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  • Title: Hamlet (Quarto 1, 1603)
  • Textual editor: Eric Rasmussen
  • ISBN: 978-1-55058-434-9

    Copyright Internet Shakespeare Editions. This text may be freely used for educational, non-proift purposes; for all other uses contact the Coordinating Editor.
    Author: William Shakespeare
    Not Peer Reviewed

    Hamlet (Quarto 1, 1603)

    Enter Ghost and Hamlet.
    Ham. Ile go no farther, whither wilt thou leade me?
    Ghost Marke me.
    Ham. I will.
    Ghost I am thy fathers spirit, doomd for a time
    695To walke the night, and all the day
    Confinde in flaming fire,
    Till the foule crimes done in my dayes of Nature
    Are purged and burnt away.
    Ham. Alas poore Ghost.
    Ghost Nay pitty me not, but to my vnfolding
    Lend thy listning eare, but that I am forbid
    To tell the secrets of my prison house
    700I would a tale vnfold, whose lightest word
    Would harrow vp thy soule, freeze thy yong blood,
    Make thy two eyes like stars start from their spheres,
    Thy knotted and combined locks to part,
    And each particular haire to stand on end
    705Like quils vpon the fretfull Porpentine,
    But this same blazon must not be, to eares of flesh and blood
    Hamlet, if euer thou didst thy deere father loue.
    Ham. O God.
    710Gho. Reuenge his foule, and most vnnaturall murder:
    Ham. Murder.
    Ghost Yea, murder in the highest degree,
    As in the least tis bad,
    But mine most foule, beastly, and vnnaturall.
    Ham. Haste me to knowe it, that with wings as swift as
    meditation, or the thought of it, may sweepe to my reuenge.
    Ghost O I finde thee apt, and duller shouldst thou be
    Then the fat weede which rootes it selfe in ease
    720On Lethe wharffe: briefe let me be.
    Tis giuen out, that sleeping in my orchard,
    A Serpent stung me; so the whole eare of Denmarke
    Is with a forged Prosses of my death rankely abusde:
    725But know thou noble Youth: he that did sting
    Thy fathers heart, now weares his Crowne.
    Ham. O my prophetike soule, my vncle! my vncle!
    Ghost Yea he, that incestuous wretch, wonne to his will
    O wicked will, and gifts! that haue the power
    So to seduce my most seeming vertuous Queene,
    But vertne, as it neuer will be moued,
    740Though Lewdnesse court it in a shape of heauen,
    So Lust, thought to a radiant angle linckt,
    Would fate it selfe from a celestiall bedde,
    And prey on garbage: but soft, me thinkes
    I sent the mornings ayre, briefe let me be,
    Sleeping within my Orchard, my custome alwayes
    745In the after noone, vpon my secure houre
    Thy vncle came, with iuyce of Hebona
    In a viall, and through the porches of my eares
    Did powre the leaprous distilment, whose effect
    750Hold such an enmitie with blood of man,
    That swift as quickesilner, it posteth through
    The naturall gates and allies of the body,
    And turnes the thinne and wholesome blood
    Like eager dropings into milke.
    And all my smoothe body, barked, and tetterd ouer.
    Thus was I sleeping by a brothers hand
    760Of Crowne, of Queene, of life, of dignitie
    760At once depriued, no reckoning made of,
    But sent vnto my graue,
    With all my accompts and sinnes vpon my head,
    765O horrible, most horrible!
    765.1Ham. O God!
    ghost If thou hast nature in thee, beare it not,
    But howsoeuer, let not thy heart
    770Conspire against thy mother aught,
    Leaue her to heauen,
    And to the burthen that her conscience beares.
    I must be gone, the Glo-worme shewes the Martin
    To be neere, and gin's to pale his vneffectuall fire:
    Hamlet adue, adue, adue: remember me.
    Ham. O all you hoste of heauen! O earth, what else?
    And shall I couple hell; remember thee?
    Yes thou poore Ghost; from the tables
    Of my memorie, ile wipe away all sawes of Bookes,
    All triuiall fond conceites
    That euer youth, or else obseruance noted,
    And thy remembrance, all alone shall sit.
    Yes, yes, by heauen, a damnd pernitious villaine,
    Murderons, bawdy, smiling damned villaine,
    (My tables) meet it is I set it downe,
    That one may smile, and smile, and be a villayne;
    At least I am sure, it may be so in Denmarke.
    795So vncle, there you are, there you are.
    795Now to the words; it is adue adue: remember me,
    Soe t'is enough I haue sworne.
    Hor. My lord, my lord.
    Enter. Horatio,
    Mar. Lord Hamlet.
    Hor. Ill, lo, lo, ho, ho.
    Mar. Ill, lo, lo, so, ho, so, come boy, come.
    800Hor. Heauens secure him.
    Mar. How i'st my noble lord?
    805Hor. What news my lord?
    Ham. O wonderfull, wonderful.
    Hor. Good my lord tel it.
    Ham. No not I, you'l reueale it.
    Hor. Not I my Lord by heauen.
    810Mar. Nor I my Lord.
    Ham. How say you then? would hart of man
    Once thinke it? but you'l be secret.
    Both. I by heauen, my lord.
    Ham. There's neuer a villaine dwelling in all Denmarke,
    815But hee's an arrant knaue.
    Hor. There need no Ghost come from the graue to tell
    you this.
    Ham. Right, you are in the right, and therefore
    I holde it meet without more circumstance at all,
    820Wee shake hands and part; you as your busines
    And desiers shall leade you: for looke you,
    Euery man hath busines, and desires, such
    As it is, and for my owne poore parte, ile go pray.
    825Hor. These are but wild and wherling words, my Lord.
    Ham. I am sory they offend you; hartely, yes faith hartily.
    Hor. Ther's no offence my Lord.
    Ham. Yes by Saint Patrike but there is Horatio,
    830And much offence too, touching this vision,
    It is an honest ghost, that let mee tell you,
    For your desires to know what is betweene vs,
    Or'emaister it as you may:
    And now kind frends, as yon are frends,
    Schollers and gentlmen,
    835Grant mee one poore request.
    Both. What i'st my Lord?
    Ham. Neuer make known what you haue seene to night
    Both. My lord, we will not.
    Ham. Nay but sweare.
    840Hor. In faith my Lord not I.
    Mar. Nor I my Lord in faith.
    Ham. Nay vpon my sword, indeed vpon my sword.
    845Gho. Sweare.
    The Gost vnder the stage.
    Ham. Ha, ha, come you here, this fellow in the sellerige,
    Here consent to sweare.
    Hor. Propose the oth my Lord.
    850Ham. Neuer to speake what you haue seene to night,
    Sweare by my sword.
    Gost. Sweare.
    Ham. Hic & vbique; nay then weele shift our ground:
    Come hither Gentlemen, and lay your handes
    855Againe vpon this sword, neuer to speake
    Of that which you haue seene, sweare by my sword.
    Ghost Sweare.
    Ham. Well said old Mole, can'st worke in the earth?
    so fast, a worthy Pioner, once more remoue.
    Hor. Day and night but this is wondrous strange.
    Ham. And therefore as a stranger giue it welcome,
    There are more things in heauen and earth Horatio,
    Then are Dream't of, in your philosophie,
    But come here, as before you neuer shall
    How strange or odde soere I beare my selfe,
    As I perchance hereafter shall thinke meet,
    To put an Anticke disposition on,
    That you at such times seeing me, neuer shall
    870With Armes, incombred thus, or this head shake,
    Or by pronouncing some vndoubtfull phrase,
    As well well, wee know, or wee could and if we would,
    Or there be, and if they might, or such ambiguous:
    Giuing out to note, that you know aught of mee,
    875This not to doe, so grace, and mercie
    At your most need helpe you, sweare
    Ghost. sweare.
    Ham. Rest, rest, perturbed spirit: so gentlemen,
    880In all my loue I do commend mee to you,
    And what so poore a man as Hamlet may,
    To pleasure you, God willing shall not want,
    Nay come lett's go together,
    But stil your fingers on your lippes I pray,
    885The time is out of ioynt, O cursed spite,
    That euer I was borne to set it right,
    Nay come lett's go together.