Obrázky stránek

Were thicker than itself with brother's blood ? Is there not rain enough in the sweet heavens, To wash it white as snow? Whereto serves

mercy, But to confront the visage of offence? And wbat’s in prayer, but this two-fold force,To be forestalled, ere we come to fall, Or pardon'd, being down? Then I'll look up; My fault is past. But, 0, what form of prayer can serve my turn? Forgive me my foul mur

der! That cannot be ; since I am still possess'd Of those effects for which I did the murder, My crown, mine own ambition, and my queen. May one be pardon'd, and retain the offence? In the corrupted currents of this world, Offence's gilded hand may shove by justice; And oft 'tis seen, the wicked prize itself Buys out the law : But 'tis not so above: There is no shuffling, there the action lies In bis true nature: and we ourselves compell’d, Even to the teeth and forehead of our faults, To give in evidence. What then? what rests? Try what repentance can: What can it not? Yet what can it, when one cannot repent? O wretched state! O bosom, black as death! O limed soul; tbat struggling to be free, Art more engag'd! Help, angels, make assay! Bow, stubborn knees! and, heart, with strings

of steel, Be soft as sinews of the new-born babe ; All may be well!

[Retires and kneels. Enter HAMLET. Ham. Now might I do it, pat, now he is

praying; And now I'll do't; and so he goes to heaven: And so am 1 reveng'd? That would be scann'd: A villain kills my father; and, for that, I, his sole son, do this same villain send To heaven. Why, this is hire and salary, not revenge. He took my father grossly full of bread; With all bis crimes broad blown, as flush as May; And, how his audit stands, who knows, save


[ocr errors]

But, in our circumstance and course of thought,
'Tis heavy with him : And am I then reveng'd,
To take bim in the purging of his soul,
When he is fit and season'd for his passage ?
Up, sword; and know thou a more horrid hent:
When he is drunk, asleep, or in bis rage;
Or in the incestuous pleasores of his bed;
At gaming, swearing; or about some act
That has no relish of salvation in't:
Then trip him, that bis heels may kick at heaven:
And that his soul may be as damn'd, and black,
As hell, whereto it goes. My mother stays:
This physick but prolongs thy sickly days.

[Exit. The King rises and advances. King. My words fly up, my thoughts remain

below: Words, without thoughts, never to heaven go.

[Erit. SCENE IV. Another Room in the same.

Enter Queen and POLONIUS. Pol. He will come straight. Look, you lay

bome to bim : Tell him, his pranks have been too broad to

bear with ; And that your grace hath screen'd and stood

between Much heat and him, I'll silence me e'en here. 'Pray you, be round with him. Queen.

I'll warrant you; Fear me not:-withdraw, I hear him coming.

(POLONIUS hides himself.

Enter HAMLET. Ham. Now, mother; what's the matter? Queen. Hamlet, thou hast thy father much

offended. Ham. Mother, you have my father much of.

fended. Queen. Come, come, you answer with an idle

tongue. Ham. Go, go, you question with a wicked

tongue. VOL. VIII.


Queen. Why, how now, Hamlet?

What's the matter now?
Queen. Have you forgot me?

No, by the rood, not so: You are the queen, your husband's brother's

wife; And, 'would it were not so!-you are my mo

ther. Queen. Nay, then I'll set those to you that

can speak. Ham. Come, come, and sit you down ; you

shall not budge; You go not, till I set you up a glass Where you may see the inmost part of you. Queen. What wilt thou do? thou wilt not

murder me? Help, help, ho!

Pol. (Behind.) What, ho! help! Ham.

How now! a rat? [Draws. Dead, for a ducat, dead.

(HAMLET makes a pass through the Arras. Pol. [Behind.]

0, I am slain.

[Falls, and dies. Queen. O me, what hast thou done? Ham.

Nay, I know not: Is it the king?

[Lifts up the Arras, and draws forth POLONIUS. Queen. 0, what a rash and bloody deed is this! Ham. A bloody deed; almost as bad, good

As kill a king, and marry with his brother.

Queen. As kill a king!

Ay, lady, 'twas my word.Thou wretched, rash, intruding fool, farewell!

[To POLONIUS. I took thee for thy better; take thy fortune: Thou find'st to be too busy, is some danger.Leave wringing of your hands; Peace; sit you

down, And let me wring your heart: for so I shall, Jt it be made of penetrable stuff : If damned custom have not braz'd it so, That it be proof and bulwark against sense. Queen. What have I done, that thou dar’st wag

thy tongue In noise so rude against me?


Such an act, That blors the grace and blush of modesty; Calls virtue, bypocrite; takes off the rose From the fair forehead of an innocent love, And sets a blister there; makes marriage vows As false as dicers' oaths: 0, such a deed As from the body of contraction plucky The very soul; and sweet religion makes A rhapsody of words : Heaven's face doth glow; Yea, this solidity and compound mass, With tristful visage, as against the doom, Is thought-sick at the act. Queen.

Ab me, what act, That roars so loud, and thunders in the index ?

Ham. Look here upon this picture,and on this; The counterfeit presentment of two brothers. See, what a grace was seated on this brow: Hyperion's curls; the front of Jove himself; An eye like Mars, to threaten and command; A station like the herald Mercury, New-lighted on a heaven-kissing hill; A combination, and a form, indeed, Where every god did seem to set his seal, To give the world assurance of a man: This was your busband.-Look you now, what

follows: Here is your husband, like a mildew'd ear, Blasting his wholesome brother. Have you eyes? Could you on this fair mountain leave to feed, And batten on this moor? Ha! have you eyes? You cannot call it, love: for, at your age, The bey-day in the blood is tame, it's humble, And waits upon the judgment; And wbat judg

ment Would step from this to this? Sepse, sure you

have, Else could you not have motion: But, sure, that Is apoplex'd: for madness would not err; Nor sense to ecstasy was ne'er so thrall’d, But it reserv'd some quantity of choice, To serve in such a difference. What devil was't That thus hath cozen'd you at boodman-blind? Eyes without feeling, feeling without sight, Ears without hands or eyes, smelling sans all, Or but a sickly part of one true sense


Could not so mope,
O shame! where is thy blush? Rebellious hell,
If thou canst mutine in a matron's bones,
To flaming youth let virtue be as wax,
And melt in her own fire; proclaim no shame,
When the compulsive ardour gives the charge;
Since frost itself as actively doth burn,
And reason panders will.

O Hamlet, speak no more:
Thou turn'st mine eyes into my very soul;
And there I see such black and grained spots
As will not leave their tinct.

Nay, but to live In the rank sweat of an enseamed bed ; Stew'd in corruption; honeying, and making

love Over the nasty sty; Queen.

0, speak to me no more; These words, like daggers, enter in mine ears: No more, sweet Hamlet. Ham.

A murderer, and a villain; A slave, that is not twentieth part the tithe Of your precedent lord :-a vice of kings: A cutpurse of the empire and the rule; That from a shelf the precious diadem stole, And put it in his pocket! Queen.

No more.

Enter Ghost. Ham.

A king Of shreds and patches :Save me, and hover o'er me with your wings, You heavenly guards!—What would your gra

cious figure? Queen. Alas, he's mad. Ham. Do you not come yourtardy son to chide, That, laps'd in time and passion, let's go by The important acting of your dread command? 0, say!

Ghost. Do not forget: This visitation Is but to whet thy almost blunted purpose. But, look! amazement ou thy mother sits: O, step between her and her fighting soul; Conceit in weakest bodies strongest works; Speak to her, Hamlet. Ham,

How is it with



« PředchozíPokračovat »