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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    Not Peer Reviewed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)

    The Tragedie of
    0.15Prince of Denmarke.
    Enter Barnardo, and Francisco, two Centinels.
    Bar. VVHose there?
    5Fran. Nay answere me. Stand and vnfolde your selfe.
    Bar. Long liue the King,
    Fran. Barnardo.
    Bar. Hee.
    10Fran. You come most carefully vpon your houre,
    Bar. Tis now strooke twelfe, get thee to bed Francisco,
    Fran. For this reliefe much thanks, tis bitter cold,
    And I am sick at hart.
    Bar. Haue you had quiet guard?
    15Fran. Not a mouse stirring.
    Bar. Well, good night:
    If you doe meete Horatio and Marcellus,
    The riualls of my watch, bid them make hast.
    Enter Horatio, and Marcellus.
    Fran. I thinke I heare them, stand ho, who is there?
    20Hora. Friends to this ground.
    Mar. And Leedgemen to the Dane,
    Fran. Giue you good night.
    Mar. O, farwell honest souldiers, who hath relieu'd you?
    Fran. Barnardo hath my place; giue you good night. Exit Fran.
    Mar. Holla, Barnardo.
    Bar. Say, what is Horatio there?
    Hora. A peece of him.
    Bar. Welcome Horatio, welcome good Marcellus,
    30Hora. What, ha's this thing appeard againe to night?
    Bar. I haue seene nothing.
    Mar. Horatio saies tis but our fantasie,
    And will not let beliefe take holde of him,
    Touching this dreaded sight twice seene of vs,
    35Therefore I haue intreated him along,
    With vs to watch the minuts of this night,
    That if againe this apparision come,
    He may approoue our eyes and speake to it.
    Hora. Tush, tush, twill not appeare.
    40Bar. Sit downe a while,
    And let vs once againe assaile your eares,
    That are so fortified against our story,
    What we haue two nights seene.
    Hora. Well, sit we downe,
    45And let vs heare Barnardo speake of this.
    Bar. Last night of all,
    When yond same starre thats weastward from the pole,
    Had made his course t'illume that part of heauen
    Where now it burnes, Marcellus and my selfe
    50The bell then beating one.
    Enter Ghost.
    Mar. Peace, breake thee of, looke where it comes againe.
    Bar. In the same figure like the King thats dead.
    Mar. Thou art a scholler, speake to it Horatio.
    55Bar. Lookes a not like the King? marke it Horatio.
    Hora. Most like, it horrowes me with feare and wonder.
    Bar. It would be spoke to.
    Mar. Speake to it Horatio.
    Hora. What art thou that vsurpst this time of night,
    60Together with that faire and warlike forme,
    In which the Maiestie of buried Denmarke
    Did sometimes march, by heauen I charge thee speake.
    Mar. It is offended.
    Bar. See it staukes away.
    Hora. Stay, speake, speake, I charge thee speake. Exit Ghost.
    Mar. Tis gone and will not answere.
    Bar. How now Horatio, you tremble and looke pale,
    Is not this somthing more then phantasie?
    70What thinke you-ont?
    Hora. Before my God I might not this belieue,
    Without the sencible and true auouch
    Of mine owne eies.
    Mar. Is it not like the King?
    75Hora. As thou art to thy selfe.
    Such was the very Armor he had on,
    When he the ambitious Norway combated,
    So frownd he once, when in an angry parle
    He smot the sleaded pollax on the ice.
    80Tis strange.
    Mar. Thus twice before, and iump at this dead houre,
    With martiall stauke hath he gone by our watch.
    Hora. In what perticular thought, to worke I know not,
    But in the grosse and scope of mine opinion,
    85This bodes some strange eruption to our state.
    Mar. Good now sit downe, and tell me he that knowes,
    Why this same strikt and most obseruant watch
    So nightly toiles the subiect of the land,
    And with such dayly cost of brazon Cannon
    90And forraine marte, for implements of warre,
    Why such impresse of ship-writes, whose sore taske
    Does not deuide the Sunday from the weeke,
    What might be toward that this sweaty hast
    Doth make the night ioynt labourer with the day,
    95Who ist that can informe mee?
    Hora. That can I.
    At least the whisper goes so; our last King,
    Whose image euen but now appear'd to vs,
    Was as you knowe by Fortinbrasse of Norway,
    100Thereto prickt on by a most emulate pride
    Dar'd to the combat; in which our valiant Hamlet,
    (For so this side of our knowne world esteemd him)
    Did slay this Fortinbrasse, who by a seald compact
    Well ratified by lawe and heraldy
    105Did forfait (with his life) all these his lands
    Which he stood seaz'd of, to the conquerour.
    Against the which a moitie competent
    Was gaged by our King, which had returne
    To the inheritance of Fortinbrasse,
    110Had he bin vanquisher; as by the same comart,
    And carriage of the article desseigne,
    His fell to Hamlet; now Sir, young Fortinbrasse
    Of vnimprooued mettle, hot and full,
    Hath in the skirts of Norway heere and there
    115Sharkt vp a list of lawelesse resolutes
    For foode and diet to some enterprise
    That hath a stomacke in't, which is no other
    As it doth well appeare vnto our state
    But to recouer of vs by strong hand
    120And tearmes compulsatory, those foresaid lands
    So by his father lost; and this I take it,
    Is the maine motiue of our preparations
    The source of this our watch, and the chiefe head
    Of this post hast and Romeage in the land.
    124.1Bar. I thinke it be no other, but enso;
    Well may it sort that this portentous figure
    Comes armed through our watch so like the King
    That was and is the question of these warres.
    124.5Hora. A moth it is to trouble the mindes eye:
    In the most high and palmy state of Rome,
    A little ere the mightiest Iulius fell
    The graues stood tennatlesse, and the sheeted dead
    Did squeake and gibber in the Roman streets
    124.10As starres with traines of fier, and dewes of blood
    Disasters in the sunne; and the moist starre,
    Vpon whose influence Neptunes Empier stands,
    Was sicke almost to doomesday with eclipse.
    And euen the like precurse of feare euents
    124.15As harbindgers preceading still the fates
    And prologue to the Omen comming on
    Haue heauen and earth together demonstrated
    Vnto our Climatures and countrymen.
    125Enter Ghost.
    But soft, behold, loe where it comes againe
    Ile crosse it though it blast mee: stay illusion, It spreads his armes.
    If thou hast any sound or vse of voyce,
    Speake to me, if there be any good thing to be done
    130That may to thee doe ease, and grace to mee,
    Speake to me.
    If thou art priuie to thy countries fate
    Which happily foreknowing may auoyd
    O speake:
    Or if thou hast vphoorded in thy life
    Extorted treasure in the wombe of earth
    135For which they say your spirits oft walke in death. The cocke crowes.
    Speake of it, stay and speake, stop it Marcellus.
    Mar. Shall I strike it with my partizan?
    Hor. Doe if it will not stand.
    Bar. Tis heere.
    140Hor. Tis heere.
    Mar. Tis gone.
    We doe it wrong being so Maiesticall
    To offer it the showe of violence,
    For it is as the ayre, invulnerable,
    145And our vaine blowes malicious mockery.
    Bar. It was about to speake when the cock crewe.
    Hor. And then it started like a guilty thing,
    Vpon a fearefull summons; I haue heard,
    The Cock that is the trumpet to the morne,
    150Doth with his lofty and shrill sounding throat
    Awake the God of day, and at his warning
    Whether in sea or fire, in earth or ayre
    Th'extrauagant and erring spirit hies
    To his confine, and of the truth heerein
    155This present obiect made probation.
    Mar. It faded on the crowing of the Cock.
    Some say that euer gainst that season comes
    Wherein our Sauiours birth is celebrated
    This bird of dawning singeth all night long,
    160And then they say no spirit dare sturre abraode
    The nights are wholsome, then no plannets strike,
    No fairy takes, nor witch hath power to charme
    So hallowed, and so gratious is that time.
    Hora. So haue I heard and doe in part belieue it,
    165But looke the morne in russet mantle clad
    Walkes ore the dewe of yon high Eastward hill
    Breake we our watch vp and by my aduise
    Let vs impart what we haue seene to night
    Vnto young Hamlet, for vppon my life
    170This spirit dumb to vs, will speake to him:
    Doe you consent we shall acquaint him with it
    As needfull in our loues, fitting our duty.
    Mar. Lets doo't I pray, and I this morning knowe
    Where we shall find him most conuenient. Exeunt.