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Laer.

I will do 't;
And, for the purpose, I'll anoint my sword. I
197 I bought an unction of a mountebank,

So mortal, that but dip a knife in it,
Where it draws blood no cataplasm so rare,
Collected from all simples that have virtue
Under the moon , can save the thing from death,
That is but scratch'd withal: I'll touch my point
With this contagion, that if I gall him slightly,
It
may

be death.
King.

Let's further 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,
’T were 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: 1
198 When in your motion you are hot and dry,

(As make your bouts more violent to that end)
And that he calls for drink, I'll have preferr'd him
A chalice for the nonce; whereon but sipping,
If he by chance escape your venom'd stuck,
Our purpose may hold there. But stay! what noise ?

Enter Queen.
How now, sweet queen?

Queen. One woe doth tread upon another's heel,
So fast they follow. Your sister 's drown'd, Laertes.

Laer. Drown'd? 0, where? | 199 Queen. There is a willow grows ascaunt the brook,

That shows his hoar leaves in the glassy stream;
Therewith fantastic garlands did she make
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 pendent boughs her coronet weeds
Clambering to hang, an envious sliver broke,
When down her weedy trophies, and herself,
Fell in the weeping brook. Her clothes spread wide,
And, mermaid - like, a while they bore her up;
Which time, she chanted snatches of old lauds;

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200

As one incapable of her own distress,
Or like a creature native and indu'd
Unto that element: but long it could not be,
Till that her garments, heavy with their drink,
Pull’d the poor wretch from her melodious lay
To muddy death.
Laer.

Alas! then is she 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.

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

Exeunt. 1

A CT V.

201

SCENE I.

A Church - Yard.

Enter Two Clowns, with Spades, &c.

1 Clo. Is she to be buried in Christian burial, that wilfully seeks her own salvation?

2 Clo. I tell thee, she is; therefore make her grave straight: the crowner hath sate on her, and finds it Christian burial.

1 Clo. How can that be, unless she drowned herself in her own defence?

2 Clo. Why, 't is found so.

1 Clo. It must be se offendendo; it cannot be else. For here lies the point: if I drown myself wittingly, it argues an act, and an act hath three branches; it is, to act, to do, and to perform; argal, she drowned herself wittingly.

2 Clo. Nay, but hear you, goodman delver.

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1 clo. Give me leave. Here lies the water; good: here stands the man; good: if the man go to this water, and drown himself, it is, will he, nill he, he

goes,
mark

you that; but if the water come to him, and drown him, he drowns not himself: argal, he that is not guilty of his own death shortens

not his own life. | 202 2 Clo. But is this law?

1 .Clo. Ay, marry, is't; crowner's quest - law.

2 Clo. Will you ha' the truth on 't? If this had not been a gentlewoman, she should have been buried out of Christian burial.

1 Clo. Why, there thou say'st; and the more pity, that great folk shall have countenance in this world to drown or hang themselves, more than their even Christian. Come, my spade. There is no ancient gentlemen but gardeners, ditchers, and gravemakers; they hold up Adam's profession.

2 Clo. Was he a gentleman?
1 Co. He was the first that ever bore arms.
2 Clo. Why, he had none.

1 Clo. What, art a heathen? How dost thou understand the Scripture? The Scripture says, Adam digged: could he dig without arms? I'll put another question to thee: if thou

answerest me not to the purpose, confess thyself -- 1 203 2 Clo. Go to.

1 Clo. What is he, that builds stronger than either the mason, the shipwright, or the carpenter? 2 Clo. The gallows-maker; for that frame outlives a thou

. sand tenants.

1 Clo. I like thy wit well, in good faith: the gallows does well; but how does it well? it does well to those that do ill: now, thou dost ill to say the gallows is built stronger than the church : argal, the gallows may do well to thee.' o't again; come.

2 Clo. Who builds stronger than a mason, a shipwright, or a carpenter?

1 Clo. Ay, tell me that, and unyoke.
2 Clo. Marry, now I can tell.
1 Clo. To 't.

2 Clo. Mass, I cannot tell. | 204

Enter HAMLET and HORATIO, at a distance.
1 Clo. Cudgel thy brains no more about it, for

dull ass will not mend his pace with beating; and, when you are,

your

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asked this question next, say, a grave - maker: the houses that
he makes, last till doomsday. Go, get thee in; fetch me a
stoop of liquor.

[Exit 2 Clown.
1 Clown digs, and sings.
In youth, when I did love, did love,

Methought it was very sweet,
To contract, 0! the time, for, ah! my behove ,

0, methought, there was nothing meet.
Ham. Has this fellow no feeling of his business, that he
sings at grave - making ?

Hor. Custom hath made it in him a property of easiness.

Ham. 'T is e'en so : the hand of little employment hath the
daintier sense.
1 Clo.

with his stealing steps ,
Hath claw'd me in his clutch,
And hath shipped me into the land ,
As if I had never been such.

[Throws up a scull. Ham. That, scull had a tongue in it, and could sing once: 205 how the knave jowls it to the ground, as if it were Cain's jaw - bone, that did the first murder! This might be the pate of a politician, which this ass now o'er - reaches, one that would circumvent God, might it not?

Hor. It might, my lord.

Ham. Or of a courtier, which could say, “Good-morrow, sweet lord! How dost thou, good lord?” This might be my lord Such- -a-one, that praised my lord Such - a-one's horse, when he meant to beg it, might it not?

Hor. Ay, my lord.

Ham. Why, e'en so, and now my lady Worm's; chapless,
and knocked about the mazzard with a sexton's spade. Here's
fine revolution, we had the trick to see 't. Did these
bones cost no more the breeding, but to play at loggats with
them? mine ache to think on't.
1 Clo.
A pick - axe, and a spade, a spade,

[Sings.
For and a shrouding sheet:
0! a pit of clay for to be made
For such a guest is meet.

[Throws up another scull. Ham. There 's another: why may not that be the scull of 206 a lawyer: Where be his quiddits now, his quillets, his cases,

an

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his tenures, and his tricks? why does he suffer this rude knave
now to knock him about the sconce with a dirty shovel, and
will not tell him of his action of battery? Hum! This fellow
might be in 's time a great buyer of land, with his statutes,
his recognizances, his fines, his double vouchers, his recoveries.
Is this the fine of his fines, and the recovery of his recoveries,
to have his fine pate full of fine dirt ? will his vouchers vouch
him no more of his purchases, and double ones too, than the
length and breadth of a pair of indentures ? The very con-
veyances of his lands will hardly lie in this box, and must
the inheritor himself have no more? ha?

Hor. Not a jot more, my lord.
Ham. Is not parchment made of sheep-skins?
Hor. Ay, my lord, and of calf-skins too.

Ham. They are sheep and calves, which seek out assurance in that. I will speek to this fellow. Whose grave 's this,

sirrah? | 207 1 Clo. Mine, Sir. 0, a pit of clay for to be made

[Sings. For such a guest is meet. Ham. I think, it be thine, indeed; for thou liest in 't.

1: Clo. You lie out on't, Sir, and therefore it is not yours : for my part, I do not lie in 't, yet it is mine.

Ham. Thou dost lie in 't, to be in 't, and say it is thine: 't is for the dead, not for the quick; therefore, thou liest.

1 Clo. 'T is a quick lie, Sir; 't will away again, from me to you.

Ham. What man dost thou dig it for?
1 Clo. For no man, Sir.
Ham. What woman, then?
1 Clo. For none, neither.
Ham. Who is to be buried in 't?

1 Clo. One, that was a woman, Sir; but, rest her soul, she's dead. 1 208 Ham. How absolute the knave is! we must speak by the

card, or equivocation will undo us. By the lord, Horatio, these three years I have taken note of it; the

grown so picked, that the toe of the peasant comes so near the heel of the courtier, he galls his kibe. How long hast thou been a grave-maker? 1 cio.

Of all the days i' the year, I came to 't that day that our last king Hamlet overcame Fortinbras.

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