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Elsinore. A Room in the Castle.

Enter Queen, Horatio, and a Gentleman''.
Queen. I will not speak with her.

Gent. She is importunate; indeed, distract:
Her mood will needs be pitied.

What would she have ? Gent. She speaks much of her father; says, she

hears, There's tricks i' the world ; and hems, and beats her

heart; Spurns enviously at straws; speaks things in doubt, That carry but half sense: her speech is nothing, Yet the unshaped use of it doth move The hearers to collection; they aim at it', And botch the words up fit to their own thoughts; Which, as her winks, and nods, and gestures yield

them, Indeed would make one think, there might be thought, Though nothing sure, yet much unhappily.

Hor. "Twere good she were spoken with’, for she

may strew

Dangerous conjectures in ill-breeding minds.
Queen. Let her come in.


10 Enter Queen, Horatio, and a Gentleman.) The folio omits the “Gentleman," and gives all the quartos assign to him to Horatio, and what Horatio says to the Queen-no doubt to avoid the employment of another actor. We have restored the ancient, more convenient, and, as it seems to us, more natural distribution of the dialogue.

1- they ajm at it,] The folio has “ aim ” for yarn of the quartos ; and yarn may possibly be right, though not very likely to be so. Three lines lower, the folio substitutes would for "might.”

2 Hor. 'Twere good, she were spoken with.) This advice seems to come properly from Horatio, as it is given in the quartos, and the Queen's reply ought to commence at the order, “ Let her come in.” In the quartos these latter words are, however, erroneously made the end of what Horatio says. The desire to employ few actors, in all probability, led to this confusion of the dialogue.


sick soul, as sin's true nature is,
Each toy seems prologue to some great amiss :
So full of artless jealousy is guilt,
It spills itself in fearing to be spilt'.

Re-enter HORATIO, with OPHELIA*.
Oph. Where is the beauteous majesty of Denmark?
Queen. How now, Ophelia ?
Oph. How should I your true love know [Singing

From another one ?
By his cockle hat and staff,

And his sandal shoon.
Queen. Alas, sweet lady! what imports this song ?
Oph. Say you ? nay, pray you, mark.
He is dead and gone, lady,

[Singing He is dead and gone ; At his head a grass-green turf,

At his heels a stone.
O, ho!

Queen. Nay, but Ophelia,

Pray you, mark.
White his shroud as the mountain snow,

Enter King
Queen. Alas! look here, my lord.
Oph. Larded with sweet flowers;

3 It spills itself in fearing to be spilt.] It deserves notice that this and the three preceding lines are marked by inverted commas in all the quartos, not for the purpose of showing that the passage was a quotation, but apparently to enforce it as an axiom. Such was not a very unusual practice.

with Ophelia.] The stage-direction in the quarto, 1603, is curiously minute : “ Enter Ophelia, playing on a lute, and her hair down, singing." She therefore accompanied herself in her fragments of ballads.

50, ho !] These interjections are left out in the folio.

6 Larded with sweet flowers ;] So the quarto, 1603, and the folio; the other quartos interpolate all after “larded.”

Which bewept to the grave did not go',

With true-love showers.

King. How do you, pretty lady?

Oph. Well, God’ild you®! They say, the owl was a baker's daughter. Lord! we know what we are, but know not what we may be. God be at your table !

King. Conceit upon her father.

Oph. Pray you, let's have no words of this; but when they ask you what it means, say you this :

To-morrow is Saint Valentine's day,

All in the morning betime,
And I a maid at your window,

To be your Valentine :
Then, up he rose, and don'd his clothes, ,

And dupp'd the chamber door ;
Let in the maid, that out a maid

Never departed more.

King. Pretty Ophelia !
Oph. Indeed, la! without an oath, I'll make an end

on't :
By Gis, and by Saint Charity,

Alack, and fie for shame!
Young men will do't, if they come to't ;

By cock, they are to blame.
Quoth she, before you tumbled me,

You promis'd me to wed :

He answers'.

? Which bewept to the grave did not go,] The quarto, 1603, and the folio have “grave,” the other quartos ground; but all authorities read "did not go," which Pope considered an error, and which may possibly be so.

& Well, God'ild you !) i. e. God yield or reward you. See Vol. iii. Pp. 62 and 94.

9 He answers.] These words are in the quartos, 1604, &c. In the folio the king afterwards asks, “ How long hath she been this?" instead of “ thus” of the quartos. VOL. VII.


So would I ha done, by yonder sun,
An thou hadst not come to my

bed. K’ing. How long hath she been thus ?

Oph. I hope, all will be well. We must be patient; but I cannot choose but weep, to think, they would lay him' i'the cold ground. My brother shall know of it, and so I thank you for your good counsel. Come, my coach! Good night, ladies; good night, sweet ladies : good night, good night.

[Exit. King. Follow her close; give her good watch, I pray you.

0! this is the poison of deep grief; it springs
All from her father's death. And now, behold”,
O Gertrude, Gertrude!
When sorrows come, they come not single spies,
But in battalions. First, her father slain ;
Next, your son gone; and he most violent author
Of his own just remove: the people muddied,
Thick and unwholesome in their thoughts and whis-

For good Polonius' death ; and we have done but

In hugger-mugger to inter himo: poor Ophelia,
Divided from herself, and her fair judgment,
Without the which we are pictures, or mere beasts :
Last, and as much containing as all these,
Her brother is in secret come from France,
Feeds on his wonder", keeps himself in clouds,
And wants not buzzers to infect his ear
With pestilent speeches of his father's death;
Wherein necessity, of matter beggar'd,

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2 And now,

they would lay him-] The folio," they should lay him.”

behold,] These words are from the quartos, 1604, &c. 3 In hugger-mugger to inter him :) The meaning is, “ We have done but imprudently or unwisely to inter him secretly:" the expression “in huggermugger" is of most frequent occurrence in writers of the time.

• Freds on his wonder,] So the quartos : the folio, “ Keeps on his wonder," the compositor having caught the word from a subsequent part of the line.

Will nothing stick our persons to arraign
In ear and ear. O, my dear Gertrude! this,
Like to a murdering piece, in many places
Gives me superfluous death.

[A noise within. Queen.

Alack! what noise is this?

Enter a Gentleman.
King. Attend !
Where are my Switzers ? Let them guard the door.
What is the matter?

Save yourself, my lord;
The ocean, overpeering of his list",
Eats not the flats with more impetuous haste',
Than young Laertes, in a riotous head,
O’erbears your officers! The rabble call him, lord;
And, as the world were now but to begin,
Antiquity forgot, custom not known,
The ratifiers and props of every word,
They cry, “Choose we; Laertes shall be king !"
Caps, hands, and tongues, applaud it to the clouds,
Laertes shall be king, Laertes king !"

Queen. How cheerfully on the false trail they cry! 0! this is counter, you false Danish dogs. King. The doors are broke.

[Noise within. Enter LAERTES, armed ; Danes following. Laer. Where is this king? — Sirs, stand you all

without. Dan. No, let's come in. Laer.


pray you give me leave.

s Alack ! what noise is this?] Only in the folios. “Attend,” just afterwards, is only in the quartos, 1604, &c.

6 Overpeering of his list,] i. e. swelling over his boundary.

? – IMPETUOUS haste,] So the quarto, 1611, the undated quarto, that of 1637, and the second folio. The reading of the quarto, 1604, and of the first folio, is impitious, probably a misprint.

*0! this is counter,] To hunt “counter" is to hunt contrary to the proper course. See Vol. ii. p. 153, and Vol. iv. p. 354.

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