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And now no soil, nor cautel, doth besmirch
keep, As watchman to my heart. But, good my
brother, Do not, as some ungracious pastors do,
Show me the steep and thorny way to heaven; Whilst, like a puff'd and reckless libertine, Himself the primrose path of dalliance treads, And recks not his own rede.
O fear me not. I stay too long ;—but here my father comes.
Enter POLONIUS. A double blessing is a double grace ; Occasion smiles upon a second leave. Pol. Yet here, Laertes! aboard, aboard, for
shame; The wind sits in the shoulder of your sail, And you are stay'd for. There, my blessing with
you! (Laying his hand on LAERTES' head. And these few precepts in thy memory See thou character. Give thy thoughts no tongue, Nor any unproportion'd thought his act. Be thou familiar, but by no means vulgar. The friends thou hast, and their adoption tried, Grapple them to thy soul with hoops of steel ; But do not dull thy palm with entertainment Of each new-hatch'd, unfledged comrade. Be.
ware Of entrance to a quarrel : but, being in, Bear't that the opposed may beware of thee. Give every man thine ear, but few thy voice : Take each man's censure, but reserve thy judg.
ment. Costly thy habit as thy purse can buy, But not express'd in fancy ; rich, not gaudy : For the apparel oft proclaims the man; And they in France of the best rank and station Are of a most select and generous sheaf in that. Neither a borrower nor a lender be : For loan oft loses both itself and friend,
And borrowing dulls the edge of husbandry.
tend. Laer. Farewell, Ophelia ; and remember well What I have said to you.
[Exit. Pol. What is't, Ophelia, he hath said to you? Oph. So please you, something touching the
lord Hamlet. Pol. Marry, well bethought : 'Tis told me, he hath very oft of late Given private time to you : and you yourself Have of your audience been most free and
bounteous : If it be so, (as so 'tis put on me, And that in way of caution,) I must tell you, You do not understand yourself so clearly, As it behoves my daughter, and your honour : What is between you give me up the truth. · Oph. He hath, my lord, of late, made many
tenders Of his affection to me.
Pol. Affection ? puh! you speak like a green
Unsifted in such perilous circumstance.
Pol. Marry, I'll teach you: think yourself a
baby ; That you have ta’en his tenders for true pay, Which are not sterling. Tender yourself more
dearly; Or, (not to crack the wind of the poor phrase, Running it thus,) you'll tender me a fool. Oph. My lord, he hath importuned me with
love, In honourable fashion. Pol. Ay, fashion you may call it; go to, go
to. Oph. And hath given countenance to his
speech, my lord, With all the vows of heaven.
Pol. Ay, springes to catch woodcocks. I do
When the blood burns, how prodigal the soul
As to give words or talk with the lord Hamlet. Look to't, I charge you ; come your ways.
Oph. I shall obey, my lord. (Exeunt.
SCENE IV.- The Platform.
Enter Hamlet, HORATIO, and MARCELLUS. Ham. The air bites shrewdly. It is very cold. Hor. It is a nipping and an eager air.. Ham. What hour now? Hor.
I think, it lacks of twelve. Mar, No, it is struck. Hor. Indeed ? I heard it not; then it draws
near the season, Wherein the spirit held his wont to walk.
[A flourish of trumpets, and ordnance shot off,
within." What does this mean, my lord ? Ham. The king doth wake to-night, and
takes his rouse, Keeps wassail, and the swaggering up-spring
reels; And, as he drains his draughts of Rhenish down, The kettle-drum and trumpet thus bray out The triumph of his pledge. Hor.
Is it a custom ? Ham. Ay, marry, is't : And to my mind, though I am native here, And to the manner born, it is a custom More honour'd in the breach than the observance. This heavy-headed revel, east and west Makes us traduced and tax'd of other nations : They clepe us drunkards, and with swinish