Imatges de pàgina
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Under the which he fhall not chufe but fall:
And for his death no wind of blame shall breathe ;
But ev'n his mother shall uncharge the practice,
And call it accident.

Laer. I will be rul'd,
The rather, if you could devife it fo, (63)
That I might be the organ.

King. It falls right:
You have been talkt of fince your travel much,
And that in Hamlet's hearing, for a quality
Wherein they fay, you shine ; your sum of parts:
Did not together pluck such envy from him,
As did that one, and that in my regard
Of the unworthieft fiege.

Laer. What part is that, my Lord ?
: King. A very feather in the cap of youth,
Yet needful too; for youth no less becomes
The light and careless livery that it wears,
Than fettled


his fables, and his weeds
Importing health and graveness. -Two months since,
Here was a gentleman of Normandy;
I've seen myself, and serv'd against the French,
And they can well on horse-back; but this Gallant
Had witchcraft in't, he grew unto his feat ;
And to such wondrous doing brought his horse,
As he had been incorps'd and demy-natar'd
With the brave beaft; fo far he topp'd my thought,
(63) Tbe rather if you could devise it so,

That I might be the instrument.
King. Il falls right.] The latter verse is nightly maim'd in the
measure, and, I apprehend, without reason. This paffage is in nei-
ther of the impressions set out by the players; and the two elder
glarios read as I have reform'd the text;

That I might be the organ.
And it is a word, which our Author chuses to use in other places.
So, before, in this play.

For murder, tho' it have no tongue, will speak

With most miraculous organ.
So, in Meafure for Measure :

And giv'n his deputation all the organs
of our own pow'r.


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That I in forgery of shapes and tricks
Come short of what he did,

Laer. A Norman, was’t ?
King. A Norman.
Laer. Upon my life, Lamond.
King. The


same. Laer. I know him well; he is the brooch,-indeed, And gem

of all the nation.
King. He made confession of you,
And gave you such a masterly report,
For art and exercise in


And for your rapier most especial,
That he cry'd out, 'would be a fight indeed,
If one could match you. Thescrimers of their nation, (64)
He swore, had neither motion, guard, nor eye,
If you oppos'd 'em.—Sir, this report of his
Did Hamlet fo envenom with his envy,
That he could nothing do, but wish and beg
Your sudden coming o'er to play with him.
Now out of this
Laor. What out of this, my Lord ?

King. Laertes, was your father dear to you?
Or are you like the painting of a forrow,
A face without a heart?
Laer. Why alk you

King. Not that I think, you did not love your father,
But that I know, love is begun by time ;
And that I fee in passages of proof,

(64) The scrimers of their nation,

He swore, bad neither motion, guard, nor eye,

If you opposid them.] This likewise is a paffage omitted in the folios : the reducing the play to a reasonable length was the motive of so many caftrations. Some of the modern quartos have in the room of scrimers substituted fencers: which is but a glofs of the more obsolete word. Scrimer is properly a gladiator, fencer; from which we have derived our word, skirmish. The science of defence was by the Dutch call's scherm ; by the Italians, feber ima and scrima ; and by the French, efcrime : as the Anglo-Saxons of old used to call a fencer or swordsman, scrimbre: which (the b being left out, and a metalbefis made in the letters of the last syllable) is the very term us'd by our Author. Vol. VIII.



Time qualifies the spark and fire of it;
There lives within the very slame of love
A kind of wick, cr snuff, that will abate it,
And nothing is at a like goodness still ;
For goodness, growing to a pleurify, ()
Dies in his own too much; what we would do,
We should do when we would; for this wuld changes,
And hath abatements and delays as many
As there are tongues, are hands, are accidents;
And then this shult is like a fpend-thrift figh
That hurts by easing ; but to th’quick o'th ulcer
Hamle! comes back; what would you undertake
"To shew yourself your father's son indeed
More than in words?

Laer. To cut his throat i'th' church. 1 King. No place, indeed, should murder sanctuarise ; Revenge should have no bounds ; but, good Laerte', (65) For goodness, growing to a pleurisy,

Dies in bis eruni too mucb.] Mr. Warburton fagaciously observ'd to me, that this is nonsense, and untrue in fact; and therefore thinks, that Shakespeare must have wrote;

For goodness, growing to a plethory, &c. For the pleurily is an inflammation of the membrane which covers the whole iborax; and is generally occafion'd by a stagnation of the blood; but a plerbora, is, when the veft:Is are fuller of humours than is agreeable to a natural state, or health : and too great a fullness and floridness of the blood are frequently the causes of sudden death. But I have not disturbid the text, because, 'iis possible, our Author him. self might be out in his physics : and I have the more reason to fuf. pect it, because Beaumont and Fletcber have twice committed the self same blunder.

You are too insolent;
And those 160 many excellencies, that feed
Your sride, turn to a pleurisy, and kill

That which should nourish virtue. Cuftom of the Country So, again;

Thou grand decider
of dusly and old titles, that heal'st with blood
The earth when it is fick, and cur'st the world
O'th' pleurisy of people.

Two Noble Kinsmen, If I may guess at the accident which caus'd their miftak', it seems this. They did not consider, that pleurisy was deriv'd from pieura, but the declination of plus, pluris, cross'd their thoughts, and so they naturally suppos'd the difemper to arise from some superfluity.

Will you

do this? keep clofe within your chamber;
Hamlei, return'd, shall know you are come home :
We'll put on those shall praise your excellence,
And let a double varnish on the fame
The Frenchman gave you ; bring you in fine together,
And wager on your heads. He being remiss,
Most generous, and free from all contriving,
Will not peruse the foils ; so that with ease,
Or with a little shuffling, you may chuse
A sword unbated, and in a pass of practice
Requite him for your father.

Luer. I will do't ;
And for the purpose I'll anoint my

sword :
I bought an unction of a Mountebank,
So mortal, that but dip a knife in it,
Where it draws blood, no Cataplasm fo rare,
Collected from all Simples that have virtue
Under the moon, can save the thing from death,
That is but scratch'd withal ; l'll touch my point
With this contagion, that if I gall him slightly,

be death.
King. I et's farther think of this;
Weigh, what convenience both of time and means
May fit us to our shape. If this should fail,
And that our drift look through our bad performance,
"Twere better not assay'd; therefore this project
Should have a back, or second, that might hold,
If this should blast in proof.--Soft-let me see-
We'll make a solemn wager on your cunnings;
I ha't-7-when in your motion you are hot,
(As ma. your bouts more violent to that end,)
And that he calls for drink, I'll have prepar'd him
A chálice for the nonce; whereon but sipping,
If he by chance escape your venom'd tuck,
Our purpose may hold there.

Enier Queen. How now, sweet Queen?

Queen. One woe doth tread upon another's heel, Se fast they follow : your sister's drown'd, Laertes.


K 2

Laer. Drown'd! oh where ?

Queen, There is a willow grows aslant a brook,
That shews his hoar leaves in the glassy stream:
There with fantastick garlands did she come,
Of crow-flowers, nettles, daisies, and long purples,
(That liberal shepherds give a grosser name;
But our cold maids do dead men's fingers call them ;)
There on the pendant boughs, her coronet weeds
Clambering to hang, an envious Niver broke;
When down her weedy trophies and herself
Fell in the weeping brook; her cloaths spread wide,
And mermaid-like, a while they bore her up;
Which time the chaunted snatches of old tunes,
As one incapable of her own distress ;
Or like a creature native, and indued
Unto that element; but long it could not be,
'Till that her garments, heavy with their drink,
Pulld the poor wretch from her melodious lay
To muddy death.

Laer. Alas then, she is drown'd!
Queen. Drown'd, drown'd.

Laer. Too much of water hast thou, poor Ophelia,
And therefore I forbid my tears : but yet
It is our trick; Nature her custom holds,
Let Shame say what it will; when these are gone,
The woman will be out : adieu, my Lord !
I have a speech of fire, that fain would blaze,
But that this folly drowns it.

[Exit, King. Follow, Gertrude : How much had I to do to calm his rage! Now fear I, this will give it start again ; Therefore, let's follow,

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