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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    Not Peer Reviewed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 Horatio, and others [including a Gentleman].
    What are they that would speak with me?
    Seafaring men, sir. They say they have letters for you.
    Let them come in.
    [Exit Gentleman.]
    I do not know from what part of the world I should be greeted, if not from Lord Hamlet.
    Enter Sailors.
    God bless you, sir.
    Let him bless thee to[o].
    'A shall, sir, an please him. There's a letter for you, sir. It came from th'ambassador that was bound for England, if your name be Horatio, as I am let to know it is.
    2985[He gives a letter.]
    [Reads the letter]
    Horatio, when thou shalt have overlooked this, give these fellows some means to the King; they have letters for him. Ere we were two days old at sea, a pirate of very warlike appointment gave us chase. Finding ourselves too slow of sail, we put on a compelled 2990valor, and in the grapple I boarded them. On the instant they got clear of our ship, so I alone became their prisoner. They have dealt with me like thieves of mercy, but they knew what they did: I am to do a turn for them. Let the King have the letters I have sent, and 2995repair thou to me with as much speed as thou wouldest fly death. I have words to speak in thine ear will make thee dumb, yet are they much too light for the bore of the matter. These good fellows will bring thee where I am. Rosencrantz and Guildenstern hold their course for England. Of them I have much to tell thee. Farewell. He that thou knowest thine, Hamlet.
    Come, I will [give] you way for these your letters,
    And do't the speedier that you may direct me
    3005To him from whom you brought them.