I do repent; but heaven hath pleas’d 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:
Thus bad begins, and worse remains behind.—
One word more, good lady.
What shall I do?
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 damn’d 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.
Be thou assur’d, if words be made of breath,
And breath of life, I have no life to breathe
What thou hast said to me.
I must to England; you know that?
I had forgot: ’tis so concluded on.
There’s letters seal’d: and my two schoolfellows,—
Whom I will trust as I will adders fang’d,—
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 petard: 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 peating knave.
Come, sir, to draw toward an end with you:—
Good night, mother.
[Exeunt severally; Hamlet, dragging out Polonius.]
Scene I. A room in the Castle.
[Enter King, Queen, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern.]
There’s matter in these sighs. These profound heaves
You must translate: ’tis fit we understand them.
Where is your son?
Bestow this place on us a little while.
[To Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, who go out.]
Ah, my good lord, what have I seen to-night!
What, Gertrude? How does Hamlet?
Mad as the sea and wind, when both contend
Which is the mightier: in his lawless fit
Behind the arras hearing something stir,
Whips out his rapier, cries ‘A rat, a rat!’
And in this brainish apprehension, kills
The unseen good old man.