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Pollax. O. C.

In which the majesty of buried Denmark
Did sometimes march? by heaven I charge thee,


MAR. It is offended.


See! it stalks away.

HOR. Stay; speak: speak I charge thee, speak. [Exit Ghost.

MAR. 'Tis gone, and will not answer.
BAR. How now, Horatio? you tremble, and look

Is not this something more than fantasy?
What think you of it?

HOR. Before my God, I might not this believe, Without the sensible and true avouch

Of mine own eyes.


Is it not like the king?

HOR. As thou art to thyself:
Such was the very armour he had on,
When he the ambitious Norway combated;
So frown'd he once, when, in an angry parle,
He smote the sledded Polacks* on the ice.(8)
'Tis strange.

MAR. Thus, twice before, and just at this dead hour, (9)

With martial stalk hath he gone by our watch. HOR. In what particular thought to work, I know not;

But in the gross and scope of mine opinion,
This bodes some strange eruption to our state.

a I might not this believe, &c.] I could not: it had not been permitted me, &c. without the full and perfect evidence, &c.

In what particular thought to work] In what particular course to set my thoughts at work: in what particular train to direct the mind and exercise it in conjecture.


⚫ gross and scope] Uvon the whole, and in a general view.

MAR. Good now, sit down, and tell me, he that

Why this same strict and most observant watch
So nightly toils the subject of the land?
And why such daily cast of brazen cannon,
And foreign mart for implements of war;
Why such impress of shipwrights, whose sore task
Does not divide the Sunday from the week:
What might be toward, that this sweaty haste
Doth make the night joint-labourer with the day;
Who is't, that can inform me?

That can I;

At least, the whisper goes so.
Our last king,
Whose image even but now appear'd to us,
Was, as you know, by Fortinbras of Norway,
Thereto prick'd on by a most emulate pride,
Dar'd to the combat; in which our valiant Hamlet
(For so this side of our known world esteem'd him,)
Did slay this Fortinbras; who, by a seal'd compact,
Well ratified by law, and heraldry,"")

Did forfeit, with his life, all those his lands,
Which he stood seiz'd of, to the conqueror :
Against the which, a moiety competent
Was gaged by our king; which had return'd
To the inheritance of Fortinbras,


⚫ deseigne,

Had he been vanquisher; as, by the same cov'nant
And carriage of the article design'd, (12)
His fell to Hamlet: Now, sir, young Fortinbras, signe. 1623.
Of unimproved mettle (13) hot and full,

4tos. de

Hath in the skirts of Norway, here and there,
Shark'd up a list of landless resolutes
For food and diet, to some enterprise
That hath a stomach in't:(14) which is no other
(And it doth well appear unto our state)
But to recover of us by strong hand

Good now] In good time: à la bonne heure. An interjection, a gentle exclamation of intreaty.-Johns. Dict. As an adverb he interprets it, well.

bmart] Marketing, exchange.

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And terms compulsative, those 'foresaid lands,
So by his father lost: And this, I take it,
Is the main motive of our preparation;
The source of this our watch; and the chief head
Of this posthaste and romage (5) thro' the land.

[BAR. I think it be no other, but even so: Well may it sort, that this portentous figure Comes armed thro' our watch; so like the king, That was and is the question of these wars.(16)


HOR. A moth (17) it is to trouble the mind's eye.
In the most high and palmy state of Rome,
A little ere the mightiest Julius fell,
The graves stood tenantless, and the sheeted dead
Did squeak and gibber in the Roman streets:
As, stars with trains of fire and dews of blood,
Disasters in the sun; (18) and the moist star,
Upon whose influence Neptune's empire stands,
Was sick almost to dooms-day with eclipse.
And even the like precurse of fierce events,'
As harbingers preceding still the fates,
And prologue to the omen coming on,(21)
Have heaven and earth together démonstrated
Unto our climatures and countrymen.-] (22)


Re-enter Ghost.

But, soft; behold! lo, where it comes again!
I'll cross it, though it blast me.-Stay, illusion!
If thou hast any sound, or use of voice,
Speak to me:

If there be any good thing to be done,
That may to thee do ease, and grace to me,


sort] Fall in with the idea of: suit, accord.

b palmy state] Outspread, flourishing. Of victory palm branches were the emblem.

c stands-sick to dooms-day] To death, to extinction, as at the day of doom, Stands is depends.

sound, or use of voice] Articulation.

Speak to me:

If thou art privy to thy country's fate,
Which, happily, foreknowing may avoid,
O, speak!

Or, if thou hast uphoarded in thy life
Extorted treasure in the womb of earth,(23)
For which, they say, you spirits oft walk in death,
[Cock crows.
Speak of it :-stay, and speak.-Stop it, Marcellus.
MAR. Shall I strike at it with my partizan?
HOR. Do, if it will not stand.



MAR. 'Tis gone!

We do it wrong, being so majestical,
To offer it the show of violence;
For it is, as the air, invulnerable, (24)
And our vain. blows malicious mockery.

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'Tis here!


BAR. It was about to speak, when the cock crew.


HOR. And then it started like a guilty thing
Upon a fearful summons.
I have heard,
The cock, that is the trumpet to the morn,
Doth with his lofty and shrill-sounding throat
Awake the god of day; and, at his warning,
Whether in sea (26) or fire, in earth or air,
The extravagant and erring spirit hies (7)
To his confine: and of the truth herein
This present object made probation.


'Tis here! [Exit Ghost.

MAR. It faded on the crowing of the cock.(28)
Some say, that ever 'gainst that season comes,
Wherein our Saviour's birth is celebrated,
The bird of dawning singeth all night long:
And then, they say, no spirit dare stir* abroad;
The nights are wholesome; then no planets strike,
No fairy (29) takes,* nor witch hath power to charm,
So hallow'd and so gracious is the time.(30)

Partizan] Pertuisane, Fr. halberd.

lofty] High and loud

Sayes. 1623, 32.

So 4tos. can walk,

1623, 32.

So 4tos.

talkes. 1623, 32.

HOR. So have I heard, and do in part believe it. But, look, the morn,(31) 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.



The same. A Room of State in the same.

Enter the King, Queen, HAMLET, POLONIUs, LAERTES, VOLTIMAND, CORNELIUS, Lords, and Attendants.

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, (32)
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'd


green] Fresh. See Rom. & Jul. IV. 3. Jul.

b wisest sorrow] Sober grief, passion discreetly reined.

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

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