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And for his death no wind of blame shall [tice, But even his mother shall uncharge the pracAnd call it, accident.

Laer. My lord, I will be rul'd; The rather, if you could devise it so, That I might be the organ.

King. It falls right.

You have been talk'd of since your travel much,
And that in Hamlet's hearing, for a quality
Wherein, they say, you shine: your sum of

Did not together pluck such envy from him,
As did that one; and that, in my regard,
Of the unworthiest siege.t

Laer. What part is that, my lord?
King. A very ribband in the cap of youth,
Yet needful too; for youth no less becoines'
The light and careless livery that it wears,
Than settled age his sables, and his weeds,
Importing health and graveness.-Two months


Here was a gentleman of Normandy,-
I have seen myself, and serv'd against, the

And they can well on horseback: out this gal[lant Had witchcraft in't; he grew unto his seat; And to such wondrous doing brought his horse, As he had been incorps'd and demi-natur'd With the brave beast: so far he topp'd my thought,

That I, in forgery of shapes and tricks,
Come short of what he did.

Laer. A Norman, was't?

King. A Norman.

Laer. Upon my life, Lamord.

King. The very same.


If you oppos'd them; Sir, this report of his Did Hamlet so envenom with his envy, Your sudden coming o'er, to play with you. That he could nothing do, but wish and beg Now, out of this,

Laer. What out of this, my lord?

King. Laertes, was your father dear to you? Or are you like the painting of a sorrow, A face without a heart?

Luer. Why ask you this?

King. Not that I think, you did not love your father;

But that I know, love is begun by time;
And that I see, in passages of proof,
Time qualifies the spark and fire of it.
There lives within the very flame of love
A kind of wick, or snuff, that will abate it;
And nothing is at a like goodness still;
For goodness, growing to a pleurisy,
Dies in his own too-much: That we would do,
We should do when we would; for this would

And hath abatements and delays as many,
As there are tongues, are hands, are accidents;
And then this should is like a spendthrift sigh,
That hurts by easing. But, to the quick o'the
Hamlet comes back; What would you un-
To show yourself in deed your father's son

More than in words?

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Laer. I will do't:

bought an unction of a mountebank, And, for the purpose, I'll anoint my sword. Where it draws blood no cataplasm so rare, So mortal, that but dip a knife in it, Under the moon, can save the thing from death, Collected from all simples that have virtue That is but scratch'd withal: I'll touch my point

With this contagion; that, if I gall him slightly, It may be death.

King. Let's further think of this; Weigh, what convenience, both of time and


May fit us to our shape: if this should fail,

Laer. I know him well, he is the brooch,+ And that our drift look through our bad per

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[ject "Twere better not assay'd; therefore this proShould have a back, or second, that might bold, If this should blast in proof. Soft;-let me [nings,


We'll make a solemn wager on your cunI ha't:

When in your motion you are hot and dry, (As make your bouts more violent to that end,) * Daily experience. + Not blunted as foils are. ↑ Exercise. As fire arms sometimes burst in proving their strength. Il Skill.

And that he calls for drink, I'll have preferr'd* | good: here stands the man; good: If the man

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How now, sweet queen?
Queen. One woe doth tread upon another's
So fast they follow:-Your sister's drown'd,
Laer. Drown'd! O, where?
Queen. There is a willow grows ascant the

That shows his hoar leaves in the glassy stream;
Therewith fantastic garlands did she make
Of crow-flowers, nettles, daisies, and long

That liberal shepherds give a grosser name, But our cold maids do dead men's fingers call them:

There on the pendent boughs her coronet weeds Clambering to hang, an envious sliver broke; When down her weedy trophies, and herself, Fell in the weeping brook. Her clothes spread wide;

And, mermaid-like, awhile they bore her up: Which time, she chanted snatches of old tunes;

As one incapable¶ of her own distress,
Or like a creature native and indu'd
Unto that element: but long it could not be,
Till that her garments, heavy with their drink,
Pull'd the poor wretch from her melodious lay
To muddy death.

Laer. Alas then, she is drown'd?
Queen. Drown'd, drown'd.

Laer. Too much of water hast thou, poor

And therefore I forbid my tears: But yet
It is our trick; nature her custom holds,
Let shame say what it will: when these are

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SCENE I.-A Church-Yard.
Enter Two CLOWNS, with Spades, &c.

1 Clo. Is she to be buried in Christian burial, that wilfully seeks her own salvation?

2 Clo. I tell thee, she is; therefore make her grave straight:++ the crowner hath set on her, and finds it Christian burial.

1 Clo. How can that be, unless she drowned herself in her own defence?

2 Clo. Why, 'tis found so.

1 Clo. It must be se offendendo; it cannot be else. For here lies the point: If I drown myself wittingly, it argues an act: and an act hath three branches; it is, to act, to do, and to perform: argal,‡‡ she drowned herself wittingly.

2 Clo. Nay, but hear you, goodman delver. 1 Clo. Give me leave. Here lies the water;

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go to this water, and drown himself, it is, will he, nill he, he goes; mark you that: but if the water come to him, and drown him, he drowns not himself: argal, he, that is not guilty of his own death, shortens not his own life.

2 Clo. But is this law?

1 Clo. Ay, marry is't; crowner's-quest law. 2 Clo. Will you ha' the truth on't? If this had not been a gentlewoman, she should have been buried out of Christian burial.

1 Clo. Why, there thou say'st: And the more pity; that great folks shall have countenance in this world to drown or hang themselves, more than their even Christian. Come, my spade. There is no ancient gentlemen but gardeners, ditchers, and grave-makers; they hold up Adam's profession.

2 Clo. Was he a gentleman?

1 Clo. He was the first that ever bore arms. 2 Clo. Why, he had none.

1 Clo. What, art a heathen? How dost thou understand the scripture? The scripture says, Adam digged; Could he dig without arms I'll put another question to thee: if thou answerest me not to the purpose, confess thyself

2 Clo. Go to.

1 Clo. What is he, that builds stronger than either the mason, the shipwright, or the carpenter?

2 Clo. The gallows-maker; for that frame out-lives a thousand tenants.

1 Clo. I like thy wit well, in good faith; the gallows does well: But how does it well? it

does well to those that do ill: now thou dost ill, to say, the gallows is built stronger than the church; argal, the gallows may do well to thee. To't again; come.

2 Clo. Who builds stronger than a mason, a shipwright, or a carpenter?

1 Clo. Ay, tell me that, and unyoke.t 2 Clo. Marry, now I can tell.

1 Clo. To't.

2 Clo. Mass, I cannot tell.

Enter HAMLET and HORATIO, at a distance.

1 Clo. Cudgel thy brains no more about it; for your dull ass will not mend his pace with beating and, when you are asked this question next, say, a grave-maker; the houses, that he makes, last till doomsday. Go, get thee to Yaughan, and fetch me a stoup of liquor. [Exit 2 CLOWN.

1 CLOWN digs, and sings.

In youth, when I did love, did love,t
Methought, it was very sweet,

To contract, O, the time, for, ah, my behove O, methought, there was nothing meet. Ham. Has this fellow no feeling of his business? he sings at grave-making.

Hor. Custom hath made it in him a property of easiness.

Ham. "Tis e'en so: the hand of little employment hath the daintier sense.

1 Clo. But age, with his stealing steps,
Hath claw'd me in his clutch,
And hath shipped me into the land,
As if I had never been such.
[Throws up a Scull.

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Ham. That scull had a tongue in it, and could sing once: How the knave jowls it to the ground, as if it were Cain's jaw-bone, that did the first murder! This might be the pate of a politician, which this ass now o'er-reaches; one that would circumvent God, might it not? Hor. It might, my lord.

Ham. Or of a courtier; which would say, Good-morrow, sweet lord! Now dost thou, good lord? This might be my lord such-a-one, that praised my lord such-a-one's horse, when he meant to beg it; might it not?

Hor. Ay, my lord.

Ham. Why, e'en so: and now my lady Worm's; chapless, and knocked about the mazzard with a sexton's spade; Here's fine revolution, an we had the trick to see't. Did these bones cost no more the breeding, but to play at loggats* with them? mine ache to think on't.

1 Clo. A pick-axe, and a spade, a spade, [Sings.
For-and a shrouding sheet:
O, a pit of clay for to be made
For such a guest is meet.
[Throws up a scull.
Ham. There's another: Why may not that
be the scull of a lawyer? Where be his quid-
dits now, his quillets, his cases, his tenures,
and his tricks? why does he suffer this rude
knave now to knock him about the sconces
with a dirty shovel, and will not tell him of his
action of battery? Humph! This fellow might
be in's time a great buyer of land, with his
statutes, his recognizances, his fiues, his double
vouchers, his recoveries: Is this the fine of his
fines, and the recovery of his recoveries, to
have his fine pate full of fine dirt? will his
Vouchers vouch him no more of his purchases,
and double ones too, than the length and breadth
of a pair of indentures? The very conveyances
of his lands will hardly lie in this box; and
must the inheritor himself have no more? ha?
Hor. Not a jot more, my lord.

Ham. Is not parchment made of sheep-skins?
Hor. Ay, my lord, and of calves-skins too.
Ham. They are sheep, and calves, which
seek out assurance in that. I will speak to
this fellow-Whose grave's this, Sirrah?
1 Clo. Mine, Sir.-

O, a pit of clay for to be made
For such a guest is meet.


Ham. I think it be thine, indeed; for thou liest in't.

1 Clo. You lie out on't, Sir, and therefore it is not yours: for my part, I do not lie in't, yet it is mine.

Hum. Thou dost lie in't, to be in't, and say it is thine: 'tis for the dead, not for the quick;

therefore thou liest.

1 Clo. 'Tis a quick lie, Sir; 'twill away again, from me to you.

Ham. What man dost thou dig it for?

1 Clo. For no man, Sir.

Ham. What woman then?

1 Clo. For none neither.

Ham. Who is to be buried in't?

near the heel of the courtier, he galls his kibe.-How long hast thou been a gravemaker?

1 Clo. Of all the days i'the year, I came to't that day that our last king Hamlet overcame Fortinbras.

Ham. How long's that since?

1 Clo. Cannot you tell that? every fool can tell that: It was that very day that young Hamlet was born: he that is mad, and sent intə England.

Ham. Ay, marry, why was he sent into England?

1 Clo. Why, because he was mad: he shall recover his wits there; or, if he do not, 'tis no great matter there.

Ham, Why?

1 Clo. "Twill not be seen in him there; there the men are as mad as he.

Ham. How came he mad?

1 Clo. Very strangely, they say.
Ham. How strangely?

1 Clo. 'Faith, e'en with losing his wits.
Ham. Upon what ground?

1 Clo. Why, here in Denmark; I have been
sexton here, man and boy, thirty years.
Ham. How long will a man lie i'the earth
ere he rot?

1 Clo 'Faith, if he be not rotten before he die, (as we have many pocky corses now-adays, that will scarce hold the laying in,) he will last you some eight year, or nine year: a tanner will last you nine year.

Ham. Why he more than another?

1 Clo. Why, Sir, his hide is so tanned with his trade, that he will keep out water a great while; and your water is a sore decayer of your whoreson dead body. Here's a scull now hath lain you i'the earth three-and-twenty years.

Ham. Whose was it?

1 Clo. A whoreson mad fellow's it was; Whose do you think it was?

Ham. Nay, I know not.

1 Clo. A pestilence on him for a mad rogue! he poured a flagon of Rhenish on my head scull, the king's jester. This same scull, Sir, was Yorick's Ham. This?


1 Clo. E'en that.

[Takes the Scull.

Ham. Alas! poor Yorick!-I knew him, Horatio; a fellow of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy: he hath borne me on his back a thousand times; and now, how abhorred in my imagination it is! my gorge rises at it. Here hung those lips, that I have kissed I know not how oft. Where be your gibes now? your gambols? your songs? your flashes of merriment, that were wont to set the table on a roar? Not one now, to mock your own grinning? quite chap-fallen? Now get you to my lady's chamber, and tell her, let her paint an inch thick, to this favour she must come; make her laugh at that.-Pr'ythee, Horatio, tell me one thing.

Hor. What's that, my lord?

Ham. Dost thou think, Alexander looked

1 Clo. One, that was a woman, Sir; but, o'this fashion i'the earth? rest her soul, she's dead.

Ham. How absolute the knave is! we must speak by the card,|| or equivocation will undo us. By the Lord, Horatio, these three years 1 have taken note of it; the age is grown so picked,¶ that the toe of the peasant comes so

+ Subtilties.

An ancient game played as quoits are at present.
1 Frivolous distinctions.
& Head.
By the compass, or chart of direction.
Spruce, affected.

Hor. E'en so.

Ham. And smelt so? pah!

[Throws down the Scull.

Hor. E'en so, my lord.

Ham. To what base uses we may return, Horatio! Why may not imagination trace the noble dust of Alexander, till he find it stopping a bunghole?

* Countenance, complexion.

Hor. "Twere to consider too curiously, to consider so.

Hum. No, faith, not a jot; but to follow him thither with modesty enough, and likelihood to lead it: As thus; Alexander died, Alexander was buried, Alexander returneth to dust; the dust is earth; of earth we make loam: And why of that loam, whereto he was converted, might they not stop a beer-barrel? Imperious Cesar, dead, and turn'd to clay, Might stop a hole to keep the wind away: O, that the earth, which kept the world in [flaw! Should patch a wall to expel the winter's But soft! but soft! aside:-Here comes the king.


Enter PRIESTS, &c. in Procession; the Corpse of
OPHELIA; LAERTES, and Mourners following;
KING, QUEEN, their Trains, &c.

The queen, the courtiers: Who is this they
And with such maimed rites! This doth be-
The corse, they follow, did with desperate

Fordos its own life. 'Twas of some estate ://
Couch we awhile, and mark.

[Retiring with HORATIO.

Laer. What ceremony else?
Ham. That is Laertes,
A very noble youth: Mark.
Laer. What ceremony else?

1 Priest. Her obsequies have been as far en-
As we have warranty: Her death was doubt-
And, but that great command o'ersways the

She should in ground unsanctified have lodg'd,
Till the last trumpet; for charitable prayers,
Shards,¶ flints, and pebbles, should be thrown
on her,

Yet here she is allow'd her virgin crants,**
Her maiden strewments, and the bringing


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[Grappling with him.

Ham. Thou pray'st not well.

I pr'ythee, take thy fingers from my throat;
Yet have I in me something dangerous,
For, though I am not splenetive and rash,
Which let thy wisdom fear: Hold off thy hand
King. Pluck them asunder.
Queen. Hamlet, Hamlet!
All. Gentlemen,-

Hor. Good my lord, be quiet.

[The Attendants part them, and they come out of the Grave.

Ham. Why, I will fight with him upon this

Until my eye-lids will no longer wag.
Queen. O my son! what theme?

Ham. I lov'd Ophelia; forty thousand bro


Could not, with all their quantity of love,
Make up my sum.-What wilt thou do for her?
King. O, he is mad, Laertes.

Queen. For love of God, forbear him.
Ham. 'Zounds, show me what thou'lt do:
Woul't weep? woul't fight? woul't fast? woul't
tear thyself?

Woul't drink up Esil?* eat a crocodile?
To outface me with leaping in her grave?
I'll do't.-Dost thou come here to whine?
Be buried quick with her, and so will I:
Millions of acres on us; till our ground,
And, if thou prate of mountains, let them throw
Make Ossa like a wart! Nay, an thou'lt mouth,
Singeing his pate against the burning zone,

I'll rant as well as thou.

And thus awhile the fit will work on him;
Queen. This is mere madness:
Anon, as patient as the female dove,
When that her golden couplets are disclos'd,t
His silence will sit drooping.

Ham. Hear you, Sir;

What is the reason that you use me thus?
I lov'd you ever: But it is no matter;
Let Hercules himself do what he may,
The cat will mew, and dog will have his day.


King. I pray thee, good Horatio, wait upon him.[Exit HORATIO. Strengthen your patience in our last night's speech; [To LAERTES. We'll put the matter to the present pushThis grave shall have a living monument: Good Gertrude, set some watch over your Till then, in patience our proceeding be. An hour of quiet shortly shall we see;



SCENE II-A Hall in the Castle.

Ham. So much for this, Sir: now shall you
You do remember all the circumstance?
see the other ;-
Hor. Remember it, my lord!

Ham. Sir, in my heart there was a kind of

That would not let me sleep: methought, I lay

*Fisel is vinegar; but Mr. Steevens conjectures the word should be Weisel, a river which falls into the Baltic ↑ Hatched.


Worse than the mutines* in the bilboes. Rashly,

And prais'd be rashness for it,-Let us know,
Our indiscretion sometimes serves us well,
When our deep plots do pall:‡ and that should
teach us,

There's a divinity that shapes our ends,
Rough-bew them how we will.
Hor. That is most certain.

Ham. Up from my cabin,

My sea-gown scarf'd about me, in the dark
Grop'd I to find out them: had my desire;
Finger'd their packet; and, in fine, withdrew
To mine own room again: making so bold,
My fears forgetting manners, to unseal
Their grand commission; where I found, Ho-

A royal knavery; an exact command,-
Larded with many several sorts of reasons,
Importing Denmark's health, and England's

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Hor. Is't possible?

Ham. Here's the commission; read it at more leisure.

But wilt thou hear now how I did proceed? Hor. Ay, beseech you.

Ham. Being thus benetted round with villanies,

Or** I could make a prologue to my brains,
They had begun the play;-I sat me down;
Devis'd a new commission; wrote it fair :
I once did hold it, as our statiststt do,
A baseness to write fair, and labour'd much
How to forget that learning; but, Sir, now
It did me yeoman's service: Wilt thou know
The effect of what I wrote?

Hor. Ay, good my lord.

They are not near my conscience; their defeat
Does by their own insinuation grow:
"Tis dangerous, when the baser nature comes
Between the pass and fell incensed points
Of mighty opposites.

Hor. Why, what a king is this!

Ham. Does it not, think thee, stand me now upon?

He that hath kill'd my king, and whor'd my mother,

Popp'd in between the election and my hopes;
Thrown out his angle for my proper life,
And with such cozenage; is't not perfect con-

To quit him with this arm? and is't not to be damn'd,

To let this cauker of our nature come
In further evil?

Hor. It must be shortly known to him from

What is the issue of the business there.
Ham. It will be short; the interim is mine;
And a man's life no more than to say, one.
But I am very sorry, good Horatio,
That to Laertes I forgot myself;
For, by the image of my cause,
The portraiture of his : I'll count+ his favours:
But, sure, the bravery of his grief did put me
Into a towering passion.

Hor. Peace; who comes here?

Enter OSRIC.


Osr. Your lordship is right welcome back to Denmark.

Ham. I humbly thank you, Sir.- Dost know this waterfly ?

Hor. No, my good lord.

Ham. Thy state is the more gracious; for 'tis a vice to know him: He hath much land, and fertile: let a beast be lord of beasts, and his crib shall stand at the king's mess: "Tis a

Ham. An earnest conjuration from the chough; but, as I say, spacious in the pos


As England was his faithful tributary; As love between them like the palm might flourish;

As peace should still her wheaten garland


And stand a comma‡‡ 'tween their amities; And many such like as's of great charge,That, on the view and knowing of these con


Without debatement further, more, or less, He should the bearers put to sudden death, Not shriving§§-time allow'd.

Hor. How was this seal'd?

session of dirt.

Osr. Sweet lord, if your lordship were at leisure, I should impart a thing to you from his majesty.

Ham. I will receive it, Sir, with all diligence of spirit: Your bonnet to its right use; 'tis for the head.

Osr. I thank your lordship, 'tis very hot. Ham. No, believe me, tis very cold; the wind is northerly.

Osr. It is indifferent cold, my lord, indeed. Ham. But yet, methinks, it is very sultry and hot; or my complexion

Osr. Exceedingly, my lord; it is very sul

Ham. Why, even in that was heaven ordi- try,-as 'twere,-I cannot tell how-My lord,

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his majesty bade me signify to you, that he has laid a great wager on your head: Sir, this is the matter,

Ham. I beseech you, remember

[HAMLET moves him to put on his Hat. Osr. Nay, good my lord; for my ease, in good faith. Sir, here is newly come to court, Laertes: believe me, an absolute gentleman, full of most excellent differences,¶ of very soft society, and great showing: Indeed, to speak feelingly of him, he is the card** or calendar of gentry, for you shall find in him the conti nenttt of what part a gentleman would see.

Ham. Sir, this definement suffers no perdition in you;-though, I know, to divide hin

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