Page images
PDF
EPUB

Iu dreadful secrecy impart they did ;
And I with them, the third night kept the watch ;
Where, as they had deliver'd, both in time,
Form of the thing, each word made true and

good,
The apparition comes; I knew your father;
These hands are not more like.
Ham.

But where was this? Mar. My lord, upon the platform where we

watch'd. Ham. Did you not speak to it? Hor.

My lord, I did: But answer made it none: yet once, methought, It lifted up its head, and did address Itself to motion, like as it would speak; But, even then, the morning cock crew loud; And at the sound it shrunk in haste away, And vanish'd from our sight. Ham.

'Tis very strange. Hor. As I do live, my honour'd lord, 'tis true; And we did think it writ down in our duty, To let you know of it. Ham. Indeed, indeed, sirs, but this troubles

me. Hold you the watch to-night? AN.

We do, my lord. Ham, Arm’d, say you? All.

Arm'd, my lord. Ham.

From top to toe? All. My lord, from head to foot. Ham.

Then saw you not His face.

Hor. O, yes, my lord; he wore his beaver up.
Ham. What, look'd he frowningly?
Hor.

A countenance more
In sorrow than in anger.
Ham.

Pale, or red ?
Hor. Nay, very pale.
Ham.

And fix'd his eyes upon you?
Hor. Most constantly.
Ham,

I would, I had been there. Hor. It would bave much amaz'd you. Ham.

Very like, Very like: Stay'd it long? Hor. While one with moderate haste might

tell a hundred.

Hor.

Mar. Ber. Longer, longer.
Hor. Not when I saw it.
Ham.

His beard was grizzl’d? no?
Hor. It was, as I have seen it in his life,
A sable silver'd.
Ham.

I will watch to-night; Perchance, 'twill walk again.

I warrant, it will. Ham. If it assume my noble father's person, I'll speak to it, though hell itself should gape, And bid me hold my peace. I pray you all, If you have bitherto conceal'd this sight, Let it be tenable in your silence still; And whatsoever else shall bap to-night, Give it an understanding, but no tongue; I will requite your loves: So, fare you well: Upon the platform, 'twixt eleven and twelve, l'll visit you. AN.

Our duty to your honour. Ham. Your loves, as mine to you: Farewell.

(Exeunt HoR. MAR. and BER. My father's spirit in arms! all is not well; I doubt some foul play: 'would, the night were

come! Till then sit still, my soul: Foul deeds will rise, Though all the earth o'erwhelm them, to men's eyes.

[Exit. SCENE III. A Room in Polonius' House.

Enter LAERTES and OPHELIA. Laer. My necessaries are embark'd; farewell: And, sister, as the winds give benefit, And convoy is assistant, do not sleep, But let me hear from you. Oph.

Do you doubt that?
Laer. For Hamlet, and the trifling of his favour,
Hold it a fashion, and a toy in blood;
A violet in the youth of primy pature,
Forward, not permanent, sweet, not lasting,
The perfume and suppliance of a minute;
No more.

Oph. No more but so?
Laer.

Think it no more:
For nature, crescent, does not grow alone
In thews, and bulk; but, as this temple waxes,

The inward service of the mind and soul
Grows wide withal. Perhaps, he loves you now;
And now no soil, nor cautel, dotb besmirch
The virtue of his will: but, you must fear,
His greatness weigh’d, his will is not his own;
For he himself is subject to his birth :
He may not, as unvalued persons do,
Carve for himself; for on his choice depends
The safety and health of the whole state;
And therefore most his choice be circumscribed
Unto the voice and yielding of that body,
Whereof he is the head: Then if he says he loves

you,
It fits your wisdom so far to believe it,
As he in his particular act and place
May give his saying deed; which is no further,
Thän the main voice of Denmark goes withal.
Then weigh what loss your bonour may sustain,
If with too credent ear you list his songs;
Or lose your heart; or your chaste treasure open
To his unmaster'd'importunity.
Fear it, Ophelia, fear it, my dear sister;
And keep you in the rear of your affection,
Out of the shot and danger of desire.
The chariest maid is prodigal enough,
If she unmask her beauty to the moon :
Virtue itself scapes not calumnious strokes :
The canker galls the infants of the spring,
Too oft before their buttons be disclos'd;
And in the morn and liquid dew of youth
Contagious blastments are most imminent.
Be wary then: best safety lies in fear;
Youth to itself rebels, though none else near,

Oph. I shall the effect of this good lesson 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 bis own read. Laer.

O fear me not. I stay too long ;-But here my father comes.

Enter POLONIUS.
A double blessing is a donble grace ;
Occasion smiles upon a second leave.

[ocr errors]

Pol. Yet here, Laertes! aboard, aboard, for

shame; The wind sits in the shoulder of yoar sail, And you are staid for: 'There,-my blessing

with
you; (Laying his Hand on LAERTES' Head.
And these few precepts in thy memory
Look thou character. Give thy thoughts no

tongue,
Nor any unproportion'd thought his act.
Be tbou familiar, but by no means vulgar.
The friends thou hast, and their adoption tried,
Grapple them to thy soul with hooks of steel;
But do not dull thy palm with entertainment
Of each new hatch'd, unfledy'd comrade. Be-

ware
Of entrance to a quarrel: but, being in,
Bear it that the opposer 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 most select and generous, chief in that.
Neither a borrower, nor a lender be:
For loan oft loses both itself and friend;
And borrowing dulls the edge of husbandry.
Tbis above all,-To thine ownself be true;
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man.
Farewell; my blessing season this in thee!
Laer. Most humbly do I take my leave, my

lord.
Pol. The time invites you; go, your servants

tend.
Laer. Farewell, Ophelia; and remember well
What I have said to you.

Tis in my memory lock’d,
And you yourself shall keep the key of it.
Laer. Farewell.

[Erit LAERTES. 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

VOL. VINI.

Oph,

P

Given private time to you; and you yourself Have of your audience been most free and boun

teous : 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 bonour: 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

girl, Unsifted in such perilous circumstance. Do you believe his tenders, as you call them? Oph. I do not know, my lord, what I should

think. Pol. Marry, I'll teach you: think yourself a

baby; That you have ta’en these tenders for true pay, Which are not sterling. Tender yourself more

dearly; Or (not to crack the wind of the poor phrase, Wronging it thus), you'll tender me a fool. Oph. My lord, he hath importun'd me with

love, In honourable fasbion.

Pol. Ay, fashion you may call it; go to, go to. Oph. And hath given countenance to his

speech, my lord, With almost all the holy vows of heaven. Pol. Ay, springes to catch woodcocks. I do

know, When the blood burns, how prodigal the soul Lends the tongue vows: these blazes, daughter, Giving more light than heat,-extinct in both, Even in their promise, as it is a making, You must not take for fire. From this time, Be somewhat scanter of your maiden presence; Set your entreatments at a higher rate, Than a command to parley. For lord Hamlet, Believe so much in him, That he is young; And with a larger tether may he walk, Than may be given you : In few, Ophelia, Do not believe his vows: for they are brokers, Not of that dye which their investments show,

« PreviousContinue »