Imatges de pÓgina

Mar. Thou art a scholar, speak to it, Horatio.

Ber. Looks it not like the King? mark it, Horatio. Hor. Most like: it harrows me with fear and wonder. Ber. It would be spoke to.

Mar. Speak to it, Horatio.

Hor. What art thou, that ufurp'ft this time of night, Together with that fair and warlike form

In which the Majesty of buried Denmark

Did fometimes march? by heaven I charge thee, speak. Mar. It is offended.

Ber. See! it ftalks away.

Hor. Stay; fpeak; fpeak, I charge thee, speak.

Mar. 'Tis gone, and will not answer.

[Exit GHOST.

Ber. How now, Horatio? you tremble, and look pale;

Is not this fomething more than fantasy ?

What think you of it?

Hor. Before my God, I might not this believe,

Without the fenfible and true avouch

Of mine own eyes.

Mar. Is it not like the King?

Hor. As thou art to thyself:

Such was the very armour he had on,
When he the ambitious Norway combated;
So frown'd he once, when in an angry parle,
He fmote the fledded Polack on the ice.

'Tis ftrange.

Mar. Thus, twice before, and just at this dead hour, With martial stalk hath he gone by our watch.

Hor. In what particular thought to work, I know not, But, in the grofs and scope of mine opinion,

This bodes fome strange eruption to our state.

Mar. Good now, fit down, and tell me, he that knows, Why this fame ftrict and moft obfervant watch

So nightly toils the fubject of the land;
And why fuch daily caft of brazen cannon,
And foreign mart for implements of war;

Why fuch imprefs of fhipwrights, whofe fore tafk
Does not divide the Sunday from the week:
What might be toward, that this sweaty hafte

Doth make the night joint-labourer with the day;
Who is't that can inform me ?

Hor. That can I;

At least the whisper goes fo. Our laft king,
Whofe image even but now appear'd to us,
Was, as you know, by Fortinbras of Norway,
Thereto prick'd on by a most emulate pride,

Dar'd to the combat; in which, our valiant Hamlet
(For fo this fide of our known world esteem'd him)
Did flay this Fortinbras; who, by a feal'd compact,
Well ratified by law and heraldry,

Did forfeit, with his life, all those his lands,
Which he stood feis'd of, to the conqueror:
Against the which, a moiety competent
Was gaged by our king; which had return'd
To the inheritance of Fortinbras,

Had he been vanquisher; as, by the fame co-mart,
And carriage of the article defign'd,

His fell to Hamlet: Now, Sir, young Fortinbras,
Of unimproved mettle hot and full,

Hath in the skirts of Norway, here and there,
Shark'd up a lift of landless resolutes,
For food and diet, to fome enterprize
That hath a stomach in't: which is no other
(As it doth well appear unto our state)
But to recover of us, by strong hand,
And terms compulfatory, thofe forefaid lands
So by his father loft: And this, I take it,


Is the main motive of our preparations;

The fource of this our watch; and the chief head Of this post-hafte and romage in the land.

Ber. I think it be no other, but even fo; Well may it fort, that this portentous figure Comes armed through our watch; fo like the king That was, and is, the queftion of thefe wars. Hor. A mote it is, to trouble the mind's eye. In the most high and palmy state of Rome, A little ere the mightiest Julius fell,

The graves stood tenantlefs, and the sheeted dead Did fqueak and gibber in the Roman streets.

As ftars with trains of fire, and dews of blood,
Disasters in the fun; and the moist star,
Upon whofe influence Neptune's empire ftands,
Was fick almoft to doomsday with eclipfe.
And even the like precurfe of fierce events,
As harbingers preceding still the fates,
And prologue to the omen coming on,

Have heaven and earth together demonftrated
Unto our climatures and countrymen.—

Re-enter GHOST.

But, foft; behold! lo, where it comes again!
I'll cross it, though it blast me.-Stay, illufion!
If thou haft any found, or use of voice,

Speak to me:

If there be any good thing to be done,
That may to thee do eafe, and grace to me,
Speak to me:

If thou art privy to thy country's fate,
Which happily, foreknowing may avoid,
O, speak!

Or, if thou haft uphoarded in thy life
Extorted treasure in the womb of earth,

For which, they fay, you fpirits oft walk in death,

[Cock crows.

Speak of it :—stay, and speak.—Stop it Marcellus.
Mar. Shall I ftrike at it with my partizan?
Hor. Do, if it will not stand.

Ber. 'Tis here!

Hor. 'Tis here!"

Mar. 'Tis gone!

We do it wrong, being so majestical,
To offer it the fhow of violence;

For it is, as the air, invulnerable,

And our vain blows malicious mockery.

[Exit GHOST.

Ber. It was about to speak when the cock crew.
Hor. And then it started, like a guilty thing
Upon a fearful fummons. I have heard,
The cock, that is the trumpet to the morn,
Doth, with his lofty and fhrill-founding throat,
Awake the god of day; and at his warning,
Whether in fea or fire, in earth or air,
The extravagant and erring spirit hies
To his confine: and of the truth herein
This present object made probation.

Mar. It faded on the crowing of the cock;
Some say, that ever 'gainst that season comes
Wherein our Saviour's birth is celebrated,
This bird of dawning fingeth all night long:
And then, they say, no spirit dares stir abroad;
The nights are wholesome; then no planets strike,
No fairy takes, nor witch hath power to charm,
So hallowed and fo gracious is the time.

Hor. So have I heard, and do in part believe it..
But look, the morn, in ruffet mantle clad,


Walks o'er the dew of yon high eastern hill:
Break we our watch up; and, by my advice,
Let us impart what we have feen to-night
Unto young Hamlet; for, upon my life,
This fpirit, dumb to us, will speak to him:
Do you confent we fhall acquaint him with it,
As needful in our loves, fitting our duty?

Mar. Let's do't, I pray and I this morning know
Where we shall find him moft convenient.


A Room of State in Elfinore.



King. Though yet of Hamlet, our dear brother's death,

The memory be green; and that it us befitted

To bear our hearts in grief, and our whole kingdom

To be contracted in one brow of woe;

Yet fo far hath difcretion fought with nature,
That we with wifeft forrow think on him,
Together with remembrance of ourselves.
Therefore our fometime fifter, now our queen,
The imperial jointress of this warlike state,
Have we, as 'twere, with a defeated joy—
With one aufpicious, and one dropping eye;
With mirth in funeral, and with dirge in marriage,
In equal scale weighing delight and dole,
Taken to wife: nor have we herein barr'd
Your better wisdoms, which have freely gone
With this affair along :-For all, our thanks..

Now follows, that you know, young Fortinbras,


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