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Having ever seen, in the prenominate" crimes,
The youth you breathe of, guilty, be assur’d,
He closes with you in this consequence;
Good sir, or so; or friend, or gentleman,-
According to the phrase, or the addition,
Of man, and country.

Very good, my lord.
Pol. And then, sir, does he this,—He does-
What was I about to say ? By the mass, I was about to
say something :-Where did I leave?

Rey. At, closes in the consequence.

Pol. At, closes in the consequence,- Ay, marry;
He closes with you thus :- I know the gentleman;
I saw him yesterday, or, tother day,
Or then, or then; with such, or such ; and, as you say,
There was he gaming ; there o'ertook in his rouse :
There falling out at tennis; or, perchance,
I saw him enter such a house of sale,
(Videlicet, a brothel,) or so forth,-

you now;
Your bait of falsehood takes this carp of truth :
And thus do we of wisdom and of reach,
With windlaces,' and with assays of bias,k
By indirections find directions out;
So, by my former lecture and advice,
Shall you my son: You have me, have


Rey. My lord, I have.

God be wi'


Rey. Good my lord,-
Pol. Observe his inclination in yourself.'
Rey. I shall, my lord.
Pol. And let him ply his musick.

Well, my lord.


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prenominate) i. e. Already named.

windlaces,] Metaphorically used for contrivances, subtleties ; a windlace is a machine for winding up great weights.--NARES.

assays of bias,) i. e. Experiments of his inclination; from essayer, Fr. in yourself.] In your own person, not by spies.—Johnson.



Pol. Farewell!-How now, Ophelia ? what's the

matter? Oph. O, my lord, my lord, I have been so affrighted ! Pol. With what, in the name of heaven?

Oph. My lord, as I was sewing in my closet,
Lord Hamlet, with his doublet all unbrac'd;
No hat upon his head ; his stockings foul'd,
Ungarter'd, and down-gyved to his ancle ;m
Pale as his shirt ; his knees knocking each other;
And with a look so piteous in purport,
As if he had been loosed out of hell,
To speak of horrors,-he comes before me.

Pol. Mad for thy love?

My lord, I do not know;
But, truly, I do fear it.

What said he?
Oph. He took me by the wrist, and held me hard ;
Then goes he to the length of all his arm;
And, with his other hand thus o'er his brow,
He falls to such perusal of my face,
As he would draw it. Long stay'd he so;
At last,—a little shaking of mine arm,
And thrice his head thus waving up and down,-
He rais'd a sigh so piteous and profound,
As it did seem to shatter all his bulk,"
And end his being: That done, he lets me go:
And, with his head over his shoulder turn’d,
He seem'd to find his way without his eyes ;
For out o'doors he went without their help,
And, to the last, bended their light on me.

Pol. Come, go with me; I will go seek the king.
This is the very ecstacy of love;
Whose violent property foredoes itself,

m Ungarter'd, and down-gyved to his ancle ;] Down-gyved means, hanging down like the loose cincture which confines the fetters round the ancles.STEEVENS. bulk,] i.e. Body.

foredoes—] Destroys.

And leads the will to desperate undertakings,
As oft as any passion under heaven,
That does afflict our natures. I am sorry,
What, have you given him any hard words of late?

Oph. No, my good lord; but as you did command,
I did repel his letters, and denied
His access to me.

That hath made him mad.
I am sorry, that with better heed, and judgment,
I had not quoted him :P I fear'd he did but trifle,
And meant to wreck thee ; but, beshrew my jealousy !
It seems, it is as proper to our age
To cast beyond ourselves in our opinions,
As it is common for the younger sort
To lack discretion. Come, go we to the king:
This must be known; which being kept close, might move,
More grief to hide, than hate to utter love.9



A Room in the Castle.


and Attendants. King. Welcome, dear Rosencrantz, and Guildenstern! Moreover that we much did long to see you, The need, we have to use you, did provoke Our hasty sending. Something have you heard Of Hamlet's transformation; so I call it, Since not the exterior nor the inward man Resembles that it was: What it should be, More than his father's death, that thus hath put him So much from the understanding of himself,


quoted him.) i. e. Observed him, to quote is invariably used in Shakspeare in the sense of to mark, or observe.-M. Mason. 9 This must be known; which, being kept close, might move

More grief to hide, than hate to utter love.] i. e. This must be made known to the king, for (being kept secret) the hiding Hamlet's love might occasion more mischief to us from him and the queen, than the uttering or revealing of it will occasion bate and resentment from Hamlet.-Johnson.

I cannot dream of: I entreat you both,
That,-being of so young days brought up with him ;
And, since, so neighbour'd to his youth and humour,—

vouchsafe your rest here in our court
Some little time: so by your companies
To draw him on to pleasures; and to gather,
So much as from occasion you may glean,
Whether aught, to us unknown, afflicts him thus,
That, open'd, lies within our remedy.

Queen. Good gentlemen, he hath much talk'd of you;
And, sure I am, two men there are not living,
To whom he more adheres. If it will please you
To show us so much gentry,' and good will,
As to expend your time with us a while,
For the supply and profit of our hope,
Your visitation shall receive such thanks
As fits a king's remembrance.


your majesties
Might, by the sovereign power you have of us,
Put your dread pleasures more into command
Than to entreaty.

But we both obey;
And here give up ourselves, in the full bent,'
To lay our service freely at your feet,
To be commanded.

King. Thanks, Rosencrantz, and gentle Guildenstern.

Queen. Thanks, Guildenstern, and gentle Rosencrantz: And I beseech you instantly to visit My too much changed son.--Go, some of you, And bring these gentlemen where Hamlet is.

Guil. Heavens make our presence, and our practices, Pleasant and helpful to him ! Queen.


and some Attendants.

-gentry,] i. e. Complaisance. For the supply, &c.] That the hope which your arrival has raised may be completed by the desired effect.-- Johnson.

in the full bent,] i. e. In the utmost extremity of exertion. The allusion is to a bow bent as far as it will go.--Malone.


Pol. The embassadors from Norway, my good lord, Are joyfully return’d.

King. Thou still hast been the father of good news.

Pol. Have I, my lord? Assure you, my good liege,
I hold my duty, as I hold my soul,
Both to my God, and to my gracious king :
And I do think, (or else this brain of mine
Hunts not the trail of policy" so sure
As it hath us’d to do,) that I have found
The very cause of Hamlet's lunacy.

King. O, speak of that; that do I long to hear.

Pol. Give first admittance to the embassadors;
My news shall be the fruit* to that great feast.
King. Thyself do grace to them, and bring them in.

[Erit POLONIUS. He tells me, my dear Gertrude, he hath found The head and source of all your son's distemper.

Queen. I doubt, it is no other but the main; His father's death, and our o'erhasty marriage.


King. Well, we shall sist him.-Welcome, my good

Say, Voltimand, what from our brother Norway?

Volt. Most fair return of greetings, and desires.
Upon our first, he sent out to suppress
His nephew's levies; which to him appear’d
To be a preparation 'gainst the Polack;
But, better look'd into, he truly found
It was against your highness: Whereat griev'd,-
That so his sickness, age, and impotence,
Was falsely borne in hand,—sends out arrests
On Fortinbras; which he, in brief, obeys;

the trail of policy-] The trail is the course of an animal pursued by the scent. Johnson,

the fruit-] The desert after the meat.---Johnson.
borne in hand,] i. e. Imposed on.


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