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H A M L E T,
PRINCE OF DENMARK.
ACT I. SCENE I.
Elsinore. A Platform before the Castle
Ber. Who's there?
Fran. Nay, answer ine: stand and unfold Yourself.
Ber. Long live the King!
hour. : Ber. 'Tis now struck twelve; get thee to bed,
Francisco. Fran. For this relief, much thanks : 'tis biller
cold, And I am sick at heart.
Ber. Have you had quiet guard ?
Fran. Not a mouse stirriug.
you do meet Horatio and Marcellus, The rivals of my watch, bid them inake haste.
Enter HORATIO and MARCELLUS. Fran. I think, I hear them. Stand, ho!
Who is there?
Alar. And liegemen to the Dane.
Fran. Bernardo hath my place.
[ Exit FRANCISCO. Mar. Holla! Bernardo!
Hor. A piece of him.
cellus. Hor. . What, has this thing appear'd again to
night? Ber. I have seen pothing.
Mar. Horatio says, 'tis but our fantasy ;
Hor. Tush! tush! 'twill not appear.
Ber. Sit down awhile;
What we two nights have seen.
Hor. Well, sit we dowi,
Ber. Last night of all,
night, Together with that fair and warlike form In which the Majesty of buried Denmark Did sometimes march? by heaven 1 charge thee,
speak. Mar. It is offended. Ber. See! it stalks away. Hor. Stay; speak; speak 1 charge thee, speak.
[ Exit Ghost, Mar. 'Tis gone, and will not answer. Ler. How now, Horatio ? you tremble, and
look pale: Is not this something more than fantasy? What think you of it?
IIor. Before my God, I'might not this be
Vithout the sensible and true avouch i
Mar. Is it not like the King ?
Hor. As thou art to thyself: Such was the very armour he had on, When he the ambitions Norway combated; So frown’d he once, when, in an angry parle, Hle smote the fledded Polack on the ice. 'Tis strange: Mar. Thus, twice before, and jump at this
dead hour, With martial stalk hath he gone by our watch. Hor. In what particular thought to work, I
know pot; But, in the gross and scope of mine opinion, This bodes some strange eruption to our state. Mar. Good now, sit down, and tell he
that knows, Why this same strict and most observant wateh So nightlý toils the subject of the land ; Aud why such daily cast of brazen cannon, And foreign mart for implements of war; 'Why such impress of shipwrights, whose sore task Does not divide the sunday from the week : What might be toward, that this sweaty haste Doth make the night joint - labourer with the day; Who is't, that can inform me?
Hor. That can' I; At least the whisper goes so. Our last King, Whose image even but now appear’d to us, Was, as you know, by Fortinbras of Norway, Thereto prick'd on by a most emulate pride , Dar'd lo ihe combat; in which, our valiant Hamlet (For so this side of our known world esteem'd hiin,)
Did slay this Fortinbras; who, by a seal'd com
páct , Well ratified by law, and heraldry, Did forfeit, with his life, all those his lands, Which be stood seiz'd of, to the conqueror: Against the which, moiety competent Was gaged by our King; which had return'd To the inheritance of Fortinbras, Had he been vanquisher; as, by the same co
mart, And carriage of the article design'd, His fell to Hamlet: Now, Sir, young Fortinbras, Of unimproved mettle hot and full, Hath in the skirts of Norway, here and there, Shark'd up a list of landless resolutes, For food and diet, to some enterprize That hath a stomach in't: which is no olher (As it doth well appear unto our stale, ) But to recover of us, by strong hand, And terms compulsatory, those foresaid lands So by his father lost: And this, 1 take it, Is the main motive of our preparations; The source of this our walch ; and the chief head Of this post-haste and romage in the land.
[ Ber.. I think, it be no other, but even so : Well may it sort, that this portentous figure Comes armed ihrough our waich; so like the King That was, and is, the question of these wars.
Hor. A moté it is, to trouble the inind's eye,. In the most high and palmy state of Rome, A little ere the mightiest Julius fell, The graves stood tenantless, and the sheeted dead Did squeak and gibber in the Roman streets.
As, stars with trains of fire and dews of blood, Disasters in the sun; and the moist star,