Hamlet

by: William Shakespeare

  Act 1 Scene 1

page Act 1 Scene 1 Page 7

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If there be any good thing to be done
130That 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,
Oh, speak!
135Or 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. Stay and speak!
If there’s any good deed I can do that will bring you peace and me honor, speak to me. If you have some secret knowledge of your country’s sad fate—which might be avoided if we knew about it—then, please, speak. Or if you’ve got some buried treasure somewhere, which they say often makes ghosts restless, then tell us about it. Stay and speak!
The cock crows
A rooster crows.
    —Stop it, Marcellus.
Keep it from leaving, Marcellus.

MARCELLUS

Shall I strike at it with my partisan?

MARCELLUS

Should I strike it with my spear?

HORATIO

140Do, if it will not stand.

HORATIO

Yes, if it doesn’t stand still.

BARNARDO

   'Tis here.

BARNARDO

It’s over here.

HORATIO

    'Tis here.

HORATIO

There it is.
Exit GHOST
The GHOST exits.

MARCELLUS

'Tis gone.
We do it wrong, being so majestical,
To offer it the show of violence,
For it is, as the air, invulnerable,
145And our vain blows malicious mockery.

MARCELLUS

It’s gone. We were wrong to threaten it with violence, since it looks so much like a king. Besides, we can’t hurt it anymore than we can hurt the air. Our attack was stupid, futile, and wicked.

BARNARDO

It was about to speak when the cock crew.

BARNARDO

It was about to say something when the rooster crowed.