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Take it to heart? Fie!'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.
HAMLET'S SOLILOQUY ON HIS MOTHER'S MARRIAGE.
0, that this too too solid flesh would melt,
Thaw, and resolve* itself into a dew!
Or that the Everlasting had not fix'd
His canont 'gainst self-slaughter! O God! O God!
How weary, stale, flat, and unprofitable
Seem to me all the uses of this world!
Fie on't! O fie! '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,
Hyperions to a satyr: so loving to my mother,
That he might not beteem|| 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 wo-
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 1 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.
* Dissolve. t Law. Entirely,
§ Apollo. Suffer.
THE EXTENT OF HUMAN PERFECTION.
He was a man, take him for all in all,
I shall not look upon his like again.
CAUTIONS TO YOUNG FEMALES.
For Hamlet, and the trifling of his favour,
Hold it a fashion, and a toy in blood:
A violet in the youth of primy nature,
Forward, not permanent, sweet, not lasting,
The perfume and suppliance of a minute:
Then weigh what loss your honour may sustain,
If with too credent* ear you listf his songs;
Or lose your heart: or your chaste treasure open
To his unmaster'dt importunity.
Fear it, Ophelia, fear it, my dear sister;
And keep you in the rear of your affection,
Out of the shot and danger of desire.
The chariests maid is prodigal enough,
If she unmask her beauty to the moon:
Virtue itself 'scapes not calumnious strokes:
The canker galls the infants of the spring,
Too oft before their buttons be disclos'd;
And in the morn and liquid dew of youth
Contagious blastments are most imminent.
SATIRE ON UNGRACIOUS PASTORS.
I shall the effect of this good lesson keep, As watchmen to my heart: But, good my brother, Do not, as some ungracious pastors do, Show me the steep and thorny way to heaven; Whilst, like a puff’d and reckless|| libertine, Himself the primrose path of dalliance treads, And recks not his own reed.
ADVICE TO A SON GOING TO TRAVEL.
Give thy thoughts no tongue, Nor any unproportion'd thought his act. Be thou familiar, but by no means vulgar. The friends thou hast, and their adoption tried, * Believing. + Listen to. # Licentious. Most cautious.
Il Careless. T Regards not his own lessons.
Grapple them to thy soul with hooks of steel;
But do not dull thy palm* with entertainment
Of each new-hatch'd, unfledg'd comrade. Beware
Of entrance to a quarrel: but, being in,
Bear it that the opposer may beware of thee.
Give every man thine ear, but few thy voice:
Take each man's censure,t but reserve thy judga
Costly thy habit as thy purse can buy,
But not express'd in fancy; rich, not gaudy:
For the apparel oft proclaims the man;
And they in France, of the best rank and station,
Are most select and generous, chief Ş in that.
Neither a borrower, nor a lender be:
For loan oft loses both itself and friend;
And borrowing dulls the edge of husbandry.||
This above all,—To thine own self be true:
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man.
HAMLET ON THE APPEARANCE OF HIS FATHER'S
Angels and ministers of grace defend us!-
Be thou a spirit of health, or goblin damn'd,
Bring with thee airs from heaven, or blasts from hell
Be thy intents wicked or charitable,
Thou com’st in such a questionable shape,
That I will speak to thee; I'll call thee Hamlet,
King, father, royal Dane: 0, answer me;
Let me not burst in ignorance! but tell
Why thy canoniz'd bones, hearsed in death,
Have burst their cerements! why the sepulchre,
Wherein we saw thee quietly in-urn’d,
Hath opd his ponderous and marble jaws,
To cast thee up again! What may this mean,
That thou, dead corse, again, in complete steel
Revisit'st thus the glimpses of the moon,
Making night hideous; and we fools of nature,
* Palm of the hand. + Opinion. # Noble.
$ Chiefly. || Economy 1 Conversables
So horribly to shake our disposition,
With thoughts beyond the reaches of our souls?
THE MISCHIEFS IT MIGHT TEMPT HIM TO.
What, if it tempt you toward the flood, my lord,
Or to the dreadful summit of the cliff,
That beetlest o'er his base into the sea?
And there assume some other horrible form,
Which might deprive your sovereignty of reason,
And draw you into madness? think of it:
The very place puts toyst of desperation,
Without more motive, into every brain, -
That looks so many fathoms to the sea,
And hears it roar beneath.
SCENE. A more remote part of the Platforn.
Re-enter Ghost and HAMLET. Ham. Whither wilt thou lead me? speak, I'll go
Ghost. Mark me.
My hour is almost come,
When I to sulphurous and tormenting flames
Must render up myself.
Alas, poor ghost ! Ghost. Pity me not, but lend thy serious hearing To what I shall unfold. Ham.
Speak, I am bound hear. Ghost. So art thou to revenge, when thou shalt Ham. What?
Ghost. I am thy father's spirit; Doom'd for a certain term to walk the night; And, for the day, confin'd to fast in fires, Till the soul crimes, done in my days of nature, Are burnt and purg'd away. But that I am forbid To tell the secrets of my prison-house, I could a tale unfold, whose lightest word Would harrow up thy soul; freeze thy young blood; Make thy two eyes, like stars, start from their
spheres; Thy knotted and combined locks to part,
* Frame. | Hangs. } Whims.
Like quills upon the fretful porcupine:
But this eternal blazon* must not be
To ears of flesh and blood:-List, list, o list!
If ever thou didst thy dear father love.-
Ham. O heaven!
. Revenge his foul and most unnatural mur,
Ghost. Murder most foul, as in the best it is;
But this most foul, strange, and unnatural.
Han. Haste me to know it; that I, with wings as
As meditation, or the thoughts of love,
May sweep to my revenge.
I find thee apt;
And duller should'st thou be than the fat weed
That rots itself in ease on Lethe wharf,
Would'st thou not stir in this. Now, Hamlet, hear.
Tis given out, that sleeping in my orchard,
A serpent stung me; so the whole ear of Denmark
Is by a forged process of my death
Rankly abus'd: but know, thou noble youth,
The serpent that did sting thy father's life,
Now wears his crown.
Ham. O, my prophetic soul! my uncle!
Ghost. Ay, that incestuous, that adulterate beast,
With witchcraft of his wit, with traitorous gifts,
(0 wicked wit, and gifts, that have the power
So to seduce!) won to his shameful lust
The will of my most seeming virtuous queen:
0, Hamlet, what a falling-off was there!
From me whose love was of that dignity,
That it went hand in hand even with the vow
I made to her in marriage; and to decline
Upon a wretch whose natural gifts were poor
To those of mine!
But virtue, as it never will be mov'd,
Though lewdness court it in a shape of heaven;
So lust, though to a radiant angel link'd,
* Display. + Garden.