Scene V. A more remote part of the Castle.
[Enter Ghost and Hamlet.]
Whither wilt thou lead me? speak! I'll go no further.
My hour is almost come,
When I to sulph'uous and tormenting flames
render up myself.
Alas, poor ghost!
Pity me not, but lend thy serious hearing
To what I shall unfold.
Speak;I am bound to hear.
So art thou to revenge, when thou shalt hear.
I am thy father's spirit;
Doom'd for a certain term to walk the night,
for the day confin'd to wastein fires,
Till the foul crimes done in my days of
Are burnt and purg'd away. But that I am forbid
To tell the secrets of my
I could a tale unfold whose lightest word
Would harrow up thy soul; freeze
thy young blood;
Make thy two eyes, like stars, start from their spheres;
and combined locks to part,
And each particular hair to stand on end
Like quills upon
the fretful porcupine:
But this eternal blazon must not be
To ears of flesh and
blood.--List, list, O, list!--
If thou didst ever thy dear father love--
Revenge his foul and most unnatural murder.
Murder most foul, as in the best it is;
But this most foul, strange, and
Haste me to know't, that I, with wings as swift
As meditation or the thoughts
May sweep to my revenge.
I find thee apt;
And duller shouldst thou be than the fat weed
itself in ease on Lethe wharf,
Wouldst thou not stir in this. Now, Hamlet, hear.
given out that, sleeping in my orchard,
A serpent stung me; so the whole ear of
Is by a forged process of my death
Rankly abus'd; but know, thou noble
The serpent that did sting thy father's life
Now wears his crown.
O my prophetic soul!
Ay, that incestuous, that adulterate beast,
With witchcraft of his wit, with
O wicked wit and gifts, that have the power
So to seduce!--won to
his shameful lust
The will of my most seeming-virtuous queen:
O Hamlet, what a
falling-off was there!
From me, whose love was of that dignity
That it went hand in hand
even with the vow
I made to her in marriage; and to decline
Upon a wretch whose natural
gifts were poor
To those of mine!
But virtue, as it never will be mov'd,
lewdness court it in a shape of heaven;
So lust, though to a radiant angel link'd,
sate itself in a celestial bed
And prey on garbage.
But soft! methinks I scent the
Brief let me be.--Sleeping within my orchard,
My custom always of the
Upon my secure hour thy uncle stole,
With juice of cursed hebenon in a
And in the porches of my ears did pour
The leperous distilment; whose
Holds such an enmity with blood of man
That, swift as quicksilver, it courses
The natural gates and alleys of the body;
And with a sudden vigour it doth
And curd, like eager droppings into milk,
The thin and wholesome blood; so did it
And a most instant tetter bark'd about,
Most lazar-like, with vile and loathsome
All my smooth body.
Thus was I, sleeping, by a brother's hand,
Of life, of crown,
of queen, at once dispatch'd:
Cut off even in the blossoms of my sin,
No reckoning made, but sent to my account
With all my
imperfections on my head:
O, horrible! O, horrible! most horrible!
If thou hast nature
in thee, bear it not;
Let not the royal bed of Denmark be
A couch for luxury and damned
But, howsoever thou pursu'st this act,
Taint not thy mind, nor let thy soul
Against thy mother aught: leave her to heaven,
And to those thorns that in her
To prick and sting her. Fare thee well at once!
The glowworm shows the
matin to be near,
And 'gins to pale his uneffectual fire:
Adieu, adieu! Hamlet, remember
O all you host of heaven! O earth! what else?
And shall I couple hell? O,
fie!--Hold, my heart;
And you, my sinews, grow not instant old,
But bear me stiffly
Ay, thou poor ghost, while memory holds a seat
In this distracted
globe. Remember thee!
Yea, from the table of my memory
I'll wipe away all trivial fond
All saws of books, all forms, all pressures past,
That youth and observation
And thy commandment all alone shall live
Within the book and volume of my
Unmix'd with baser matter: yes, by heaven!--
O most pernicious woman!
villain, smiling, damned villain!
My tables,--meet it is I set it down,
That one may
smile, and smile, and be a villain;
At least, I am sure, it may be so in Denmark:
So, uncle, there you are. Now to my word;
It is 'Adieu, adieu! remember me:'
[Within.] My lord, my lord,--
[Within.] Lord Hamlet,--
[Within.] Heaven secure him!
So be it!
[Within.] Illo, ho, ho, my lord!
Hillo, ho, ho, boy! Come, bird, come.
[Enter Horatio and Marcellus.]
How is't, my noble lord?
What news, my lord?
Good my lord, tell it.
No; you'll reveal it.
Not I, my lord, by heaven.
Nor I, my lord.
How say you then; would heart of man once think it?--
But you'll be
Hor. and Mar.
Ay, by heaven, my lord.
There's ne'er a villain dwelling in all Denmark
But he's an arrant knave.
There needs no ghost, my lord, come from the grave
To tell us this.
Why, right; you are i' the right;
And so, without more circumstance at all,
hold it fit that we shake hands and part:
You, as your business and desires shall point
For every man hath business and desire,
Such as it is;--and for my own poor
Look you, I'll go pray.
These are but wild and whirling words, my lord.
I'm sorry they offend you, heartily;
Yes, faith, heartily.
There's no offence, my lord.
Yes, by Saint Patrick, but there is, Horatio,
And much offence too. Touching
this vision here,--
It is an honest ghost, that let me tell you:
For your desire to know
what is between us,
O'ermaster't as you may. And now, good friends,
As you are friends,
scholars, and soldiers,
Give me one poor request.
What is't, my lord? we will.
Never make known what you have seen to-night.
Hor. and Mar.
My lord, we will not.
Nay, but swear't.
My lord, not I.
Nor I, my lord, in faith.
Upon my sword.
We have sworn, my lord, already.
Indeed, upon my sword, indeed.
Ha, ha boy! say'st thou so? art thou there, truepenny?--
Come on!--you hear
this fellow in the cellarage,--
Consent to swear.
Propose the oath, my lord.
Never to speak of this that you have seen,
Swear by my sword.
Hic et ubique? then we'll shift our ground.--
Come hither, gentlemen,
your hands again upon my sword:
Never to speak of this that you have heard,
Swear by my
Well said, old mole! canst work i' the earth so fast?
A worthy pioner!--Once
more remove, good friends.
O day and night, but this is wondrous strange!
And therefore as a stranger give it welcome.
There are more things in heaven
and earth, Horatio,
Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.
Here, as before,
never, so help you mercy,
How strange or odd soe'er I bear myself,--
As I, perchance,
hereafter shall think meet
To put an antic disposition on,--
That you, at such times
seeing me, never shall,
With arms encumber'd thus, or this head-shake,
Or by pronouncing
of some doubtful phrase,
As 'Well, well, we know'; or 'We could, an if we would';--
'If we list to speak'; or 'There be, an if they might';--
Or such ambiguous giving out,
That you know aught of me:--this is not to do,
So grace and mercy at your most
need help you,
Rest, rest, perturbed spirit!--So, gentlemen,
With all my love I do commend me
And what so poor a man as Hamlet is
May do, to express his love and friending to
God willing, shall not lack. Let us go in together;
And still your fingers on your
lips, I pray.
The time is out of joint:--O cursed spite,
That ever I was born to set it
Nay, come, let's go together.