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will forestal' their repair hither, and say, you are Let all the battlements their ordnance fire; not fit.

The king shall drink to Hamlet's better breath; Ham. Not a whit, we defy augury; there is a And in the cup an union shall he ihrow, special providence in the fall of a sparrow. If it Richer than that which four successive kings be now, 'tis not to come; if it be not to come, it In Denmark's crown have worn ; Give me the cups; will be now ; if it be not now, yet it will come : the And let the kettle to the trumpet speak, readiness is all : Since no men, if aught he leaves, The trumpet to the cannoneer without, knows, what is't to leave betimes ? Let be. The cannons to the heavens, the heaven to earth, Enter King, Queen, Laertes, Lords, Osric, and Al- Now the king drinks to Hamlet.—Come, begin;

And you, the judges, bear a wary eye. tendants, with foils, fc.

Ham. Come on, sir. King. Come, Hamlet, come, and take this hand Laer,

Come, my lord. [They play from me.

Ham.

One.
[The King puts the hand of Laertes into Laer.

No,
that of Hamlet.
Ham.

Judgment. Ham. Give me your pardon, sir: I have done you Osr. A hit, a very palpaple hit. wrong ;

Laer.

Well,-again. Bit pardon it, as you are a gentleman.

King. Stay, give me drink: Hamlet, this peeri This presence knows, and you must needs have is thine; heard,

Here's to thy health.-Give him the cup. How I am punish'd with a sore distraction.

[Trumpets sound; and cannon shol off within What I have done,

Ham. I'll play this bout first, set it by a while. That might your nature, honour, and exception, Come,-Another hit; What say you (They plot, Roughly awake, I here proclaim was madness. Laer. A touch, a touch, I do confess. Was't Hamlet wrong'd Laertes ? Never, Hamlet : King. Our son shall win. If Hamlet from himself be ta'en away,

Queen. He's fat, and scant of breath. And, when he's not himself, does wrong Laertes, Here, Hamlet, take my napkin, rub thy brows: Then Hamlet does it not, Hamlet denies it. The queen carouses' to thy fortune, Hamlet. Who does it then ? His madness: Il't be so, Hain. Good madam,Hamlet is of the faction that is wrong'd;

King.

Gertrude, do not drink His madness is poor Hamlet's enemy.

Queen. I will, my lord ;-I pray you, pardon ile Sir, in this audience,

King. It is the poison'd cup; it is too late. Let my disclaiming from a purpos'd evil

[.fside Free me so far in your most generous thoughts, Ham. I dare not drink yet, madam ; by and by. That I have shot my arrow o'er the house,

Queen. Come, let me wipe thy face.
And hurt my brother.

Laer. My lord, I'll hit him now.
Laer.
I am satisfied in nature,

King.

I do not think it Whose motive, in this case, should stir me most Laer. And yet it is almost against my conscience To my revenge : but in my terms of honour, I stand aloof; and will no reconcilement,

Ham. Come, for the third, Laertes; you do but Till by some elder masters, of known honour,

dally ; I have a voice and precedent of peace,

pray you, pass with your best violence ; To keep my name ungor'd:But till that time, I am aleard, you make a wanton of me. I do receive your offer'd love like love,

Laer. Say you so ? come on. [They ples. And will not wrong it.

Osr. Nothing neither way.
Ham.
I embrace it freely ;

Laer. Have at you now.
And will this brother's wager frankly play.--

[Laertes rounds Hamlet ; then, in scu flins, Give us the soils ; come on.

they change rapiers, and Hamlet sands Laer. Come, one for me.

Laertes. Ham. I'll be your foil, Laertes ; in mine igno-King.

Part them, they are incens'd.

Ham. Nay, come again. (The Queen falls. Your skill shall, like a star i'the darkest night, Osr.

Look to the queen there, bo! Stick fiery off indeed.

Hor. They bleed on both sides :—How is it, my Laer. You mock me, sir.

lord ? Ham. No, by this hand.

Osr. How is't, Laertes ? King. Give them the soils, young Osric.-Cousin. Laer. Why, as a woodcock to my own springs, Hamlet,

Osric;
You know the wager?

I am justly kill'd with mine own treachery.
Ham.
Very well, my lord ;

Ham. How does the queen ?
Your grace hath laid the odds o'the weaker side. King.

She swoons to see them bleed. King. I do not fear it: I have seen you both : Qucen. No, no, the drink, the drink,-0 my dea But since he's better'd, we have therefore odds.

Hamlet! Laer. This is too heavy, let me see another. The drink, the drink; I am poison'd! Ham. This likes me well: these foils have all a Ham. O villany!-Ho! let the door be lock'd : length ? [They prepare to play. Treachery ! seek it out.

(Laertes falls Osr. Ay, my good lord.

Laer. It is here, Hamlet: Hamlet, thou art slain, King. Set me the stoups4 of wine upon that No medicine in the world can do thee good, table :

In thee there is not half an hour's life; Ii Hamlet give the first or second hit,

The treacherous instrument is in thy hand, Or quit in answer of the third exchange,

Unbated,' and envenom'd: the foul practice (1) Prevent. (2) The king and queen's presence. (7) Drinks good luck to you. (8) Boy. (3) Unwounded (4) Large jugs.

(9) The Coil without a button, and poisoned # (5) A precious pearl, (6) Handkerchief, the point.

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«! Hath turn'd itself on me; lo, here I lie,

Where should we have our thanks ?
Never to rise again: Thy mother's poison'd; Hor.

Not from his mouth, * I can no more; the king, the king's to blame. Had it the ability of life to thank you; Ham. The point

He never gave commandment for their death.
Envenom'd too!-Then, venom, to thy work. But since, so jump upon this bloody question,

(Slabs the King. You from the Polackij wars, and you from England, Osr. &. Lords. Treason ! treason!

Are here arriv'd; give order, that these bodies
King. O, yet defend me, friends, I am but hurt. High on a stage be placed to the view;
Ham. Here, thou incestuous, murd'rous, damned And let me speak, to the yet unknowing world,
Dane,

How these things come about: So shall you hear
Drink off this potion :-is the union here?

Of carnal, bloody, and unnatural acts;
Follow my mother.

(King dies. Or accidental judgments, casual slaughters;
Laer.
He is justly serv'd;

of deaths put on by cunning, and forc'd cause; It is a poison temper'd' by himself.

And, in this upshot, purposes mistook
Exchange forgiveness with me, noble Hamlet: Fall’n on the inventors' heads : all this can I
Mine and my father's death come not upon thee; Truly deliver.
Nor thine on me!

(Dies. Fort. Let us haste to hear it,
Ham. Heaven make thee free of it! I follow thee. And call the noblest to the audience.
J am dead, Horatio :-Wretched queen, adieu ! - For me, with sorrow I embrace my fortune
You that look pale and tremble at this chance, I have some rights of memory in this kingdom,
That are but mutes or audience to this act,

Which now to claim my vantage doth invite me.
Had I but time (as this fell sergeant,” death,

Hor. Of that I shall have also cause to speak, Is strict in his arrest,) O, I could tell you,

And from his mouth whose voice will draw on more:
But let it be :-Horatio, I am dead;

But let this same be presently performid,
Thou liv'st; report me and my cause aright Even while men's minds are wild ; lest more mis-
To the unsatisfied.

chance,
Hor.
Never believe it;

On plots and errors, happen.
I am more an antique Roman than a Dane,

Fort,

Let four captains
Here's yet some liquor left.

Bear Hanilet, like a soldier, to the stage;
Ham.

As thou’rt a man,-- For he was likely, had he been put on,
Give me the cup; let go; by heaven I'll have it. To have prov'd most royally: and, for his passage,
O Cod !-Horatió, what a wounded name, The soldier's music, and the riles of war,
Things standing thus unknown, shall live behind me? Speak loudly for him.-
If thou didst ever hold me in thy heart,

Take up the bodies:-Such a sight as this
Absent thee from felicity a while,

Becomes the field, but here shows much amiss,
And in this harsh world draw thy breath in pain, Go, bid the soldiers shoot.

[A dead march. To tell my story.-

{Exeunt, bearing off the bodies; after which, a (March afar off, and shot within.

peal of ordnance is shot oil.
What warlike noise is this?
Ost. Young Fortinbras, with conquest come from

Poland,
To the ambassadors of England gives
This warlike volley.

If the dramas of Shakspeare were to be charac-
Ham.
0, I die, Horatio ;

leriscd, each by the particular excellence which The potent poison quité o'er-crows my spirit; distinguishes it from the rest, we must allow to the I cannot live to hear the news from England: tragedy of Hamlet the praise of variety. The inBut I do prophesy the election lights

cidents are so numerous, that the argument of the On Fortinbras ; he has my dying voice;

play would make a long tale. The scenes are inSo tell him, with the occurrents, more or less, terchangeably diversified with merriment and soWhich have solicited, " -The rest is silence. [Tries. lemnity: with merriment that includes judicious Hor. Now cracks a noble heart;Good night, and instructive observations; and solemnity not sweet prince;

strained by poetical violence above the natural senAnd fights of angels sing thee to thy rest! timents of man. New characters appear frorn time Why does the drum come hither? [March within. to time in continual succession, exhibiting various

forms of life, and peculiar modes of conversation. Enter Fortinbras, the English Ambassadors, and the pretended madness of Hamlet causes much others.

mirth, the mournful distraction of Ophelia fills the Fort. Where is this sight?

heart with tenderness, and every personage proHor.

What is it, you would see? duces the effect intended, from the apparition that, If aught of wo, or wonder, cease your search. in the first act, chills the blood with horror, to the Fort. This quarry cries on havoc !?O proud top in the last, that exposes affectation to just condeath!

tempt. What least is toward in thine eternal cell,

The conduct is, perhaps, not wholly secure against That thou so many princes, at a shut,

objections. The action is, indeed, for the most part, So bloodily hast struck?

in continual progression ; but there are some scenes 1 Amb.

The sight is dismal; which neither forward nor retard it. Of the feignAnd our affairs from England come too late: ed madness of Hamlet there appears no adequate The ears are senseless, that should give us hearing, cause, for he does nothing which he might not have To tell him, his commandment is fulfilld,

done with the reputation of sanity. He plays the That Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are dead:

(7) A word of censure when more game was (1) Mixed. (2) A sergeant is a sheriff's officer. destroyed than was reasonable. (3) O'ercomes. (4) Incidents. (5) Incited. (8) L. e. The king's. (9) By chance. 6) Heap of dead game

(10) Polish,

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madman most, when he treats Ophelia with so much easily be formed, to kill Hamlet with the dagger rudeness, which seems to be useless and wanton and Laertes with the bowl. cruelty.

The poet is accused of having shown little ra Hamlet is, through the whole piece, rather an in- gard to poetical justice, and may be charged sin strument than an agent. After he has, by the strat- equal neglect of poetical probability. The appariagem of the play, convicted the king, he makes no tion left the regions of the dead to little purpose: attempt to punish him; and his death is at last ef- the revenge which he demands is not obtained, bat fected by an incident which Hamlet had no part in by the death of him that was required to take it; producing

and the gratification, which would arise from the The catastrophe is not very happily produced ; destruction of a usurper and a murderer, is abated the exchange of weapons is rather an expedient of by the untimely death of Ophelia, the young, te necessity, ihan a stroke of art. A scheme might beautiful, the harmless, and the pious.

JOHNSON.

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