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Ros. Truly, and I hold ambition of so airy. and light a quality, that it is but a shadow's shadow.'
Ham. Then are our beggars, bodies, and our monarchs and out-stretch'd heroes, the beggar'shadows. Shall we to th’ Court? for, by my fay, I cannot reason.
Both. We'll wait upon you.
I will not fort you
with the rest of my servants ; for, to speak to you like an honest man, I am moft dreadfully attended. But in the beaten way of Friendship, what make you at Elfinoor?
Ros. To visit you, my Lord; no other occasion.
Ham. Beggar that I am, I am even poor in thanks; but I thank you; and sure, dear friends, my thanks are too dear of a half-penny. Were you not sent for? Is it your own inclining? Is it a free visitation ? Come, deal justly with me; Come, come; Nay, speak.
Guil. What should we say, my Lord ?
Ham. Any thing, but to the purpose. You were fent for ; and there is a kind of confession in your looks, which your modesties have not craft enough to colour. I know, the good King and Queen have sent
Ros. To what end, my Lord ?
Ham. That you must teach me ; but let me conjure you by the rights of our fellowship, by the consonancy of our youth, by the obligation of our everpreserved love, and by what more dear, a better propofer could charge you withal ; be even and direct with me, whether you were sent for or no? Rof. What say you?
9 Then are our beggars, bodies;} against wealth and greatness, that Shakespeare seems here to design seem to make happiness confift a ridicule of these declamaciuns in poverty.
Ham. Nay, then I have an eye of you: if you love me, hold not off.
Guil. My Lord, we were sent for.
Ham. I will tell you why. So shall my anticipation prevent your discovery, and your fecresy to the King and Queen moult no feather. *I have of late, but wherefore I know not, loft all my mirth, forgone all custom of exercise; and, indeed, it goes so heavily with my disposition, that this goodly frame, the earth, seems to me a steril promontory; this most excellent canopy the air, look you, this brave o'er-hanging firmament, this majestical roof fretted with golden firem why, it appears no other thing to me, than a foul and peftilent congregation of vapours. What a piece of work is a man'! how noble in reason ! how infinite in faculties ! in form and moving how express and admirable! in action how like an angel! in apprehenfion how like a God! the beauty of the world, the paragon, of animals!' and yet to me, what is this quintessence of duft? Man delights not me. Nor woman neither ; though by your smiling you seem to
Rof My Lord, there was no such stuff in my thoughts.
Ham. Why did you laugh, when I said, man delights not me?
Ros. To think, my Lord, if you delight not in man, what lenten entertainment the Players shall receive from you ; we accosted them on the way, and hither are they coming to offer you service.
Ham. He that plays the King shall be welcome. His Majesty shall have tribute of me; the adventurous Knight shall use his foyl and target ; the lover shall
* I have of late, &c.] This is of his disorder from the penetraan admirable description of a tion of these two friends, who rooted melancholy sprung from were fet over him as spies. thickness of blood, and artfully
not sigh gratis ; the humorous man, 2 shall end his part in peace; and 3 the lady
shall say her mind freely, or the blank verse shall halt for't. What Players are they?
Rof. Even those you were wont to take delight in, the Tragedians of the city.
Ham. How chances it, they travel their residence both in reputation and profit was better, both ways.
Ros, 4 I think, their inhibition comes by means of the late innovation.
Ham. Do they hold the same estimation they did, when I was in the city are they so follow'd ?
Ros. No, indeed, they are not.
Rof. Nay, their endeavour keeps in the wonted pace; but there is, Sir, an Aiery of Children, “ 's little Eyases, that cry out on the top of question ;
2 Mall end his part in peace ;] the top of question ;} The poet After these words the folio adds, here fteps oot of his fubject to the clown shall make ihose laugh give a lash at home, and sneer whose lungs are tickled o tb fere. at the prevailing fashion of fol
WARBURTON. lowing plays perform'd by the This paffage I have omitted, Children of the Chapel, and for the same reason, I suppose, abandoning the establith'd theas the other editors. I do not atres. But why are they call'd anderftand it.
little Yases? As he first calls tem 3 the lady swall, &c.] The lady an Aiery of Children, (now, an fall have no obftruction, unlifs Aery or Eyery is a hawk's or From the lamenes of the verse. eagle's nest ; there is not the
4 I think, their inhibition] I least question but we ought to refancy this is transposed : Hamlet store-little Eyales ; i. e. Young enquires not about an inhibirion, neftlings, creatures juft out of but an innovation; the answer the egg.
THEOBAD. therefore probably was, I think, An Aiery of children,]Relatthiir innovation, that i'; their ing to the play.houses then connew practice of trolling, comes by tending, the Bankfide, the For the means of the late inhibition. tune, &c play'd by the children
* The lines marked with com of his Majesty's chapel, Pope. mas are in the folio of 1623, but 6 cry out on the top of question ] not in the quarto of 1637, nor, The meaning seems to be, they I fappose, in any of the quartos. ak a common question in the
slerle Yases, that cry out or higheft notes of the voice.
e and are most tyrannically clapt for't; these are now “ che fathion, and so berattle the common stages, (so " they call them) that many wearing rapiers are afraid “ of goose-quills, and dare scarce come thither.
« Ham. What, are they children? who maintains " 'em? how are they escoted ? s will they pursue « the Quality, no longer than they can fing? will they « not say afterwards ? If they should
grow themselves " to common players, as it is most like, if their
means are no better : their writers do them wrong “ to make them exclaim against their own succession.
Rof. 'Faith, there has been much to do on both « sides; and the nation holds it no fin, to tarre them “ on to controversy. There was, for a while, no “ mony bid for argument, unless the poet and the
player went to cuffs in the question,
« Guil. Oh, there has been much throwing about * of brains. “ Ham. Do the Boys carry
it “ Rof. Ay, that they do, my Lord, o Hercules and « his load too.
Ham. * It is not strange ; for mine uncle is King 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 little. There is something in this more than natural, if philosophy could find it out.
[Flourish for the Players.
7 Escoted] Paid.
the world, but the world bearer 8 will they pursue the Quality too: Alluding to the story of
no longer ihan they can ling? Hercules's relieving Atlas. This Will they follow the profeffion of is humourous.
WARB. players, no longer than they keep 1 It is not ftrange ; for mine the voices of boys ? So after- unkle] I do not wonder that the wards he fays to the player, new players have so fuddenly Come, give us a taste of your risen to reputation, my uncle quality; Come, a palfionate speech. fupplies another example of the
9 Hercules and his load to..] facility with which honour is cona i;e. They not only carry away ferred upon new claimants. 1.
Guil. There are the Players.
Han Gentlemen, you are welcome to Ellinoor. Your hands. Come then. The appurtenance of welcome is fahion and ceremony; 2 let me comply with you in this garbe; left my extent to the players, which, I tell you, mult shew fairly outward, should more appear like entertainment than yours. You are welcome ; but my Uncle-father and Aunt mother are deceiv'd.
Guil. In what, my dear Lord ?
Ham. I am but mad north, north-west : when the wind is foutherly, I know a hawk from a hand-faw.
Pol. Well be with you, gentlemen.
Ham. Hark you, Guildenstern; and you too, at each éar a hearer, : That great Baby, you see there, is not yet out of his swathling.clouts.
Rof. Haply, he's the second time come to them ; for they say, an old man is twice a child. ; Ham. I will prophesy, he comes to tell me of the players. Mark it. You say right, Sir; for on Monday morning 'twas so, indeed.
Pol. My Lord, I have news to tell you.
Ham. My Lord, I have news to tell you. When Rofcius was an Actor in Rome.
Pol. The Actors are come hither, my Lord.
2 Harmer reads, Let me com other had been a corruption of pliment with ou.
the players ; whereas the poet I know a bauk from a hands found the proverb thus corrupted Jan ) This was a common pro- in the mouths of the people. Sa ve bal speech. The Oxford E that this critick's alteration only ditur alters it to. I know a bawk serves to Thew us the original of from a bernlaw, As if the the expreflian.