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Ham. Of him, sir.

Osr. You are not ignorant of what excellence Laertes is

Ham. I dare not confess that, lest I should compare with him in excellence; but, to know a man well, were to know himself.

Osr. I mean, sir, for his weapon.

Ham. What is his weapon?

Osr. Rapier and dagger.

Ham. That's two of his weapons:-But, well,Osr. The king, sir, hath wager'd with him six Barbary horses: against the which he has impawn'd, as I take it, six French rapiers and poniards, with their assigns, as girdle, hangers, and so: Three of the carriages, in faith, are very dear to fancy, very responsive to the hilts, most delicate carriages, and of very liberal conceit.

Ham. What call you the carriages?

Osr. The carriages, sir, are the hangers..

Ham. The phrase would be more german to the matter, if we could carry a cannon by our sides.

Osr. The king, sir, hath lay'd, that in a dozen passes between yourself and him, he shall not exceed you three hits; and it would come to immediate trial, if your lordship would vouchsafe the answer.

Ham. How, if I answer, no?

Osr. I mean, my lord, the opposition of your person in trial.

Ham. Sir, it is the breathing time of day with me: let the foils be brought; the gentleman willing, and the king hold his purpose, I will win for him, if I can; if not, I will gain nothing but my shame, and

the odd hits.

Osr. Shall I deliver you so?

Ham. To this effect, sir; after what flourish your nature will.

Osr. I commend my duty to your lordship.

[Exit OSRICK. Hor. You will lose this wager, my lord.

Ham. I do not think so; since he went into France, I have been in continual practice; I shall win at the odds. But thou would'st not think how ill all's here about my heart: but it is no matter.

Hor. Nay, good my lord

Ham. It is but foolery; but it is such a kind of gaingiving, as would, perhaps, trouble a woman.

Hor. If your mind dislike any thing, obey it: I will forestall their repair hither, and say, you are not


Ham. Not a whit, we defy augury; there is a special Providence in the fall of a sparrow.



The Court of Denmark.

Flourish of Trumpets and Drums.



King. Come, Hamlet, come, and take this hand from me.

Ham. Give me your pardon, sir: I have done you


But, pardon it, as you are a gentleman.

Let my disclaiming from a purpos'd evil,

Free me so far in your most generous thoughts,
That I have shot my arrow o'er the house,
And hurt my brother.

Laer. I am satisfied in nature,

Whose motive, in this case, should stir me most

To my revenge:

I do receive your offer'd love like love,

And will not wrong


Ham. I embrace it freely.

And will this brother's wager frankly play.

Give us the foils.

Laer. Come, one for me.

Ham. I'll be your foil, Laertes; in mine igno


Your skill shall, like a star i'the darkest night,

Stick fiery off indeed.

Laer. You mock me, sir.

Ham. No, by this hand.

King. Give them the foils, young Osrick.— [OSRICK gives the Foils to HAMLET and LAERTES.

Cousin Hamlet,

You know the wager?

Ham. Very well, my lord:

Your grace hath laid the odds o' the weaker side.
King. I do not fear it; I have seen you both :-
But since he's better'd; we have therefore odds.
Laer. This is too heavy, let me see another.
Ham. This likes me well :-These foils have all
a length ?

Osr. Ay, my good lord.

King. Set me the stoups of wine upon that table:

If Hamlet give the first or second hit,

Or quit in answer of the third exchange,
Let all the battlements their ordnance fire;

The king shall drink to Hamlet's better breath:

And in the cup a union shall he throw,
Richer than that which four successive kings
In Denmark's crown have worn:


And let the kettle to the trumpet speak,
The trumpet to the cannoneer without,

Give me the

The cannons to the Heavens, the Heavens to earth, Now the King drinks to Hamlet.

[He drinks. [Drums and Trumpets sound,-Cannons shot off within.

Come begin;

And you, the judges, bear a wary eye. ·

Ham. Come on, sir.

Laer. Come, my lord. They play.

Ham. One.

Laer. No.

Ham. Judgment.

Osr. A hit, a very palpable hit.

[Drums and Trumpets,-Cannon.

Laer. Well,-again,—

King. Stay; give me the drink :-Hamlet, this pearl is thine;- [Puts Poison into the Cup.

Here's to thy health.

Give him the cup.

[He pretends to drink.

[Gives the Cup to FRANCISCO.

Ham. I'll play this bout first; set it by a while.

Come.- [They play.] Another hit: What say you? Laer. A touch, a touch, I do confess.

King. Our son shall win.

[Talks to MARcellus.

Queen. The queen carouses to thy fortune, Ham


Ham. Good madam,

[The QUEEN drinks.

[Drums and Trumpets,--Cannon.

King. Gertrude, do not drink.

Queen. I have, my lord, I pray you, pardon me.
King. It is the poison'd cup; it is too late. [Aside.

Laer. I'll hit him now:

And yet it is almost against my conscience.


Ham. Come, for the third, Laertes:-You do but


pray you, pass with your best violence;

I am afeard, you make a wanton of me.

Laer. Say you so? come on.

[They play.-LAERTES wounds HAMLET: then, in scuffling, they change Foils.

King. Part them, they are incens'd.

Ham. Nay, come again.

[HAMLET wounds LAERTES, who falls.

Queen. O, O, O!

Osr. Look to the queen there, ho!

Hor. How is it, my


Osr. How is't, Laertes?

[She swoons.

Laer. Why, as a woodcock to my own springe, Osrick;

I am justly kill'd with mine own treachery.

Ham. How does the queen?

King. She swoons to see them bleed.

Queen. No, no; the drink, the drink,-O, my dear Hamlet!

The drink, the drink,-I am poison'd.

[She dies.

Ham. O villainy!-Ho! let the door be lock'd: Treachery! seek it out.

Laer. It is here, Hamlet: Hamlet, thou art slain; No medicine in the world can do thee good, In thee there is not half an hour's life; The treacherous instrument is in thy hand, Unbated, and envenom'd: the foul practice Hath turn'd itself on me : lo, here I lie, Never to rise again: Thy mother's poison'd; I can no more;-the King, the King's to blame. Ham. The point

Envenom'd too! Then, venom, to thy work !—

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