ACT 1
Scene 1
Enter Ghost.

MARCELLUS    
Peace, break thee off! Look where it comes again.
BARNARDO    
In the same figure like the King that’s dead.
MARCELLUS , to Horatio    
Thou art a scholar. Speak to it, Horatio.
BARNARDO    
Looks he not like the King? Mark it, Horatio.
HORATIO    
Most like. It harrows me with fear and wonder.
BARNARDO    
It would be spoke to.
MARCELLUS    Speak to it, Horatio.
HORATIO    
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.
MARCELLUS    
It is offended.
BARNARDO    See, it stalks away.
HORATIO    
Stay! speak! speak! I charge thee, speak!
Ghost exits. Enter Ghost.

But soft, behold! Lo, where it comes again!
I’ll cross it though it blast me.—Stay, illusion!
It spreads his arms.
If thou 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.
If thou art privy to thy country’s fate,
Which happily foreknowing may avoid,
O, speak!
Or if thou hast uphoarded in thy life
Extorted treasure in the womb of earth,
For which, they say, you spirits oft walk in death,
Speak of it.The cock crows.
Stay and speak!—Stop it, Marcellus.
MARCELLUS    
Shall I strike it with my partisan?
HORATIO    Do, if it will not stand.
BARNARDO    ’Tis here.
HORATIO    ’Tis here.
Ghost exits.
Scene 4
Enter Ghost.

HORATIO    Look, my lord, it comes.
HAMLET    
Angels and ministers of grace, defend us!
Be thou a spirit of health or goblin damned,
Bring with thee airs from heaven or blasts from
hell,
Be thy intents wicked or charitable,
Thou com’st in such a questionable shape
That I will speak to thee. I’ll call thee “Hamlet,”
“King,” “Father,” “Royal Dane.” O, answer me!
Let me not burst in ignorance, but tell
Why thy canonized bones, hearsèd in death,
Have burst their cerements; why the sepulcher,
Wherein we saw thee quietly interred,
Hath oped his ponderous and marble jaws
To cast thee up again. What may this mean
That thou, dead corse, again in complete steel,
Revisits thus the glimpses of the moon,
Making night hideous, and we fools of nature
So horridly to shake our disposition
With thoughts beyond the reaches of our souls?
Say, why is this? Wherefore? What should we do?
Ghost beckons.
HORATIO    
It beckons you to go away with it
As if it some impartment did desire
To you alone.
MARCELLUS    Look with what courteous action
It waves you to a more removèd ground.
But do not go with it.
HORATIO    No, by no means.
HAMLET    
It will not speak. Then I will follow it.
HORATIO    
Do not, my lord.
HAMLET    Why, what should be the fear?
I do not set my life at a pin’s fee.
And for my soul, what can it do to that,
Being a thing immortal as itself?
It waves me forth again. I’ll follow it.
HORATIO    
What if it tempt you toward the flood, my lord?
Or to the dreadful summit of the cliff
That beetles o’er his base into the sea,
And there assume some other horrible form
Which might deprive your sovereignty of reason
And draw you into madness? Think of it.
The very place puts toys of desperation,
Without more motive, into every brain
That looks so many fathoms to the sea
And hears it roar beneath.
HAMLET    
It waves me still.—Go on, I’ll follow thee.
MARCELLUS    
You shall not go, my lord.They hold back Hamlet.
HAMLET    Hold off your hands.
HORATIO    
Be ruled. You shall not go.
HAMLET    My fate cries out
And makes each petty arture in this body
As hardy as the Nemean lion’s nerve.
Still am I called. Unhand me, gentlemen.
By heaven, I’ll make a ghost of him that lets me!
I say, away!—Go on. I’ll follow thee.
Ghost and Hamlet exit.
Scene 5
Enter Ghost and Hamlet.

HAMLET    
Whither wilt thou lead me? Speak. I’ll go no
further.
GHOST    
Mark me.
HAMLET    I will.
GHOST    My hour is almost come
When I to sulf’rous and tormenting flames
Must render up myself.
HAMLET    Alas, poor ghost!
GHOST    
Pity me not, but lend thy serious hearing
To what I shall unfold.
HAMLET    Speak. I am bound to hear.
GHOST    
So art thou to revenge, when thou shalt hear.
HAMLET    What?
GHOST    I am thy father’s spirit,
Doomed for a certain term to walk the night
And for the day confined to fast in fires
Till the foul crimes done in my days of nature
Are burnt and purged away. But that I am forbid
To tell the secrets of my prison house,
I could a tale unfold whose lightest word
Would harrow up thy soul, freeze thy young blood,
Make thy two eyes, like stars, start from their
spheres,
Thy knotted and combinèd locks to part,
And each particular hair to stand an end,
Like quills upon the fearful porpentine.
But this eternal blazon must not be
To ears of flesh and blood. List, list, O list!
If thou didst ever thy dear father love—
HAMLET    O God!
GHOST    
Revenge his foul and most unnatural murder.
HAMLET    Murder?
GHOST    
Murder most foul, as in the best it is,
But this most foul, strange, and unnatural.
HAMLET    
Haste me to know ’t, that I, with wings as swift
As meditation or the thoughts of love,
May sweep to my revenge.
GHOST    I find thee apt;
And duller shouldst thou be than the fat weed
That roots itself in ease on Lethe wharf,
Wouldst thou not stir in this. Now, Hamlet, hear.
’Tis given out that, sleeping in my orchard,
A serpent stung me. So the whole ear of Denmark
Is by a forgèd process of my death
Rankly abused. But know, thou noble youth,
The serpent that did sting thy father’s life
Now wears his crown.
HAMLET    O, my prophetic soul! My uncle!
GHOST    
Ay, that incestuous, that adulterate beast,
With witchcraft of his wits, with traitorous gifts—
O wicked wit and gifts, that have the power
So to seduce!—won to his shameful lust
The will of my most seeming-virtuous queen.
O Hamlet, what a falling off was there!
From me, whose love was of that dignity
That it went hand in hand even with the vow
I made to her in marriage, and to decline
Upon a wretch whose natural gifts were poor
To those of mine.
But virtue, as it never will be moved,
Though lewdness court it in a shape of heaven,
So, lust, though to a radiant angel linked,
Will sate itself in a celestial bed
And prey on garbage.
But soft, methinks I scent the morning air.
Brief let me be. Sleeping within my orchard,
My custom always of the afternoon,
Upon my secure hour thy uncle stole,
With juice of cursèd hebona in a vial
And in the porches of my ears did pour
The leprous distilment, whose effect
Holds such an enmity with blood of man
That swift as quicksilver it courses through
The natural gates and alleys of the body,
And with a sudden vigor it doth posset
And curd, like eager droppings into milk,
The thin and wholesome blood. So did it mine,
And a most instant tetter barked about,
Most lazar-like, with vile and loathsome crust
All my smooth body.
Thus was I, sleeping, by a brother’s hand
Of life, of crown, of queen at once dispatched,
Cut off, even in the blossoms of my sin,
Unhouseled, disappointed, unaneled,
No reck’ning made, but sent to my account
With all my imperfections on my head.
O horrible, O horrible, most horrible!
If thou hast nature in thee, bear it not.
Let not the royal bed of Denmark be
A couch for luxury and damnèd incest.
But, howsomever thou pursues this act,
Taint not thy mind, nor let thy soul contrive
Against thy mother aught. Leave her to heaven
And to those thorns that in her bosom lodge
To prick and sting her. Fare thee well at once.
The glowworm shows the matin to be near
And ’gins to pale his uneffectual fire.
Adieu, adieu, adieu. Remember me.He exits.
ACT 3
Scene 4
Enter Ghost.

Save me and hover o’er me with your wings,
You heavenly guards!—What would your gracious
figure?
QUEEN    Alas, he’s mad.
HAMLET    
Do you not come your tardy son to chide,
That, lapsed in time and passion, lets go by
Th’ important acting of your dread command?
O, say!
GHOST    Do not forget. This visitation
Is but to whet thy almost blunted purpose.
But look, amazement on thy mother sits.
O, step between her and her fighting soul.
Conceit in weakest bodies strongest works.
Speak to her, Hamlet.
HAMLET    How is it with you, lady?
QUEEN    Alas, how is ’t with you,
That you do bend your eye on vacancy
And with th’ incorporal air do hold discourse?
Forth at your eyes your spirits wildly peep,
And, as the sleeping soldiers in th’ 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?
HAMLET    
On him, on him! Look you how pale he glares.
His form and cause conjoined, preaching to stones,
Would make them capable. To the Ghost. Do not
look upon me,
Lest with this piteous action you convert
My stern effects. Then what I have to do
Will want true color—tears perchance for blood.
QUEEN    To whom do you speak this?
HAMLET    Do you see nothing there?
QUEEN    
Nothing at all; yet all that is I see.
HAMLET    Nor did you nothing hear?
QUEEN    No, nothing but ourselves.
HAMLET    
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!
Ghost exits.