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Red goatskin binding. Title tooled in gilt on spine reads “HAMLET”
Gold‐colored label on facsimile image 002.
Armorial ink stamp of John Ker, 3rd Duke of Roxburghe, 1740-1804 on facsimile image 005.
Sh., Wm Plays
See Greg p. 101.
“printed after the ed. of 1611 and before
that of 1637.”
To the Celestiall and my soules Idoll the most beautified
Ophelia, that's an ill phrase, a vile phrase, beauti
fied is a vile phrase, but you shall heare: thus in her
excellent white bosome, these &c.
O deere Ophelia, I am ill at these numbers, I haue not art to
reckon my groanes, but that I loue thee best, oh most be_t be
leeue it! adiew. Thine euermore most deare Ladie, whilest this
machine is to him. (Hamlet.
How say you by that, st_ll harping on my daughter, yet
he knew me not at first, a said I was a Fishmonger, a is farre gone,
and truly in my youth, I suffer_d much extremity for loue, very
neere this. Ile speake to him againe. What doe you reade my
Words, words, words.
What is the matter my Lord.
I meane the matter that you read my Lord.
Slanders sir; for the Satericall Rogue saies here, that old
men haue grey beards, that their faces are wrinkled, their eies
purging thick Amber, and Plum‐tree Gum, and that they haue a
Though this be madnesse, yet there is method in't, wil you
walke out of the aire my Lord?
Into my graue.
Indeed that's out of the aire; how pregnant sometimes
his replies are, a happines that often madnes hits on, which reason
and sanctitie could not so prosperou_ly be deliuered of. I wil leaue
him and my daughter. My Lord, I will take my leaue of you.
You cannot take from me any thing that I will not more
willingly part withall: except my life, except my life, except my
Begger that I am, I am euer poore in thankes, but I thank
you, and sure deare friends, my thanks are too deare a halfpeny:
were you not sent for? is it your owne inclining? is it a free visita
tion? come, come, deale iu_tly with me, come, come, nay speake.
VVhat should we say my Lord?
Any thing but to'th purpose; you were sent for, and _here
is a kind of confession in your lookes, which your modesties haue
not craft enough to cullour, I know the good King and Queene
haue sent for you.
To what end my Lord?
That you must teach me: but let me coniure you, by the
rights of our fellowship, by the consonancie of our youth, by the
obl_gation of our euer preserued loue; and by what more deare
a better proposer can change you withal, be euen and direct with
mee whether you were sent for or no.
What say you?
Nay then I haue an eie of you, if you loue me hold not off.
My Lord we were sent for.
I will tell you why so shall, my anticipation preuent your
discouerie & your secrecie to the King and Queen moult no fea
ther, I haue of late, but wherefore I know not, lost all my mirth,
forgon all custome of exercises, and indeede it goes soe heauily
with my disposition, that this goodly frame the earth, seems to me
a sterill promontorie, this most excellent Canopie the aire, looke
you, this braue ore‐hanged firmament, this maiesticall roofe fret
ted with golden fire, why it appearth nothing to mee but a foule
and pestilent congregation of vapours. What peece of worke is
a man, how noble in reason, how infinit in faculties, in forme and
moouing, how e_presse and admirable in action, how like an An
gell in apprehension, how like a God: the beautie of the world;
the parragon of Annimales, & yet to me, what is this quintessence
of dust? man delights not mee nor woman neither, though by
your smiling you seeme to say so.
My Lord there was no such stuffe in my thoughts.
Why did yee laugh then, when I said man delights not me.
To thinke my Lord if you delight not in man, what Lenton
entertainment the plaiers shall receiue from you, wee coted them
on the way, and hether are the coming to offer you seruice.
He that plaies the King shall be welcome, his Maiest_e
shall haue tribute on mee, the aduenterous Knight shall vse his
foyle and target, the louer shall not sing gratis, the humorous man
shall end his part in pe_ce and the Ladie shall say her mind freely:
or the blanke verse shall hault for't. What players are they?
Euen those you were wont to take such delight in, the Tra
gedians of the Citie.
How chances it the trauaile? their residence both in re
putation and profit was better both waies.
I thinke their inhibition, comes by the meanes of the
Do the hold the same e_timation they did when I was
in the Citie? are they so followed?
No indeede are they not.
It is not very strange, for my Vncle is King of Denmarke,
& those that would make mouths at him while my father liued,
giue twentie, fortie, fiftie, a hundred duckets a peece, for his Pic
ture in little: s'bloud there is something in this more then natu
rall, if Philosophy could fin d it out.
There are plaiers.
Gentlemen you are welcome to Elsonoure, your hands,
come then th'apportenance of welcome is fashion and ceremo
nie; let mee comply with you in this garb: let my extent to the
Plaiers, which I tell you must showe fairely outwards, fhould
more appeare like entertainment then yours? you are welcome:
but my Vncle‐father, and Aunt‐mother, are deceaued.
In what my deare Lord.
I am but mad North North‐west; when the wind is Sou
therly, I know a Hawke, from a Hand‐saw.
Well be with you Gentlemen.
Hark you Guyldensterne, and you to, are each eare a hearer,
that great babie as you see is not yet out of his swadling clouts.
Happily he is the second time come to them, for they say
an old man is twice a child.
I will prophecie that he comes to tell me of the Plaiers;
marke it, you say right sir a Monday morning t'was then indeed.
My Lord I haue newes to tell you.
My Lord I haue newes to tell you: when Rossius was
an Actor in Rome.
The Actors are come hether my Lord.
Vpon my honour.
Then came each Actor on his Asse.
The best actors in the world, either for Tragedie, Comedie,
Historie, Pastorall, Pastoral‐Comicall, Historical‐Pastorall, seeme
O Ieptha Iudge of Israel, what a treasure hadst thou?
What a treasure had he my Lord?
Why one faire daughter and no more, the which he lo
ued passing well.
Still on my daughter.
Am I not i'th right old Ieptha?
What followes then my Lord?
Why as by lot God wot, and then you know it came to
passe, as most like it was; the first rowe of the pious chanson will
show you more, for looke where my abridgement comes.
You are welcome maisters, welcome all, I am glad to see
thee well, welcome good friends, oh old friend, why thy face is
valanc'd since I saw thee last, com'st thou to beard mee in Den
marke? what my young Ladie and Mistris, my Ladie your Ladi
ship is neerer to Heauen, then when I saw you last by the altitude
of a chopine, pray God your voice like a peece of vncurrant gold,
be not crackt within the ring: maisters you are all welcome,
weele ento't like friendly Faukners, flie at any thing w_ see, weele
haue a speech strait, come giue vs a taste of your qualitie, come a
What speech my good Lord?
I heard thee speake me a speech once, but it was neuer ac
ted, or if it was, not aboue once, for the play I remember pleasd
not the million, t'was cauiary to the general, but it was as I recei
ued it and others, whose iudgements in such matters cried in the
top of mine, an excellent play, well digested in the scenes, set
downe with as much modesty as cunning. I remember one said
there were no sallets in the lines, to make the matter sauory, nor
no matter in the phrase that might indite the author of affection,
but cald it an honest method, as wholesome as sweet, and by very
much, more handsome then fine: one speech in't I chiefly loued,
t'was Æneas talke to Dido, and there about of it especially when
he speakes of Priams slaughter, if it liue in your memory begin at
this line, let me see, let me see, the rugged Pyrhus like Th'ircanian
Foregod my Lord well spoken, with good accent and (good discretion.
This is too long.
It shal to the barbers with your beard; prethee say on, he's
for a Iig, or a tale of bawdry, or he sleepes, say on, come to Hecuba
The mobled Queene.
Looke where he has not turned his collour, and has teares
in's eyes prethee no more.
Tis well, Ile haue thee speake out the rest of this soone,
good my Lord will you see the Players well bestowed; doe you
heare, let them be well vsed, for they are the abstract and breefe
Chronicles of the time; after your death you were better haue a
bad Epitaph then their ill report while you liue.
My Lord, I will vse them according to their desert.
Gods bodkin man, much better, vse euery man after his
desert, and who shall scape whipping, vse them after your owne
honour and dignitie, the lesse they deserue the more merrit is in
your boun_y. Take them in.
Follow him friends, weele here a play to morrow; dost thou
I my Lord.
Weele hau't to morrow night, you could for need study
a speech of some dosen lines, or sixteene lines, which I would set
downe and insert in't: could you not?
I my Lord.
Very well, follow that Lord, and looke you mocke him
not. My good friends, Ile leaue you till night, you are welcome
Good my Lord.
I truly, for the power of beautie will sooner transforme
honestie from what it is to a Baud, then the force of honesty can
translate beautie in his likenesse, this was sometime a Paradoxe,
but now the time giues it proofe, I did loue you once.
You should not haue beleeu'd me, for vertue cannot so
euacuate our old stock, but we shall rellish of it: I loued you not.
Get thee a Nunry: why would'st thou be a breeder of
_inners? I am my self indifferent honest, but yet I could accuse me
of such things, that it were better my Mother had not borne mee:
I am very proud, reuengeful, ambitious, with more offences at my
beck, then I haue thoghts to put them in, imagination to giue thē
shape, or time to act them in: what should such fellowes as I do
crauling betweene Earth and Heauen? we are arrant Knaues, be
lieue none of vs. Go thy waies to a Nunry, VVhe_'s your father?
If thou doost mary, Ile giue thee this plague for thy dow
ry, be thou as chast as Ice, as pure as snow, thou shalt not escape
calumny, get thee to a Nunry, farwell. Or if thou wilt needs mar
ry, marrie a foole, for wisemen know well enough what monsters
you make of them: to a Nunry go, and quickly to, farwell.
I haue heard of your paintings well enough, God hath
giuen you one face, and you make your selues another, you gig &
amble, and you list you nickname Gods creatures, and make your
wantonnesse ignorance; go to, Ile no more on't, it hath made me
mad, I say we will haue no mo marriage, those that are married
already, all but one shall liue, the rest shall keepe as they are: to a
Speake the speech I pray you as I pronounc'd it to you,
trippingly on the tongue, but if you mouth it as many of our
Players do, I had as liue the Town‐crier spoke my lines, nor doe
not saw the aire too much with your hand thus, but vse al gently,
for in the very torrent tempest, & as I may say, whirlwind of your
passion, you must acquire and beget a tempernce, that may giue it
smoothnesse, O it offends me to to the soule, to heare a robusti
Be not too tame neither, but let your own discretion be
your tutor, sute the action to the word, the word to the action,
with this spe_iall obseruance, that you ore‐step not the modestie
of Nature: For any thing so ore‐done, is from the purpose of
playing, whose end both a_ first, and now, was and is, to hold as
twere the Mirrour vp to Nature, to shew vertue her feature; scorn
her own Image, and t_e very age and bodie of the time his forme
and pressure: Now this ouer‐done, or come tardie off though it
makes the vnskilfull laugh, cannot but make _h_ iudicious grieue,
the censure of which one mu_t in your allowance ore‐weigh a
whole Theater of others. O there be Players that I haue seen play,
and heard others praisd, and that highly, not to speake it profane
ly, t_at neither hauing th' accent of Christians, nor the gate of
Christian, Pagan, nor man, haue so strutted & bellowed, that I haue
thought some of Natures Iournymen had made men, and not
made them well, they imitated humanitie so abominably.
O reforme it altogether, and let those that play your
Clownes speake no more then is set downe for them, for there be
of them that will themselues laugh, to set on some quantitie of
barraine Specta_ors to laugh to, though in the meane time, some
nec_ssarie question of the play be then to be considered: that's vil
lanous, and shewes a most pittifull ambition in the Foole that v
ses it: go make you readie. How now my Lord, will the King
heare this piece of wo_ke?
O God! your onely Iigge‐maker, what should a man do
but be merrie, for looke you how cherefully my mother lookes,
and my father died within's two houres.
So long, nay then let the Deuill weare black, for Ile haue
a Sute of Sables; O heauens, die two moneths ago, and not for
gotten yet, then there's hope a great mans memorie may out‐liue
his life halfe a yeare, but ber Ladie a must build Churches then, or
else shall a suffer not thinking on, with the Hobby‐horse, whose
Epitaph is, for O, for O, the Hobby‐horse is forgot.
The Mousetrap, mary how tropically, this Play is the
Image of a murther done in Vienna, Gonzago is the Dukes name,
his wife Baptista, you shall see anon, tis a knauish piece of work,
but what of that? your Maiesty and we shall haue free soules, it
touches vs not, let _he gauled Iade winch, our withers are vn
wrung. This is one Lucianus, Nephew to the King.
So you mistake your husbands. Begin murtherer, leaue
thy damnable faces and begin, come, the croking Rauen doth
bellow for reuenge.
A poisons him i'th Garden for his estate, his names Gonza
go, the story is extant and written in very choice Italian, you shall
see anon how the murtherer gets the loue of Gonzagoes wife.
Thus runs the world away. Would not this sir & a forrest of fea
thers, if the rest of my fortuns turne Turk with me, with prouincial
Roses, on my raz'd shooes, get me a fellowship in a city of Player?
O good Horatio, Ile take the Ghosts word for a thousand
pound. Didst perceaue?
Your wisedome should shew it selfe more richer to sig
nifie this to the Doctor, for, for me to put him to his purgation,
would perhaps plunge him into more choller.
The Queene your mother in mo_t great affliction of spi
rit, hath sent me to you.
You are welcome.
Nay good my Lord, this curte_ie is not of the right breed,
if it shall please you to make me a wholsome answer, I will do
your mothers commandement, if not, your pardon and my re
turne, shall be the end of businesse.
Sir I cannot.
What my Lord.
Make you a wholsome answer, my wits diseasd, but sir, such
answer as I can make, you shal command, or rather as you say, my
mother, therefore no more, but to the matter, my mother you say.
Then thus she saies, your behauiour hath strooke her into
amazement and admiration.
O wonderfull sonne that can so stonish a mother! but is
there no sequell at the heeles of this mothers admiration? impart.
She desires to speak with you in her closet ere you go to bed.
We shall obey, were she ten times our mother, haue you
any further trade with vs?
My Lord you once did loue me.
And doe still by these pickers and stealers.
Good my Lord, what is your cause of distemper, you do
surely bar the doore vpon your owne liberty, if you deny your
griefes to your friend.
Sir I lack aduancement.
How can that be when you haue the voyce of the King
himselfe for your succession in Denmarke.
I sir, but wile the grasse grows, the prouerb is somthing
musty, oh the Recorders, let me see one, to withdraw with you,
why do you go about to recouer the wind of me, as if you would
driue me into a toyle?
O my lord if my duty be too bold, my loue is too vnmanerly
I do not well vnderstand that, will you play vpon this pipe?
My Lord I cannot.
I pray you.
Beleeue me I cannot.
I beseech you.
I know no touch of it my Lord.
It is as easie as lying; gouern these ventages with your fin
gers, & the thumb giue it breath with your mouth, and it wil dis
course most eloquent musique, look you, these are the stops.
But these cannot I command to any vtrance of harmony,
I haue not the skill.
Why look you now how vnworthy a thing you make of
me, you would play vpon me, you would seem to know my stops,
you would pluck out the heart of my mysterie, you would sound
me from my lowest note to my compasse, and there is much mu
sique, excellent voice in this little organ, yet cannot you make it
speak, s'blood do you think I am easier to be plaid on then a pipe,
call me what Instrument you will, though you fret me not, you
cannot play vpon me. God blesse you sir.
That I can keep your counsaile and not mine owne, be
sides to be demanded of a spunge, what replication should be
made by the sonne of a King.
I sir, that sokes vp the Kings countenance, his rewards, his
authorities, but such Officers do the King best seruice in the end,
he keepsthem like an apple in the corner of his iaw, first mouth'd
to be last swallowed, when he needs what you haue gleand, it is
but sqeesing you, and spunge you shall be dry againe.
I vnderstand you not my Lord.
I am glad of it, a knauish speech sleeps in a foolish eare.
My Lord, you must tell vs where the body is, and go with
vs to the King.
The body is with the King, but the King is not with th_
body. The King is a thing.
A thing my Lord.
Of nothing, bring me to him.
Not where he eates, but where he is eaten, a certain conuo
cation of politick worms are een at him: your worme is your only
Emperour for dyet, we fat all creatures else to fat vs, and we fat
our selues for maggots, your fat King & your leane Beggar is but
variable seruice, two dishes but to one table, that's the end.
A man may fish with the worme that hath eat of a King,
eat of the fish that hath fed of that worme.
Nothing but to shew you how a King may go a pro
In heauen, send thether to see, if your messenger find him
not there, seeke him i'th other place your selfe, but if indeed you
find him not within this moneth, you shall nose him as you go vp
the staires into the Lobby.
VVell good dild you, they say the Owle was a Bakers
daughter, Lord we know what we are, but know not what wee
may be; God be at your table.
I hope all will be well, we must be patient, but I cannot
chuse but weep to think they would lay him i'th cold ground, my
brother shall know of it, & so I thank you for your good counsel.
There's Fennill for you, and Colembines, there's Rew for
you, and heere's some for mee, wee may call it herbe of Grace a
Sundayes, you may weare your Rew with a difference, there's a
Dasie, I would giue you some Violets, but they witherd all when
my Father died, they say a made a good end.
A shall sir and please him, there's a Letter for you sir, it
came from the Embassador that was bound for England, if your
name be Horatio, as I am let to know it is.
Horatio, when thou shalt haue ouer‐look't this, giue these
fellowes some meanes to the King, they haue Letters for him: Ere
we were two daies old at Sea, a Pirat of very warlike appoint
ment gaue vs chase, finding our selues too slow of saile, we put on
a compelled valour, and in the grapple I boorded them, on the in
stant they got cleere of our ship, so I alone became their prisoner,
they haue dealt with me like theeues of mercy, but they knew
what they did: I am to doe a turne for them, let the King haue the
Letters I haue sent, and repaire thou to me with as much speed
as thou wouldst flie death. I haue words to speake in thine eare
So that thou knowest thine Hamlet.
High and mighty, you shall know I am set naked on your King
dome, to morrow shall I beg leaue to see your Kingly eies, when
I shall, first asking you pardon, thereunto recount the occasion of
my sudden returne.
Is she to be buried in Christian burial, when she wilfully
seeks her owne saluation?
I tell thee she is, therefore make her graue straight, the
Crowner hath sate on her, and finds it Christian buriall.
How can that be, vnlesse she drown'd her selfe in her own
Why tis found so.
It must be so offended, it cannot be else, for here lies the
point, if I drowne my selfe wittingly, it argues an act, and an act
hath three branches, it is to act, to do, to performe, or all; she
drown'd her selfe wittingly.
Nay, but here you good man deluer.
Giue me leaue, here lies the water, good, here stands the
But is this law?
I marry i'st, Crowners que_t law.
Will you ha the truth an't, if this had not been a gentle
woman, she should haue bin buried out a Christian buriall.
Why there thou saist, and the more pitty that great folke
should haue countenance in this world to drowne or hang them
selues, more then their euen Christen: Come my spade, there is no
ancient gentlemen but Gardners, Ditchers, and Graue‐makers,
they hold vp Adams profession.
Was he a gentleman?
A was the first that euer bore armes.
I'le put another question to thee, if thou answerest me not to the
purpose, confesse thy selfe.
What is hee that builds stronger then either the Mason,
the Shipwright, or the Carpenter.
The gallowes‐maker, for that out‐liues a thousand tenants.
I like thy wit well in good faith, the gallowes dooes well,
but how dooes it well? It dooes wel to those that do ill, now thou
doo_t ill to say the gallowes is built stronger then the Church, ar
gall, the gallowes may doe well to thee. Too't againe, come.
VVho builds stronger then a Mason, a Shipwright, or a
I, tell me that and vnyoke.
Marry now I can tell.
Masse I cannot tell.
Cudgel thy brains no more about it, for your dul asse wil
not mend his pace with beating, & when your are askt this questiō
next, say a graue‐maker, the houses he makes la_ts tel Doomsday.
Goe get thee in and fetch me a soope of liquer.
Has this fellow no feeling of his busines? a sings in graue
Custome hath made it in him a property of easines.
Tis een so, the hand of little imploiment hath the daintier (sence.
That skull had a tongue in it, and could sing once, how the
knaue iowles it to the ground, as if t'were Cains iaw‐bone, that
did the first murder: this might be the pate of a pollititian, which
this Asse now ore‐reaches; one that would circumuent God,
might it not?
It might my Lord.
Or of a Courtier, which could say good morrow my
Lord: how dost thou sweet Lord? This might be my Lord such
a one, that praised my Lord such a ones horse, when a meant to
beg it: might it not?
I my Lord.
Why een so, and now my Lady worms Choples, and knockt
about the mazer with a Sextens spade; heer's fine reuolution and
we had the tricke to see't, did these bones cost no more the bree
ding, but to play at loggits with them: mine ake to thinke on't.
There's another, why may not that be the skul of a Lawyer?
where be his quiddities now, his quillities, his cases, his tenures,
and his tricks? why dooes he suffer this mad knaue now to knock
him about the sconce with a dirty shouell, and will not tell him of
his actions of battery: hum, this fellow might be in's time a great
buyer of Land, with his Statutes, his recognisances, his fines, his
double vouchers, his recoueries, to haue his fine pate full of fine
durt: will vouchers vouch him no more of his purchases and
doubles, then the length and breadth of a payre of Indentures?
The very conueyances of his Lands will scarcely lye in this box,
and must th'inheritor himselfe haue no more? ha.
Not a iot more my Lord.
Is not parchment made of sheep‐skins?
I my Lord, and of Calue‐skins too.
They are Sheep and Calues which seeke out assurance in
that, I will speake to this fellow. Whose graue's this sirra?
Mine sir, or a pit of clay for to be made.
I thinke it thine indeed for thou lyest in't.
You lye out on't sir, and therefore tis not yours; for my
part I do not lye in't, yet it is mine.
Thou dost lye in't to be in't and say it is thine, tis for the
dead, not for the quick, therefore thou lyest.
Tis a quick lye sir, twill away againe from me to you.
VVhat man dost thou dig it for?
For no man sir.
What woman then?
For none neither.
Who is to be buried in't?
One that was a woman sir, but rest her soule shee's dead.
How absolute the knaue is, we must speak by the card, or
equiuocatiō wil vndoo vs. By the Lord Horatio, this three yeres I
haue took note of it, the age is grown so picked, that the toe of the
pesant comes so neere the heele of the Courtier he galls his kybe.
How long hast thou been a Graue‐maker?
Of the daies i'th yeere I came too't that day that our last
King Hamlet ouercame Fortinbrasse.
How long is that since?
Cannot you tell that? euery foole can tell that, it was that
very day that young Hamlet was borne: he that is mad and sent
I marry, why was he sent into England?
Why because a was mad: a shall recouer his wits there,
or if a doe not, tis no great matter there.
Twill not bee seene in him there, there are men as mad
How came he mad?
Very strangely they say.
Faith een with loosing his wits.
Vpon what ground?
Why here in Denmark: I haue bin Sexton here man and
boy thirty yeares.
How long will a man lye i'th earth ere he rot?
Faith if a be not rotten before a dye, as we haue many
pocky corses, that will scarce hold the laying in, a will last you
some eight yeere, or nine yeere. A Tanner will last you nine yeare.
VVhy he more then another?
Why sir, his hide is so tand with his trade, that a will keep
out water a great while; and your water is a sore decayer of your
whorson dead body, heer's a scull now hath lyen you i'th earth (twenty three yeares.
VVhose was it?
A whorson mad fellowes it was, whose do you think it (was?
Nay I know not.
A pestilence on him for a mad rogue, a pourd a flagon of
Renish on my head once; this same skull sir, was sir Yoricks skull,
the Kings Iester.
Alas poore Yoricke, I knew him Horatio, a fellow of infinite
iest, of most excellent fancy, he hath bore me on his back a thou
sand times, and now how abhorred in my imagination it is: my
gorge rises at it. Here hung those lips that I haue kist I know not
how oft: where be your gibes now? your gamboles, your songs,
your flashes of merriment, that were wont to set the table on a
roare, not one now to mock your own grinning, quite chopfalne.
Now get you to my Ladies table, and tell her, let her paint an
inch thick, to this fauour _he must come, make her laught at that.
Prethee Horatio tell me one thing.
VVhat's that my Lord?
Dost thou think Alexander lookt a this fashion i'th earth?
And smelt so: pah.
Een so my Lord.
To what base vses we may returne Horatio? Why may
not imagination trace the noble dust of Alexander, till a find it
stopping a bunghole?
'Twere to consider too curiously, to consider so.
No faith, not a iot, but to follow him thether with modesty
enough, and likelihood to lead it. Alexander died, Alexander was
buried, Alexander returneth to dust, the dust is earth, of earth we
make lome, & why of that lome whereto he was conuerted, might
Thy state is the more gracious, for tis a vice to know
him, He hath much land and fertill: let a beast be Lord of beasts,
and his Crib shall stand at the Kings messe, tis a chough, but as I
say, spacious in the possession of durt.
Sweet Lord, if your Lordship were at leisure, I should
impart a thing to you from his Maiesty.
I will receiue it sir with all diligence of spirit, your bon
net to his right vse, tis for the head.
I thanke your Lordship, it is very hot.
No beleeue me, tis very cold, the wind is Northerly.
It is indifferent cold my Lord indeed.
But yet me thinks it is very soultry and hot, or my com
Exceedingly my Lord, it is very soultry_ as t'were I can
not tell how: my Lord his Maiesty bad me signifie to you, that a
has layed a great wager on your head, _ir this is the matter.
I beseech you remember.
Nay good my Lord for my ease in good faith, sir here is
newly come to Court Laertes, beleeue mee an absolute Gentle
Sir, his definement suffers no perdition in you, though I
know to diuide him inuentorially, would dizzie th'arithmetick
of memorie, and yet but raw neither, in respect of his quick saile,
but in the verity of extolment, I take him to be a soule of great ar
ticle, and his infusion of such dearth and rarenesse, as to make true
dixion of him, his semblable is his mirrour, and who els would
trace him, his vmbrage, nothing more.
Your Lordship speakes most infallibly of him.
The concernancy sir, why do we wrap the Gentleman in
our mor rawer breath?
Ist not possible to vnderstand in another tongue, you will
doo't sir really.
What imports the nomination of this Gentleman?
His purse is empty already, all's golden words are spent.
Of him sir.
I know you are not ignorant.
I would you did sir, yet in faith if you did, it would, not
much approue me, well sir.
You are ignorant of what excellence Laertes is.
I dare not confesse that, least I should compare with him
in excellence, but to know a man well, were to know himselfe.
I meane sir for this weapon, but in the imputation laid
on him by them in his meed, he's vnfellowed.
What's his weapon?
Rapiar and Dagger.
That's two of his weapons, but well.
The King sir hath wagerd with him six Barbary horses
against the which he has impaund as I take it six French Rapiers
and Poinards, with their assignes, as girdle, hanger and so. Three
of the carriages in faith, are very deare to fancie, very responsiue
to the hilts, most delicate carriages, and of very liberall conceit.
What call you the carriages?
I knew you must be edified by the margent ere you had
The carriage sir are the hangers.
The phrase would be more German to the matter if we
could carrie a Canon by our sides, I would it might bee hangers
till then, but on, six Barbary horses against six French Swords their
assignes, and three liberall conceited carriages, that's the French
bet against the Danish, why is this all you call it?
The King sir, hath laid sir, that in a dozen passes betweene
your selfe and him, he shall not exceed you three hits, he hath laid
on twelue for nine, and it would _ome to immediate triall, if your
Lordship would vouchsafe the answere.
How if I answere no?
I meane my Lord the opposition of your person in trial.
Sir I will walke heere in the hall, If it please his Maiesty,
it is the breathing time of day with me, let the foiles be brought,
the Gentleman willing, and the King hold his purpose; I will win
for him and I can, if not I will gaine nothing but my shame, and
the odde hits.
Shall I deliuer you so?
To this effect sir, after what florish your nature will.
I commend my dutie to your Lordship.
Yours doo's well to commend it himselfe, there are no
tongues else for his turne.
This Lapwing runs away with the shell on his head.
A did so sir with his dugge before a suckt it, thus has he
and many more of the same breed that I know the drossie age
dotes on, onely got the tune of the time, and out of an habit of
incounter, a kind of mistie collection, which carries them through
and through the most profane and trennowned opinons, and do_
but blow them to their triall, the bubbles are out.
My Lord, his Maiestie commended him to you by yong
Ostricke, who brings back to him that you attend him in the hall,
he sends to know if your pleasure hold to play with Laertes, or that
you will take longer time?
I am constant to my purposes, they follow the Kings
pleasure, if his fitnesse speakes, mine is ready: now or whensoeuer,
prouided I be so able as now.
The King and Queene and all are comming downe.
In happy time.
The Queene desires you to vse some gentle entertain
ment to Laertes, before you go to play.
Shee well instructs me.
You will loose my Lord.
I do not think so, since he went into France, I haue bin
in continuall practise, I shall winne at the oddes; thou would'st
not thinke how ill all's heere about my heart, but it is no matter.
Nay good my Lord.
It is but foolerie, but it is such a kind of game‐giuing,
as would perhaps trouble a woman.
If your mind dislike any thing, obay it. I shall forestall
their repaire hither and say you are not fit.
Not a whit we defie Augurie, there is speciall prouidence
in the fall of a Sparrow, if it bee, tis not to come, if it bee not to
come, it will be now, if it be not now, yet it will come, the readi
nesse is all, since no man of ought he leaues, knowes what ist to
leaue betimes, let be.
69308 Cat. 11 Jul '17. B.