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Hamlet: Act III, Scene 2

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Hamlet
Act III, Scene 2

Elsinore. A hall in Elsinore castle.

  1. Enter Hamlet and three of the Players.

Hamlet

1 - 13
  1. Speak the speech, I pray you, as I pronounc’d it to
  2. you,trippingly on the tongue, but if you mouth it, as many
  3. of our players do, I had as lief the town-crier spoke my
  4. lines. Nor do not saw the air too much with your hand, thus,
  5. but use all gently, for in the very torrent, tempest, and,
  6. as I may say, whirlwind of your passion, you must acquire
  7. and beget a temperance that may give it smoothness. O, it
  8. offends me to the soul to hear a robustious periwig-pated
    Feb 25, 2019 Miko
    A periwig is a fancy wig. So “periwig-pated” describes someone wearing a periwig.
  9. fellow tear apassion to totters, to very rags, to spleet the
  10. ears of the groundlings, who for the most part are capable
  11. of nothing but inexplicable dumb shows and noise. I would
  12. have such a fellow whipt for o’erdoing Termagant, it
  13. out-Herods Herod, pray you avoid it.

First Player (Player King)

14
  1. I warrant your honor.

Hamlet

15 - 32
  1. Be not too tame neither, but let your own discretion be your
  2. tutor. Suit the action to the word, the word to the action,
  3. with this special observance, that you o’erstep not the
  4. modesty of nature: for any thing so o’erdone is from the
  5. purpose of playing, whose end, both at the first and now,
  6. was and is, to hold as ’twere the mirror up to nature: to
  7. show virtue her feature, scorn her own image, and the very
  8. age and body of the time his form and pressure. Now this
  9. overdone, or come tardy off, though it makes the unskillful
  10. laugh, cannot but make the judicious grieve; the censure of
  11. which one must in your allowance o’erweigh a whole theatre
  12. of others. O, there be players that I have seen playand
  13. heard others praise, and that highlynot to speak it
  14. profanely, that, neither having th’ accent of Christians nor
  15. the gait of Christian, pagan, nor man, have so strutted and
  16. bellow’d that I have thought some of Nature’s journeymen had
  17. made men, and not made them well, they imitated humanity so
  18. abominably.

First Player (Player King)

33
  1. I hope we have reform’d that indifferently with us, sir.

Hamlet

34 - 41
  1. O, reform it altogether. And let those that play your clowns
  2. speak no more than is set down for them, for there be of
  3. them that will themselves laugh to set on some quantity of
  4. barren spectators to laugh too, though in the mean time some
  5. necessary question of the play be then to be consider’d.
  6. That’s villainous, and shows a most pitiful ambition in the
  7. fool that uses it. Go make you ready.
  8. Exeunt Players.
  9. Enter Polonius, Guildenstern, and Rosencrantz.
  10. How now, my lord? Will the King hear this piece of work?

Polonius

42
  1. And the Queen too, and that presently.

Hamlet

43 - 44
  1. Bid the players make haste.
  2. Exit Polonius.
  3. Will you two help to hasten them?

Rosencrantz

45
  1. Ay, my lord.
  1. Exeunt they two.

Hamlet

46
  1. What ho, Horatio!
  1. Enter Horatio.

Horatio

47
  1. Here, sweet lord, at your service.

Hamlet

48 - 49
  1. Horatio, thou art e’en as just a man
  2. As e’er my conversation cop’d withal.

Horatio

50
  1. O my dear lord

Hamlet

51 - 82
  1.                 Nay, do not think I flatter,
  2. For what advancement may I hope from thee
  3. That no revenue hast but thy good spirits
  4. To feed and clothe thee? Why should the poor be flatter’d?
  5. No, let the candied tongue lick absurd pomp,
  6. And crook the pregnant hinges of the knee
  7. Where thrift may follow fawning. Dost thou hear?
  8. Since my dear soul was mistress of her choice
  9. And could of men distinguish her election,
  10. Sh’ hath seal’d thee for herself, for thou hast been
  11. As one in suff’ring all that suffers nothing,
  12. A man that Fortune’s buffets and rewards
  13. Hast ta’en with equal thanks; and blest are those
  14. Whose blood and judgement are so well co-meddled,
  15. That they are not a pipe for Fortune’s finger
  16. To sound what stop she please. Give me that man
  17. That is not passion’s slave, and I will wear him
  18. In my heart’s core, ay, in my heart of heart,
  19. As I do thee. Something too much of this.
  20. There is a play tonight before the King,
  21. One scene of it comes near the circumstance
  22. Which I have told thee of my father’s death.
  23. I prithee, when thou seest that act afoot,
  24. Even with the very comment of thy soul
  25. Observe my uncle. If his occulted guilt
  26. Do not itself unkennel in one speech,
  27. It is a damned ghost that we have seen,
  28. And my imaginations are as foul
  29. As Vulcan’s stithy. Give him heedful note,
  30. For I mine eyes will rivet to his face,
  31. And after we will both our judgements join
  32. In censure of his seeming.

Horatio

83 - 85
  1.                            Well, my lord.
  2. If ’a steal aught the whilst this play is playing,
  3. And scape detecting, I will pay the theft.
  1. Sound a flourish. Danish march. Enter Trumpets and
  2. Kettle-drums, King, Queen, Polonius, Ophelia, Rosencrantz,
  3. Guildenstern, and other Lords attendant, with his Guard
  4. carrying torches.

Hamlet

86 - 87
  1. They are coming to the play. I must be idle; Get you a
  2. place.

Claudius

88
  1. How fares our cousin Hamlet?

Hamlet

89 - 90
  1. Excellent, i’ faith, of the chameleon’s dish: I eat the air,
  2. promise-cramm’dyou cannot feed capons so.

Claudius

91 - 92
  1. I have nothing with this answer, Hamlet, these words are not
  2. mine.

Hamlet

93 - 94
  1. No, nor mine now.
  2. To Polonius.
  3. My lord, you play’d once i’ th’ university, you say?

Polonius

95
  1. That did I, my lord, and was accounted a good actor.

Hamlet

96
  1. What did you enact?

Polonius

97 - 98
  1. I did enact Julius Caesar. I was kill’d i’ th’ Capitol;
  2. Brutus kill’d me.

Hamlet

99 - 100
  1. It was a brute part of him to kill so capital a calf there.
  2. Be the players ready?

Rosencrantz

101
  1. Ay, my lord, they stay upon your patience.

Gertrude

102
  1. Come hither, my dear Hamlet, sit by me.

Hamlet

103
  1. No, good mother, here’s metal more attractive.
  1. Lying down at Ophelia’s feet.

Polonius

104
  1. To the King.
  2. O ho, do you mark that?

Hamlet

105
  1. Lady, shall I lie in your lap?

Ophelia

106
  1. No, my lord.

Hamlet

107
  1. I mean, my head upon your lap?

Ophelia

108
  1. Ay, my lord.

Hamlet

109
  1. Do you think I meant country matters?

Ophelia

110
  1. I think nothing, my lord.

Hamlet

111
  1. That’s a fair thought to lie between maids’ legs.

Ophelia

112
  1. What is, my lord?

Hamlet

113
  1. Nothing.

Ophelia

114
  1. You are merry, my lord.

Hamlet

115
  1. Who, I?

Ophelia

116
  1. Ay, my lord.

Hamlet

117 - 119
  1. O God, your only jig-maker. What should a man do but be
  2. merry, for look you how cheerfully my mother looks, and my
  3. father died within ’s two hours.

Ophelia

120
  1. Nay, ’tis twice two months, my lord.

Hamlet

121 - 127
  1. So long? Nay then let the dev’l wear black, for I’ll have a
  2. suit of sables. O heavens, die two months ago, and not
  3. forgotten yet? Then there’s hope a great man’s memory may
  4. outlive his life half a year, but, by’r lady, ’a must build
  5. churches then, or else shall ’a suffer not thinking on, with
  6. the hobby-horse, whose epitaph is, For O, for O, the
  7. hobby-horse is forgot.“
  1. The trumpets sound.
  1. Dumb show follows. Enter a King and a Queen very lovingly,
  2. the Queen embracing him and he her. She kneels and makes
  3. show of protestation unto him. He takes her up and declines
  4. his head upon her neck. He lies him down upon a bank of
  5. flowers. She, seeing him asleep, leaves him. Anon come in
  6. another man, takes off his crown, kisses it, pours poison in
  7. the sleeper’s ears, and leaves him. The Queen returns, finds
  8. the King dead, makes passionate action. The pois’ner with
  9. some three or four mutes come in again, seem to condole with
  10. her. The dead body is carried away. The pois’ner woos the
  11. Queen with gifts; she seems harsh and unwilling awhile, but
  12. in the end accepts love.
  1. Exeunt.

Ophelia

128
  1. What means this, my lord?

Hamlet

129
  1. Marry, this’ miching mallecho, it means mischief.

Ophelia

130
  1. Belike this show imports the argument of the play.
  1. Enter Player Prologue.

Hamlet

131 - 132
  1. We shall know by this fellow. The players cannot keep
  2. counsel, they’ll tell all.

Ophelia

133
  1. Will ’a tell us what this show meant?

Hamlet

134 - 135
  1. Ay, or any show that you will show him. Be not you asham’d
  2. to show, he’ll not shame to tell you what it means.

Ophelia

136
  1. You are naught, you are naught. I’ll mark the play.

Player Prologue

137 - 139
  1. For us, and for our tragedy,
  2. Here stooping to your clemency,
  3. We beg your hearing patiently.
  1. Exit.

Hamlet

140
  1. Is this a prologue, or the posy of a ring?

Ophelia

141
  1. ’Tis brief, my lord.

Hamlet

142
  1. As woman’s love.
  1. Enter two Players, King and Queen.

First Player (Player King)

143 - 148
  1. Full thirty times hath Phoebus’ cart gone round
  2. Neptune’s salt wash and Tellus’ orbed ground,
  3. And thirty dozen moons with borrowed sheen
  4. About the world have times twelve thirties been,
  5. Since love our hearts and Hymen did our hands
  6. Unite comutual in most sacred bands.

Player Queen

149 - 160
  1. So many journeys may the sun and moon
  2. Make us again count o’er ere love be done!
  3. But woe is me, you are so sick of late,
  4. So far from cheer and from your former state,
  5. That I distrust you. Yet though I distrust,
  6. Discomfort you, my lord, it nothing must,
  7. For women’s fear and love hold quantity,
  8. In neither aught, or in extremity.
  9. Now what my love is, proof hath made you know,
  10. And as my love is siz’d, my fear is so.
  11. Where love is great, the littlest doubts are fear;
  12. Where little fears grow great, great love grows there.

First Player (Player King)

161 - 165
  1. Faith, I must leave thee, love, and shortly too;
  2. My operant powers their functions leave to do,
  3. And thou shalt live in this fair world behind,
  4. Honor’d, belov’d, and haply one as kind
  5. For husband shalt thou

Player Queen

166 - 169
  1.                         O, confound the rest!
  2. Such love must needs be treason in my breast.
  3. In second husband let me be accurs’d!
  4. None wed the second but who kill’d the first.

Hamlet

170
  1. Aside.
  2. That’s wormwood!

Player Queen

171 - 174
  1. The instances that second marriage move
  2. Are base respects of thrift, but none of love.
  3. A second time I kill my husband dead,
  4. When second husband kisses me in bed.

First Player (Player King)

175 - 204
  1. I do believe you think what now you speak,
  2. But what we do determine, oft we break.
  3. Purpose is but the slave to memory,
  4. Of violent birth, but poor validity,
  5. Which now, the fruit unripe, sticks on the tree,
  6. But fall unshaken when they mellow be.
  7. Most necessary ’tis that we forget
  8. To pay ourselves what to ourselves is debt.
  9. What to ourselves in passion we propose,
  10. The passion ending, doth the purpose lose.
  11. The violence of either grief or joy
  12. Their own enactures with themselves destroy.
  13. Where joy most revels, grief doth most lament;
  14. Grief joys, joy grieves, on slender accident.
  15. This world is not for aye, nor ’tis not strange
  16. That even our loves should with our fortunes change:
  17. For ’tis a question left us yet to prove,
  18. Whether love lead fortune, or else fortune love.
  19. The great man down, you mark his favorite flies,
  20. The poor advanc’d makes friends of enemies.
  21. And hitherto doth love on fortune tend,
  22. For who not needs shall never lack a friend,
  23. And who in want a hollow friend doth try,
  24. Directly seasons him his enemy.
  25. But orderly to end where I begun,
  26. Our wills and fates do so contrary run
  27. That our devices still are overthrown,
  28. Our thoughts are ours, their ends none of our own:
  29. So think thou wilt no second husband wed,
  30. But die thy thoughts when thy first lord is dead.

Player Queen

205 - 212
  1. Nor earth to me give food, nor heaven light,
  2. Sport and repose lock from me day and night,
  3. To desperation turn my trust and hope,
  4. An anchor’s cheer in prison be my scope!
  5. Each opposite that blanks the face of joy
  6. Meet what I would have well and it destroy!
  7. Both here and hence pursue me lasting strife,
  8. If once I be a widow, ever I be a wife!

Hamlet

213
  1. If she should break it now!

First Player (Player King)

214 - 216
  1. ’Tis deeply sworn. Sweet, leave me here a while,
  2. My spirits grow dull, and fain I would beguile
  3. The tedious day with sleep.
  1. Sleeps.

Player Queen

217 - 218
  1.                             Sleep rock thy brain,
  2. And never come mischance between us twain!
  1. Exit.

Hamlet

219
  1. Madam, how like you this play?

Gertrude

220
  1. The lady doth protest too much, methinks.

Hamlet

221
  1. O but she’ll keep her word.

Claudius

222
  1. Have you heard the argument? Is there no offense in’t?

Hamlet

223 - 224
  1. No, no, they do but jest, poison in jestno offense i’ th’
  2. world.

Claudius

225
  1. What do you call the play?

Hamlet

226 - 232
  1. The Mouse-trap.” Marry, how? Tropically: this play is the
  2. image of a murder done in Vienna; Gonzago is the duke’s
  3. name, his wife, Baptista. You shall see anon. ’Tis a knavish
  4. piece of work, but what of that? Your Majesty, and we that
  5. have free souls, it touches us not. Let the gall’d jade
  6. winch, our withers are unwrung.
  7. Enter Player Lucianus.
  8. This is one Lucianus, nephew to the king.

Ophelia

233
  1. You are as good as a chorus, my lord.

Hamlet

234 - 235
  1. I could interpret between you and your love, if I could see
  2. the puppets dallying.

Ophelia

236
  1. You are keen, my lord, you are keen.

Hamlet

237
  1. It would cost you a groaning to take off mine edge.

Ophelia

238
  1. Still better, and worse.

Hamlet

239 - 241
  1. So you mistake your husbands. Begin, murderer, leave thy
  2. damnable faces and begin. Come, the croaking raven doth
  3. bellow for revenge.

Player Lucianus

242 - 247
  1. Thoughts black, hands apt, drugs fit, and time agreeing,
  2. Confederate season, else no creature seeing,
  3. Thou mixture rank, of midnight weeds collected,
  4. With Hecat’s ban thrice blasted, thrice infected,
  5. Thy natural magic and dire property
  6. On wholesome life usurps immediately.
  1. Pours the poison in his ears.

Hamlet

248 - 251
  1. ’A poisons him i’ th’ garden for his estate. His name’s
  2. Gonzago, the story is extant, and written in very choice
  3. Italian. You shall see anon how the murderer gets the love
  4. of Gonzago’s wife.

Ophelia

252
  1. The King rises.

Hamlet

253
  1. What, frighted with false fire?

Gertrude

254
  1. How fares my lord?

Polonius

255
  1. Give o’er the play.

Claudius

256
  1. Give me some light. Away!

Polonius

257
  1. Lights, lights, lights!
  1. Exeunt all but Hamlet and Horatio.

Hamlet

258 - 264
  1. Why, let the strucken deer go weep,
  2.                                      The hart ungalled play,
  3. For some must watch while some must sleep,
  4.                                            Thus runs the world away.”
  5. Would not this, sir, and a forest of feathersif the rest of
  6. my fortunes turn Turk with mewith two Provincial roses on
  7. my raz’d shoes, get me a fellowship in a cry of players?

Horatio

265
  1. Half a share.

Hamlet

266 - 270
  1. A whole one, I.
  2. For thou dost know, O Damon dear,
  3.                                    This realm dismantled was
  4. Of Jove himself, and now reigns here
  5.                                      A very, very”—pajock.

Horatio

271
  1. You might have rhym’d.

Hamlet

272 - 273
  1. O good Horatio, I’ll take the ghost’s word for a thousand
  2. pound. Didst perceive?

Horatio

274
  1. Very well, my lord.

Hamlet

275
  1. Upon the talk of the pois’ning?

Horatio

276
  1. I did very well note him.

Hamlet

277 - 280
  1. Ah, ha! Come, some music! Come, the recorders!
  2. For if the King like not the comedy,
  3. Why then belike he likes it not, perdy.
  4. Come, some music!
  1. Enter Rosencrantz and Guildenstern.

Guildenstern

281
  1. Good my lord, vouchsafe me a word with you.

Hamlet

282
  1. Sir, a whole history.

Guildenstern

283
  1. The King, sir

Hamlet

284
  1. Ay, sir, what of him?

Guildenstern

285
  1. Is in his retirement marvelous distemp’red.

Hamlet

286
  1. With drink, sir?

Guildenstern

287
  1. No, my lord, with choler.

Hamlet

288 - 290
  1. Your wisdom should show itself more richer to signify this
  2. to the doctor, for for me to put him to his purgation would
  3. perhaps plunge him into more choler.

Guildenstern

291 - 292
  1. Good my lord, put your discourse into some frame, and start
  2. not so wildly from my affair.

Hamlet

293
  1. I am tame, sir. Pronounce.

Guildenstern

294 - 295
  1. The Queen, your mother, in most great affliction of spirit,
  2. hath sent me to you.

Hamlet

296
  1. You are welcome.

Guildenstern

297 - 300
  1. Nay, good my lord, this courtesy is not of the right breed.
  2. If it shall please you to make me a wholesome answer, I will
  3. do your mother’s commandment; if not, your pardon and my
  4. return shall be the end of my business.

Hamlet

301
  1. Sir, I cannot.

Rosencrantz

302
  1. What, my lord?

Hamlet

303 - 306
  1. Make you a wholesome answermy wit’s diseas’d. But, sir,
  2. such answer as I can make, you shall command, or rather, as
  3. you say, my mother. Therefore no more, but to the matter: my
  4. mother, you say

Rosencrantz

307 - 308
  1. Then thus she says: your behavior hath struck her into
  2. amazement and admiration.

Hamlet

309 - 310
  1. O wonderful son, that can so ’stonish a mother! But is there
  2. no sequel at the heels of this mother’s admiration? Impart.

Rosencrantz

311 - 312
  1. She desires to speak with you in her closet ere you go to
  2. bed.

Hamlet

313 - 314
  1. We shall obey, were she ten times our mother. Have you any
  2. further trade with us?

Rosencrantz

315
  1. My lord, you once did love me.

Hamlet

316
  1. And do still, by these pickers and stealers.

Rosencrantz

317 - 319
  1. Good my lord, what is your cause of distemper? You do surely
  2. bar the door upon your own liberty if you deny your griefs
  3. to your friend.

Hamlet

320
  1. Sir, I lack advancement.

Rosencrantz

321 - 322
  1. How can that be, when you have the voice of the King himself
  2. for your succession in Denmark?

Hamlet

323 - 327
  1. Ay, sir, but While the grass grows”—the proverb is
  2. something musty.
  3. Enter the Players with recorders.
  4. O, the recorders! Let me see one.—To withdraw with youwhy
  5. do you go about to recover the wind of me, as if you would
  6. drive me into a toil?

Guildenstern

328 - 329
  1. O my lord, if my duty be too bold, my love is too
  2. unmannerly.

Hamlet

330
  1. I do not well understand that. Will you play upon this pipe?

Guildenstern

331
  1. My lord, I cannot.

Hamlet

332
  1. I pray you.

Guildenstern

333
  1. Believe me, I cannot.

Hamlet

334
  1. I do beseech you.

Guildenstern

335
  1. I know no touch of it, my lord.

Hamlet

336 - 339
  1. It is as easy as lying. Govern these ventages with your
  2. fingers and thumbs, give it breath with your mouth, and it
  3. will discourse most eloquent music. Look you, these are the
  4. stops.

Guildenstern

340 - 341
  1. But these cannot I command to any utt’rance of harmony. I
  2. have not the skill.

Hamlet

342 - 350
  1. Why, look you now, how unworthy a thing you make of me! You
  2. would play upon me, you would seem to know my stops, you
  3. would pluck out the heart of my mystery, you would sound me
  4. from my lowest note to the top of my compass; and there is
  5. much music, excellent voice, in this little organ, yet
  6. cannot you make it speak. ’Sblood, do you think I am easier
  7. to be play’d on than a pipe? Call me what instrument you
  8. will, though you fret me, yet you cannot play upon me.
  9. Enter Polonius.
  10. God bless you, sir.

Polonius

351
  1. My lord, the Queen would speak with you, and presently.

Hamlet

352
  1. Do you see yonder cloud that’s almost in shape of a camel?

Polonius

353
  1. By th’ mass and ’tis, like a camel indeed.

Hamlet

354
  1. Methinks it is like a weasel.

Polonius

355
  1. It is back’d like a weasel.

Hamlet

356
  1. Or like a whale.

Polonius

357
  1. Very like a whale.

Hamlet

358 - 359
  1. Then I will come to my mother by and by.
  2. Aside.
  3. They fool me to the top of my bent.—I will come by and by.

Polonius

360
  1. I will say so.
  1. Exit.

Hamlet

361 - 373
  1. By and by is easily said. Leave me, friends.
  2. Exeunt all but Hamlet.
  3. ’Tis now the very witching time of night,
  4. When churchyards yawn and hell itself breathes out
  5. Contagion to this world. Now could I drink hot blood,
  6. And do such bitter business as the day
  7. Would quake to look on. Soft, now to my mother.
  8. O heart, lose not thy nature! Let not ever
  9. The soul of Nero enter this firm bosom,
  10. Let me be cruel, not unnatural;
  11. I will speak daggers to her, but use none.
  12. My tongue and soul in this be hypocrites
  13. How in my words somever she be shent,
  14. To give them seals never my soul consent!
  1. Exit.
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