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Serv. Sailors, sir: they say they have letters for you.
Hor. Let them come in.
First Sail. God bless you, sir.
Second Sail. He shall, sir, an 't please him. There's a letter for you, sir ;-it comes from the ambassador that was bound for England;-if your name be Horatio, as I am let to know it is. Hor. Horatio, when thou shalt have overlooked this, give these fellows some means to the king: they have letters for him. Ere we were two days old at sea, a pirate of very war-like appointment gave us chase. Finding ourselves too slow of sail, we put on a compelled valour, and in the grapple I boarded them: on the instant they got clear of our ship, so I alone became their prisoner. They have dealt with me like thieves of mercy; but they knew what they did; I am to do a good turn for them. Let the king have the letters I have sent; and repair thou to me with as much haste as thou would'st fly death. I have words to speak in thine ear will make thee dumb; yet are they much too light for the bore of the matter. These good fellows will bring thee where I am. Rosencrantz and Guildenstern hold their course for England: of them I have much to tell thee. Farewell.
He that thou knowest thine,
Come, I will give you way for these your letters; What should this mean? Are all the rest come
Or is it some abuse and no such thing?
'Tis Hamlet's character. 'Naked,' And in a postscript here, he says 'alone.' Can you advise me?
No more to undertake it, I will work him
My lord, I will be rul'd;
Here was a gentleman of Normandy :
To cut his throat i' the church. King. No place, indeed, should murder sanctuarize;
Revenge should have no bounds. But, good
Will you do this, keep close within your chamber.
And wager on your heads: he, being remiss,
I have seen myself, and serv'd against, the French,
That I, in forgery of shapes and tricks,
King. A Norman.
A Norman was 't?
Laer. Upon my life, Lamord.
The very same.
King. He made confession of you,
He swore, had neither motion, guard, nor eye,
Let's further think of this; Weigh what convenience both of time and means May fit us to our shape. If this should fail, And that our drift look through our bad per formance
Fell in the weeping brook. Her clothes spread | thou understand the Scripture? The Scripture wide,
And, mermaid-like, awhile they bore her up;
says Adam digged; could he dig without arms? I'll put another question to thee; if thou answerest me not to the purpose, confess thyself
Second Clo. Go to.
First Clo. What is he that builds stronger than either the mason, the shipwright, or the carpenter?
Second Clo. The gallows-maker; for that frame
Alas! then, she is drown'd? outlives a thousand tenants. Queen. Drown'd, drown'd.
Laer. Too much of water hast thou,
And therefore I forbid my tears; but yet
Exit. Let's follow, Gertrude. How much I had to do to calm his rage! Now fear I this will give it start again; Therefore let 's follow.
SCENE I.-A Churchyard.
Enter two Clowns, with spades and mattocks. First Clo. Is she to be buried in Christian burial that wilfully seeks her own salvation?
Second Clo. I tell thee she is; and therefore make her grave straight: the crowner hath sat on her, and finds it Christian burial.
First Clo. How can that be, unless she drowned herself in her own defence?
Second Clo. Why, 'tis found so.
First Clo. It must be se offendendo; it cannot be else. For here lies the point: if I drown myself wittingly it argues an act; and an act hath three branches; it is, to act, to do, and to perform argal, she drowned herself wittingly. Second Clo. Nay, but hear you, goodman delver,
First Clo. Ay, marry, is 't; crowner's quest law. Second Clo. Will you ha' the truth on 't? If this had not been a gentlewoman she should have been buried out o' Christian burial.
First Clo. Why, there thou sayest; and the more pity that great folk shall have countenance in this world to drown or hang themselves more than their even Christian. Come, my spade. There is no ancient gentlemen but gardeners, ditchers, and grave makers; they hold up Adam's profession. 34
Second Clo. Was he a gentleman ?
First Clown digs, and sings.
In youth, when I did love, did love,
To contract, O! the time, for, ah! my behove, 70
Hor. Custom hath made it in him a property of easiness.
Ham. 'Tis e'en so; the hand of little employment hath the daintier sense.
First Clo. But age, with his stealing steps, Hath claw'd me in his clutch, And hath shipp'd me intil the land, As if I had never been such.
Hor. Ay, my lord.
Ham. Why, e'en so, and now my Lady Worm's; chapless, and knocked about the mazzard with a sexton's spade. Here's fine revolution, an we had the trick to see 't. Did these bones cost no more the breeding but to play at loggats with First Clo. What! art a heathen? How dost 'em? mine ache to think on 't.
First Clo. A' was the first that ever bore arms. Second Clo. Why, he had none.
First Clo. A pick-axe, and a spade, a spade,
For and a shrouding sheet;
Throws up another skull.
Ham. There's another; why may not that be the skull of a lawyer? Where be his quiddities now, his quillets, his cases, his tenures, and his tricks? why does he suffer this rude knave now to knock him about the sconce with a dirty shovel, and will not tell him of his action of battery? Hum! This fellow might be in's time a great buyer of land, with his statutes, his recognizances, his fines, his double vouchers, his recoveries; is this the fine of his fines, and the recovery of his recoveries, to have his fine pate full of fine dirt? will his vouchers vouch him no more of his purchases, and double ones too, than the length and breadth of a pair of indentures? The very conveyances of his lands will hardly lie in this box, and must the inheritor himself have no more, ha?
Hor. Not a jot more, my lord.
Ham. I think it be thine, indeed; for thou liest in 't.
First Clo. You lie out on 't, sir, and therefore it is not yours; for my part, I do not lie in 't, and yet it is mine.
Ham. Thou dost lie in 't, to be in 't, and say it is thine: 'tis for the dead, not for the quick; therefore thou liest.
First Clo. 'Tis a quick lie, sir; 'twill away again, from me to you. 140
Ham. What man dost thou dig it for?
Ham. What woman, then?
First Clo. For no man, sir.
First Clo. For none, neither.
Ham. Who is to be buried in 't?
First Clo. Faith, if he be not rotten before he die, as we have many pocky corpses now-a-days, that will scarce hold the laying in, he will last you some eight year or nine year; a tanner will last you nine year.
Ham. Why he more than another?
First Clo. Why, sir, his hide is so tanned with his trade that he will keep out water a great while, and your water is a sore decayer of your whoreson dead body. Here's a skull now; this skull hath lain i' the earth three-and-twenty years.
Ham. Whose was it?
Alas! poor Yorick. I knew him, Horatio; a fellow of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy; he hath borne me on his back a thousand times; and now, how abhorred in my imagination it is! my gorge rises at it. Here hung those lips that I have kissed I know not how oft. Where be your gibes now? your gambols? your songs! your flashes of merriment, that were wont to set the table on a roar? Not one now, to mock your own grinning? quite chapfallen? Now get you to my lady's chamber, and tell her, let ber paint an inch thick, to this favour she must
First Clo. One that was a woman, sir; but, come; make her laugh at that. Prithee, Horatio, rest her soul, she's dead.
tell me one thing.
Hor. What's that, my lord?
Ham. Dost thou think Alexander looked o' this fashion i' the earth?
Hor. E'en so.
Ham. And smelt so? pah!
Hor. E'en so, my lord.
Puts down the skull.
Ham. To what base uses we may return, Horatio! Why may not imagination trace the noble dust of Alexander, till he find it stopping a bung-hole?
Hor. 'Twere to consider too curiously, to consider so.
Ham. No, faith, not a jot; but to follow him thither with modesty enough, and likelihood to lead it; as thus: Alexander died, Alexander was buried, Alexander returneth into dust; the dust is earth; of earth we make loam; and why of that loam, whereto he was converted, might they not stop a beer-barrel?