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Hor. So have I heard, and do in part believe it. But, look, the morn,) in russet 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 seen to-night Unto young Hamlet : for, upon my life, This spirit, dumb to us, will speak to him : Do you consent we shall 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 most conveniently.

[Exeunt. SCENE II.

The same.

A Room of State in the same.

Enter the King, Queen, HAMLET, POLONIUş,


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 so far hath discretion fought with nature, That we with wisest sorrow think on him, Together with remembrance of ourselves. Therefore our sometime sister, now our queen, The imperial jointress of this warlike state, Have we, as 'twere with a defeated joy, With one auspicious, 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'de

a green] Fresh. See Rom. & Jul. IV. 3. Jul.
b wisest sorrow] Sober grief, passion discreetly reined.

barr'd] Excluded : acted without the concurrence of.

Your better wisdoms, which have freely gone
With this affair along : For all, our thanks.
Now follows, that you know, young Fortinbras,

Holding a weak supposal of our worth ;
Or thinking, by our late dear brother's death,
Our state to be disjoint and out of frame,
Colleagued with this dream of his advantage,
He hath not faild to pester us with message,
Importing the surrender of those iands
Lost by his father, with all bands of law, (33)
To our most valiant brother.-So much for him.
Now for ourself, and for this time of meeting.
Thus much the business is : We have here writ
To Norway, uncle of young Fortinbras,-
Who, impotent and bed-rid, scarcely hears
Of this his nephew's purpose, to suppress
His further gait (34) herein ; in that the levies,
The lists, and full proportions, are all made
Out of his subject :-(35) and we here despatch
You, good Cornelius, and

you, Voltimand,
For bearers of this greeting to old Norway ;
Giving to you no further personal power
To business with the king, more than the scope
Of these dilated articles allow. (36)
Farewell; and let your haste commend your duty.
Cor. Vol. In that, and all things, will we show

our duty.
King. We doubt it nothing; heartily farewell.

[Exeunt Voltimand and CORNELIUS. And now, Laertes, what's the news with you? You told us of some suit; What is't, Laertes ? You cannot speak of reason to the Dane, And lose * your voice : What wouldst thou beg, So 4tos.


loose. 1623, 32.

Colleagued with this dream] United with this wild conceit. power to business] For the purpose of, to transact, business. c. You cannot speak of reason to the Dane,

And lose your voice] Of any matter fit to be brought under discussion, and throw away your labour.

That shall not be my offer, not thy asking ?
The head is not more native to the heart,
The band more instrumental to the mouth,
Than is the throne of Denmark to thy father."
What wouldst thou have, Laertes ?

My dread lord,
Your leave and favour to return to France;
From whence though willingly I came to Den-

To shew my duty in your coronation;
Yet now, I must confess, that duty done,
My thoughts and wishes bend again toward France,
And bow them to your gracious leave and pardon.
King. Have you your father's leave? What says

Pol. He hath, my lord, [wrung from me my slow

By laboursome petition ; and, at last,
Upon his will I seal'd my hard consent:]®
I do beseech you, give him leave to go.
King. Take thy fair hour, Laertes! time be

thine!! And thy best graces spend it at thy will ! But now, my cousin Hamlet, and my son,

* The head is not more native, &c.] The principal parts of the body are not more natural, instrum

or necessary to each other, than is the throne natural to, and a machine acted upon and under the guidance of, your father.

Your leave and favour] The favour of your leave granted, the kind permission. Two substantives with a copulative being here, as is the frequent practise of our author, used for an adjective and substantive: an adjective sense is given to a substantive. See “ Law and Heraldry," sc. 1. Horatio.

Upon his will I seald my hard consent] At or upon his earnest and importunate suit, I gave my full and final, though hardly obtained and reluctant, consent. Take thy fair hour! time be thine!

And thy best graces spend it at thy will!] Catch the auspicious moment! be time thy own! and may the exercise of thy fairest virtues fill up those its hours, that are wholly at your command!


HAM. A little more than kin, and less than kind.

[Aside. King. How is it that the clouds still hang on


HAM. Not so, my lord, I am too much i'the

sun. (38)


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QUEEN. Good Hamlet, cast thy nighted colour

And let thine eye look like a friend on Denmark.
Do not, for ever, with thy vailed lids,"
Seek for thy noble father in the dust :
Thou know'st, 'tis common; all that lives(39) must

Passing through nature to eternity.

HAM. Ay, * madam, it is common.

If it be,
Why seems it so particular with thee?

HAM. Seems, madam! nay, it is ; I know not

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'Tis not alone my inky cloak, good mother,
Nor customary suits of solemn black,
Nor windy suspiration of forc'd breath,(40)
No, nor the fruitful river in the eye,
Nor the dejected haviour of the visage,
Together with all forms, modes, shows of grief,
That can denote me truly: These, indeed, seem,
For they are actions that a man might play:
But I have that within, which passeth show ;(41)
These, but the trappings" and the suits of woe.

nighted colour] Black, night-like; as presently he says, inky cloak:” and in Lear, IV.5, Regan speaks of the “ nighted life,” of “ the dark and blinded Gloster.”

b vailed lids] Cast down. See M. of V. Salar. I. 1. & L. L. L. V. 2. Boyet.

Ay, madam, it is common] Similar examples of frailty, connected with such an event, are the things or occurrences, that, he would have it inferred, were common.

4 trappings] Trappings are • furnishings,' as in Lear II1. 1. Kent.

King. 'Tis sweet and commendable in your na

ture, Hamlet, To give these mourning duties to your father : But, you must know, your father lost a father; That father lost, lost his;a and the survivor bound In filial obligation, for some term To do obsequious sorrow :b But to perséver In obstinate condolement, is a course Of impious stubbornness; 'tis unmanly grief: It shews a will most incorrect to heaven;" A heart unfortified, or mind impatient; An understanding simple and unschoold. For what, we know, must be, and is as common As any the most vulgar thing to sense, Why should we, in our peevish opposition, Take it to heart? Fye! 'tis a fault to heaven, A fault against the dead, a fault to nature, To reason most absurd; whose common theme Is death of fathers, and who still hath cried, From the first corse, till he that died to-day, This must be so. We pray you, throw to earth This unprevailing' woe; and think of us As of a father: for let the world take note, You are the most immediate to our throne; And, with no less nobility of love,

* That father lost, lost his] “That lost father of your father, i.e. your grandfather) or father so lost, lost his."

b do obsequious sorrow] Follow with becoming and ceremonious observance the memory of the deceased. See III. H. VI. Father. II. 5. & M. W. of W. IV. 2. Falst. We have “ Shed obsequious tears upon his trunk.”

Tit. Andr. V. 3. Luc. obstinate condolement] Ceaseless and unremitted expression of grief.

d incorrect to heaven] Contumacious towards.


as common


any the most vulgar thing to sense] To sense is as “ addressed too sense: in every hour's occurrence offering itself to our observation and feelings.

“Most sure and vulgar." Lear, IV. 6. Gent, : unprevailing] Fruitless, unprofitable.

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