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Cor. Vol. In that, and all things, will we show our
duty. King. We doubt it nothing; heartily farewell.
[Ereunt VoLTIMAND and CORNELIUS, And now, Laertes, what's the news with
You told us of some suit; What is't, Laertes ?
You cannot speak of reason to the Dane,
And lose your voice : What would'st thou beg, La-
That shall not be my offer, not thy asking ?
The head is not more native to the heart,
The hand more instrumental to the mouth,
Than is the throne of Denmark to thy father.
What would'st thou have, Laertes ?
My dread lord,
Your leave and favour to return to France;
From whence though willingly I came to Denmark,
To show my duty in your coronation;
Yet now, I must confess, that duty done,
My thoughts and wishes bend again toward France,
And bow them to your gracious leave and pardon.
King. Have you your father's leave? What says
Pol. He hath my lord, [wrung from me my slow
By laboursome petition; and, at last,
Upon his will I seal'd my hard consent:]
I do beseech you, give him leave to go.
King. Take thy fair hour, Laertes; time be thine,
And thy best graces : spend it at thy will.-
But now, my cousin Hamlet, and my son,-
Ham. A little more than kin, and less than kind.5
[ Aside. King. How is it that the clouds still hang on you? Ham. Not so, my lord, I am too much i’the sun.
Queen. Good Hamlet, cast thy nighted colour off, And let thine eye look like a friend on Denmark. Do not, for ever, with thy valid lids 6 Seek for thy noble father in the dust : Thou know'st, 'tis common; all, that live, must die, Passing through nature to eternity.
Ham. Ay, madam, it is common.
Why seems it so particular with thee?
Ham. Seems madam! nay, it is; I know not seems.
'Tis not alone my inky cloak, good mother,
Nor customary suits of solemn black,
Nor windy suspiration of forc'd breath,
No, nor the fruitful river in the eye,
Nor the dejected haviour of the visage,
Together with all forms, modes, shows of grief,
That can denote me truly : These, indeed, seem,
For they are actions that a man might play:
But I have that within, which passeth show;
These, but the trappings and the suits of woe.
King. 'Tis sweet and commendable in your nature,
To give these mourning duties to your father :
But, you must-know, your father lost a father ;
That father lost his; and the survivor bound
s Nature, a little more than a kinsman, and less than a natural
6 Lowering eyes. VOL. X,
In filial obligation, for some term
To do obsequious sorrow : But to perséver
In obstinate condolement, is a course
Of impious stubbornness; 'tis unmanly grief:
It shows a will most incorrect to heaven ;
A heart unfortified, or mind impatient;
An understanding simple and unschool'd:
For what, we know, must be, and is as common
As any the most vulgar thing to sense,
Why should we, in our peevish opposition,
Take it to heart? Fye! 'tis a fault to heaven,
A fault against the dead, a fault to nature,
To reason most absurd; whose common theme
Is death of fathers, and who still hath cried,
From the first corse, till he that died to-day,
This must be so. We pray you, throw to earth
This unprevailing woe; and think of us
As of a father : for let the world take note,
You are the most immediate to our throne;
And, with no less nobility of love,
Than that which dearest father bears his son,
Do I impart toward you. For your intent
In going back to school in Wittenberg,
It is most retrograde to our desire:
And, we beseech you, bend you to remain
Here, in the cheer and comfort of our eye,
Our chiefest courtier, cousin, and our son.
Queen. Let not thy mother lose her
Hamlet; I pray thee, stay with us, go not to Wittenberg.
Ham. I shall in all my best obey you, madam.
King. Why, 'tis a loving and a fair reply; Be as ourself in Denmark.--Madam, come; This gentle and unforc'd accord of Hamlet Sits smiling to my heart: in grace whereof, No jocund health, that Denmark drinks to-day, But the great cannon to the clouds shall tell; And the king's rousethe heaven shall bruit ) again, Re-speaking earthly thunder. Come away.
[Exeunt King, Queen, Lords, fc. POLONIUS,
and LAERTES. Ham. O, that this too too solid flesh would melt, Thaw, and resolve' itself into a dew! Or that the Everlasting had not fix’d His canon? 'gainst self-slaughter! O God! O God! How weary, stale, flat, and unprofitable Seem to me all the uses of this world! Fye on't! O fye! 'tis an unweeded garden, That grows to seed; things rank, and gross in nature, Possess it merely. That it should come to this ! But two months dead!-nay, not so much, not two: So excellent a king; that was, to this, Hyperion + to a satyr: so loving to my mother, That he might not beteems the winds of heaven Visit her face too roughly. Heaven and earth! Must I remember? why, she would hang on him, As if increase of appetite had grown By what it fed on: And yet, within a month, Let me not think on't;-Frailty, thy name is woa
9 Report. 1 Dissolve. 2 Law.
4 Apollo. Suffer.
A little month; or ere those shoes were old,
With which she follow'd my poor father's body,
Like Niobe, all tears ;—why she, even she,
O heaven ! a beast, that wants discourse of reason,
Would have mourn'd longer,-married with my
My father's brother; but no more like my father,
Than I to Hercules: Within a month;
Ere yet the salt of most unrighteous tears
Had left the flushing in her galled eyes,
She married:-0 most wicked speed, to post
With such dexterity to incestuous sheets !
It is not, nor it cannot come to, good;
But break, my heart: for I must hold my tongue!
Enter HORATIO, BERNARDO, and MARCELLUS.
Hor. Hail to your lordship?
I am glad to see you well:
Horatio,mor I do forget myself.
Hor. The same, my lord, and your poor servant
Ham. Sir, my good friend; I'll change that name
with you. And what make you from Wittenberg, Horatio? Marcellus ?
Mar. My good lord,
Ham. I am very glad to see you; good even, sir.But what, in faith, make you from Wittenberg ?
Hor. A truant disposition, good my lord.
Ilam. I would not hear your enemy say so:
Nor shall you do mine ear that violence,
To make it truster of your own report