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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    Not Peer Reviewed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 old Polonius, with his man or two.
    890Pol. Giue him this money, and these notes Reynaldo.
    Rey. I will my Lord.
    Pol. You shall doe meruiles wisely good Reynaldo,
    Before you visite him, to make inquire
    Of his behauiour.
    895Rey. My Lord, I did intend it.
    Pol. Mary well said, very well said; looke you sir,
    Enquire me first what Danskers are in Parris,
    And how, and who, what meanes, and where they keepe,
    900What companie, at what expence, and finding
    By this encompasment, and drift of question
    That they doe know my sonne, come you more neerer
    Then your perticuler demaunds will tuch it,
    Take you as t'were some distant knowledge of him,
    905As thus, I know his father, and his friends,
    And in part him, doe you marke this Reynaldo?
    Rey. I, very well my Lord.
    Pol. And in part him, but you may say, not well,
    But y'ft be he I meane, hee's very wilde,
    910Adicted so and so, and there put on him
    What forgeries you please, marry none so ranck
    As may dishonour him, take heede of that,
    But sir, such wanton, wild, and vsuall slips,
    As are companions noted and most knowne
    915To youth and libertie.
    Rey. As gaming my Lord.
    Pol. I, or drinking, fencing, swearing,
    Quarrelling, drabbing, you may goe so far.
    Rey. My Lord, that would dishonour him.
    920Pol. Fayth as you may season it in the charge.
    You must not put another scandell on him,
    That he is open to incontinencie,
    That's not my meaning, but breath his faults so quently
    That they may seeme the taints of libertie,
    925The flash and out-breake of a fierie mind,
    A sauagenes in vnreclamed blood,
    Of generall assault.
    Rey. But my good Lord.
    Pol. Wherefore should you doe this?
    Rey. I my Lord, I would know that.
    930Pol. Marry sir, heer's my drift,
    And I belieue it is a fetch of wit,
    You laying these slight sallies on my sonne
    As t'were a thing a little soyld with working,
    Marke you, your partie in conuerse, him you would sound
    935Hauing euer seene in the prenominat crimes
    The youth you breath of guiltie, be assur'd
    He closes with you in this consequence,
    Good sir, (or so,) or friend, or gentleman,
    According to the phrase, or the addistion
    940Of man and country.
    Rey. Very good my Lord.
    Pol. And then sir doos a this, a doos, what was I about to say?
    By the masse I was about to say something,
    Where did I leaue?
    945Rey. At closes in the consequence.
    Pol. At closes in the consequence, I marry,
    He closes thus, I know the gentleman,
    I saw him yesterday, or th'other day,
    950Or then, or then, with such or such, and as you say,
    There was a gaming there, or tooke in's rowse,
    There falling out at Tennis, or perchance
    I saw him enter such a house of sale,
    Videlizet, a brothell, or so foorth, see you now,
    955Your bait of falshood take this carpe of truth,
    And thus doe we of wisedome, and of reach,
    With windlesses, and with assaies of bias,
    By indirections find directions out,
    So by my former lecture and aduise
    960Shall you my sonne; you haue me, haue you not?
    Rey. My Lord, I haue.
    Pol. God buy ye, far ye well.
    Rey. Good my Lord.
    Pol. Obserue his inclination in your selfe.
    965Rey. I shall my Lord.
    Pol. And let him ply his musique.
    Rey. Well my Lord. Exit Rey.
    Enter Ophelia.
    Pol. Farewell. How now Ophelia, whats the matter?
    Oph. O my Lord, my Lord, I haue beene so affrighted,
    Pol. With what i'th name of God?
    Ophe. My Lord, as I was sowing in my closset,
    Lord Hamlet with his doublet all vnbrac'd,
    975No hat vpon his head, his stockins fouled,
    Vngartred, and downe gyued to his ancle,
    Pale as his shirt, his knees knocking each other,
    And with a looke so pittious in purport
    As if he had been loosed out of hell
    980To speake of horrors, he comes before me.
    Pol. Mad for thy loue?
    Oph. My lord I doe not know,
    But truly I doe feare it.
    Pol. What said he?
    Oph. He tooke me by the wrist, and held me hard,
    985Then goes he to the length of all his arme,
    And with his other hand thus ore his brow,
    He falls to such perusall of my face
    As a would draw it, long stayd he so,
    At last, a little shaking of mine arme,
    990And thrice his head thus wauing vp and downe,
    He raisd a sigh so pittious and profound
    As it did seeme to shatter all his bulke,
    And end his beeing; that done, he lets me goe,
    And with his head ouer his shoulder turn'd
    995Hee seem'd to find his way without his eyes,
    For out adoores he went without theyr helps,
    And to the last bended their light on me.
    Pol. Come, goe with mee, I will goe seeke the King,
    This is the very extacie of loue,
    1000Whose violent propertie fordoos it selfe,
    And leades the will to desperat vndertakings
    As oft as any passions vnder heauen
    That dooes afflict our natures: I am sorry,
    What, haue you giuen him any hard words of late?
    1005Oph. No my good Lord, but as you did commaund
    I did repell his letters, and denied
    His accesse to me.
    Pol. That hath made him mad.
    I am sorry, that with better heede and iudgement
    1010I had not coted him, I fear'd he did but trifle
    And meant to wrack thee, but beshrow my Ielousie:
    By heauen it is as proper to our age
    To cast beyond our selues in our opinions,
    As it is common for the younger sort
    1015To lack discretion; come, goe we to the King,
    This must be knowne, which beeing kept close, might moue
    More griefe to hide, then hate to vtter loue,
    Come. Exeunt.