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HAM. What, are they children? who maintains them? how are they escoted ?a Will they pursue the qualityb no longer than* they can sing ?c will they not say afterwards, if they should grow themselves tod common players, (as it is like most, if their means are not better,) their writers do them wrong, to make them exclaim against their own succession ??

Ros. 'Faith, there has been much to do on both sides; and the nation holds it no sin, to tarre them to controversy: there was, for a while, no money bid for argument, unless the poet and the player went to cuffs in the question.

Ham. Is it possible? Guil. O, there has been much throwing about of

HAM. Do the boys carry it away?

Ros. Ay, that they do, my lord; Hercules and his load too.']

Ham. It is not strange: for my uncle (34) is king

escoted] Paid. From the Fr. escot, a sort of reckoning. Johnson.

pursue the quality] The calling. See Two Ġ. of V. 1. Outl. IV. 1.

c no longer than they can sing] Keep their voices.
d grow themselves to] Advance themselves, shoot up to.

e like most] Most like, or likely, is the modern turn of the phrase.

exclaim against their own succession] By another sort of outcry traduce that profession, to which they must look, as an inheritance or future provision.

5 to turre them] Set them on. See K. John, IV. 1. Arth. } throwing about of brains] Sharp and nice discussion.

i Hercules and his load too] Every thing before them. Mr. Steevens observes, “ the allusion may be to the Globc playhouse on the Bankside, the sign of which was Hercules carrying the Globe; as for a time he did in ease of the labours of Atlas."

of Denmark; and those, that would make mowes® at him while my father lived, give twenty, forty, fifty, an hundred ducats a-piece, for his picture in littleb. ['Sblood, *) there is something in this more. So, 4tvę. than natural, if philosophy could find it out.

[Flourish of Trumpets within GUIL. There are the players.

HAM. Gentlemen, you are welcome to Elsinore. Your hands. Come then: the appurtenance of welcome is fashion and ceremony: let me comply with you in the* garb; lest my extent tod the this, 4tos. players, which, I tell you, must show fairly outward, should more appearlike entertainment than **then, O.C. yours. You are welcome: but my uncle-father, throughout. and aunt-mother, are deceived.

Guil. In what, my dear lord ?

HAM. I am but mad north-north west: when the wind is southerly, I know a hawk from a hand-saw.(35)

11. I tell you, e entertainmene father, throughout

and so


Pol. Well be with you, gentlemen!

HAM. Hark you, Guildenstern ;-and you too; --at each ear a hearer: that great baby, you see there, is not yet out of his swathing-clouts.

Ros. Haply, he's the second time come to them; for, they say, an old man is twice a child.

Him. I will prophecy, he comes to tell me of the

a make mowes at him] Use antic gestures, mockery. See Temp. II. 2. Calib. The quartos read mouths.

to in little] In miniature. See III. 4. Haml.

c comply with you in the garb] Compliantly assume this dress and fashion of behaviour. See Haml. of Osric, V. 2.

d my extent to] The degree of courtesy dealt out.
* cntertainment] Acceptance of service, kind reception.


can, 1623,

players; mark it, you say right, sir : for o’Monday morning 'twas so indeed.

Pol. My lord, I have news to tell you.

HAM. My lord, I have news to tell you. When . was, 4tos. Roscius (was *7 an actor in Rome,

Pol. The actors are come hither, m
HAM. Buz, buz ! (86)

Pol. Upon my honour,--
* So 4tos. HAM. Then came* each actor on his ass.

Pol. The best actors in the world either for tragedy, comedy, history, pastoral ; pastorical-comical, historical-pastoral; tragical-historical, tragical-comical-historical-pastoral ; scene indivisible

or poem unlimited. Seneca cannot be too heavy, * light for nor Plautus too light. (37) For the law of writ and the law of writ and the the liberty, these are the only * men.(58) T'hese c. Ham. O Jephthah, judge of Israel, what a trea. 0. C. sure hadst thou !

Pol. What a treasure had he, my lord ?
HAM. Why-One fair daughter, and no more,

The which he loved passing well.
Pol. Still on my daughter.

[Aside. HAM. Am I not i'the right, old Jephthah?

Pol. If you call me Jephthah, my lord, I have
a daughter, that I love passing well.

HAM. Nay, that follows not.
Pol. What follows then, my lord ?

HAM. Why, As by lot, God wot,(39) and then, you know, It came to pass, As most like it was, The first row of the Pons* Chanson will shew you more; for look, where my abridgments come. (40)


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* Then came each actor on his ass] This seems to be a line of a ballad. Johnson.

brow of the Pons Chanson] Row is column or division : Pons Chanson, says Pope, the old ballads, sung on bridges. Hamlet is here repeating ends of old songs. Pans is the reading of the folio of 1632, and one 4to. Pious of the other.

Enter Four or Five Players.

You are welcome, masters; welcome, all :-I am glad to see thee well :-welcome, good friends. O, old friend! Why, thy face is valiant (41) 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 choppine.(42) Pray God, your voice, like a piece of uncurrent gold, be not cracked within the ring. (43) Masters, you are all welcome. We'll e'en to't like French falconers, (44) 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 PLAY. 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 caviarie to the General : (45) but it was (as I received it, and others, whose judg. ments, in such matters, cried in the top of mine) an excellent play; well digested in the scenes, set down with as much modesty as cunning. I remember, one said, there were no sallets in the lines,' to make the matter savoury; nor no matter in the phrase, that might indite the author of af. fectation : (46) but called it, an honest method. sas

quality] Qualifications, faculty. Haml. to Rosencr. supra.

cried in the top of mine] Proclaimed not merely in addition to my voice and censure, but with a tone of authority, that mine could not sound. See Rosencr. supra. Cried out on the top of question."

• as much modesty as cunning] As much propriety and de. corum, as skill.

a no sallets in the lines] Licentious jocularity, ribaldry. “ For junkets, joci, and for curious sallets, sales." A Banquet of Jests, 1669. Steevens.

e an honest method] Plain, subdued and sober.




wholesome as sweet, and by very much more hand. some than fine.7 One chief speech in it I chiefly loved :(47) '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 the Hyrcanian beast,’tis not so ; it begins with Pyrrhus.

The rugged Pyrrhus,-he, whose sable arnis,
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
* So, 4tos. Now is he total gules ; * horridly trick'd(48)
to take

With blood of fathers, mothers, daughters, sons; 1623, 32. Bak'd and impasted (49) with the parching streets,

That lend a tyrannous and damned light * lord's murder,

To their vile murders: * Roasted in wrath and fire,

And thus o'er-sized with coagulate gore, vilde, 1623,

With eyes like carbuncles ;' the hellish Pyrrhus
Old grandsire Priam seeks ; [So proceed you.]

Pol. 'Fore God, my lord, well spoken; with good accent, and good discretion.

i Play. Anon he finds him Striking too short at Greeks; his antiquè 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 The unnerved father falls. d Then senseless Ilium, a and by very much more handsome than fine] With more of elegant and just form and proportion, than of superfluous ornament: and composed in the spirit and taste of the advice just given by Polonius to Laertes as to dress ; “ rich, not gaudy." bo'er-sized] Covered as with glutinous matter. carbuncles) Jewels, resembling coals. Sce P. Lost. IX. 500.

Falls with the whiff and wind of his fell sword] Our author employs the same image in almost the same phrase:

“ The Grecians fall
Even in the fan and wind of your fair sword.

Tr. & Cress. V. 3. Tr.

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