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That monster, custom, who all sense doth eat,
Of habits devil, is angel yet in this,
That to the use of actions fair and good
He likewise gives a frock or livery,
That aptly is put on.
And that shall lend a kind of easiness
To the next abstinence ; the next more easy ;
For use almost can change the stamp
And either mock the devil, or throw him out
With wondrous potency. Once more, good night ;
And when you are desirous to be blest,
I'll blessing beg of you.
For this same lord,
[Pointing to Polonius]
I do repent; but heaven hath pleased it so,
To punish me with this, and this with me,
That I must be their scourge and minister.
I will bestow him, and will answer well
The death I gave him. So, again, good night.
I must be cruel, only to be kind
Thus bad begins, and worse remains behind.-
One word more, good lady.
What shall I do?
Not this, by no means, that I bid you
Let the bloat king tempt you again to bed ;
Pinch wanton on your
his mouse ;
And let him, for a pair of reechy kisses,
Or paddling in your neck with his damn'd fingers,
Make you to ravel all this matter out,
That I essentially am not in madness,
But mad in craft. 'Twere good you
'Twere good you let him know ;
For who that's but a queen, fair, sober, wise,
Would from a paddock, from a bat, a gib,
Such dear concernings hide? who would do so ?
No, in despite of sense and secrecy,
Unpeg the basket on the house's top,
Let the birds fly, and, like the famous ape,
To try conclusions, in the basket creep,
And break your own neck down.
Be thou assur’d, if words be made of breath
And breath of life, I have no life to breathe
What thou hast said to me.
I must to England; you know that ?
Alack I had forgot—tis so concluded on.
There's letters seald ; and my two school-fellows,
(Whom I will trust as I will adders fang’d)
They bear the mandate ; they must sweep my way,
And marshal me to knavery. Let it work ;
For 'tis the sport to have the enginer
Hoist with his own petar ; and't shall go
But I will delve one yard below their mines,
And blow them at the moon : oh, 'tis most sweet
When in one line two crafts directly meet.
This man shall set me packing;
I'll lug the guts into the neighbour room.
Mother, good night. Indeed, this counsellor
Is now most still, most secret, and most grave,
Who was in life a most foolish prating knave.
Come, sir, to draw toward an end with you.
Good night, mother.
[Exeunt severally ; Hamlet dragging in Polonius]
A ROYAL APARTMENT IN THE CASTLE
Enter King, Queen, RosENCRANTZ, and GUILDENSTERN
There's matter in these sighs: these profound heaves :
You must translate ; 'tis fit we understand them.
Where is your son ?
Bestow this place on us a little while.
[Exeunt Rosencrantz and Guildenstern]
Ah, mine own lord, what have I seen to-night!
What, Gertrude? How does Hamlet ?
Mad as the sea and wind, when both contend
Which is the mightier : in his lawless fit,
Behind the arras hearing something stir,
Whips out his rapier, cries, “ A rat, a rat !”
And in this brainish apprehension kills
The unseen good old man.
O heavy deed!
It had been so with us had we been there :
His liberty is full of threats to all,
To you yourself, to us, to every one.
Alas, how shall this bloody deed be answer'd ?
It will be laid to us, whose providence
Should have kept short, restrain'd, and out of haunt,
This mad young man ; but so much was our love,
We would not understand what was most fit,
But, like the owner of a foul disease,
To keep it from divulging, let it feed
Even on the pith of life. Where is he gone ?
To draw apart the body he hath kill'd;
O’er whom, his very madness, like some ore
Among a mineral of metals base,
Shows itself pure ;
for what is done.
O Gertrude, come away
The sun no sooner shall the mountains touch
But we will ship him hence ; and this vile deed
We must, with all our majesty and skill,
Both countenance and excuse. Ho! Guildenstern!
Re-enter ROSENCRANTZ and GUILDENSTERN
Friends both, go join you with some further aid ;
Hamlet in madness hath Polonius slain,
And from his mother's closet hath he dragg'd him :
Go seek him out; speak fair, and bring the body
Into the chapel. I pray you, haste in this.
[Exeunt Rosencrantz and Guildenstern]
Come, Gertrude, we'll call up our wisest friends,
And let them know both what we mean to do
And what's untimely done,
Whose whisper o'er the world's diameter,
(As level as the cannon to his blank,
Transports his poison'd shot) may miss our name,
And hit the woundless air. O, come away!
My soul is full of discord and dismay.
[Exeunt King and Queen]
[Within) Hamlet ! Lord Hamlet !
But soft, what noise ? who calls on Hamlet ?
O, here they come.
Enter ROSENCRANTZ and GUILDENSTERN
What have you done, my lord, with the dead body?
Compounded it with dust, whereto 'tis kin.
Tell us where 'tis, that we may take it thence, and bear it
to the chapel.
Do not believe it.
That I can keep your counsel and not mine own.
Besides, to be demanded of a sponge : what replication
should be made by the son of a king ?
Take you me for a sponge, my lord ?
Ay, sir ; a sponge that soaks up the king's countenance,
his authorities, his rewards ; that makes his liberality your
store house. But such officers do the king best service
in the end ; he keeps them, like an ape doth nuts, in
the corner of his jaw ; first mouth'd, to be last swallowed.
When he needs what you have gleaned, it is but squeezing
you, and, sponge, you shall be dry again.
I understand you not, my lord.
I am glad of it; a knavish speech sleeps in a foolish ear.
My lord, you must tell us where the body is, and go
us to the king.
The body is with the king, but the king is not with the
body. The king is a thing-
“A thing," my lord ?
Of nothing : bring me to him.
[Exeunt Hamlet, Rosencrantz, and Guildenstern]