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Hamlet: Act III, Scene 1

Hamlet
Act III, Scene 1

Scene 1

Elsinore. A room in Elsinore castle.

  1. Enter King, Queen, Polonius, Ophelia, Rosencrantz,
  2. Guildenstern, Lords.

Claudius

1 - 4
  1. And can you by no drift of conference
  2. Get from him why he puts on this confusion,
  3. Grating so harshly all his days of quiet
  4. With turbulent and dangerous lunacy?

Rosencrantz

5 - 6
  1. He does confess he feels himself distracted,
  2. But from what cause ’a will by no means speak.

Guildenstern

7 - 10
  1. Nor do we find him forward to be sounded,
  2. But with a crafty madness keeps aloof
  3. When we would bring him on to some confession
  4. Of his true state.

Gertrude

11
  1.                    Did he receive you well?

Rosencrantz

12
  1. Most like a gentleman.

Guildenstern

13
  1. But with much forcing of his disposition.

Rosencrantz

14 - 15
  1. Niggard of question, but of our demands
  2. Most free in his reply.

Gertrude

16 - 17
  1.                         Did you assay him
  2. To any pastime?

Rosencrantz

18 - 23
  1. Madam, it so fell out that certain players
  2. We o’erraught on the way; of these we told him,
  3. And there did seem in him a kind of joy
  4. To hear of it. They are here about the court,
  5. And as I think, they have already order
  6. This night to play before him.

Polonius

24 - 26
  1.                                ’Tis most true,
  2. And he beseech’d me to entreat your Majesties
  3. To hear and see the matter.

Claudius

27 - 30
  1. With all my heart, and it doth much content me
  2. To hear him so inclin’d.
  3. Good gentlemen, give him a further edge,
  4. And drive his purpose into these delights.

Rosencrantz

31
  1. We shall, my lord.
  1. Exeunt Rosencrantz and Guildenstern.

Claudius

32 - 40
  1.                    Sweet Gertrude, leave us two,
  2. For we have closely sent for Hamlet hither,
  3. That he, as ’twere by accident, may here
  4. Affront Ophelia. Her father and myself,
  5. We’ll so bestow ourselves that, seeing unseen,
  6. We may of their encounter frankly judge,
  7. And gather by him, as he is behav’d,
  8. If’t be th’ affliction of his love or no
  9. That thus he suffers for.

Gertrude

41 - 46
  1.                           I shall obey you.
  2. And for your part, Ophelia, I do wish
  3. That your good beauties be the happy cause
  4. Of Hamlet’s wildness. So shall I hope your virtues
  5. Will bring him to his wonted way again,
  6. To both your honors.

Ophelia

47
  1.                      Madam, I wish it may.
  1. Exit Queen.

Polonius

48 - 55
  1. Ophelia, walk you here.—Gracious, so please you,
  2. We will bestow ourselves.
  3. To Ophelia.
  4. Read on this book,
  5. That show of such an exercise may color
  6. Your loneliness. We are oft to blame in this
  7. ’Tis too much prov’dthat with devotion’s visage
  8. And pious action we do sugar o’er
  9. The devil himself.

Claudius

56 - 61
  1. Aside.
  2.                    O, ’tis too true!
  3. How smart a lash that speech doth give my conscience!
  4. The harlot’s cheek, beautied with plast’ring art,
  5. Is not more ugly to the thing that helps it
  6. Than is my deed to my most painted word.
  7. O heavy burden!

Polonius

62
  1. I hear him coming. Withdraw, my lord.
  1. Exeunt King and Polonius.
  1. Enter Hamlet.

Hamlet

63 - 97
  1. To be, or not to be, that is the question:
  2. Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer
  3. The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
  4. Or to take arms against a sea of troubles,
  5. And by opposing, end them. To die, to sleep
  6. No more, and by a sleep to say we end
  7. The heart-ache and the thousand natural shocks
  8. That flesh is heir to; ’tis a consummation
  9. Devoutly to be wish’d. To die, to sleep
  10. To sleep, perchance to dreamay, there’s the rub,
  11. For in that sleep of death what dreams may come,
  12. When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
  13. Must give us pause; there’s the respect
  14. That makes calamity of so long life:
  15. For who would bear the whips and scorns of time,
  16. Th’ oppressor’s wrong, the proud man’s contumely,
  17. The pangs of despis’d love, the law’s delay,
  18. The insolence of office, and the spurns
  19. That patient merit of th’ unworthy takes,
  20. When he himself might his quietus make
  21. With a bare bodkin; who would fardels bear,
  22. To grunt and sweat under a weary life,
  23. But that the dread of something after death,
  24. The undiscover’d country, from whose bourn
  25. No traveler returns, puzzles the will,
  26. And makes us rather bear those ills we have,
  27. Than fly to others that we know not of?
  28. Thus conscience does make cowards of us all,
  29. And thus the native hue of resolution
  30. Is sicklied o’er with the pale cast of thought,
  31. And enterprises of great pitch and moment
  32. With this regard their currents turn awry,
  33. And lose the name of action.—Soft you now,
  34. The fair Ophelia. Nymph, in thy orisons
  35. Be all my sins rememb’red.

Ophelia

98 - 99
  1.                            Good my lord,
  2. How does your honor for this many a day?

Hamlet

100
  1. I humbly thank you, well, well, well.

Ophelia

101 - 103
  1. My lord, I have remembrances of yours
  2. That I have longed long to redeliver.
  3. I pray you now receive them.

Hamlet

104 - 105
  1.                              No, not I,
  2. I never gave you aught.

Ophelia

106 - 111
  1. My honor’d lord, you know right well you did,
  2. And with them words of so sweet breath compos’d
  3. As made these things more rich. Their perfume lost,
  4. Take these again, for to the noble mind
  5. Rich gifts wax poor when givers prove unkind.
  6. There, my lord.

Hamlet

112
  1. Ha, ha! Are you honest?

Ophelia

113
  1. My lord?

Hamlet

114
  1. Are you fair?

Ophelia

115
  1. What means your lordship?

Hamlet

116 - 117
  1. That if you be honest and fair, your honesty should admit no
  2. discourse to your beauty.

Ophelia

118 - 119
  1. Could beauty, my lord, have better commerce than with
  2. honesty?

Hamlet

120 - 124
  1. Ay, truly, for the power of beauty will sooner transform
  2. honesty from what it is to a bawd than the force of honesty
  3. can translate beauty into his likeness. This was sometime a
  4. paradox, but now the time gives it proof. I did love you
  5. once.

Ophelia

125
  1. Indeed, my lord, you made me believe so.

Hamlet

126 - 128
  1. You should not have believ’d me, for virtue cannot so
  2. inoculate our old stock but we shall relish of it. I lov’d
  3. you not.

Ophelia

129
  1. I was the more deceiv’d.

Hamlet

130 - 138
  1. Get thee to a nunn’ry, why wouldst thou be a breeder of
  2. sinners? I am myself indifferent honest, but yet I could
  3. accuse me of such things that it were better my mother had
  4. not borne me: I am very proud, revengeful, ambitious, with
  5. more offenses at my beck than I have thoughts to put them
  6. in, imagination to give them shape, or time to act them in.
  7. What should such fellows as I do crawling between earth and
  8. heaven? We are arrant knaves, believe none of us. Go thy
  9. ways to a nunn’ry. Where’s your father?

Ophelia

139
  1. At home, my lord.

Hamlet

140 - 141
  1. Let the doors be shut upon him, that he may play the fool no
  2. where but in ’s own house. Farewell.

Ophelia

142
  1. O, help him, you sweet heavens!

Hamlet

143 - 148
  1. If thou dost marry, I’ll give thee this plague for thy
  2. dowry: be thou as chaste as ice, as pure as snow, thou shalt
  3. not escape calumny. Get thee to a nunn’ry, farewell. Or if
  4. thou wilt needs marry, marry a fool, for wise men know well
  5. enough what monsters you make of them. To a nunn’ry, go, and
  6. quickly too. Farewell.

Ophelia

149
  1. Heavenly powers, restore him!

Hamlet

150 - 156
  1. I have heard of your paintings, well enough. God hath given
  2. you one face, and you make yourselves another. You jig and
  3. amble, and you lisp, you nickname God’s creatures and make
  4. your wantonness your ignorance. Go to, I’ll no more on’t, it
  5. hath made me mad. I say we will have no more marriage. Those
  6. that are married already (all but one) shall live, the rest
  7. shall keep as they are. To a nunn’ry, go.
  1. Exit.

Ophelia

157 - 168
  1. O, what a noble mind is here o’erthrown!
  2. The courtier’s, soldier’s, scholar’s, eye, tongue, sword,
  3. Th’ expectation and rose of the fair state,
  4. The glass of fashion and the mould of form,
  5. Th’ observ’d of all observers, quite, quite down!
  6. And I, of ladies most deject and wretched,
  7. That suck’d the honey of his music vows,
  8. Now see that noble and most sovereign reason
  9. Like sweet bells jangled out of time, and harsh;
  10. That unmatch’d form and stature of blown youth
  11. Blasted with ecstasy. O, woe is me
  12. T’ have seen what I have seen, see what I see!
  1. Ophelia withdraws.
  1. Enter King and Polonius.

Claudius

169 - 182
  1. Love? His affections do not that way tend,
  2. Nor what he spake, though it lack’d form a little,
  3. Was not like madness. There’s something in his soul
  4. O’er which his melancholy sits on brood,
  5. And I do doubt the hatch and the disclose
  6. Will be some danger; which for to prevent,
  7. I have in quick determination
  8. Thus set it down: he shall with speed to England
  9. For the demand of our neglected tribute.
  10. Haply the seas, and countries different,
  11. With variable objects, shall expel
  12. This something-settled matter in his heart,
  13. Whereon his brains still beating puts him thus
  14. From fashion of himself. What think you on’t?

Polonius

183 - 195
  1. It shall do well; but yet do I believe
  2. The origin and commencement of his grief
  3. Sprung from neglected love.
  4. Ophelia comes forward.
  5.                             How now, Ophelia?
  6. You need not tell us what Lord Hamlet said,
  7. We heard it all. My lord, do as you please,
  8. But if you hold it fit, after the play
  9. Let his queen-mother all alone entreat him
  10. To show his grief. Let her be round with him,
  11. And I’ll be plac’d (so please you) in the ear
  12. Of all their conference. If she find him not,
  13. To England send him, or confine him where
  14. Your wisdom best shall think.

Claudius

196 - 197
  1.                               It shall be so.
  2. Madness in great ones must not unwatch’d go.
  1. Exeunt.
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