Hamlet

by: William Shakespeare

Original Text

Modern Text

But in the verity of extolment, I take him to be a soul of great article, and his infusion of such dearth and rareness as, to make true diction of him, his semblable is his mirror. And who else would trace him? His umbrage, nothing more.
Speaking the very truth of high praise, I can honestly say that I find him to possess a soul of such great importance, and so rare and unique in every respect, that—to speak the absolute truth—he can find an equal only when he gazes into a mirror. Anyone else is just a pale copy of him.

OSRIC

Your lordship speaks most infallibly of him.

OSRIC

You speak absolutely correctly, sir.

HAMLET

The concernancy, sir? Why do we wrap the gentleman in our more rawer breath?

HAMLET

And what’s the point, sir? Why are we talking about him like this?

OSRIC

125Sir?

OSRIC

Sorry, sir?

HORATIO

(aside to HAMLET) Is ’t not possible to understand in another tongue? You will do ’t, sir, really.

HORATIO

(speaking so that only HAMLET can hear) Can’t you talk to him in a different way?

HAMLET

What imports the nomination of this gentleman?

HAMLET

(to OSRIC) What is the significance of referring to this individual?

OSRIC

Of Laertes?

OSRIC

Laertes, you mean?

HORATIO

(aside to HAMLET) His purse is empty already. All ’s golden words are spent.

HORATIO

(speaking so that only HAMLET can hear) All his fancy language has run out finally; his pockets are empty.

HAMLET

Of him, sir.

HAMLET

Yes, Laertes, sir.

OSRIC

I know you are not ignorant—

OSRIC

I know you know something—

HAMLET

I would you did, sir. Yet in faith, if you did, it would not much approve me. Well, sir?

HAMLET

Thanks for the compliment, I’m happy you know that. But in fact it doesn’t say much. I’m sorry, you were saying?

OSRIC

You are not ignorant of what excellence Laertes is—

OSRIC

I know you know something about how excellent Laertes is—