Internet Shakespeare Editions

About this text

  • Title: Hamlet (Folio 1, 1623)
  • Editor: David Bevington
  • Textual editor: Eric Rasmussen
  • ISBN: 978-1-55058-434-9

    Copyright David Bevington. This text may be freely used for educational, non-profit purposes; for all other uses contact the Editor.
    Author: William Shakespeare
    Editor: David Bevington
    Peer Reviewed

    Hamlet (Folio 1, 1623)

    The Tragedie of Hamlet. 259
    875That you know ought of me; this not to doe:
    So grace and mercy at your most neede helpe you:
    Ghost. Sweare.
    Ham. Rest, rest perturbed Spirit: so Gentlemen,
    880With all my loue I doe commend me to you;
    And what so poore a man as Hamlet is,
    May doe t' expresse his loue and friending to you,
    God willing shall not lacke: let vs goe in together,
    And still your fingers on your lippes I pray,
    885The time is out of ioynt: Oh cursed spight,
    That euer I was borne to set it right.
    Nay, come let's goe together. Exeunt.

    Actus Secundus.

    Enter Polonius, and Reynoldo.
    890Polon. Giue him his money, and these notes Reynoldo.
    Reynol. I will my Lord.
    Polon. You shall doe maruels wisely: good Reynoldo,
    Before you visite him you make inquiry
    Of his behauiour.
    895Reynol. My Lord, I did intend it.
    Polon. Marry, well said;
    Very well said. Looke you Sir,
    Enquire me first what Danskers are in Paris;
    And how, and who; what meanes; and where they keepe:
    900What company, at what expence: and finding
    By this encompassement and drift of question,
    That they doe know my sonne: Come you more neerer
    Then your particular demands will touch it,
    Take you as 'twere some distant knowledge of him,
    905And thus I know his father and his friends,
    And in part him. Doe you marke this Reynoldo?
    Reynol. I, very well my Lord.
    Polon. And in part him, but you may say not well;
    But if't be hee I meane, hees very wilde;
    910Addicted so and so; and there put on him
    What forgeries you please: marry, none so ranke,
    As may dishonour him; take heed of that:
    But Sir, such wanton, wild, and vsuall slips,
    As are Companions noted and most knowne
    915To youth and liberty.
    Reynol. As gaming my Lord.
    Polon. I, or drinking, fencing, swearing,
    Quarelling, drabbiug. You may goe so farre.
    Reynol. My Lord that would dishonour him.
    920Polon. Faith no, as you may season it in the charge;
    You must not put another scandall on him,
    That hee is open to Incontinencie;
    That's not my meaning: but breath his faults so quaintly,
    That they may seeme the taints of liberty;
    925The flash and out-breake of a fiery minde,
    A sauagenes in vnreclaim'd bloud of generall assault.
    Reynol. But my good Lord.
    Polon. Wherefore should you doe this?
    Reynol. I my Lord, I would know that.
    930Polon. Marry Sir, heere's my drift,
    And I belieue it is a fetch of warrant:
    You laying these slight sulleyes on my Sonne,
    As 'twere a thing a little soil'd i'th' working:
    Marke you your party in conuerse; him you would (sound,
    935Hauing euer seene. In the prenominate crimes,
    The youth you breath of guilty, be assur'd
    He closes with you in this consequence:
    Good sir, or so, or friend, or Gentleman.
    According to the Phrase and the Addition,
    940Of man and Country.
    Reynol. Very good my Lord.
    Polon. And then Sir does he this?
    He does: what was I about to say?
    I was about to say somthing: where did I leaue?
    945Reynol. At closes in the consequence:
    At friend, or so, and Gentleman.
    Polon. At closes in the consequence, I marry,
    He closes with you thus. I know the Gentleman,
    I saw him yesterday, or tother day;
    950Or then or then, with such and such; and as you say,
    There was he gaming, there o'retooke in's Rouse,
    There falling out at Tennis; or perchance,
    I saw him enter such a house of saile;
    Videlicet, a Brothell, or so forth. See you now;
    955Your bait of falshood, takes this Cape of truth;
    And thus doe we of wisedome and of reach
    With windlesses, and with assaies of Bias,
    By indirections finde directions out:
    So by my former Lecture and aduice
    960Shall you my Sonne; you haue me, haue you not?
    Reynol. My Lord I haue.
    Polon. God buy you; fare you well.
    Reynol. Good my Lord.
    Polon. Obserue his inclination in your selfe.
    965Reynol. I shall my Lord.
    Polon. And let him plye his Musicke.
    Reynol. Well, my Lord. Exit.

    Enter Ophelia.
    Polon. Farewell:
    970How now Ophelia, what's the matter?
    Ophe. Alas my Lord, I haue beene so affrighted.
    Polon. With what, in the name of Heauen?
    Ophe. My Lord, as I was sowing in my Chamber,
    Lord Hamlet with his doublet all vnbrac'd,
    975No hat vpon his head, his stockings foul'd,
    Vngartred, and downe giued to his Anckle,
    Pale as his shirt, his knees knocking each other,
    And with a looke so pitious in purport,
    As if he had been loosed out of hell,
    980To speake of horrors: he comes before me.
    Polon. Mad for thy Loue?
    Ophe. My Lord, I doe not know: but truly I do feare it.
    Polon. What said he?
    Ophe. 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 o're his brow,
    He fals to such perusall of my face,
    As he would draw it. Long staid he so,
    At last, a little shaking of mine Arme:
    990And thrice his head thus wauing vp and downe;
    He rais'd a sigh, so pittious and profound,
    That it did seeme to shatter all his bulke,
    And end his being. That done, he lets me goe,
    And with his head ouer his shoulders turn'd,
    995He seem'd to finde his way without his eyes,
    For out adores he went without their helpe;
    And to the last, bended their light on me.
    Polon. Goe with me, I will goe seeke the King,
    This is the very extasie of Loue,
    1000Whose violent property foredoes it selfe,