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Ros. I understand you not, my lord.

Ham. I am glad of it: a knavish speech sleeps in a foolish ear.

Ros. My lord, you must tell us where the body is, and go with us to the King.

Ham. The body is with the King, but the King is not with the body. The King is a thing

Guil. A thing, my lord!

Ham. Of nothing: bring me to him. Hide, fox, and all after.



Another Room in the Same.

Enter King, attended.

King. I have sent to seek him, and to find the body.

How dangerous is it that this man goes loose!
Yet must not we put the strong law on him:
He's lov'd of the distracted multitude,

Who like not in their judgment, but their eyes;
And where 'tis so, th' offender's scourge is weigh'd,
But never the offence. To bear all smooth and even,
This sudden sending him away must seem
Deliberate pause: diseases desperate grown
By desperate appliancè are reliev'd,


Or not at all. How now! what hath befall'n?
Ros. Where the dead body is bestow'd, my lord,
We cannot get from him.


But where is he?

Ros. Without, my lord; guarded, to know your pleasure.

King. Bring him before us.

Ros. Ho, Guildenstern! bring in my lord.


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

King. At supper! Where?

Ham. Not where he eats, but where he is eaten : a certain convocation of [politic] worms are e'en at him. Your worm is your only emperor for diet: we fat all creatures else to fat us, and we fat ourselves for maggots your fat king and your lean beggar is but variable service; two dishes, but to one table: that's the end.

[King. Alas! alas!

Ham. A man may fish with the worm that hath eat of a king; and eat of the fish that hath fed of that worm.]

King. What dost thou mean by this?

Ham. Nothing, but to shew you how a king may go a progress through the guts of a beggar.

King. Where is Polonius?

Ham. In Heaven: send thither to see; if your messenger find him not there, seek him i' th' other place yourself. But, indeed, if you find him not within this month, you shall nose him as you go up the stairs into the lobby.

King. Go seek him there. [To some Attendants. Ham. He will stay till ye come.

[Exeunt Attendants. King. Hamlet, this deed, for thine especial


Which we do tender, as we dearly grieve

For that which thou hast done, must send thee


With fiery quickness: therefore, prepare thyself.
The bark is ready, and the wind at help,
Th' associates tend, and every thing is bent

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King. So is it, if thou knew'st our purposes. Ham. I see a cherub that sees them. But, come; for England! - Farewell, dear mother.

King. Thy loving father, Hamlet.

Ham. My mother: father and mother is man and wife, man and wife is one flesh; and so, my mother. Come, for England.

[Exit. King. Follow him at foot; tempt him with speed


Delay it not; I'll have him hence to-night.
Away, for every thing is seal'd and done

That else leans on th' affair: pray you, make haste.
[Exeunt Ros. and GUIL.

And, England, if my love thou hold'st at aught,
(As my great power thereof may give thee sense,
Since yet thy cicatrice looks raw and red
After the Danish sword, and thy free awe
Pays homage to us) thou may'st not coldly set
Our sovereign process, which imports at full,
By letters conjuring to that effect,

The present death of Hamlet. Do it, England;
For like the hectic in my blood he rages,
And thou must cure me. Till I know 'tis done,

Howe'er my haps, my joys were ne'er begun. [Exit.


A Plain in Denmark.

Enter FORTINBRAS and Forces marching. Fortinbras. Go, Captain; from me greet the Danish King:

Tell him that, by his license, Fortinbras

Claims the conveyance of a promis'd march
Over his kingdom. You know the rendezvous.
If that his Majesty would aught with us,
We shall express our duty in his eye;
And let him know so.


For. Go softly on.

I will do't, my lord.

[Exeunt FORTINBRAS and Forces.


Ham. Good sir, whose powers are these?

Cap. They are of Norway, sir.

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Cap. The nephew to old Norway, Fortinbras.
Ham. Goes it against the main of Poland, sir,
Or for some frontier?

Cap. Truly to speak, and with no addition,
We go to gain a little patch of ground,
That hath in it no profit but the name.
To pay five ducats, five, I would not farm it;
Nor will it yield to Norway, or the Pole,
A ranker rate, should it be sold in fee.

Ham. Why, then the Polack never will defend it. Cap. Yes, 'tis already garrison'd.


Two thousand souls, and twenty thousand ducats,

Will not debate the question of this straw:
This is th' imposthume of much wealth and peace,
That inward breaks, and shews no cause without

Why the man dies. I humbly thank you, sir.

Cap. God b' wi' you, sir.


[Exit Captain. Will 't please you go, my lord? Ham. I'll be with you straight, Go a little be


[Exeunt ROSENCRANTZ and GUILDENSTERN. How all occasions do inform against me, And spur my dull revenge! What is a man, If his chief good and market of his time Be but to sleep and feed? a beast, no more. Sure, He that made us with such large discourse, Looking before and after, gave us not

That capability and godlike reason,

To fust in us unus'd. Now, whether it be
Bestial oblivion, or some craven scruple

Of thinking too precisely on th' event,

A thought, which, quarter'd, hath but one part wis


And ever three parts coward, -I do not know

Why yet I live to say, 'This thing 's to do;'

Sith I have cause, and will, and strength, and


To do't. Examples gross as earth exhort me :
Witness this army, of such mass and charge,
Led by a delicate and tender prince,

Whose spirit, with divine ambition puff'd,
Makes mouths at the invisible event;
Exposing what is mortal and unsure

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