Imatges de pÓgina

That thou, dead coarse, again, in compleat fteel,
Revifit'ft thus the glimpfes of the moon,
Making night hideous, and us fools of nature
So horribly to fhake our difpofition

With thoughts beyond the reaches of our fouls?
Say, why is this? wherefore? what should we do?

[Ghoft beckons Hamlet.

Hor. It beckons you to go away with it, As if it fome impartment did defire

To you alone.

Mar. Look, with what courteous action It waves you to a removed ground:

But do not go with it.

Hor. No, by no means.

Ham. It will not speak;
Hor. Do not, my Lord.

[Holding Hamlet,

then I will follow it.

Ham. Why, what should be the fear?
I do not fet my life at a pin's fee;
And, for my foul, what can it do to that,
Being a thing immortal as itself?

It waves me forth again.I'll follow it

Hor. What if it tempt you tow'rd the flood, my Lord? Or to the dreadful fummit of the cliff,

That beetles o'er his bafe into the fea;

And there affume fome other horrible form,

Which might deprive your fov'reignty of reason,
And draw you into madness ? think of it.
The very place puts toys of defperation,
Without more motive, into ev'ry brain,
That looks fo many fathoms to the fea;
And hears it roar beneath.

Ham. It waves me ftill: go on, I'll follow thee-
Mar. You fhall not go, my Lord.

Ham. Hold off your hands.

Mar. Be rul'd, you fhall not go.

Ham. My fate cries out,

And makes each petty artery in this body
As hardy as the Nemean lion's nerve:

Still am I call'd: unhand me, gentlemen

[Breaking from them.

By heav'n, I'll make a ghost of him that lets me-
I fay, away-go on. -I'll follow thee

[Exeunt Ghoft and Hamlet. Hor. He waxes defp'rate with imagination.

Mar. Let's follow! 'tis not fit thus to obey him. Hor. Have after.-To what iffue will this come? Mar. Something is rotten in the state of Denmark. Hor. Heav'n will direct it.

Mar. Nay, let's follow him.


SCENE changes to a more remote Part of the


Re-enter Ghoft and Hamlet.

Ham. Here wilt thou lead me fpeak, I'll ge no further.


Ghost. Mark me.

Ham. I will.

Ghoft. My hour is almost come,

When I to fulphurous and tormenting flames

Muft render up myself.

Ham. Alas, poor Ghost!

Ghoft. Pity me not, but lend thy ferious hearing

To what I fhall unfold.

Ham. Speak, I am bound to hear.

Ghoft. So art thou to revenge, when thou shalt hear. Ham. What?

Ghoft. I am thy father's Spirit;

Doom'd for a certain term to walk the night,

And, for the day, confin'd to faft in fires;

'Till the foul crimes, done in my days of nature,
Are burnt and purg'd away. But that I am forbid
To tell the fecrets of my prifon-house,

I could a tale unfold, whofe lightest word.
Would harrow up thy foul, freeze thy young blood,
Make thy two eyes, like ftars, ftart from their spheres,
Thy knotty 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; lift, lift, oh lift!

If thou didit ever thy dear father love

Ham. Oh heav'n!

Ghoft. Revenge his foul and moft unnatural murder. Ham. Murder?

Ghoft. Murder most foul, as in the best it is ; But this most foul, frange, and unnatural.

Ham. Hafte me to know it, that I, with wings as swift As meditation or the thoughts of love,

May sweep to my revenge.

Ghoft. I find thee apt;

And duller fhouldft thou be, than the fat weed

That roots itself in ease on Lethe's wharf,

Wouldst thou not ftir in this.

Now, Hamlet, hear

'Tis given out, that, fleeping in my orchard,

A ferpent ftung me. So the whole ear of Denmark
Is by a forged procefs of my death

Rankly abus'd but know, thou noble youth,
The ferpent, that did fting thy father's life,
Now wears his crown.


Ham. Oh, my prophetick foul! my uncle? Ghost. Ay, that inceftuous, that adulterate beaff, With witchcraft of his wit, with trait'rous gifts, (O wicked wit, and gifts, that have the power So to feduce!) won to his fhameful luft The will of my moft feeming-virtuous Queen. Oh Hamlet, what a falling off was there! From me, whofe love was of that dignity, That it went hand in hand ev'n with the vow I made to her in marriage; and to decline Upon a wretch, whofe natural gifts were poor To thofe of mine!

But virtue, as it never will be mov'd,

Though lewdness court it in a shape of heav'n;
So luft, though to a radiant angel link'd,
Will fate itfelf in a celeftial bed,

And prey on garbage

But, foft! methinks, I fcent the morning air
`Brief let me be; Sleeping within mine orchard,

My custom always of the afternoon,
Upon my fecure hour thy uncle ftole
With juice of curfed hebenon in a phial,
And in the porches of mine ears did pour
The leperous diftilment; whofe effect
Holds fuch an enmity with blood of man,
That fwift as quick-filver it courses through.
The natʼral gates and allies of the body;
And, with a sudden vigour, it doth poffet
And curd, like eager droppings into milk,
The thin and wholsome blood: fo did it mine,
And a most instant tetter bark'd about,
Moft lazar-like, with vile and loathfome cruft
All my fmooth body.-


Thus was I, fleeping, by a brother's hand,
Of life, of crown, of Queen, at once dispatcht;
Cut off ev'n in the bloffoms of my fin,
Unhoufel'd, unappointed, unaneal'd: (11)


(11) Unbouzzled, unanointed, unaneal'd;] The Ghoft, having recounted the Process of his, Murder, proceeds to exaggerate the Inhumanity and Unnaturalness of the Fact, from the Circumstances in which he was furprized. But thefe, I find, have been ftumbling Blocks to our Editors; and therefore I muft amend and explain thefe three compound Adjectives in their Order. Inftead of unbouzzel'd, we must restore, unboufel'd, i. e. without the Sacrament taken; from the old Saxon Word for the Sacrament, boufel. In the next place, unanointed, is a Sophiftication of the Text: the old Copies concur in reading, disappointed. I correct,

Unboufel', unappointed,

i. e. no Confeffion of Sins made, no Reconciliation to Heaven, no Appointment of Penance by the Church. Unaneal'd I agree to be the Poet's genuine Word; but I must take the Liberty to difpute Mr. Pope's Explication of it, viz. No Knell rung. The Adjective formed from Knell, muft have been unknell'd, or unknoll'd. There is no Rule in Orthography for finking the k in the Deflection of any Verb or Compound formed from Knell, and melting it into a Vowel. What Senfe does unaneal'd then bear? SKINNER, in his Lexicon of old and obfolete English Terms, tells us, that Aneal'd is unetus; from the Teutonick Prepofition an, and Ole, i. e. Oil: fo that unaneal'd must confequently fignify, unanointed, not having the extream Unction. The Poet's Reading and Explication being af


No reck'ning made, but fent to my account
With all my imperfections on my head.
Oh, horrible! oh, horrible! most horrible!
If thou haft nature in thee, bear it not;
Let not the royal bed of Denmark be
A couch for luxury and damned incest.
But howsoever thou purfu'ft this act,
Taint not thy mind, nor let thy foul contrive
Against thy mother aught; leave her to heav'n,
And to those thorns that in her bofom lodge,
To prick and fting her. Fare thee well at once!
The glow-worm fhews the matin to be near,
And gins to pale his uneffectual fire.
Adieu, adieu, adieu; remember me.


Ham. Oh, all you hoft of heav'n! oh earth! what else
And fhall I couple hell? oh, hold my heart-
And you, my finews, grow not instant old;
But bear me ftiffly up. Remember thee-
Ay, thou poor ghoft, while memory holds a feat
In this distracted globe; remember thee
Yea, from the table of my memory

I'll wipe away all trivial fond records,
All faws of books, all forms, all preffures paft,
That youth and obfervation copied there;
And thy commandment all alone shall live
Within the book and volume of my brain,
Unmix'd with baser matter. Yes, by heav'n:
Oh moft pernicious woman!

Oh villain, villain, fmiling damned villain!
My tables,meet it is, I fet it down,

certained, he very finely makes his Gho complain of these four dreadful Hardships; that he had been difpatched out of Life without receiving the Hoft, or Sacrament; without being reconciled to Heaven and abfolv'd; without the Benefit of extream Unction; or without fo much as a Confeffion made of his fins. The having no Knell rung, I think, is not a Point of equal Confequence to any of thefe; efpecially, if we confider, that the Romish Church admits the Efficacy of praying for the Dead..

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