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Hyperion to a fatyr : so loving to my mother,
That he permitted not the winds of heav'n
Visit her face too roughly. Heav'n and earth!
Must I remember? why, she would hang on him,
As if increase of appetite had grown
By what it fed on ; yet, within a month,
Let me not think Frailty, thy name is Woman!
A little month! or ere those shoes were old,
With which the follow'd my poor father's body,
Like Niobe, all tears- Why, she, ev'n fhe-
(O Heav'n! a beaft that wants discourse of reason,'
Would have mourn'd longerm) married with mine uncle,
My father's brother ; but no more like my father,
Than I to Hercules. Within a month -
Ere'yet the falt of most unrighteous tears
Had left the flushing in her galled eyes,
She married--Oh, most wicked speed, to post
With such dexterity to incestuous sheets! .
It is not, nor it cannot come to good.
But break, my heart, for I must hold my tongue.
CH A P. XXIX.
HAMLET AND GHOST.
HAM. A NGEL S and ministers of grace defend us!
1. Be thru a spirit of health, or goblin damn’d, Bring with thee airs from heav'n, or blasts from hell, Be thy intent wicked or charitable, . . Thou' com’st in such a questionable hape, That I will speak to thee. I'll call thee Hamlet, King, Father, Royal Dane: oh! answer me ;
Let me not burst in ignorance; but tell,
Why thy canoniz'd bones, hearsed in earth,
Have burst their cearments ? why the sepulchre,
Wherein we saw thee quietly inurn'd,
Hath op'd his ponderous and marble jaws,
To cast thee up again? What may this mean?
That thou, dead corse, again in compleat steel,
Revisit'ít thus the glimpses of the moon,
Making night hideous, and us fools of nature
So horribly to shake our disposition
With thoughts beyond the reaches of our souls ?
Say, why is this? wherefore? what should we do?
Ghost. Mark me.
Ham. I will.
Ghost. My hour is almost come,
When I to sulphurous and tormenting flames
Must render up myself.
Ham. Alas, poor ghost !
Ghost. Pity me not, but lend thy serious hearing
To what I fall unfold.
Ham. Speak, I am bound to hear.
Ghost. So art thou to revenge, when thou shalt hear.
Ghost. I am thy father's spirit;
Doom'd for a certain term to walk the night,
And, for the day, confin'd to fast in fire : : :
Till the foul crimes done in my days of nature,
Are burnt and purg'd away. But that I am forbid
To tell the secrets of my prison-house,
I could a tale unfold, whose lightest word
Would harrow up thy soul, freeze thy young blood,
Make thy two eyes, like stars, start from their spheres,
Thy knotty and combined locks to part,
And each particular hair to stand on end
Like quills upon the fretful porcupine :
But this eternal blazon must not be
To ears of flesh and blood ; list, lift, oh lift!
If thou did'st ever thy dear father love
HAM. O heav'n!
Ghost. Revenge his foul and most unnatural murther,
Ghost. Murther most foul, as in the best it is ;
But this most foul, strange and unnatural.
Ham. Hafte me to know it, that I, with wings as swift
As meditation, or the thoughts of love,
May fly to my revenge.
Ghost. I find thee apt;
And duller should'st thou be, than the fat weed
That roots itself in ease on Lethe's wharf,
Would'st thou not fir in this. Now, Hamlet, hear:
'Tis giv'n out, that, sleeping in my orchard,
A serpent ftung me. So the whole ear of Denmark
Is by a forged process of my death
Rankly abus’d: but know, thou noble youth,
The serpent that did fting thy father's life,
Now wears his crown.
Ham. Oh, my prophetic foul! my uncle !
Ghost. Ay, that incestuous, that adulterate beast,
With witchcraft of his wit, with trait'rous gifts,
(O wicked wit, and gifts, that have the power
So to seduce !) won to his shameful luft
The will of my most seeming virtuous Queen.
Oh Hamlet, what a falling off was there!
But foft! methinks I'scent the morning air-
Brief let me be : Sleeping within mine orchard,
My custom always in the afternoon,
Upon my secure hour thy uncle stole
With juice of cursed hebony in a phial,
And in the porches of mine ear did pour
The leperous distilment.--
Thus was I, sleeping, by a brother's hand,
Of life, of crown, of Queen, at once bereft ;
Cut off even in the blossoms of my fin;
No reck’ning made ! but sent to my account
With all my imperfections on my head! .
Ham. Oh horrible ! oh horrible! most horrible !
Ghost. If thou hast nature in thee, bear it not;
But howsoever thou pursu'lt this act,
Taint not thy mind, nor let thy soul contrive!
Against thy mother aught ; leave her to heav'n,
And to those thorns that in her bosom lodge,
To prick and sting her. Fare thee well at once !
The glow-worm shews the matin to be near,
And’gins to pale his ineffectual 'fire.
Adieu, adieu, adieu : remember me.
Ham. Oh, all you host of heav'n! oh earth! what else!
And shall I couple hell? oh fie! hold my heart!
And yoy, my finews, grow not instant old;
But bear me stify up. Remember thee !
Ay, thou poor ghoft, while memory holds a seat
In this distracted globe ; remember thee!
Yea, from the table of my memory.
I'll wipe away all trivial fond records,
All saws of books, all forms, all pressures paft,
That youth and observation copied there ; ..
And thy commandment all alone shall live
Within the book and volume of my brain,
Unmix'd with baser matter.
CH A P. XXX. HAMLET'S SOLILOQUY ON DEATH, To be, or not to be :-—that is the question.-
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind, to suffer The stings and arrows of outrageous fortune, Or to take arms against a fea of troubles, And by opposing end them ?-To die,-to sleepNo more ; and by a sleep, to say, we end The heart-ache, and the thousand natural shocks That fieíh is heir to ;—'Tis a consummation Devouily to be with’d. To die-to sleepTo fleepperchance to dream?- ay, there's the rub; For in that sleep of death what dreams may come, When we have shuffled off this mortal coil, Must give us pause.-There's the respect That makes calamity of so long life : For who would bear the whips and scorns of th' time, Th' oppressor's wrong, the proud man's contumely, The pang of despis'd love, the law's delay, The insolence of office, and the spurns That patient merit of th’ unworthy takes ; When he himself might his quietus make With a bare bodkin? Who would fardels bear, To groan and sweat under a weary life ; But that the dread of something after death (That undiscover'd country, from whose bourne No traveller returns) puzzles the will;