Internet Shakespeare Editions

About this text

  • Title: Hamlet (Folio 1, 1623)
  • Editor: David Bevington
  • Textual editor: Eric Rasmussen
  • ISBN: 978-1-55058-434-9

    Copyright David Bevington. This text may be freely used for educational, non-profit purposes; for all other uses contact the Editor.
    Author: William Shakespeare
    Editor: David Bevington
    Peer Reviewed

    Hamlet (Folio 1, 1623)

    The Tragedie of Hamlet.
    Ile doo't. Do st thou come heere to whine;
    3475To outface me with leaping in her Graue?
    Be buried quicke with her, and so will I.
    And if thou prate of Mountaines; let them throw
    Millions of Akers on vs; till our ground
    Sindging his pate again st the burning Zone,
    3480Make O s s a like a wart. Nay, and thoul't mouth,
    Ile rant as well as thou.
    Kin. This is meere Madne s s e:
    And thus awhile the fit will worke on him:
    Anon as patient as the female Doue,
    3485When that her golden Cuplet are disclos'd;
    His silence will sit drooping.
    Ham. Heare you Sir:
    What is the reason that you vse me thus?
    I loud' you euer; but it is no matter:
    3490Let Hercules himselfe doe what he may,
    The Cat will Mew, and Dogge will haue his day. Exit.
    Kin. I pray you good Horatio wait vpon him,
    Strengthen you patience in our la st nights speech,
    Wee'l put the matter to the present pu sh:
    3495Good Gertrude set some watch ouer your Sonne,
    This Graue shall haue a liuing Monument:
    An houre of quiet shortly shall we see;
    Till then, in patience our proceeding be. Exeunt.

    Enter Hamlet and Horatio.
    3500 Ham. So much for this Sir; now let me see the other,
    You doe remember all the Circum stance.
    Hor. Remember it my Lord?
    Ham. Sir, in my heart there was a kinde of fighting,
    That would not let me sleepe; me thought I lay
    3505Worse then the mutines in the Bilboes, ra shly,
    (And praise be ra shne s s e for it) let vs know,
    Our indiscretion sometimes serues vs well,
    When our deare plots do paule, and that should teach vs,
    There's a Diuinity that shapes our ends,
    3510Rough-hew them how we will.
    Hor. That is mo st certaine.
    Ham. Vp from my Cabin
    My sea-gowne scarft about me in the darke,
    Grop'd I to finde out them; had my de sire,
    3515Finger'd their Packet, and in fine, withdrew
    To mine owne roome againe, making so bold,
    (My feares forgetting manners) to vnseale
    Their grand Commi s sion, where I found Horatio,
    Oh royall knauery: An exact command,
    3520Larded with many seuerall sorts of reason;
    Importing Denmarks health, and Englands too,
    With hoo, such Bugges and Goblins in my life,
    That on the superuize no leasure bated,
    No not to stay the grinding of the Axe,
    3525My head shoud be struck off.
    Hor. I st po s sible?
    Ham. Here's the Commi s sion, read it at more leysure:
    But wilt thou heare me how I did proceed?
    Hor. I beseech you.
    3530 Ham. Being thus benetted round with Villaines,
    Ere I could make a Prologue to my braines,
    They had begun the Play. I sate me downe,
    Deuis'd a new Commi s sion, wrote it faire,
    I once did hold it as our Stati sts doe,
    3535A basene s s e to write faire; and laboured much
    How to forget that learning: but Sir now,
    It did me Yeomans seruice: wilt thou know
    The effects of what I wrote?
    Hor. I, good my Lord.
    3540 Ham. An earne st Coniuration from the King,
    As England was his faithfull Tributary,
    As loue betweene them, as the Palme should flouri sh,
    As Peace should still her wheaten Garland weare,
    And stand a Comma 'tweene their amities,
    3545And many such like A s sis of great charge,
    That on the view and know of these Contents,
    Without debatement further, more or le s s e,
    He should the bearers put to sodaine death,
    Not shriuing time allowed.
    3550 Hor. How was this seal'd?
    Ham. Why, euen in that was Heauen ordinate;
    I had my fathers Signet in my Purse,
    Which was the Modell of that Dani sh Seale:
    Folded the Writ vp in forme of the other,
    3555Subscrib'd it, gau't th' impre s sion, plac't it safely,
    The changeling neuer knowne: Now, the next day
    Was our Sea Fight, and what to this was sement,
    Thou know' st already.
    Hor. So Guilden sterne and Ro sincrance, go too't.
    3560 Ham. Why man, they did make loue to this imployment
    They are not neere my Conscience; their debate
    Doth by their owne in sinuation grow:
    'Tis dangerous, when the baser nature comes
    Betweene the pa s s e, and fell incensed points
    3565Of mighty oppo sites.
    Hor. Why, what a King is this?
    Ham. Does it not, think st thee, stand me now vpon
    He that bath kil'd my King, and whor'd my Mother,
    Popt in betweene th'election and my hopes,
    3570Throwne out his Angle for my proper life,
    And with such coozenage; is't not perfect conscience,
    To quit him with this arme? And is't not to be damn'd
    To let this Canker of our nature come
    In further euill.
    3575 Hor. It mu st be shortly knowne to him from England
    What is the i s s ue of the bu sine s s e there.
    Ham. It will be short,
    The interim's mine, and a mans life's no more
    Then to say one: but I am very sorry good Horatio,
    3580That to Laertes I forgot my selfe;
    For by the image of my Cause, I see
    The Portraiture of his; Ile count his fauours:
    But sure the brauery of his griefe did put me
    Into a Towring pa s sion.
    3585 Hor. Peace, who comes heere?
    Enter young Osricke.
    Osr. Your Lord ship is right welcome back to Den- (marke.
    Ham. I humbly thank you Sir, do st know this waterflie?
    Hor. No my good Lord.
    3590 Ham. Thy state is the more gracious; for 'tis a vice to
    know him: he hath much Land, and fertile; let a Bea st
    be Lord of Bea sts, and his Crib shall stand at the Kings
    Me s s e; 'tis a Chowgh; but as I saw spacious in the pos -
    se s sion of dirt.
    3595 Osr. Sweet Lord, if your friend ship were at leysure,
    I should impart a thing to you from his Maie sty.
    Ham. I will receiue it with all diligence of spirit; put
    your Bonet to his right vse, 'tis for the head.
    Osr. I thanke your Lord ship, 'tis very hot.
    3600 Ham. No, beleeue mee 'tis very cold, the winde is
    Osr. It is indifferent cold my Lord indeed.
    Ham. Mee thinkes it is very soultry, and hot for my