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En:er Ofrick. Of. Your Lordhipis right welcome back to Denmark. Ham. I humbly thank you, Sir. Doft know this
water-fiy Hor. No, my good Lord.
Ham. Thy itate is the more gracious; for 'tis a vice to know him: he hath much land, and fertile ; let a beast be Lord of beasts, and his crib hall itand at the King's messe; 'tis a chough; but, as I say, spacious in the posietion of dirt.
Ojr. Sweet Lord, if your Lordship were at leisure, I fhould impart a thing to you from his Majetty.
Han. I will receive it with all diligence of spirit: your bonnet to his right ufc, es for the head.
Ofr. I thank your Lordship, 'tis very hot. (72)
Ham. No, believe me, 'tis very cold; the wind is northerly.
Ojr. It is indifferent cold, my Lord, indeed.
Ham. But yet, methinks, it is very sultry, and hot for my complexion.
Ofr. Exceedingly, my Lord, it is very sultry, as 'twere, I cannot tell how:-My Lord, his Majesty bid me signify to you, that he has laid a great wager on your head : Sir, this is the matter
Ham. I beseech you, remember Ofr. Nay, in good faith, fo; mine eafe, in good faith: -Sir, here is newly come to Court, Laertés; (73) believe
me, (72) I hank your Lordship, 'tis very hot. Ham. No, believe
the wind is nori berly. Olr. It is indifferent cold, my Lord, indeed. Ham. But yet, methinks, it is very sultry, and Lot for my complexion,
Ofr. Exceedingly, my Lord, it is very fultry, as 'iwere, I cannot tell how.] The humourous compliance of this fantastic courtier, to every thing that Hamlet says, is so close a copy from Juvenal, (Sat. 111.) that our Author must certainly have had that picture in his eye.
Rides? majore cachinno
Accipit endremidem : fi dixeris, Altuo, fudat. (73) Sir, bere is n-wly come to court, Laertes.] I have resor'd here several speeches from the elder quartos, which were omitted in the
me, an absolute Gentieman, full of most excellent Dif. ferences, of very soft fociety, and great shew: indeed, to speak feelingly of him, he is the card or kalendar of gentry; for you shall find in him the continent of what part a gentleman would see.
Ham. Sir, his definement suffers no perdition in you, tho' I know, to divide him inventorially would dizzy the arithmetick of memory; and yet but raw neither in respect of his quick fail : But, in the verity of extolment, I take him to be a foul of great article ; and his infusion of such dearth and rareness, as, to make true diction of him, his semblable is his mirrour; and, who else would trace him, his umbrage, nothing more.
Ofr. Your Lordihip speaks molt infallibly of him.
Ham. The concernancy, Sir?Why do we wrap the Gentleman in our more rawer breath?
[To Horatio. Ofr. Sir,
Hor. Is't not possible to understand in another tongue ? you will do't, Sir, rarely.
Ham. What imports the nomination of this gentleman? Ofi. Of Laertes ?
Hor. His purse is empty already: all's golden words are spent.
tium. Cfhim, Sir,
Ham. I would, you did, sir; yet, in faith, if you did, it would not much approve me.- Well, Sir.
Ofr. You are not ignorant of what excellence Laertes is,
Ham. I dare not confess that, lest I should compare with him in excellence: but to know a man well, were to know himself.
Ofr. I mean, Sir, for his weapon : but in the Imputation laid on him by them in his meed, he's unfellow'd. filio editions, and which Mr. Pope has likewife thought fit to fink upon us. They appear to me very well worthy not to be lost, as they thoroughly thew the foppery and affectation of Ofrick, and the bumour and address of Hamlet in accofting the other at once in his own vein and Atyle,
Ham. What's his weapon 12
Ofr. The King, Sir, has wag'd with him fix Barbary horses, against the which he has impond, as I take it, fix French rapiers and poniards, with their assigns, as girdle, hangers, and so : three of the carriages, in faith, are very dear to fancy, very responsive to the hilts, most delicate carriages, and of very liberal conceit:
Ham. What call you the carriages? Hor. I knew, you must be edified by the Margent, you had done.
[ifde. Ofr. The carriages, Sir, are the hangers.
Ham. "I he phrase would be more germane to the matter, if we could carry cannon by our fides; I would, it might be hangers till then. But, on; fix Barbary horses against fix French swords, their assigns, and three liberal-conceited carriages; that's the French bett againft the Danish; why is this impon'd, as you call it?
Ofr. The King, Sir, hath laid, that in a Dozen Passes between you and him, he shall not exceed you
three hits; he hath laid on twelve for nine, and it would come to immediate trial, if your Lordship would vouche safe the answer.
Ham. How if I answer, no?
Ofr. I mean, my Lord, the opposition of your person in trial.
Ham. Sir, I will walk here in the hall; If it please his Majesty, 'tis the breathing time of day with me; let the foils be brought, the gentleman willing, and the King hold his purpose, I will win for him if I can: if not, I'll gain nothing but my shame, and the odd hits.
Ofr. Shall I deliver you so ?
Ham. To this effect, Sir, after what flourish your nature will.
Ofr. I commend my duty to your Lordship. (Exit.
Ham. Yours, yours; he does well to commend it himself, there are no tongues else for's turn.
Hor. This lapwing runs away with the shell on his head.
Ham. He did so, Sir, with his dug before he fuck'd it : thus has he (and many more of the same breed, that, I know, the drossy age dotes on) only got the tune of the time, and outward habit of encounter, a kind of yesty collection, which carries them through and through the most fond and winnowed opinions; and do but blow them to their trials, the bubbles are out.
Enter a Lord,
Lord. My Lord, his Majesty commended him to you by young Ofrick, who brings back to him, that you attend him in the hall; he sends to know if your pleasure hold to play with Laertes; or that you will take longer time?
Ham. I am constant to my purposes, they follow the King's pleasure ; if his fitness speaks, mine is ready, now, or whensoever, provided I be so able as now.
Lord. The King, and Queen, and all are coming down.
Ham. In happy time.
Lord. The Queen desires you to use some gentle entertainment to Laertes, before you fall to play. Ham. She well instructs me.
[Exit Lord, Hor. You will lose this wager, my Lord.
Ham. I do not think so; since he went into France, I have been in continual practice; I shall win at the odds. But thou wouldit not think how ill all's here about my heart - but it is no matter.
Hor. Nay, my good Lord.
Ham. It is but foolery; but it is such a kind of gaingiving as would, perhaps, trouble a woman.
Hor. If your mind disike any thing, obey it. I will forestal their repair hither, and say you are not fit.
Ham. Not a whit, we defy augury; there is a special providence in the fall of a sparrow. If it be now, 'tis not to come ; if it be not to come, it will be now : If it be not now, yet it will come; the readiness is all. Since no man has aught of what he leaves, what is't to leave betimes
Enter King, Queen, Laertes and Lords, Ofrick, with other
Attendunts with foils, and cantlets. A table, and flaggons of wine on it. King. Come, Hamlet, come, and take this hand
from me. Ham. Give me your pardon, Sir; I've done you wrong; But pardon't, as you are a gentleman. This presence knows, and you must needs have heard, How I am punilh'd with a fore distraction. What I have done, That might your nature, honour, and exception Roughly awake, I here proclaim was madness: Was't H1 mlet wrong'd Laertes? never, Hamlet. If Haslet from himself be ta'en away, And, when he's not himself, docs wrong Laertes, Then Him'ct does it not; Hamlit denies it : Who does it then? his madness. f't be fo, Hamler is of the faction that is wrong'd; His madnels is poor Har let's enemy. Let my disclaiming from a purpos'd evil, Free me so far in your most generous thoughts, That I have shot mine arrow o'er the house, And hurt
Ham. I embrace it freely,
Laer. Come, one for me.
Ham . I'll be your foil, Li ertes; in mine ignorance Your skill shall like a star i'th' darkest night Stick fiery off, indeed. 5