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Dear maid, kind fiter, sweet Ophilia!
O heav'ns, is’t pollible a young maid's wits
should be as mortal as an old man's life?
Nature is fine in love; and, where 'tis fine, (52)
It sends some precious in:tance of itself
After the thing it loves.
Oph. They bore him bare-fai'd on the bier,

his grave reigns many a tear ;
Fare ye well,

dove!

And on

well, my

(62) Narure is fine in love,] Mr. Pope seems puzzled at this passage, and therefore in both his editions subjoins this conje&ure. Perhaps, says he,

Nature is fire in love, and sobere 'ris fire,
It sends some precious incense of itself

After the ibing it loves. I own, táis conjecture to me imparts no satisfactory idea. Nature is suppos’d to be the fire, and to furnith the incense too : bad love been suppos’d the fire, and nature sent out the incense, I bould more readily have been reconcil'd to the sentiment. But no change, in my opinion, is necessary to the text ; I conceive, that this might be the Poet's meaning. “ In the passion of love, nature becomes more ex. " quisite of sensation, is more delicate and refin'd; 16.10 is, natural « affection, rais'd and sublim'd into a love-paffion, becomes more “ inflamed and intense than usual ; and where it is so, as people in “ love generally fend what they have of most valuable after their “ lovers ; so poor Opbelia has sent her most precious fenses after the “ object of her inflim'd affection.” If I miftake not, our Poet has play'd with this thought, of the powers being refind by the passion, in feveral other of his plays. His clown, in As You Like

it, seems Sensible of this refinement; but, talking in his own way, interprets it a sort of frantickness,

We, that are frue lovers, run into strange capers ; but as all is mortal in nature, so is all nature in love mortal in folly.

Again, in Troilus and Cressida, the latter expresses herself concern. ing grief, exactly as Laertes does here of nature.

The grief is fine, full, perfect, that I tafte ;
And in its sense is no less strong, than that

Which causeth it. But Jago, in Qıbello, delivers himself much more dire&t!y to the puro pose of the fenriment here before us,

Come hither, if thou bee'st valiant; as they say, base men, being in love, bave then a nobility in their natures more than is native to them.

Lasta

rue for

may call it

Laer. Hadft thou thy wits, and didit persuade revenge, It could not move thus.

Oph. You must fing, down a-down, and you call him a-down-a. O how the wheel becomes it! it is the false steward that stole his master's daughter.

Laer. This nothing's more than matter.

Oph. There's rosemary, that's for remembrance ; pray, love, remember; and there's pansies, that's for thoughts.

Laer. A document in madness, thoughts and remembrance fitted. Oph. There's fennel for you, and columbines; there's you,

and here's some for me. We herb of grace o' Sundays: you may wear your rue with a difference. There's a daisy; I would give you some violets, but they withered all when my father dy'd; they say, he made a good end;

For bonny sweet Robin is all my joy.
Laer. Thought, and Afiction, passion, hell itself
She turns to favour, and to prettiness.
Oph. And will he not come again?

And will be not came again?
No, no, be is dead, go to thy di atk-bed,
He never will come again.
His beard was as white as snow,
All flaxen was his pole :
He is gone, he is gone, and we caft away mone,

Gramercy on his foul !
And of all christian fouls! God b'w'ye. [Exit Ophelia.
Laer. Do you see this, you

Gods!
King. Laertes, I must commune with

your grief,
Or you deny me right; go but a-part,
Make choice of whom your wisest friends you will,
And they shall hear and judge 'twixt you and me;
If by direct or by collateral hand

They find us touch’d, we will our Kingdom give,
Our Crown, our life, and all that we call ours,
*To you in satisfaction.

But if not,
Be you content to lend your patience to us;

And

And we shall jointly labour with your soul,
To give it due content.

Laer. Let this be so.
His means of death, his obscure funeral,
No trophy, sword, nor hatchment o'er his bones,
No noble rite, nor formal oftentation,
Cry to be heard, as 'twere from heav'n to earth,
That I must call't in question.

King. So you shall :
And where th' offence is, let the great ax fall.
I
pray you, go
with me.

[Exeunt.
Enter Horatio, with an attendant.
Hor. What are they, that would speak with me?
Serv. Sailors, Sir; they say, they have letters for you

Hor. Let them come in.
I do not know from what part of the world
I should be greeted, if not from Lord Hamlet.

Enter Sailors,
Sail. God bless you, Sir.
Hor. Let him bless thee too.

Soil. He shall, Sir, an't please him.-- There's a letter for you, Sir: It comes from th' ambassador that was bound for England, if your name be Horatio, as I am let to know it is. Horatio reads the letter.

d , these fellows some means 10 the King : they have lerrers for him. Ere we were two days old at sea, a pirate

warlike appointment gave us chace. Finding our. felves too slow of fail, we put on a compelled valour, and in the grapple I boarded them : on the instant they got clear of our fpip, 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 bafte as thou woulde fly death. I have words to speak in

will make thee dumb ; yet are they much to light

of very

sby far,

am.

put me in

for the metter. These good fellows will bring thee where I

Rofincrantz and Guildenstern held their course for England. Of them I have much to tell thee, farewel.

He that thou knowe thine, Hamlet. Come, I will make you way for these your letters; And do't the speedier, that you may direct me To him from whom you brought them. [Exeunt.

Enter King, and Laertes. King. Now must your conscience my acquittance seal, And you must

you

heart for friend;
Sith you have heard, and with a knowing ear,
That he, which hath your noble father dlain,
Pursued my life.

Larr. It well appears. But tell me,
Why you proceeded not against these feats,
£o crimeful and so capital in nature,
As by your safety, wisdom, all things else,
You mainly were stirr'd up?

King. Two special reasons,
Which may to you, perhaps, feem much unfinew'd,
And yet to me are strong. The Queen, his mother,
Lives almost by his looks; and for myself,
(My virtue or my plague, be't either which,)
She's so conjunctive to my life and soul,
'That, as the star moves not but in his sphere,
I could not but by her. The other motive,
Why to a publick count I might not go,
Is the great love the general gender bear him ;
Who, dipping all his faults in their affection,
Would, like the spring that turneth wood to stone,
Convert his gyves to graces.

So that my arrows
Too slightly timbred for so loud a wind,
Would have reverted to my bow again,
And not where I had aim'd them.

Laer. And so have I a noble father lost,
A sister driven into desperate terms,
Whose worth, if praises may go back again,
Stood challenger on mount of all the age
For her perfections --But my revenge will come.

King

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King. Break not your sleeps for that; you must not
That we are made of stuff so flat and dull, [think,
That we can let our beard be shook with danger,
And think it pastime. You thall soon hear more.
I lov'd your father, and we love ourself,
And that I hope, will teach you to imagine-
How now? what news ?

Enter a Messenger
MS. Letters, my Lord, from Hamlet.
These to your Majesty : this to the Queen.

King. From Hamlet? who brought them?
Ms. Sailors, my Lord, they fay; I saw them not ;
They were given me by Claudio, he receiv'd them.
King. Lacrtes, you shall hear them : leave us, all-

[Exit Mes. IGH and Mighty, you shall know, I am fet naked

on your Kingdom. To-morrow foall I beg leave ia Jee your kingly eyes. When I shall, (first asking your pardon thereunto, ) recount th' occasion of my sudden return.

Hamlet. What should this mean? are all the rest come back? Or is it some abuse. - and no such thing?

Laer. Know you the hand ?

King. 'Tis Hamlet's character ;
Naked; and (in a postscript here, he says)
Alone: can you advise me?

Laer, I'm lost in it, my Lord: but let him come ;
It warms the very sickness in my heart,
That I shall live and tell him to his teeth,
Thus diddest thou.

King. If it be so, Laertes,
As how should it be fo!-how, otherwise ?
you

be rul'd by me ?
Laér. Ay, so you'll not o'er-rule me to a peace.

King. To thine own peace; if he be now return’d,
As liking not his voyage, and that he means
No more to undertake it; I will work him
To an exploit now ripe in my device,

Under

Will

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