Hamlet

by: William Shakespeare

  Act 1 Scene 2

page Act 1 Scene 2 Page 6

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That he might not beteem the winds of heaven
Visit her face too roughly.—Heaven and earth,
Must I remember? Why, she would hang on him
As if increase of appetite had grown
145By what it fed on, and yet, within a month—
Let me not think on ’t. Frailty, thy name is woman!—
A little month, or ere those shoes were old
With which she followed my poor father’s body,
Like Niobe, all tears. Why she, even she—
150O God, a beast that wants discourse of reason
Would have mourned longer!—married with my uncle,
My father’s brother, but no more like my father
Than I to Hercules. Within a month,
Ere yet the salt of most unrighteous tears
155Had left the flushing in her gallèd eyes,
She married. O most wicked speed, to post
With such dexterity to incestuous sheets!
It is not nor it cannot come to good,
But break, my heart, for I must hold my tongue.
Oh God, do I have to remember that? She would hang on to him, and the more she was with him the more she wanted to be with him; she couldn’t get enough of him. Yet even so, within a month of my father’s death (I don’t even want to think about it. Oh women! You are so weak!), even before she had broken in the shoes she wore to his funeral, crying like crazy—even an animal would have mourned its mate longer than she did!—there she was marrying my uncle, my father’s brother, who’s about as much like my father as I’m like Hercules. Less than a month after my father’s death, even before the tears on her cheeks had dried, she remarried. Oh, so quick to jump into a bed of incest! That’s not good, and no good can come of it either. But my heart must break in silence, since I can’t mention my feelings aloud.
Enter HORATIO, MARCELLUS, and BARNARDO
HORATIO, MARCELLUS, and BARNARDO enter.

HORATIO

160Hail to your lordship.

HORATIO

Hello, sir.

HAMLET

    I am glad to see you well.—
Horatio? Or I do forget myself?

HAMLET

Nice to see you again, Horatio—that is your name, right?

HORATIO

The same, my lord, and your poor servant ever.

HORATIO

That’s me, sir. Still your respectful servant.

HAMLET

Sir, my good friend, I’ll change that name with you.
And what make you from Wittenberg, Horatio?—
165Marcellus!

HAMLET

Not my servant, but my friend. I’ll change that name for you. But what are you doing so far from Wittenberg, Horatio? —Oh, Marcellus?

MARCELLUS

  My good lord.

MARCELLUS

Hello, sir.