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Disasters in the sun;” and the moist star,”
Upon whose influence Neptune's empire stands,
Was sick almost to dooms-day with eclipse.
And even” the like precurse of fierce events,
As harbingers preceding still the fates,
And prologue to the omen coming on,"—
Have heaven and earth together démonstrated
Unto our climatures and countrymen.—]

Re-enter Ghost.

But, soft; behold! lo, where it comes again!
I'll cross it, though it blast me.—Stay, illusion 1
If thou hast any sound,' or use of voice,
Speak to me: .
if there be any good thing to be done,
That may to thee do ease, and grace to me,
Speak to me:
If thou art privy to thy country's fate,
Which, happily, foreknowing may avoid,
O, speak | -
Or, if thou hast uphoarded in thy life
Extorted treasure in the womb of earth,
For which, they say, you spirits oft walk in death,
[Cock crows.
Speak of it:—stay, and speak—Stop it, Marcellus.
Mar. Shall I strike at it with my partizan:
Hor. Do, if it will not stand.

* 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.

WOL. X.

Ber. "Tis here!
Hor. 'Tis here!
Mar. "Tis gone! [Exit Ghost.

We do it wrong, being so majestical,
To offer it the show of violence;
For it is, as the air, invulnerable,
And our vain blows malicious mockery.
Ber. It was about to speak, when the cock crew.
Hor. And then it started like a guilty thing
Upon a fearful summons. I have heard,
The cock, that is the trumpet to the morn,
Doth with his lofty and shrill-sounding throat
Awake the god of day; and, at his warning,
Whether in sea or fire, in earth or air,”
The extravagant and erring spirit” hies
To his confine: and of the truth herein
This present object made probation.
Mar. It faded on the crowing of the cock.
Some say, that ever 'gainst that season comes
Wherein our Saviour's birth is celebrated,
This bird of dawning singeth all night long:
And then, they say, no spirit dares stir abroad;
The nights are wholesome; then no planets strike,
No fairy takes,' nor witch hath power to charm,
So hallow'd and so gracious is the time.

* 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.

SCENE II.

The same. A Room of State in the same.

Enter the King, Queen, HAMLET, Polonius, LAERTEs, VolTIMAND, CoRNELIUS, Lords, and

Attendants.

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?
You told us of some suit; What is't, Laertes?
You cannot speak of reason to the Dane,
And lose your voice: What would'st thou beg,
Laertes,
That shall not be my offer, not thy asking?
The head is not more native to the heart,
The hand more instrumental to the mouth,
Than is the throne of Denmark to thy father.
What would'st thou have, Laertes?
Laer. My dread lord,
Your leave and favour to return to France;
From whence though willingly I came to Denmark,
To show my duty in your coronation;
Yet now, I must confess, that duty done,
My thoughts and wishes bend again toward France,
And bow them to your gracious leave and pardon.
King. Have you your father's leave? What says
Polonius?
Pol. He hath, my lord, wrung from me my slow
leave,
By laboursome petition; and, at last,
Upon his will I seal'd my hard consent:
I do beseech you, give him leave to go.
King. Take thy fair hour, Laertes; time be thine,
And thy best graces: spend it at thy will.—
But now, my cousin Hamlet, and my son,
Ham. A little more than kin, and less than kind.”
[Aside.
King. How is it that the clouds still hang on you?
Ham. Not so, my lord, I am too much i'the sun.
Queen. Good Hamlet, cast thy nighted colour off,

" 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.

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