Hamlet - Two-hour Version by William Shakespeare edited Kathy Grunewald


Public Domain
This Play can be performed Royalty Free


(A guard platform of the castle. Barnardo, a sentinel, on duty)

(Enter Horatio and Marcellus)

Bar.) Stand ho! Who is there?
Hor.) Friends to this ground.
Mar.) And liegemen to the Dane. Holla, Barnardo!
Bar.) Say—what, is Horatio there?
Hor.) A piece of him.
Bar.) Welcome, Horatio, welcome good Marcellus.
Hor.) What, has this thing appeared again tonight?
Bar.) 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,
That if again this apparition come,
He may approve our eyes and speak to it.
Hor.) Tush, tush, 'twill not appear.
Bar.) Sit down a while,
And let us once again assail your ears,
That are so fortified against our story,
What we have two nights seen.

(Enter Ghost)

Mar.) Peace, break thee off! Look where it comes again!
Bar.) In the same figure like the King that's dead.
Mar.) Thou art a scholar, speak to it, Horatio.
Bar.) Looks 'a not like the King? Mark it, Horatio.
Hor.) Most like; it harrows me with fear and wonder.
Bar.) It would be spoke to.
Mar.) Speak to 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!
Mar.) It is offended.
Bar.) See, it stalks away!
Hor.) Stay! Speak, speak, I charge thee speak!

(Exit Ghost)

Mar.) 'Tis gone, and will not answer.
Bar.) How now, Horatio? you tremble and look pale.
Is not this something more than fantasy?
What think you on it?
Hor.) Before my God, I might not this believe
Without the sensible and true avouch
Of mine own eyes.
Mar.) 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.
'Tis strange.
Mar.) Thus twice before, 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.
(Enter Ghost)
But soft, behold! lo where it comes again!
I'll cross it though it blast me. Stay, illusion!
If thous hast any sound or use of voice,
Speak to me.
If there be any good thing to be done
That may to thee do ease, and grace to me,
Speak to me.
(The cock crows)
Speak of it, stay and speak! Stop it, Marcellus.
Mar.) Shall I strike it with my partisan?
Hor.) Do, if it will not stand.

(Exit Ghost)

Mar.) 'Tis gone!
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.
Bar.) It was about to speak when the cock crew.
Hor.) And then it started like a guilty thing.
But look, the morn in russet clad
Walks o'er the dew of yon high eastward hill.
Break we the watch up, and by my advice
Let us impart what we have seen tonight
Unto young Hamlet, for, upon my life,
This spirit, dumb to us, will speak to him.
Mar.) Let's do't, I pray, and I this morning know
Where we shall find him most convenient.


[end of extract]


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