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lor. You might have rhymed.
Ham. Oh, good Horatio, I'll take the Ghost's word for a thousand pounds. Didit perceive?
Hor. Very well, my Lord.
Enter ROSINCRANTZ and GUILDENSTERN.
you. Ham. Sir, a whole history. Guil. The King, Şir---Ham. Ay, Sir, what of hin? Guil. Is, in bis retirement, marvellous distemperedHam. With drink, Sir ? Guil. No, my Lord, with choler.
Ham. Your wisdom shall thew itself more rich, to fignify this to his doctor; for, for me to put him to his purgation, would perhaps plunge him into more choler.
The witches are supposed to hear their spirits call to them in the screaming of a cat, and the croaking of a toad. But what makes it the more probable that this term should be used here, Hamlet again, afterwards speaking of his uncle to the Queen, among other contemptuous additions, gives him this very appellation :
Twere good you let him know; For who that's but a Queen, fair, sober, wise, Would from a paddock, from a bat, a gibbe, Such dear concernings hide? I had forinerly proposed other conjectures; but I think I may venture to stand by this. Sub judice lis ef. If it has reason and probability on its Gde, Mr Pope's legendary pero cook must even be content to wait for another election,
Gril. Good my Lord, put your discourse into fome frame, and start not fo wildly from my affair.
Ham. I am tame, Sir ;---pronounce.
Guil. The Queen yonr mother, in most great ami&tion of spirit, hath sent me to you.
Ham. You are welcome.
Guil. Nay, good my Lord, this courtesy is not of the right breed. If it shall please you to make me a wholesome answer, I will do your mother's commandment; if not, your pardon, and my return, shall be the end of my business.
Ham. Sir, I cannot.
Ham. Make you a wholesome answer; my wit's diseased. But, Sir, such answer as I can make you thall command; cr, rather, as you say, my mother-therefore no more but to the matter my mother, you say
Rof. Then thas the says; your behaviour hath struck her into amazement and admiration.
Ham. Oh wonderful fon, that can fo astonish a 'mother! But is there no sequel at the heels of this mother's admiration?
Rof. She desires to [peak with you in her clofet, ere you go to bed. Ham. We Arall obey, were she ten times our
Rof. My Lord, you once did love me.
Rof. Good my Lord, wliat is your cause of distemper? you do, surely, bar the door of your own liberty, if you deny your griefs to your friend.
Ham. Sir, I lack advancement.
of the King himself for your succession in Denmark?
Ham. Ay, but " while the grass grows"-----the proverb is fomething musty.
Enter one, with a Recorder. Oh, the recorders; let me see one. To withdraw with you-..---Why do you go about to recover the wind of me, as if you would drive me into a toile?
Guil. Oh my Lord, if my duty be too bold, my love is too unmannerly.
Ham. I do not well understand that. Will you play upon this pipe?
Guil. My Lord, I cannot.
Ham. 'Tis as easy as lying; govern these ventiges with your fingers and thumb, give it breath with your mouth, and it will discourse most eloquent music. Look you, these are the stops.
Guil. But these cannot I command to any utterance of harmony; I have not the skill.
Ham. Why, look you now, how unworthy a thing you make of me; you would play upon me, you would seem to know my stops ; you would pluck out the heart of my mystery; you would Tound me from my lowest note to the top of my compass; and there is much mufic, excellent voice, in this little organ, yet cannot you make it speak, Why, do you think that I am easier to be played on than a pipe ? call me what instrument you will, though you can fret me, you cannot play upon me,
God bless you, Sir.
Pol. My Lord, the Queen would speak with you, and presently.
Ham. Do yon see yonder cloud, that's almost in fhape of a cainel ?
Pol. By the mass, and it's like a camel, indeed. -
Ham. Then will I come to my mother by and by.- They fool me to the top of my bent.---I will come by and by.
(44) Methinks it is like an onzle.
Pol. It is black lite an ouzia) The old Quarto and Foliogive us this passage thus;
Methinks it is like a weeze!.
Pol. It is black like a weezel. But a weezel, as Mr Pope bas observed, is not black. Some other editions read the last line thus;
Pol. It is backed like a weezel. This only avoids the abfurdity of giving a false colour to the weezel; but oulze is certainly the true reading, and a word which our Author has used in other places;
The ouzel-cock, so black of hue,
With orange-tawny bill, &c. Midsummer Nighi's Dream. Shal. And how doth my coafin, your bedfellow! and your fairest daughter and mine, my god-daughter Ellen? Sil. Alas, a black ouzil, coulin Shallow.
2 Henry IV. But there is a propriety in the word being used in the passage before us, which deterinines it to be the true reading; the. rea?on of which, I presume, did not occur to Mr Pope. ’ris obvious that Hamlet, under the umbrage of supposed madness, is playing on Polonius; and a particular compliance is fhewn in the old man, (who thinks Hamlet really mad, and. perhaps is afraid of hin) to confess, that the lanie cloud is like a beast, a bird, and a fish, viz. a camel, an ouzel, and. a while. Nor is there a little humour in the dispropor-tion of the three things which the cloud is supposed to refenible.
Fol. I will say fo. ham. By and by is eafily faid. Leave me, friends.
[Exeunt. 'Tis now the very witching time of night, [out When church-yards yawn, and held itself breathes Contagion to this world. Now could I drink hot And do such bitter business as the day [blood, Would quake to look on. Soft, now to my mothers O heart, lofe not thy nature; let not ever The soul of Nero enter this firm borom; Let me be cruel, not unnatural; I will speak daggers to her, but use none. My tongue and loul in this be hypocrites; How in my words focver she be (hent, To give them seals never my soul consent! [Exita. Enter. King, ROSINCRANTZ,
and GUILDEN STERN. King. I like him not, nor stands it safe with us To let his madness range. Therefore, prepare you; } your commillion wiit forth with dispatch, And he to England íhali along with you. The terms of our estate may not endure (45) Hazard so near us, as doth hourly grow Out of his Lunes.
(45) The terms of our efate may not endure
Hazara lo neor us, as woth bourly grow
Guil. He will provide ourselves;} The old Quartos read, -Out of his brows. This was fron she ignorance of the first editors, as is this unneceifary Alex.. andrine, which we owe to the players, The l'oet lam per.. fuaded wrote;
as doth hourly grow Out of his lunes. i. e. his madness, frenzy. So our Poet before, in his Wine ter's Tale ;
These dangerous, un fafe lunes i'th'King!-beNirew 'em,,
He must be told of it, &c. The reader, if he pleases, may turn to my teath remarks