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know, It came to pass, As most like it was --The first row of the pious chanson' will show you more; for look, my abridgmento comes.

Enter four or five Players. You are welcome, masters; welcome, all:—I am glad to see thee well : welcome, good friends. -0, old friend! Why, thy face is valanced since I saw thee last; Com'st thou to beard me in Denmark ?-What! my young lady and mistress! By-'r-lady, your ladyship is nearer to heaven, than when I saw you last, by the altitude of a chopine. Masters, you are all welcome. We'll e'en to't like French falconers, fly at any thing we see: We'll have a speech straight: Come, give us a taste of your quality; come, a passionate speech.

1 Pl. What speech, my lord ?

Ham. I heard thee speak me a speech once,-but it was never acted; or, if it was, not above once: for the play, I remember, pleased not the million; 'twas caviare to the general :: but it was an excellent play; well digested in the scenes, set down with as much modesty as cunning. One speech in it I chiefly loved: 'twas Æneas' tale to Dido; and thereabout of it especially, where he speaks of Priam's slaughter: If it live in your memory, begin at this line; let me see, let me see ;

The rugged Pyrrhus, like thHyrcanian beast,'tis not so; it begins with Pyrrhus.

The rugged Pyrrhus,-he, whose sable arms,
Black as his purpose, did the night resemble
When he lay couched in the ominous horse,
Hath now this dread and black complexion smear'd
With heraldry more dismal; head to foot

· A kind of Christmas carol. . Those who will shorten my talk. 3 Fringed with a beard. ,

4 A high shoe worn by the Italians.
5 A delicacy too refined for the multitude.

Now is he total gules ;' horridly trick'da
With blood of fathers, mothers, daughters, sons,
With eyes like carbuncles, the hellish Pyrrhus
Old grandsire Priam seeks ;-So proceed you.

Pol. Fore (heaven !] my lord, well spoken; with good accent, and good discretion.

1 Pl. Anon he finds him
Striking too short at Greeks; his antique sword,
Rebellious to his arm, lies where it falls,
Repugnant to command: Unequal matchd,
Pyrrhus at Priam drives; in rage, strikes wide;
But with the whiff and wind of his fell sword
Th' unnerved father falls.
Out, out, thou strumpet, Fortune! All you gods,
In general synod, take away her power;
Break all the spokes and fellies from her wheel,
And bowl the round nave down the hill of heaven, .
As low as to the fiends!
Pol. This is too long.

Ham. It shall to the barber's, with your beard.-
Prythee, say on :-say on: come to Hecuba.

1 Pl. But who, ah woe! had seen the mobled queenHam. The mobled queen? Pol. That's good; mobled queen is good.

1 Pl. Run barefoot up and down, threať ning the With bisson rheum ;4 a clout upon that head, [flames Where late the diadem stood; and, for a robe, About her lank and all o'er-teemed loins, A blanket, in th' alarm of fear caught up.

Pol. Look, whether he has not turned his colour, and has tears in's eyes.—Prythee, no more.

Ham. 'Tis well; I'll have thee speak out the rest of this soon.-Good my lord, will you see the players well bestowed ? Do you hear, let them be well used; for they are the abstract, and brief chronicles, of the

A term in heraldry signifying red. 3 huddled, grossly covered.

? smeared, painted. 4 blinding tears.

time: After your death you were better have a bad epitaph, than their ill report while you live.

Pol. My lord, I will use them according to their desert.

Ham. Odd's bodikin, man, much better: Use every man after his desert, and who shall ’scape whipping. Use them after your own honour and dignity: The less they deserve, the more merit is in your bounty. Take them in. Pol. Come, sirs.

[Éxit Polonius with some of the Players. Ham. Follow him, friends: we'll hear a play tomorrow.-Dost thou hear me, old friend; can you play the murder of Gonzago?

1 Pl. Ay, my lord.

Ham. We'll have it to-morrow night. You could, for a need, study a speech of some dozen or sixteen lines, which I would set down, and insert in't? could you not?

1 Pl. Ay, my lord.

Ham. Very well.—Follow that lord; and look you mock him not. [Exit Player. ]—My good friends, (To ROSENCRANTZ and GUILDENSTERN,] I'll leave you till night: you are welcome to Elsinore. Ros. Good my lord !

Exeunt ROSENCRANTZ and GUILDENSTERN. Ham. Ay, so, God be wi' you :-Now I am alone 0, what a rogue and peasant slave am I! Is it not monstrous, that this player here, But in a fiction, in a dream of passion, Could force his soul so to his own conceit, That from her working, all his visage wann'd; Tears in his eyes, distraction in's aspect, A broken voice, and his whole function suiting With forms to his conceit? And all for nothing! For Hecuba! What's Hecuba to him, or he to Hecuba, That he should weep for her? What would he do, Had he the motive and the cue for passion,

That I have? He would drown the stage with tears,
And cleave the general ear' with horrid speech;
Make mad the guilty, and appal the free,
Confound the ignorant; and amaze, indeed,
The very faculties of eyes and ears.
Yet I,
A dull and muddy-mettled rascal, peak,
Like John a dreams, unpregnants of my cause,
And can say nothing; no, not for a king,
Upon whose property, and most dear life,
A damn'd defeat* was made. Am I a coward ?
Who calls me villain? breaks my pate across ?
Plucks off my beard, and blows it in my face?
Tweaks me by the nose? gives me the lie i'th'throat,
As deep as to the lungs ? Who does me this?
Why, I should take it: for it cannot be,
But I am pigeon-liver'd, and lack gall
To make oppression bitter; or, ere this,
I should have fatted all the region kites
With this slave's offal: Bloody, remorseless,
Treacherous, lecherous, kindless villain!
Why, what an ass am I! This is most brave;
That I, the son of a dear father murder'd,
Prompted to my revenge by heaven and hell,
Must fall a cursing, like a very drab,
A scullion !
Fye upon't! foh! About my brains!5 Humph! I have
That guilty creatures, sitting at a play, [heard,
Have by the very cunning of the scene
Been struck so to the soul, that presently
They have proclaim'd their malefactions ;
For murder, though it have no tongue, will speak
With most miraculous organ. I'll have these players

The ears of all mankind.
• A nickname for any ignorant silly fellow.
3 Having no due sense of.

5 Wits, to your work.

Play something like the murder of my father,
Before mine uncle: I'll observe his looks;
I'll tent' him to the quick; if he do blench,
I know my course. The spirit, that I have seen,
May be a devil: and the devil hath power
To assume a pleasing shape; yea, and, perhaps,
Out of my weakness, and my melancholy,
(As he is very potent with such spirits,
Abuses me to damn me: I'll have grounds
More relative than this: The play's the thing,
Wherein I'll catch the conscience of the king. (Exit,


SCENE I.-A room in the castle.

Enter King, Queen, POLONIUS, OPHELIA,

King. And can you, by no drift of conference
Get from him, why he puts on this confusion;
Grating so harshly all his days of quiet
With turbulent and dangerous lunacy?

Ros. He does confess, he feels himself distracted; But from what cause he will by no means speak.

Guil. Nor do we find him forward to be sounded;
But, with a crafty madness, keeps aloof,
When we would bring him on to some confession
Of his true state.

Did he receive you well ?
Ros. Most like a gentleman.
Guil. But with much forcing of his disposition.

Ros. Niggard of question; but, of our demands, Most free in his reply.

* search him, observe him. : turn pale.
3 more extended-embracing more evidence.


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