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This; in obedience, hath my daughter shown me:
But how hath she
think of me? King. As of a man faithful and honourable, Pol. I would fain prove so.
But what might you think, When I had seen this hot love on the wing, (As I perceiv'd it, I must tell
that, Before my daughter told me,) what might you, Or my dear majesty your queen here, think, If I had play'd the desk, or table-book ; Or given my heart a working, mute and dumb; Or look'd upon this love with idle sight; What might you think? no, I went rounds to work, And my young mistress thus did I bespeak; Lord Hamlet is a prince out of thy sphere; This must not be : and then I precepts gave her, That she should lock herself from his resort, Admit no messengers, receive no tokens. Which done, she took the fruits of my advice; And he, repulsed, (a short tale to make,) Fell into a sadness; then into a fast; "Thence to a watch; thence into a weakness; Thence to a lightness; and, by this declension, Into the madness wherein now he raves, And all we mourn for.
s Roundly, without reserve.
you think, 'tis this? Queen. It may be, very likely. Pol. Hath there been such a time, (I'd fain know
Not that I know.
[Pointing to his Head and Shoulder.
How may we try it further?
gether, Here in the lobby. Queen.
So he does, indeed.
and I behind an arras 6 then;
We will try it.
Enter HAMLET, reading.
[Exeunt King, Queen, and Attendunts.
How does my good lord Hamlet?
Ham. Well, god-'a-mercy:
Ham. Ay, sir; to be honest, as this world goes, is to be one man picked out of ten thousand.
Pol. That's very true, my lord.
Ham. For if the sun breed maggots in a dead dog, being a god, kissing carrion, -Have you a daughter? Pol. I have, my lord.
. Ham. Let her not walk i’the sun : conception is a blessing; but as your daughter may conceive, 9 friend, look to't.
Pol. How say you by that? [Aside.] Still harping on my daughter:-yet he knew me not at first; he said, I was a fishmonger : He is far gone,
gone : and, truly in my youth I suffered much extremity for love; very near this. I'll speak to him again.- What do you read, my lord ?
Ham. Words, words, words !
Ham. Slanders, sir: for the satirical rogue says here, that old men have grey beards; that their faces are wrinkled; their eyes purging thick amber, and plum-tree gum; and that they have a plentiful lack
of wit, together with most weak hams: All of which, sir, though I most powerfully and potently believe, yet I hold it not honesty to have it thus set down; for yourself, sir, shall be as old as I am, if, like a crab, you could go backward.
Pol. Though this be madness, yet there's method in it. [Aside.] Will you walk out of the air, my lord?
Ham. Into my grave?
Pol. Indeed, that is out o'the air.—How pregnant' sometimes his replies are ! a happiness that often madness hits on, which reason and sanity? could not so prosperously be delivered of. I will leave him, and suddenly contrive the means of meeting between him and my daughter.-My honourable lord, I will most humbly take my leave of you.
Ham. You cannot, sir, take from me any thing that I will more willingly part withal; except my life, except my life, except my life. Pol. Fare you
lord. Ham. These tedious old fools !
Enter ROSENCRANTZ and GUILDENSTERN.
Pol. You go to seek the lord Hamlet; there he is. Ros. God save you, sir ! [To Polonius,
[Erit POLONIUS. Guil. My honour'd lord !Ros. My most dear lord !
Ham. My excellent good friends! How dost thou, Guildenstern? Ah, Rosencrantz! Good lads, how do ye both?
Ros. As the indifferent children of the earth.
Guil. Happy, in that we are not overhappy; On fortune's cap we are not the very
button. Ham. Nor the soles of her shoe? Ros. Neither, my lord.;
Ham. Then you live about her waist, or in the middle of her favours?
Guil. 'Faith, her privates we.
Ham. In the secret parts of fortune? O, most true; she is a strumpet. What news ?
Ros. None, my lord; but that the world is grown honest.
Ham. Then is dooms-day near : But your news is not true. Let me question more in particular : What have you, my good friends, deserved at the hands of fortune, that she sends you to prison hither? Guil. Prison, my
lord ! Ham. Denmark's a prison. Ros. Then is the world one.
Ham. A goodly one; in which there are many confines, wards, and dungeons; Denmark being one of the worst.
Ros. We think not so, my lord.
Ham. Why, then 'tis none to you; for there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so: to me it is a prison.
· Ros. Why, then your ambition makes it one; 'tis, too narrow for
mind. Ham. O God! I could be bounded in a nut-shell, and count myself a king of infinite space; were it not that I have bad dreams.
Guil. Which dreams, indeed, are ambition ; for