of you,
And gaue you such a Masterly report,
For Art and exercise in your defence;
And for your Rapier most especiall,
That he cryed out, t'would be a sight indeed,
If one could match you Sir. This report of his
Did Hamlet so envenom with his Enuy,
That he could nothing doe but wish and begge,
Your sodaine comming ore to play with him;
Now out of this

Laer. Why out of this, my Lord?
Kin. Laertes was your Father deare to you?
Or are you like the painting of a sorrow,
A face without a heart?
Laer. Why aske you this?
Kin. Not that I thinke you did not loue your Father,
But that I know Loue is begun by Time:
And that I see in passages of proofe,
Time qualifies the sparke and fire of it:
Hamlet comes backe: what would you vndertake,
To show your selfe your Fathers sonne indeed,
More then in words?
Laer. To cut his throat i'th' Church

Kin. No place indeed should murder Sancturize;
Reuenge should haue no bounds: but good Laertes
Will you doe this, keepe close within your Chamber,
Hamlet return'd, shall know you are come home:
Wee'l put on those shall praise your excellence,
And set a double varnish on the fame
The Frenchman gaue you, bring you in fine together,
And wager on your heads, he being remisse,
Most generous, and free from all contriuing,
Will not peruse the Foiles? So that with ease,
Or with a little shuffling, you may choose
A Sword vnbaited, and in a passe of practice,
Requit him for your Father

Laer. I will doo't.
And for that purpose Ile annoint my Sword:
I bought an Vnction of a Mountebanke
So mortall, I but dipt a knife in it,
Where it drawes blood, no Cataplasme so rare,
Collected from all Simples that haue Vertue
Vnder the Moone, can saue the thing from death,
That is but scratcht withall: Ile touch my point,
With this contagion, that if I gall him slightly,
It may be death

Kin. Let's further thinke of this,
Weigh what conuenience both of time and meanes
May fit vs to our shape, if this should faile;
And that our drift looke through our bad performance,
'Twere better not assaid; therefore this Proiect
Should haue a backe or second, that might hold,
If this should blast in proofe: Soft, let me see
Wee'l make a solemne wager on your commings,
I ha't: when in your motion you are hot and dry,
As make your bowts more violent to the end,
And that he cals for drinke; Ile haue prepar'd him
A Challice for the nonce; whereon but sipping,
If he by chance escape your venom'd stuck,
Our purpose may hold there; how sweet Queene.
Enter Queene.

Queen. One woe doth tread vpon anothers heele,
So fast they'l follow: your Sister's drown'd Laertes

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