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Disasters in the sun;” and the moist star,”
But, soft; behold! lo, where it comes again!
* As, stars with trains of fire and dews of blood, Disasters in the sun;] This passage is not in the folio. By
the quartos therefore our imperfect text is supplied; for an intermediate verse being evidently lost, it were idle to attempt a union that never was intended. I have therefore signified the supposed deficiency by a vacant space. Malone.
4 a.d the moist star, &c.] i. e. the moon.
* And even—] Not only such prodigies have been seen in Rome, but the elements have shown our countrymen like forerunners and foretokens of violent events.
"And prologue to the omen coming on,] i. e. the approaching dreadful and portentous event.
* If thou hast any sound,) The speech of Horatio to the spectre is very elegant and noble, and congruous to the common traditions of the causes of apparitions. Johnson.
Ber. "Tis here!
We do it wrong, being so majestical,
* Whether in sea, &c.] According to the pneumatology of that time, every element was inhabited by its peculiar order of spirits, who had dispositions different, according to their various places of abode. The meaning therefore is, that all spirits extravagant, wandering out of their element, whether aerial spirits visiting earth, or earthly spirits ranging the air, return to their station, to their proper limits in which they are confined.
9 erring spirit, Erring is here used in the sense of wan
dering. * No fairy takes, No fairy strikes with lameness or diseases. This sense of take is frequent in this author.
Hor. So have I heard, and do in part believe it. But, look, the morn, in russet mantle clad, | Walks o'er the dew of yon high eastern hill: Break we our watch up; and, by my advice, Let us impart what we have seen to-night Unto young Hamlet: for, upon my life, This spirit, dumb to us, will speak to him: Do you consent we shall acquaint him with it, As needful in our loves, fitting our duty Mar. Let's do't, I pray; and I this morning know Where we shall find him most convenient. [Ereunt.
The same. A Room of State in the same.
Enter the King, Queen, HAMLET, Polonius, LAERTEs, VolTIMAND, CoRNELIUS, Lords, and
King. Though yet of Hamlet our dear brother's death The memory be green; and that it us befitted To bear our hearts in grief, and our whole kingdom To be contracted in one brow of woe; Yet so far hath discretion fought with nature, That we with wisest sorrow think on him, Together with remembrance of ourselves. Therefore our sometime sister, now our queen, The imperial jointress of this warlike state, Have we, as 'twere, with a defeated joy, With one auspicious, and one dropping eye; With mirth in funeral, and with dirge in marriage, In equal scale weighing delight and dole,_ Taken to wife: nor have we herein barr'd Your better wisdoms, which have freely gone With this affair along:—For all, our thanks.
Now follows, that you know, young Fortinbras, Holding a weak supposal of our worth; Or thinking, by our late dear brother's death, Our state to be disjoint and out of frame, Colleagued with this dream of his advantage,” He hath not fail'd to pester us with message, Importing the surrender of those lands Lost by his father, with all bands of law, To our most valiant brother.—So much for him. Now for ourself, and for this time of meeting. Thus much the business is: We have here writ To Norway, uncle of young Fortinbras, Who, impotent and bed-rid, scarcely hears Of this his nephew's purpose, to suppress His further gait herein;" in that the levies, The lists, and full proportions, are all made Out of his subject:—and we here despatch You, good Cornelius, and you, Voltimand, For bearers of this greeting to old Norway; Giving to you no further personal power To business with the king, more than the scope" Of these dilated articles” allow. Farewell; and let your haste commend your duty.
Cor. Pol. In that, and all things, will we show
our duty. King. We doubt it nothing; heartily farewell. [Ereunt VoltiMAND and CoRNElius.
* Colleagued with this dream of his advantage, This imaginary advantage, which Fortinbras hoped to derive from the unsettled state of the kingdom.
3. to suppress
His further gait herein.] Gate or gait is here used in the
northern sense, for proceeding, passage; from the A. S. verb gae. A gate for a path, passage, or street, is still current in the north.
4. more than the scope—] More is comprized in the general design of these articles, which you may explain in a more diffused and dilated style.
* – dilated articles, &c.] i. e. the articles when dilated.
And now, Laertes, what's the news with you?
" Ham. A little more than kin, and less than kind.] A little more than kin, is a little more than a common relation. The king was certainly something less than kind, by having betrayed the mother of Hamlet into an indecent and incestuous marriage, and obtained the crown by means which he suspects to be unjustifiable.