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Claudius, king of Denmark.
Hamlet, son to the former king, and nephew to the present king.
Polonius, lord chamberlain.
Horatio, friend to Hamlet.
Laertes, son to Polonius.
Osric, a courtier.
Francisco, a soldier.
Reynaldo, servant to Polonius.
A Captain. An Ambassador.
Fortinbras, prince of Norway.
Gertrude, queen of Denmark, and mother of
Ophelia, daughter of Polonius.
Lords, Ladies, Officers, Soldiers, Players, Gravediggers, Sailors, Messengers, and other Attendants.
PRINCE OF DENMARK.
SCENE I. Elsinore. A platform before the castle.
Francisco on his post. Enter to him Bernardo.
Fran. You come most carefully upon your hour. Ber. 'Tis now struck twelve; get thee to bed,
Fran. For this relief, much thanks: 'tis bitter cold,
And I am sick at heart.
Ber. Have you had quiet guard?
Ber. Well, good night.
Not a mouse stirring.
you do meet Horatio and Marcellus, The rivals of my watch, bid them make haste.
Enter Horatio and Marcellus.
Fran. I think, I hear them.-Stand, ho! Who is
A piece of him.
Ber. Welcome, Horatio; welcome, good Mar
Hor. What, has this thing appear'd again to-night? Ber. I have seen nothing.
Mar. Horatio says, 'tis but our fantasy; And will not let belief take hold of him,
Touching this dreaded sight, twice seen of us;
Therefore I have entreated him, along
With us to watch the minutes of this night;
He may approvet our eyes, and speak to it.
Sit down awhile;
And let us once again assail your ears,
Well, sit we down,
And let us hear Bernardo speak of this.
Ber. Last night of all,
When yon same star, that's westward from the pole,
+ Make good, or establish.
Had made his course to illume that part of heaven
Mar. Peace, break thee off; look, where it comes again!
Ber. In the same figure like the king that's dead. Mar. Thou art a scholar, speak to it, Horatio. Ber. Looks it not like the king? mark it, Horatio. Hor. Most like:-it harrows me with fear, and
Ber. It would be spoke to.
Speak to it, Horatio. Hor. What art thou, that usurp'st this time of
Together with that fair and warlike form
In which the majesty of buried Denmark
Did sometimes march? by heaven I charge thee,
Mar. It is offended.
See! it stalks away.
Hor. Stay; speak: speak I charge thee, speak.
Mar. 'Tis gone, and will not answer.
Ber. How now, Horatio? you tremble, and look
Is not this something more than fantasy?
What think you of it?
Hor. Before my God, I might not this believe, Without the sensible and true avouch
Of mine own eyes.
Is it not like the king?
Hor. As thou art to thyself:
Such was the very armour he had on,
When he the ambitious Norway combated;
He smote the sledded Polack + on the ice.
Mar. Thus, twice before, and jump‡ at this dead hour,
With martial stalk hath he gone by our watch.
But, in the gross and scope of mine opinion,
Why this same strict and most observant watch
At least, the whisper gocs so.
That can I;
Our last king,
Whose image even but now appear'd to us,
Did forfeit, with his life, all those his lands
Was gaged by our king; which had return'd
To the inheritance of Fortinbras,
Had he been vanquisher; as, by the same co-martý, And carriage of the article design'd ||,
Sledged. + Polander, an inhabitant of Poland. § Joint bargain.
The covenant to confirm that bargain.