Hamlet character quotes

“To be, or not to be: that is the question: Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,Or to take arms against a sea of troubles,And by opposing end them? To die: to sleep;No more; and by a sleep to say we endThe heartache and the thousand natural shocksThat flesh is heir to, ’tis a consummationDevoutly to be wish’d. To die, to sleep;To sleep: perchance to dream: ay, there’s the rub;For in that sleep of death what dreams may comeWhen we have shuffled off this mortal coil,Must give us pause: there’s the respectThat makes calamity of so long life;For who would bear the whips and scorns of time,The oppressor’s wrong, the proud man’s contumely,The pangs of despised love, the law’s delay,The insolence of office and the spurnsThat patient merit of the unworthy takes,When he himself might his quietus makeWith a bare bodkin? who would fardels bear,To grunt and sweat under a weary life,But that the dread of something after death,The undiscover’d country from whose bournNo traveller returns, puzzles the willAnd makes us rather bear those ills we haveThan fly to others that we know not of?Thus conscience does make cowards of us all;And thus the native hue of resolutionIs sicklied o’er with the pale cast of thought,And enterprises of great pith and momentWith this regard their currents turn awry,And lose the name of action.–Soft you now!The fair Ophelia! Nymph, in thy orisonsBe all my sins remember’d!”(Shakespeare, Act 3 scene 1) Hamlet
“There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, Than are dreamt of in your philosophy. Here, as before, never, so help you mercy,How strange or odd soe’er I bear myself” (Shakespeare, 1.5.167-8) Hamlet
” I have of late,—but wherefore I know not,—lost all my mirth, forgone all custom of exercises; and indeed, it goes so heavily with my disposition that this goodly frame, the earth, seems to me a sterile promontory; this most excellent canopy, the air, look you, this brave o’erhanging firmament, this majestical roof fretted with golden fire,—why, it appears no other thing to me than a foul and pestilent congregation of vapours. What a piece of work is man! How noble in reason! how infinite in faculties! in form and moving, how express and admirable! in action how like an angel! in apprehension, how like a god! the beauty of the world! the paragon of animals! And yet, to me, what is this quintessence of dust?”(Shakespeare, Act II, scene ii (287-298)) Hamlet
“O that this too too solid flesh would melt,Thaw, and resolve itself into a dew!Or that the Everlasting had not fix’dHis canon ‘gainst self-slaughter! O God! O God!How weary, stale, flat, and unprofitableSeem to me all the uses of this world!Fie on’t! O fie! ’tis an unweeded garden,That grows to seed; things rank and gross in naturePossess it merely. That it should come to this!But two months dead!—nay, not so much, not two:So excellent a king; that was, to this,Hyperion to a satyr; so loving to my mother,That he might not beteem the winds of heavenVisit her face too roughly. Heaven and earth!Must I remember? Why, she would hang on himAs if increase of appetite had grownBy 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 oldWith which she followed my poor father’s bodyLike Niobe, all tears;—why she, even she,— O God! a beast that wants discourse of reason,Would have mourned longer,—married with mine uncle,My father’s brother; but no more like my fatherThan I to Hercules: within a month;Ere yet the salt of most unrighteous tearsHad left the flushing in her galled eyes,She married:— O, most wicked speed, to postWith such dexterity to incestuous sheets!It is not, nor it cannot come to good;But break my heart,—for I must hold my tongue.”(Shakespeare, Act I, scene ii (129-158)) Hamlet
“Has this fellow no feeling of his business? He sings at grave- making.” (Shakespeare, Scene 5 act 1) Hamlet
“Thou know’st ’tis common; all that lives must die,Passing through nature to eternity.”(Shakespeare, Act I, scene 2, line 72) Hamlet
. “Nothing can we call our own but deathAnd that small model of the barren earthWhich serves as paste and cover to our bones.” (Shakespeare, Act III, scene 2, line 152) Hamlet
. “Nothing can we call our own but deathAnd that small model of the barren earthWhich serves as paste and cover to our bones.” (Shakespeare, Act III, scene 2, line 152) Hamlet
No, not at all. Just follow the logic: Alexander died, Alexander was buried, Alexander returneth to dust, the dust is dirt, and dirt makes mud we use to stop up holes. So why can’t someone plug a beer barrel with the dirt that used to be Alexander? The great emperor Caesar, dead and turned to clay, might plug up a hole to keep the wind away. Oh, to think that the same body that once ruled the world could now patch up a wall! But quiet, be quiet a minute.(ShakeSpeare, Hamlet 5.1.201-206) Hamlet
“I do repent: but heaven hath pleas’d it so, To punish me with this and this with me, That I must be their scourge and minister. I will bestow him, and will answer well The death I gave him. So, again, good night.I must be cruel, only to be kind: Thus bad begins and worse remains behind.” (ShakeSpeare, Hamlet Act 3, scene 4, 173-179) Hamlet
[…] poor Ophelia Divided from herself and her fair judgment, Without the which we are pictures or mere beasts; Claudius (about Ophelia)
‘Tis sweet and commendable in your nature, Hamlet, To give these mourning duties to your father. But you must know your father lost a father, That father lost, lost his, and the survivor bound In filial obligation for some term To do obsequious sorrow. But to persever In obstinate condolement is a course Of impious stubbornness. ‘Tis unmanly grief. It shows a will most incorrect to heaven, A heart unfortified, a mind impatient, An understanding simple and unschooled. Claudius
O, ’tis too true! How smart a lash that speech doth give my conscience. The harlot’s cheek beautied with plast’ring art Is not more ugly to the thing that helps it Than is my deed to my most painted word. O heavy burden! Claudius
Though yet of Hamlet our dear brother’s deathThe memory be green, and that it us befittedTo bear our hearts in grief, and our whole kingdomTo be contracted in one brow of woe,Yet so far hath discretion fought with natureThat we with wisest sorrow think on himTogether with remembrance of ourselves Claudius
I entreat you both, That, being of so young days brought up with him, And sith so neighbour’d to his youth and havior, That you vouchsafe your rest here in our court Some little time: so by your companies To draw him on to pleasures, and to gather, So much as from occasion you may glean, Whether aught, to us unknown, afflicts him thus, That, open’d, lies within our remedy. Claudius
Set me the stoops of wine upon that table. If Hamlet give the first or second hit, Or quit in answer of the third exchange, Let all the battlements their ordnance fire: The king shall drink to Hamlet’s better breath; And in the cup an union shall he throw, Richer than that which four successive kings In Denmark’s crown have worn. Give me the cups; And let the kettle to the trumpet speak, The trumpet to the cannoneer without, The cannons to the heavens, the heavens to earth, ‘Now the king dunks to Hamlet.’ Come, begin: And you, the judges, bear a wary eye. Claudius
Gertrude, do not drink. It is the poisoned cup. It is too late Claudius
No place indeed should murder sanctuarize; Revenge should have no bounds. Claudius
Make choice of whom your wisest friends you will, and they shall hear and judge ‘twixt you and me. Caludius
O, my offence is rank, it smells to heaven; It hath the primal eldest curse upon ‘t, A brother’s murder. Claudius
Ophelia. My lord, I have remembrances of yours That I have longed long to re-deliver. I pray you, now receive them.Hamlet. No, not I! I never gave you aught.Ophelia. My honour’d lord, you know right well you did, And with them words of so sweet breath compos’d As made the things more rich. Their perfume lost, Take these again; for to the noble mind Rich gifts wax poor when givers prove unkind. There, my lord.Hamlet. Ha, ha! Are you honest?Ophelia. My lord?Hamlet. Are you fair?1800Ophelia. What means your lordship?Hamlet. That if you be honest and fair, your honesty should admit no discourse to your beauty.Ophelia. Could beauty, my lord, have better commerce than with honesty?Hamlet. Ay, truly; for the power of beauty will sooner transform 1805honesty from what it is to a bawd than the force of honesty can translate beauty into his likeness. This was sometime a paradox, but now the time gives it proof. I did love you once. Ophelia
Say you? Nay, pray You mark. (Sings) He is dead and gone, lady, He is dead and gone; 2890At his head a grass-green turf, At his heels a stone. O, ho! Ophelia
Pray let’s have no words of this; but when they ask, you what it means, say you this: (Sings) To-morrow is Saint Valentine’s day, 2910All in the morning bedtime, And I a maid at your window, To be your Valentine. Then up he rose and donn’d his clo’es And dupp’d the chamber door, 2915Let in the maid, that out a maid Never departed more.Claudius. Pretty Ophelia!Ophelia. Indeed, la, without an oath, I’ll make an end on’t! [Sings] By Gis and by Saint Charity, 2920Alack, and fie for shame! Young men will do’t if they come to’t By Cock, they are to blame. Quoth she, ‘Before you tumbled me, You promis’d me to wed.’ He answers: ‘So would I ‘a’ done, by yonder sun, An thou hadst not come to my bed.’Claudius. How long hath she been thus?Ophelia. I hope all will be well. We must be patient; but I cannot choose but weep to think they would lay him i’ th’ cold ground. My brother shall know of it; and so I thank you for your good counsel. Come, my coach! Good night, ladies. Good night, sweet ladies. Good night, good night. Ophelia
They bore him barefac’d on the bier (Hey non nony, nony, hey nony) And in his grave rain’d many a tear. 3045Fare you well, my dove!Laertes. Hadst thou thy wits, and didst persuade revenge, It could not move thus.?: You must sing ‘A-down a-down, and you call him a-down-a.’ O, how the wheel becomes it! It is the false steward, that stole his 3050master’s daughter. Ophelia
There’s fennel for you, and columbines. There’s rue for you, and here’s some for me. We may call it herb of grace o’ Sundays. O, you must wear your rue with a difference! There’s a daisy. I would give you some violets, but they wither’d all when my father died. They say he made a good end.[Sings] For bonny sweet Robin is all my joy. Ophelia
And will he not come again? And will he not come again? No, no, he is dead; Go to thy deathbed; He never will come again. His beard was as white as snow,All flaxen was his poll. He is gone, he is gone, And we cast away moan. God ‘a’mercy on his soul! And of all Christian souls, I pray God. God b’ wi’ you. Ophelia
There is a willow grows aslant a brook,That shows his hoar leaves in the glassy stream;There with fantastic garlands did she comeOf crow-flowers, nettles, daisies, and long purplesThat liberal shepherds give a grosser name,But our cold maids do dead men’s fingers call them:There, on the pendent boughs her coronet weedsClambering to hang, an envious sliver broke;When down her weedy trophies and herselfFell in the weeping brook. Her clothes spread wide;And, mermaid-like, awhile they bore her up:Which time she chanted snatches of old tunes;As one incapable of her own distress,Or like a creature native and induedUnto that element: but long it could not beTill that her garments, heavy with their drink,Pull’d the poor wretch from her melodious layTo muddy death. Gertrude about Ophelia
So please you, something touching the Lord Hamlet.Polonius.: Marry, well bethought! ‘Tis told me he hath very oft of late Given private time to you, and you yourself Have of your audience been most free and bounteous. 580If it be so- as so ’tis put on me, And that in way of caution- I must tell you You do not understand yourself so clearly As it behooves my daughter and your honour. What is between you? Give me up the truth.585?: He hath, my lord, of late made many tenders Of his affection to me. Polonius (about Ophelia)
Affection? Pooh! You speak like a green girl, Unsifted in such perilous circumstance. Do you believe his tenders, as you call them?590Ophelia.: I do not know, my lord, what I should think,Polonius.: Marry, I will teach you! Think yourself a baby That you have ta’en these tenders for true pay, Which are not sterling. Tender yourself more dearly, Or (not to crack the wind of the poor phrase, 595Running it thus) you’ll tender me a fool.Ophelia. My lord, he hath importun’d me with love In honourable fashion.Polonius: Ay, fashion you may call it. Go to, go to!Ophelia: And hath given countenance to his speech, my lord, 600With almost all the holy vows of heaven.Polonius. Ay, springes to catch woodcocks! I do know, When the blood burns, how prodigal the soul Lends the tongue vows. These blazes, daughter, Giving more light than heat, extinct in both 605Even in their promise, as it is a-making, You must not take for fire. From this time Be something scanter of your maiden presence. Set your entreatments at a higher rate Than a command to parley. For Lord Hamlet, 610Believe so much in him, that he is young, And with a larger tether may he walk Than may be given you. In few, Ophelia, Do not believe his vows; for they are brokers, Not of that dye which their investments show, 615But mere implorators of unholy suits, Breathing like sanctified and pious bawds, The better to beguile. This is for all: I would not, in plain terms, from this time forth Have you so slander any moment leisure 620As to give words or talk with the Lord Hamlet. Look to’t, I charge you. Come your ways.Ophelia. I shall obey, my lord. Polonius (about Ophelia)
I shall obey you; And for your part, Ophelia, I do wish That your good beauties be the happy cause Of Hamlet’s wildness. So shall I hope your virtues Will bring him to his wonted way again, To both your honours Gertrude
?He’s fat and scant of breath.— Here, Hamlet, take my napkin; rub thy brows.The queen carouses to thy fortune, Hamlet. [She lifts the cup.]HGood madam.KGertrude, do not drink.?I will, my lord; I pray you pardon me. [She drinks.]K[aside]It is the poisoned cup. It is too late.HI dare not drink yet, madam—by and by.?Come, let me wipe thy face. Gertrude
Let not thy mother lose her prayers, Hamlet.I pray thee, stay with us. Go not to Wittenberg. Gertrude
O Hamlet, speak no more:Thou turn’st my very eyes into my soul,And there I see such black and grained spotsAs will not leave their tinct (III.iv.88-91)…O speak to me no more;these words like daggars enter my ears;No more, sweet Hamlet! Gertrude
For love of God, forbear him! Gertrude
Be thou assured, if words be made of breath And breath of life, I have no life to breathe What thou hast said to me. Gertrude

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