What do you like about the ISE? What could we do better? Please tell us in this 10-minute survey!

Start Survey

Internet Shakespeare Editions

Become a FriendSign in


Jump to line
Help on texts

About this text

  • Title: Hamlet (Quarto 2, 1604)
  • 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    Not Peer Reviewed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 2, 1604)

    The Tragedie of Hamlet
    beast, tis not so, it beginnes with Pirrhus, the rugged Pirrhus, he whose
    sable Armes,
    1495Black as his purpose did the night resemble,
    When he lay couched in th'omynous horse,
    Hath now this dread and black complection smeard,
    With heraldy more dismall head to foote,
    Now is he totall Gules horridly trickt
    1500With blood of fathers, mothers, daughters, sonnes,
    Bak'd and empasted with the parching streetes
    That lend a tirranus and a damned light
    To their Lords murther, rosted in wrath and fire,
    And thus ore-cised with coagulate gore,
    1505With eyes like Carbunkles, the hellish Phirrhus
    Old grandsire Priam seekes; so proceede you.
    Pol. Foregod my Lord well spoken, with good accent and good (discretion.
    Play. Anon he finds him,
    1510Striking too short at Greekes, his anticke sword
    Rebellious to his arme, lies where it fals,
    Repugnant to commaund; vnequall matcht,
    Pirrhus at Priam driues, in rage strikes wide,
    But with the whiffe and winde of his fell sword,
    1515Th'vnnerued father fals:
    Seeming to feele this blowe, with flaming top
    Stoopes to his base; and with a hiddious crash
    Takes prisoner Pirrhus eare, for loe his sword
    Which was declining on the milkie head
    1520Of reuerent Priam, seem'd i'th ayre to stick,
    So as a painted tirant Pirrhus stood
    Like a newtrall to his will and matter,
    Did nothing:
    But as we often see against some storme,
    A silence in the heauens, the racke stand still,
    1525The bold winds speechlesse, and the orbe belowe
    As hush as death, anon the dreadfull thunder
    Doth rend the region, so after Pirrhus pause,
    A rowsed vengeance sets him new a worke,
    And neuer did the Cyclops hammers fall,
    1530On Marses Armor forg'd for proofe eterne,
    With lesse remorse then Pirrhus bleeding sword
    Now falls on Priam.