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  • 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    Not Peer Reviewed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)

    Enter Gho st, and Hamlet.
    Ham. Whether wilt thou leade me, speake, Ile goe no further.
    Gho st . Marke me.
    Ham. I will.
    685 Gho st . My houre is almo st come
    When I to sulphrus and tormenting flames
    Mu st render vp my selfe.
    Ham. Alas poore Gho st.
    Gho st . Pitty me not, but lend thy serious hearing
    690 To what I shall vnfold.
    Ham. Speake, I am bound to heare.
    Gho st . So art thou to reuenge, when thou shalt heare.
    Ham. What?
    Gho st . I am thy fathers spirit,
    695 Doomd for a certaine tearme to walke the night,
    And for the day confind to fa st in fires,
    Till the foule crimes done in my dayes of nature
    Are burnt and purg'd away: but that I am forbid
    To tell the secrets of my prison house,
    700 I could a tale vnfolde whose lighte st word
    Would harrow vp thy soule, freeze thy young blood,
    Make thy two eyes like stars start from their spheres,
    Thy knotted and combined locks to part,
    And each particuler haire to stand an end,
    705 Like quils vpon the fearefull Porpentine,
    But this eternall blazon mu st not be
    To eares of fle sh and blood, li st, li st, ô li st:
    If thou did' st euer thy deare father loue.
    Ham. O God.
    710 Gho st . Reuenge his foule, and mo st vnnaturall murther.
    Ham. Murther.
    Gho st . Murther mo st foule, as in the be st it is,
    But this mo st foule, strange and vnnaturall.
    Ham. Ha st me to know't, that I with wings as swift
    As meditation, or the thoughts of loue
    May sweepe to my reuenge.
    Gho st . I find thee apt,
    And duller should st thou be then the fat weede
    720 That rootes it selfe in ease on Lethe wharffe,
    Would' st thou not sturre in this; now Hamlet heare,
    Tis giuen out, that sleeping in my Orchard,
    A Serpent stung me, so the whole eare of Denmarke
    Is by a forged proce s s e of my death
    725 Ranckely abusde: but knowe thou noble Youth,
    The Serpent that did sting thy fathers life
    Now weares his Crowne.
    Ham. O my propheticke soule! my Vncle?
    Gho st . I that ince stuous, that adulterate bea st,
    730 With witchcraft of his wits, with trayterous gifts,
    O wicked wit, and giftes that haue the power
    So to seduce; wonne to his shamefull lu st
    The will of my mo st seeming vertuous Queene;
    O Hamlet, what falling off was there
    735 From me whose loue was of that dignitie
    That it went hand in hand, euen with the vowe
    I made to her in marriage, and to decline
    Vppon a wretch whose naturall gifts were poore,
    To those of mine; but vertue as it neuer will be mooued,
    740 Though lewdne s s e court it in a shape of heauen
    So but though to a radiant Angle linckt,
    Will sort it selfe in a cele stiall bed
    And pray on garbage.
    But soft, me thinkes I sent the morning ayre,
    Briefe let me be; sleeping within my Orchard,
    745 My cu stome alwayes of the afternoone,
    Vpon my secure houre, thy Vncle stole
    With iuyce of cursed Hebona in a viall,
    And in the porches of my eares did poure
    The leaprous di stilment, whose effect
    750 Holds such an enmitie with blood of man,
    That swift as quick siluer it courses through
    The naturall gates and allies of the body,
    And with a sodaine vigour it doth po s s e s s e
    And curde like eager droppings into milke,
    755 The thin and wholsome blood; so did it mine,
    And a mo st in stant tetter barckt about
    Mo st Lazerlike with vile and lothsome cru st
    All my smooth body.
    Thus was I sleeping by a brothers hand,
    760 Of life, of Crowne, of Queene at once dispatcht,
    Cut off euen in the blo s s omes of my sinne,
    Vnhuzled, disappointed, vnanueld,
    No reckning made, but sent to my account
    Withall my imperfections on my head,
    765 O horrible, ô horrible, mo st horrible.
    If thou ha st nature in thee beare it not,
    Let not the royall bed of Denmarke be
    A couch for luxury and damned ince st.
    But howsomeuer thou pursues this act,
    770 Tain't not thy minde, nor let thy soule contriue
    Again st thy mother ought, leaue her to heauen,
    And to those thornes that in her bosome lodge
    To prick and sting her, fare thee well at once,
    The Gloworme shewes the matine to be neere
    775 And gins to pale his vneffectuall fire,
    Adiew, adiew, adiew, remember me.
    Ham. O all you ho st of heauen, ô earth, what els,
    And shall I coupple hell, ô fie, hold, hold my hart,
    And you my sinnowes, growe not in stant old,
    780 But beare me swiftly vp; remember thee,
    I thou poore Gho st whiles memory holds a seate
    In this di stracted globe, remember thee,
    Yea, from the table of my memory
    Ile wipe away all triuiall fond records,
    785 All sawes of bookes, all formes, all pre s s ures pa st
    That youth and obseruation coppied there,
    And thy commandement all alone shall liue,
    Within the booke and volume of my braine
    Vnmixt with baser matter, yes by heauen,
    790 O mo st pernicious woman.
    O villaine, villaine, smiling damned villaine,
    My tables, meet it is I set it downe
    That one may smile, and smile, and be a villaine,
    At lea st I am sure it may be so in Denmarke.
    795 So Vncle, there you are, now to my word,
    It is adew, adew, remember me.
    I haue sworn't.
    Enter Horatio, and Marcellus.
    Hora. My Lord, my Lord.
    Mar. Lord Hamlet.
    800 Hora. Heauens secure him.
    Ham. So be it.
    Mar. Illo, ho, ho, my Lord.
    Ham. Hillo, ho, ho, boy come, and come.
    Mar. How i' st my noble Lord?
    805 Hora. What newes my Lord?
    Ham. O, wonderfull.
    Hora. Good my Lord tell it.
    Ham. No, you will reueale it.
    Hora. Not I my Lord by heauen.
    810 Mar. Nor I my Lord.
    Ham. How say you then, would hart of man once thinke it,
    But you'le be secret.
    Booth. I by heauen.
    Ham. There's neuer a villaine,
    Dwelling in all Denmarke
    815 But hee's an arrant knaue.
    Hora. There needes no Gho st my Lord, come from the graue
    To tell vs this.
    Ham. Why right, you are in the right,
    And so without more circum stance at all
    820 I hold it fit that we shake hands and part,
    You, as your bu sines and de sire shall poynt you,
    For euery man hath bu sines and de sire
    Such as it is, and for my owne poore part
    I will goe pray.
    825 Hora. These are but wilde and whurling words my Lord.
    Ham. I am sorry they offend you hartily,
    Yes faith hartily.
    Hora. There's no offence my Lord.
    Ham. Yes by Saint Patrick but there is Horatio,
    830 And much offence to, touching this vi sion heere,
    It is an hone st Gho st that let me tell you,
    For your de sire to knowe what is betweene vs
    Orema stret as you may, and now good friends,
    As you are friends, schollers, and souldiers,
    835 Giue me one poore reque st.
    Hora. What i' st my Lord, we will.
    Ham. Neuer make knowne what you haue seene to night.
    Booth. My Lord we will not.
    Ham. Nay but swear't.
    840 Hora. In faith my Lord not I.
    Mar. Nor I my Lord in faith.
    Ham. Vppon my sword.
    Mar. We haue sworne my Lord already.
    Ham. Indeede vppon my sword, indeed.
    845 Gho st cries vnder the Stage.
    845 Gho st . Sweare.
    Ham. Ha, ha, boy, say' st thou so, art thou there trupenny?
    Come on, you heare this fellowe in the Sellerige,
    Consent to sweare.
    Hora. Propose the oath my Lord.
    850 Ham. Neuer to speake of this that you haue seene
    Sweare by my sword.
    Gho st . Sweare.
    Ham. Hic, & vbique, then weele shift our ground:
    Come hether Gentlemen
    855 And lay your hands againe vpon my sword,
    Sweare by my sword
    Neuer to speake of this that you haue heard.
    Gho st . Sweare by his sword.
    Ham. Well sayd olde Mole, can' st worke it'h earth so fa st,
    860 A worthy Pioner, once more remooue good friends.
    Hora. O 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
    865 Heere as before, neuer so helpe you mercy,
    (How strange or odde so mere I beare my selfe,
    As I perchance heereafter shall thinke meet,
    To put an Anticke dispo sition on
    That you at such times seeing me, neuer shall
    870 With armes incombred thus, or this head shake,
    Or by pronouncing of some doubtfull phrase,
    As well, well, we knowe, or we could and if we would,
    Or if we li st to speake, or there be and if they might,
    Or such ambiguous giuing out, to note)
    875 That you knowe ought of me, this doe sweare,
    So grace and mercy at your mo st neede helpe you.
    Gho st . Sweare.
    Ham. Re st, re st, perturbed spirit: so Gentlemen,
    880 Withall my loue I doe commend me to you,
    And what so poore a man as Hamlet is,
    May doe t'expre s s e his loue and frending to you
    God willing shall not lack, let vs goe in together,
    And still your fingers on your lips I pray,
    885 The time is out of ioynt, ô cursed spight
    That euer I was borne to set it right.
    Nay come, lets goe together. Exeunt.