Gertrude’s Lines from Act 3.4

I’ll warrant you, fear me not. Withdraw, I hear him coming. Polonius hides behind the arras Enter HAMLET.


Hamlet, thou hast thy father much offended.


Come, come, you answer with an idle tongue.


Why, how now, Hamlet!


Have you forgot me?


Nay, then, I’ll set those to you that can speak.


What wilt thou do? thou wilt not murder me? Help, ho!


O me, what hast thou done?


O, what a rash and bloody deed is this!


As kill a king!


What have I done, that thou darest wag thy tongue In noise so rude against me?


Ay me, what act, That roars so loud, and thunders in the index?


O Hamlet, speak no more: Thou turn’st my eyes into my very soul; And there I see such black and grained spots As will not leave their tinct.


O, speak to me no more; These words, like daggers, enter in my ears; No more, sweet Hamlet!
No more!


Alas, he’s mad!


Alas, how is’t with you, That you do bend your eye on vacancy And with the incorporal air do hold discourse? Forth at your eyes your spirits wildly peep; And, as the sleeping soldiers in the alarm, Your bedded hair, like life in excrements, Start up, and stand an end. O gentle son, Upon the heat and flame of thy distemper Sprinkle cool patience. Whereon do you look?


To whom do you speak this?


Nothing at all; yet all that is I see.


No, nothing but ourselves.


This is the very coinage of your brain: This bodiless creation ecstasy Is very cunning in.


O Hamlet, thou hast cleft my heart in twain.


What shall I do?


Be thou assured, if words be made of breath, And breath of life, I have no life to breathe What thou hast said to me.


Alack, I had forgot: ’tis so concluded on.

Hamlet’s Lines from Act 3.4

 

 

Now, mother, what’s the matter?


Mother, you have my father much offended.


Go, go, you question with a wicked tongue.


What’s the matter now?


No, by the rood, not so: You are the queen, your husband’s brother’s wife; And — would it were not so! — you are my mother.


Come, come, and sit you down; you shall not budge; You go not till I set you up a glass Where you may see the inmost part of you.


Drawing How now! a rat? Dead, for a ducat, dead! Makes a pass through the arras.


Nay, I know not: Is it the king?
A bloody deed! almost as bad, good mother, As kill a king, and marry with his brother.


Ay, lady, it was my word. Lifts up the arras and discovers Polonius. Thou wretched, rash, intruding fool, farewell! I took thee for thy better: take thy fortune; Thou find’st to be too busy is some danger. Leave wringing of your hands: peace! sit you down, And let me wring your heart; for so I shall, If it be made of penetrable stuff, If damned custom have not brassed it so That it be proof and bulwark against sense.


Such an act That blurs the grace and blush of modesty, Calls virtue hypocrite, takes off the rose From the fair forehead of an innocent love And sets a blister there, makes marriage vows As false as dicers’ oaths: O, such a deed As from the body of contraction plucks The very soul, and sweet religion makes A rhapsody of words: heaven’s face does glow o’er this solidity and compound mass, With heated visage, as against the doom, Is thought-sick at the act.


Look here, upon this picture, and on this, The counterfeit presentment of two brothers. See, what a grace was seated on this brow; Hyperion’s curls; the front of Jove himself; An eye like Mars, to threaten and command; A station like the herald Mercury New lighted on a heaven-kissing hill; A combination and a form indeed, Where every god did seem to set his seal, To give the world assurance of a man: This was your husband. Look you now, what follows: Here is your husband; like a mildewed ear, Blasting his wholesome brother. Have you eyes? Could you on this fair mountain leave to feed, And batten on this moor? Ha! have you eyes? You cannot call it love; for at your age The hey-day in the blood is tame, it’s humble, And waits upon the judgement: and what judgement Would step from this to this? Sense, sure, you have, Else could you not have motion; but sure, that sense Is apoplexed; for madness would not err, Nor sense to ecstasy was ne’er so thralled But it reserved some quantity of choice, To serve in such a difference. What devil was’t That thus hath cozened you at hoodman-blind? Eyes without feeling, feeling without sight, Ears without hands or eyes, smelling sans all, Or but a sickly part of one true sense Could not so mope. O shame! where is thy blush? Rebellious hell, If thou canst mutine in a matron’s bones, To flaming youth let virtue be as wax, And melt in her own fire: proclaim no shame When the compulsive ardour gives the charge, Since frost itself as actively doth burn And reason panders will.


Nay, but to live In the rank sweat of an enseamed bed, Stewed in corruption, honeying and making love Over the nasty sty,


A murderer and a villain; A slave that is not twentieth part the tithe Of your precedent lord; a vice of kings; A cutpurse of the empire and the rule, That from a shelf the precious diadem stole, And put it in his pocket!


A king of shreds and patches, Enter Ghost. Save me, and hover o’er me with your wings, You heavenly guards! What would your gracious figure?


Do you not come your tardy son to chide, That, lapsed in time and passion, lets go by The important acting of your dread command? O, say!


How is it with you, lady?


On him, on him! Look you, how pale he glares! His form and cause conjoined, preaching to stones, Would make them capable. Do not look upon me; Lest with this piteous action you convert My stern effects: then what I have to do Will want true colour; tears perchance for blood.


Do you see nothing there?


Nor did you nothing hear?


Why, look you there look, how it steals away! My father, in his habit as he lived! Look, where he goes, even now, out at the portal! Exit Ghost.


Ecstasy! My pulse, as yours, doth temperately keep time, And makes as healthful music: it is not madness That I have uttered: bring me to the test, And I the matter will re-word; which madness Would gambol from. Mother, for love of grace, Lay not that flattering unction to your soul, That not your trespass, but my madness speaks: It will but skin and film the ulcerous place, Whiles rank corruption, mining all within, Infects unseen. Confess yourself to heaven; Repent what’s past; avoid what is to come; And do not spread the compost on the weeds, To make them ranker. Forgive me this my virtue; For in the fatness of these pursy times Virtue itself of vice must pardon beg, Yea, curb and woo for leave to do him good.


O, throw away the worser part of it, And live the purer with the other half. Good night: but go not to my uncle’s bed; Assume a virtue, if you have it not. That monster, custom, who all sense doth eat, Of habits devil, is angel yet in this, That to the use of actions fair and good He likewise gives a frock or livery, That aptly is put on. Refrain to-night, And that shall lend a kind of easiness To the next abstinence: the next more easy; For use almost can change the stamp of nature, And either …the devil, or throw him out With wondrous potency. Once more, good night: And when you are desirous to be blessed, I’ll blessing beg of you. For this same lord, Pointing to Polonius. I do repent: but heaven hath pleased it so, To punish me with this and this with me, That I must be their scourge and minister. I will bestow him, and will answer well The death I gave him. So, again, good night. I must be cruel, only to be kind: This bad begins and worse remains behind. One word more, good lady.


Not this, by no means, that I bid you do: Let the bloat king tempt you again to bed; Pinch wanton on your cheek; call you his mouse; And let him, for a pair of reechy kisses, Or paddling in your neck with his damned fingers, Make you to ravel all this matter out, That I essentially am not in madness, But mad in craft. ‘Twere good you let him know; For who, that’s but a queen, fair, sober, wise, Would from a paddock, from a bat, a gib, Such dear concernings hide? who would do so? No, in despite of sense and secrecy, Unpeg the basket on the house’s top, Let the birds fly, and, like the famous ape, To try conclusions, in the basket creep, And break your own neck down.


I must to England; you know that?


There’s letters sealed: and my two schoolfellows, Whom I will trust as I will adders fanged, They bear the mandate; they must sweep my way, And marshal me to knavery. Let it work; For ’tis the sport to have the enginer Hoist with his own petar: and’t shall go hard But I will delve one yard below their mines, And blow them at the moon: O, ’tis most sweet, When in one line two crafts directly meet. This man shall set me packing: I’ll lug the guts into the neighbour room. Mother, good night. Indeed this counsellor Is now most still, most secret and most grave, Who was in life a foolish prating knave. Come, sir, to draw toward an end with you. Good night, mother. Exeunt severally; Hamlet dragging in Polonius.