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DRAMATIS PERSONÆ. CLAUDIUS, king of Denmark. MARCELLUS,
officers. HAMLET, son to the former, and BERNARDO,
nephew to the present king. FRANCISCO, a soldier. POLONIUS, lord chamberlain. REYNALDO, servant to Polonius. HORATIO, friend to Hamlet. Players. LAERTES, son to Polonius. Two Clowns, grave-diggers. VOLTIMAND,
FORTINBRAS, prince of Norway. CORNELIUS,
A Captain. ROSENCRANTZ,
GERTRUDE, queen of Denmark, A Gentleman,
and mother to Hamlet. A Priest.
OPHELIA, daughter to Polonius. Lords, Ladies, Officers, Soldiers, Sailors, Messengers, and other
Ghost of Hamlet's Father. SCENE -- Elsinore; except in the fourth scene of the fourth act,
where it is a plain in Denmark.
Francisco at his post. Enter to him BERNARDO.
Fran. For this relief much thanks: 'tis bitter cold,
Ber. Have you had quiet guard ?
Not a mouse stirring.
do meet Horatio and Marcellus, The rivals of my watch, bid them make haste.
Fran. I think I hear them. Stand, ho! Who is there?
Enter HORATIO and MARCELLUS.
And liegemen to the Dane.
O, farewell, honest soldier: Who hath reliev'd you? Fran.
Bernardo has my place. Give you good night.
A piece of him.
Mar. Horatio says 'tis but our fantasy,
Hor. Tush, tush, 'twill not appear.
Sit down awhile;
That are so fortified against our story,
Well, sit we down,
Ber. Last night of all, When yond same star that's westward from the pole Had made bis course t'illume that part of heaven Where now it burns, Marcellus and myself, The bell then beating one, Mar. Peace, break thee otf; look, where it comes again!
Enter Ghost. Ber. In the same figure, like the king that's dead. Mar. Thou art a scholar; speak to it, Horatio. Ber. Looks it not like the king? mark it, Horatio. Hor. Most like: it harrows me with fear and wonder. Ber. It would be spoke to. Mar.
Question it, Horatio.
Mar. It is offended.
See, it stalks away!
[Exit Ghost. Mar. 'Tis gone, and will not answer.
Ber. How now, Horatio! you tremble, and look pale:
Hor. Before my God, I might not this believe
Is it not like the king?
So frown'd he once, when, in an angry parle,
Mar. Thus twice before, and jump at this dead hour, With martial stalk hath he gone by our watch.
Hor. In what particular thought to work I know not; But, in the gross and scope of my opinion, This bodes some strange eruption to our state.
Mar. Good now, sit down, and tell me, he that knows,
That can I;
Shark'd up a list of lawless resolutes,
Ber. I think it be no other but e'en so:
Hor. A mote it is to trouble the mind's eye. In the most high and palmy state of Rome, A little ere the mightiest Julius fell, The graves stood tenantless, and the sheeted dead Did squeak and gibber in the Roman streets: As, stars with trains of fire, and dews of blood, Disasters in the sun; and the moist star, Upon whose influence Neptune's empire stands, Was sick almost to doomsday with eclipse: And even the like precurse of fierce events As harbingers preceding still the fates, And prologue to the omen coming on — Have heaven and earth together demonstrated Unto our climature and countrymen. But, soft, behold! lo, where it comes again!
Re-enter Ghost. I'll cross it, though it blast me. Stay, illusion! If thou hast any sound, or use of voice, Speak to me: If there be any good thing to be done, That may to thee do ease, and grace to me, Speak to me: