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CLAUDrus, King of Denmark.
HoRATIo, Friend to Hamlet.
LAERTEs, Son to Polonius.
BERNARDO, 3. } Officers.
GERTRude, Queen of Denmark, and Mother to Hamlet.
Lords, Ladies, Officers, Soldiers, Players, Grave-diggers, Sailors, Messengers, and other Attendants.
HAMLET, PRINCE OF DENMARK.
ACT i. SCENE I. Elsinore. A Platform before the Castle.
FRANCIsco on his post. Enter to him, BERNARDO.
Bernardo. Who’s there *
Fran. Nay, answer me; * stand, and unfold Yourself.
Ber. Long live the king!
Fran. Bernardo P
Fran. You come most carefully upon your hour. Ber. 'Tis now struck twelve; get thee to bed, Francisco.
Fran. For this relief, much thanks ; ’tis bitter cold, And I am sick at heart.
Ber. Have you had quiet guard P
Fran. Not a mouse stirring.
Ber. Well, good night.
1. i. e. me, who have a right to demand the watchword; which appears to have been, “Long live the king.”
* Shakspeare uses rivals for associates, partners; and competitor has the same sense throughout these plays. It is the original sense of rivalis. 1. To approve is to confirm.
Enter HoRATIo and MARCELLUs. Fran. I think I hear them.—Stand, ho! Who is
Hor, Friends to this ground.
Mar. And liegemen to the Dane.
Fran. Give you good night.
Mar. O, farewell, honest soldier ; Who hath relieved you?
Fran. Bernardo hath my place. Give you good night. [Exit FRANcisco.
Mar. Holla Bernardo
Ber. Say, What, is Horatio there P
Hor. A piece of him.
Ber. Welcome, Horatio; welcome, good Marcellus.
Hor. What, has this thing appeared again to-night?
Ber. I have seen nothing.
Mar. Horatio says 'tis but our fantasy;
Hor. Tush ! tush ' 'twill not appear.
Ber. Sit down awhile ; And let us once again assail your ears, That are so fortified against our story, What we two nights have seen.
Hor. Well, sit we down, And let us hear Bernardo speak of this.
Ber. Last night of all, When yon same star, that’s westward from the pole, Had made his course to illume that part of heaven Where now it burns, Marcellus, and myself, The bell then beating one,—
Mar. Peace, break thee off; look, where it comes
Ber. In the same figure like the king that’s dead. Mar. Thou art a scholar; speak to it, Horatio." Ber. Looks it not like the king f Mark it, Horatio. Hor. Most like ;—it harrows” me with fear and
wonder. Ber. It would be spoke to. Mar. Speak to it, Horatio. Hor. What art thou, that usurp'st this time of night,
Together with that fair and warlike form
Mar. It is offended.
Ber. See it stalks away.
Hor. Stay; speak: speak, I charge thee speak.
Is not dioding more than fantasy P
Hor. Before my God, I might not this believe,
Mar. Is it not like the king P
Hor. As thou art to thyself.
1 It was a vulgar motion, that a supernatural being could only be spoken to, with effect, by persons of learning; exorcisms being usually practised by the clergy in Latin.
2 The first quarto reads, “it horrors me.”
3 i. e. the sledged Polander (Polaque, Fr.). The old copy reads
Mar. Thus, twice before, and jump at this dead hour, 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. Mar. Good now, sit down, and tell me, he that knows, 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-laborer with the day; Who is't that can inform me 2 . Hor. - That can I; At least, the whisper goes so. Our last king, Whose image even but now appeared to us, Was, as you know, by Fortinbras of Norway, Thereto pricked on by a most emulate pride, Dared to the combat; in which our valiant Hamlet o or so this side of our known world esteemed him) id slay this Fortinbras; who, by a sealed compáct, Well ratified by law and heraldry, Did forfeit, with his life, all those his lands, Which he stood seized of, to the conqueror: Against the which, a moiety competent Was gaged by our king ; which had returned To the inheritance of Fortinbras,
1 Jump. So the quarto of 1603, and that of 1604. The folio reads just. Jump and just were synonymous. So in Chapman's May Day, 1611:— “Your appointment was jumpe at three with me.”
2 That is, “what particular train of thought to follow,” &c. The first quarto reads:–
“In what particular to work I know not.”