Obrazy na stronie
PDF
ePub

Guild. We will provide ourselves:
Moft holy and religious fear it is,
To keep those many, many bodies safe,
That live and feed upon your Majesty.

Rof. The single and peculiar Hfe is bound,
With all the strength and armour of the mind,
To keep itself from noyance; but much more
That spirit on whose weal depends and reits
The lives of many. The cease of Majesty
Dies not alone, but, like a.gulf, doth draw,
What's near it with it. It's a matly wheel
Eix'd on the summit of the highest mount,
To whose huge spokes ten thousand lesser things
Are mortized and adjoined; which, when it fallsgn
Each small annexment, petty consequence,
Attends the boisterous ruin. Ne'er alune
Did the King figh; but with a general groan.

King. Arm you, I pray you, to this speedy voyage : Eor we will fetters put upon this fear, Which now goes too free-footed.Both. We will batte us: [Exeunt Gentlement.

Enter POLONIUS. Pol. My Lord, he's gone to his mother's closet; Behind the arras I'll convey myself To hear the process. I'll: warrant she'll tảx him: And, as you faid, and wisely was ir fait, [home. 'Tis meet that some more audience than a mother (Since nature makes them partial,) should o’er-hear The speech, of vantage. Fare you well, iny Liege ;or that play. Perhaps, too, in the Merry Wives of Win'sorge where all the editieds read,

Why, woman, your busband is in his old fincs again, we ought to correct,

in his old lunes again; . s. in bis old fits of madness, frenzy.

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

I'll call upon you ere you go to bed,
And tell you what I'know.

[Exito
King Thanks, dear my Lord.
Oh! my offence is rank, it smells to heaven,
It hath the primal, eldest curse. upon't;(46).
That of a brother's murder. Pray I cannot,
Though inclination be as sharp as will; (47)
(40) It hath the primal, eldeft curse upon't ;

A ir ther's murder. Pray I cannot,] The last verse, 'tis evident, halts in the meafure; and, if I don't miltake, is 25 Jittle lame in the sense too. Was a brother's murder the eldest curfe? Surely it was rather tlie crime that was the cause of this eldeft, curse. We have no allistance, however, cither to the sense or numbers from any of the copies. All the editions concur in the deficiency of a foot; but if we can both cure the meafure, and help the meaning, without a prejudice to the Author, I-think the concurrence of the pridied copies should not be sufficient to forbid a conjecture. I have ventured at two supplemental fyllables, as innocent in then felves as neceffary to the purposes.for which they are: introduced;

That of a brother's murder.(47) Though inclination be] This line has lain under the fufpicion of many nice observers; and an ingevious gentle-man started, at a heat; this very probable emendation:

Though iuclination be as tharp as 't will. The variation from the traces of ihe letter is very minute, at | with an apostrophe before it only being added, which might? very eally have lipt out under the printer's hands; fo that rbe chiange will not be disputed, fuppofing, there is a necefSty for it; which however is fubmitted to judgment. 'Tis certain the line, as it stands in all the editions, has so strongby the air of a flat tautology, that it may deserve a fhors comment, and to have the difference betwixt:inclinet:on and will ascertained. The word inclinntior, in its use with us ias my friend Mr Warburton defines it to me) is caken in these three acceptations. First, in its exact philofophical sense, it hgnifies the drawing or inclining the will to determine itfcif one certain way, according to this signification the line ji nonsense; and is the fame as to affirm, that the part is as big as the whole. In the next place, inchoation lignifies the will, and then it is the most abfurd tautology. But, lalily,

[ocr errors]

My stronger guilt defeats my strong intent:
And, like a man to double business bound,
I stand in pause where I shall first begin,
And both neglect. What if this curled hand
Were thicker than itself wiih brother's blood?
Is there not rain enough in the Tweet heavens
To wash it white as snow? whereto serves Mercy,
But to confront the vitage of offence?
And what's in prayer, but this two-fold force,
To be fore-stalled ere we come to fall,
Or pardoned being down then I'll look up;
My fault is pait. -

Bat oh, what form of prayer
Can ferve my turn? Forgive me my faul murder !---
That cannot be, fince I am still poffefs'd
Of those effects for which I did the murder,
My crown, mine own ambition, and my queen.
May one-be pardoned, and retain th' offence!
In the corrupted currents of this world,
Offence's gilded hand may thove by justice;
And oft ’tis feen, tlie wicked prize ittelf
Buys out the law; but 'tis not fo above :
There, is no shuffting; there, the action lyes
In his true nature, and we ourselves compelled,
Even to the teeth and forehead of our faults,
To give in evidence. What then? what reits?
Try what repentance can : What can it not?
Yet what can it, when one cannot repent?
Oh wretched ftate! oh bosom black as death!

it fignifies a difpofition to do a thing, already determined of, with complacency and pleafure. And if this is, as it seems. to be, the fease of the word here, then the fentiment will be very clear and proper. For signifying barely the determination of the mind to do a thing, the fenfe will be this: “ Though the pleasure I take in this act, be as strong as the determination of my mind to perform its yet my longer guils detears my strong iptet, &c."

Oh.limed-foal, that, ftruggling to be free,
Art more engaged! help, angeks! make assay.!
Bow, stubborn knees; and, heart, with strings of
Be soft as finews of the new-born babe! [iteel,
All may be well. [The King retires and kneelso

Etter HAMLET.
Ham. Now might I do it pat, now he is praying,
And now I'll do'tand fo he

goes

to heaven. And so am I revenged? that would be scanned ;. A villain kills my father, and for that 1, his sole son, do this fame villain fepd. Ta heaven- O, this is hire and salary, not revenge.. He took my father grolly, full of bread, With all his crimes broad blown, as flush as-May;, And how his audit stands, who knows, save Heaven? But in our circumstance and course of thought, 'Tis heavy with him. Am I then revenged, To take him in the purging, of his soul, When he is fit and seasoned for his paffage? Up, sword, and know thou a more horrid bent; (48) When he is drunk, afleep, or in his rage, Or in th' incestuous pleature of his bed;.

(48) Up, sword, and know thou a m re horrid time.] This. is a sophisticated reading: warranted by none of the coe pies of any authority. Mr Pope says, I read conjectu-rall.;

a more horrid bert.. I do so, and why? The two oldest Quartos, as well as the two elder Folios, read, -a: inore horrid hent.

But as there is no such English subliantive, it fecois very natural" to conclude, that, with che change of a. Gngle letter, our due thor's: genuine word was beni, i. e drift, scope, iuclination, purpose, &c.

I have proved his frequent use of this word, in my hakespeare. Reitored; fo fall spare the trouble of making the quotasjons over again here. I took notice there, that chrowing my eye casually orer the fourib Folio edition, printed in 1085, 1.sound my correction there anticipated

At gaming, swearing, or aboui some act
That has no relish of salvation in't;
Then trip him, that his-hecis may kick at heaven;
And that his soul may be as damned and black
As hell, whereto it goes. My mother itays;
This phyfic but prolongs thy fickly days. [Exit.

The King rises, and comes forward.
King. My words fly up, my thoughts remain

below; Words, without thoughts, never to Heaven go.

[Exit.

SCENE changes to the Queen's Apartment.

Enter Queen and POLONTU S. Pol. He will come straight; look you lay home

to him: Tell him, his pranks have been too broad to bear

with; And that your Grace hath screened, and stood be..

tween Much heat and him. I'll filence me e'en here; Pray you, be round with him.

Han. [within.] Mother, mother, mother.

Queen. Ill warrant you, fear me not. Withdraw, I hear him coming.

[Polonius bideshimself behind the Arras..

Enter HAMLET.
Hain. Now, mother, what's the matter? [ed.

Queen. Hamleț, thou hast thy father much offendI think myself obliged to repeat this con{efsion, that i may vot' be accused of plagiarism, for an emendation which I had made before ever I law. a single page of that book.

« PoprzedniaDalej »