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Scene One 

Elsinore A platform before the castle

 

[FRANCISCO at his postEnter to him BERNARDO]

BERNARDO

Who’s there

FRANCISCO

Nayanswer mestand and unfoldyourself

BERNARDO

Long live the king

FRANCISCO

Bernardo

BERNARDO

He

FRANCISCO

You come most carefully upon your hour

BERNARDO

>Tis now struck twelveget thee to bed Francisco

FRANCISCO

For this relief much thanks>tis bitter cold

And I am sick at heart

BERNARDO

Have you had quiet guard

FRANCISCO

Not a mouse stirring

BERNARDO

Well good night

If you do meet Horatio and Marcellus

The rivals of my watchbid them make haste

FRANCISCO

I think I hear themStandho

Who’s there

[Enter HORATIO and MARCELLUS]

HORATIO

Friends to this ground

MARCELLUS

And liegemen to the Dane

FRANCISCO

Give you good night

MARCELLUS

Ofarewell honest soldier

Who hathrelievedyou

FRANCISCO

Bernardo has my place

Give you good night

[Exit]

MARCELLUS

HollaBernardoBERNARDO

Say Whatis Horatio there

HORATIO

A piece of him

BERNARDO

WelcomeHoratiowelcomegood Marcellus

MARCELLUS

Whathas this thing appear’d again to-night

BERNARDO

I have seen nothing

MARCELLUS

Horatio says>tis but our fantasy

And will not let belief take hold of him

Touching this dreadedsighttwice seen of us

Therefore I have entreated him along

With us to watch the minutes of this night

That if again this apparitioncome

He may approve our eyes and speak to it

HORATIO

Tushtush>twill not appear

BERNARDO

Sit down awhile

And let us once again assail your ears

That are so fortified against our story

What we have two nights seen

HORATIO

Wellsit we down

And let us hear Bernardo speak of this

BERNARDO

Last night of all

When yond same star that's westward from the pole

Had made his course to illurne that part of heaven

Where now it burnsMarcellus and myself

The bell then beating one,——

[Enter Ghost]

MARCELLUS

Peace break thee offlookwhere it comes again

BERNARDO

In the same figurelike the king that's dead

MARCELLUS

Thouarta scholarspeak to itHoratio

BERNARDO

Looks it not like the king markit Horatio

HORATIO

Most likeit harrowsme with fear and wonder

BERNARDO

It would be spoke to

MARCELLUS

Question itHoratio

HORATIO

What art thou that usurp' st this time of night

Together with that fair and warlike form

In which the majesty of buried Denmark

Did sometimes march by heaven charge thee speak

MARCELLUS

It is offended

BERNARDO

Seeit stalk away

HORATIO

StayspeakspeakI charge theespeak

[Exit Ghost]

MARCELLUS

>Tis goneand will not answer

BERNARDO

How nowHoratio you tremble and look pale

Is not this something more than fantasy

What think you on>t

HORATIO

Before my GodI might not this believe

Without the sensibleand true avouch

Of mine own eyes

MARCELLUS

Is it not like the king

HORATIO

As thouartto thyself

Such was the very armour he had on

When he the ambitious Norway combated

So frown'd he oncewhenin an angry parle

He smote the sledded Polacks on the ice

>Tis strange

MARCELLUS

Thus twice beforeand jump at this dead hour

With martial stalk hath he gone by our watch

HORATIO

In what particularthought to work I know not

But in the gross and scope of my opinion

This bodes some strange eruption to our state

MARCELLUS

Good now sit down and tell me he that knows

Why this same strict and most observant watch

So nightlytoils the subject of the land

And why such daily cast of brazen cannon

And foreign mart for implementsof war

Why such impressof shipwrightswhose sore task

Does not divide the Sunday from the week

What might be towardthat this sweatyhaste

Doth make the night joint- labourer with the day

Who is>t that can inform me

HORATIO

That can I

At least the whispergoes soOur last king

Whose image even but nowappear'd to us

Was as you know by Fortinbras of Norway

Thereto prick'd on by a most emulate pride

Dared to the combatin which our valiant Hamlet——

For so this side of our known world esteem'd him——

Did slay this Fortinbraswho by a seal'd compact

Well ratified by law and heraldry

Did forfeit with his life all those his lands

Which he stood seized ofto the conqueror

Against the whicha moiety competent

Was gagedby our kingwhich had return'd

To the inheritance of Fortinbras

Had he been vanquisherasby the same covenant

And carriage of the article design'd

His fell to HamletNowsir young Fortinbras

Of unimproved mettlehot and full

Hath in the skirtsof Norway here and there

Shark'd up a list of lawless resolutes

For food and dietto some enterprise

That hath a stomach in>twhich is no other——

As it doth well appear unto our state——

But to recover of usby strong hand

And termscompulsatory those foresaid lands

So by his father lostand thisI take it

Is the main motive of our preparations

The source of this our watch and the chief head

Of this post-haste and romage in the land

BERNARDO

I think it be no other but e>enso

Well may it sortthat this portentousfigure

Comes armed through our watchso like the king

That was and is the question of these wars

HORATIO

A mote it is to trouble the mind's eye

In the most high and palmy state of Rome

A little erethe mightiestJulius fell

The graves stood tenantlessand the sheeted dead

Did squeakand gibberin the Roman streets

As stars with trains of fire and dews of blood

Disasters in the sunand the moiststar

Upon whose influence Neptune's empire stands

Was sick almost to doomsdaywith eclipse

And even the like precurseof fierce events

As harbingers preceding still the fates

And prologueto the omencoming on

Have heaven and earth together demonstrated

Untoour climatures and countrymen.——

But soft behold lowhere it comes again

[Re-enter Ghost]

I>ll cross itthough it blast meStayillusion

If thouhastany soundor 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

[Cock crows]

If thou art privy to thy country's fate

Whichhappilyforeknowingmay avoidOspeak

Or if thou hast uphoarded in thy life

Extorted treasure in the womb of earth

For whichthey sayyou spirits oft walk in death

Speak of itstayand speakStop itMarcellus

MARCELLUS

Shall I strike at it with my partisanHORATIO

Doif it will not stand

BERNARDO

>Tis here

HORATIO

>Tis here

MARCELLUS

>Tis gone

[ Exit Ghost]

We do it wrongbeing so majestical

To offer it the show of violence

For it isas the airinvulnerable

And our vain blows malicious mockery

BERNARDO

It was about to speakwhen the cock crew

HORATIO

And then it started like a guiltything

Upon a fearful summonsI have heard

The cockthat is the trumpet to the morn

Dothwith his loftyand shrill-sounding throat

Awake the god of dayandat his warning

Whether in sea or fire in earth or air

The extravgantand erringspirit hies

To his confineand of the truth herein

This present object made probation

MARCELLUS

It faded on the crowing of the cock

Some say that ever>gainstthat season comes

Wherein our Saviour's birth is celebrated

The bird of dawning singeth all night long

And thenthey sayno spirit dares sti abroad

The nights are wholesome then no planets strike

No fairy takesnor witch hath power to charm

So hallow'dand so graciousis the time

HORATIO

So have I heard and do in part believe it

Butlookthe mornin russet mantleclad

Walks o>erthe dew of yon high eastward hill

Break we our watch upand by my advice

Let us impartwhat we have seen to-night

Unto young Hamletforupon my life

This spiritdumb to uswill speak to him

Do you consentwe shall acquainthim with it

As needful in our lovesfitting our duty

MARCELLUS

Let's do>tI pray and I this morning know

Where we shall find him most conveniently

[Exeunt]


 

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