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That are so fortified against our story,
What we two nights have seen.
Well, sit we down,
And let us hear Bernardo speak of this.
Ber. Last night of all,
When yond' same star, that's westward from the pole,
Where now it burns, Marcellus, and myself,
The bell then beating one,
Mar. Peace! break thee off: look, where it comes again!
Ber. In the same figure, like the king that 's dead.
Hor. Most like: - it harrows me with fear, and wonder.
Question it, Horatio.
Hor. What art thou, that usurp'st this time of night, Together with that fair and warlike form,
In which the majesty of buried Denmark
Did sometimes march? by heaven I charge thee, speak!
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 pale.
Is not this something more than fantasy?
What think you on 't?
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 th' ambitious Norway combated.
So frown'd he once, when, in an angry parle,
'T is strange.
Mar. Thus, twice before, and jump at this dead hour, With martial stalk hath he gone by our watch.
Hor. In what particular thought to work, I know not; But in the gross and scope of mine opinion,
This bodes some strange eruption to our state.
Mar. Good now, sit down; and tell me, he that knows,
Why such impress of shipwrights, whose sore task
At least, the whisper goes so.
Did forfeit with his life all those his lands,
Had he been vanquisher; as, by the same co-mart,
His fell to Hamlet. Now, Sir, young Fortinbras,
Hath in the skirts of Norway, here and there,
Shark'd up a list of lawless resolutes,
For food and diet, to some enterprize
That hath a stomach in 't: which is no other (As it doth well appear unto our state)
But to recover of us, by strong hand
And terms compulsative, those 'foresaid lands
The source of this our watch, and the chief head
Ber. I think, it be no other, but e'en so: Well may it sort, that this portentous figure Comes armed through our watch; so like the king That was, and is, the question of these wars.
Hor. A mote it is to trouble the mind's eye. In the most high and palmy state of Rome, A little ere the mightiest Julius fell, The graves stood tenantless, and the sheeted dead Did squeak and gibber in the Roman streets: As, stars with trains of fire and dews of blood, Disasters in the sun; and the moist star, Upon whose influence Neptune's empire stands Was sick almost to dooms-day with eclipse: And even the like precurse of fierce events As harbingers preceding still the fates, And prologue to the omen coming on Have heaven and earth together demonstrated Unto our climatures and countrymen.
But, soft! behold! lo, where it comes again!
I'll cross it, though it blast me.
If there be any good thing to be done,
If thou art privy to thy country's fate,
Or, if thou hast uphoarded in thy life
For which, they say, you spirits oft walk in death, [Cock crows.
stay, and speak!
Mar. Shall I strike at it with my partisan?
We do it wrong, being so majestical,
To offer it the show of violence;
For it is, as the air, invulnerable,
And our vain blows malicious mockery.
Ber. It was about to speak, when the cock crew.
Upon a fearful summons. I have heard,
Mar. It faded on the crowing of the cock.
Hor. So have I heard, and do in part believe it.
Break we our watch up; and, by my advice,
Mar. Let's do 't, I pray; and I this morning know
The Same. A Room of State.
Enter the King, Queen, HAMLEt, Polonius, Laertes, VolTIMAND, CORNELIUS, Lords, and Attendants.
King. Though yet of Hamlet our dear brother's death
The memory be green, and that it us befitted
To bear our hearts in grief, and our whole kingdom
To be contracted in one brow of woe;
Yet so far hath discretion fought with nature,