HAMLET Speak the speech, I pray you, as I pronounced it to you, trippingly on the tongue; but if you mouth it, as many of our players do, I had as lief the town-crier spoke my lines. Nor do not saw the air too much with your hand, thus, but use all gently; 5 for in the very torrent, tempest, and, as I may say, whirlwind of your passion, you must acquire and beget a temperance that may give it smoothness.
O, it offends me to the soul to hear a robustious, periwig-pated fellow tear a passion to tatters, to very 10 rags, to split the ears of the groundlings, who for the most part are capable of nothing but inexplicable dumb shows and noise. It out-Herods Herod. Pray you, avoid it. Hamlet, in director mode, tells the actors how he wants them to perform the play.
He'd like it to come off naturally, which means they shouldn't be too loud, or gesticulate make gestures too much, as bad actors often do. Instead, they should use their discretion to build up suspense with their actions. Note that Hamlet gives directions as though he has some familiarity with acting himself And let those that play 40 your clowns speak no more than is set down for them, for there be of them that will themselves laugh, to set on some quantity of barren spectators to laugh too, though in the meantime some necessary question of the play be then to be considered.
Go make you ready. Polonius exits. Will you two help to hasten them? Hamlet gives the players one last piece of advice: don't be tempted to get a cheap laugh, since the audience's laughter might drown out the important parts.
With that, he sends the players off to get ready, then tells Polonius, Rosencrantz, and Guildenstern to keep them on schedule. It's showtime! Why should the poor be flattered? No, let the candied tongue lick absurd pomp And crook the pregnant hinges of the knee 65 Where thrift may follow fawning. Dost thou hear? Since my dear soul was mistress of her choice And could of men distinguish, her election Hath sealed thee for herself.
I prithee, when thou seest that act afoot, Even with the very comment of thy soul Observe my uncle. Give him heedful note, For I mine eyes will rivet to his face, 90 And, after, we will both our judgments join In censure of his seeming. Together, they can figure out whether Claudius really did kill King Hamlet. Enter Trumpets and Kettle Drums. I eat the air, promise-crammed. You cannot feed capons so. As Claudius settles in, he asks Hamlet how he's doing.
Hamlet says he eats as well as a chameleon creatures that were thought to live on a diet of air. He then says you can't feed capons that way. Yeah, we know.Hamlet meets with the actors and instructs them as to the nature of proper acting.
He tells them not to overact, and not to use large gestures. He wishes them to be honest; he asks them to mirror nature, to be entirely realistic in their portrayals. Polonius enters and announces the arrival of the King and Queen to hear the play.
While the court assembles for the performance, Hamlet explains to Horatio how the play will help prove the Ghost's honesty and reveal Claudius ' perfidy.
He asks Horatio to watch the King and note his reaction to a specific speech in Murder of Gonzago. Horatio, Hamlet's faithful friend, assures his Prince that he will follow Hamlet's instructions to the letter. As the courtiers enter the hall, Claudius greets his nephew and asks how Hamlet is, and Hamlet gives a cryptic response. Then Hamlet and Polonius exchange a few words, and Polonius brags about having been murdered by Brutus when he played Julius Caesar in his student days.
Hamlet chooses instead to lie down at Ophelia 's feet. He converses a bit with Ophelia before the dumb show — a pantomime — begins, and she mistakes his manic behavior for merriness. The dumb show mimes the following: A man murders a king while he is sleeping in his garden, and his loving wife, initially inconsolable over the king's death, marries the usurper, who has crowned himself king. When the dumb show ends, the players perform the actual play, which depicts the same plot as the pantomime.
An intermission follows the Player Queen's declaration that she will never remarry should the Player King die. Hamlet seizes the moment to ask Gertrude what she thinks of the play, and Gertrude answers that she is enjoying the play but that the "Lady doth protest too much. Claudius asks Hamlet for the play's title, to which Hamlet replies, The Mousetrap. He says that the play presents the true story of a murder carried out in Vienna. He explains the action of the play, and Ophelia congratulates Hamlet for his story-telling skill.
Hamlet makes a crude pun, suggesting that he could interpret the actions of Ophelia and her lover if he could watch them. Ophelia accuses him of being keen crueland Hamlet responds with another sexual innuendo. Hearing the word keen to mean sexually eager, he tells her she would have to work hard to relieve his sexual urges.
Ophelia laughs that he is wittier than she, but more indecent. Hamlet says that women take their husbands for better or worse but then they deceive them. As Lucianus, the Player King's nephew, pours poison in the ears of the sleeping Player King, Hamlet explains that the murderer will presently win the love of the dead Player King's widow.
Claudius rises and calls for lights to be lit. Polonius repeats the order for the lights and stops the play. The King and his court exit, leaving Hamlet and Horatio to debrief. The two agree that the King's reaction implicates him in the murder of King Hamlet, and Hamlet says he is now convinced of the Ghost's trustworthiness.
Rosencrantz and Guildenstern enter and tell him that the King is displeased and the Queen wants Hamlet to join her in her quarters. Hamlet promises to obey. When a Player enters carrying a recorder, Hamlet seizes the opportunity to make an off-color allusion to Guildenstern's manhood and to chide him for being manipulative. Polonius enters and instructs Hamlet to visit his mother. Hamlet toys with Polonius, pretending to see shapes that do not exist, and then he asks that everyone leave him alone.
Hamlet observes that the dark time of night has come, when spirits and goblins rise from hell to spread their "Contagion to this world. He then chides himself because his words are at war with his soul. Previous Scene 1. Next Scene 2.Hamlet is such an often-quoted play, it is almost impossible to select just a few well-known quotes, but here are some likely contenders, in order of appearance in the play.
O, that this too, too solid flesh would melt, Thaw and resolve itself into a dew! Polonius, Act 1 Scene Hamlet, Act 1 Scene 4 Something is rotten in the state of Denmark. Marcellus, Act 1 Scene 4 That one may smile and smile and be a villain. Hamlet, Act 1 Scene 5 There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, Than are dreamt of in our philosophy.
Hamlet, Act 1 Scene 5 Brevity is the soul of wit. Hamlet, Act 2 Scene 2 O, what a rogue and peasant slave am I! Hamlet, Act 2 Scene 2 To be, or not to be, that is the question. Hamlet, Act 3 Scene 1 The lady protests too much, methinks. Gertrude, Act 3 Scene 2 This is often misquoted as: 'Methinks the lady doth protest too much' How all occasions do inform against me, and spur my dull revenge. I knew him, Horatio: A fellow of infinite jest. Hamlet, Act 5 Scene 1 This is often misquoted as: 'Alas, poor Yorick, I knew him well' If it be now, 'tis not to come: if it be not to come, it will be now: if it be not now, yet it will come: the readiness is all.
Hamlet, Act 5 Scene 2 The rest is silence. Hamlet, Act 5 Scene 2 Goodnight, sweet prince, And flights of angels sing thee to thy rest! Horatio, Act 5 Scene 2. Studying Shakespeare? Discover loads of facts, videos and in-depth information about Shakespeare's plays.
Really get to grips with the stories, settings and characters of Shakespeare's plays. Unlock his language using the same techniques our actors use in rehearsals. Discover now. You are in: About Shakespeare. Also in this section Also in this section Dates and sources Stage history Key moments.
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Detailed explanations, analysis, and citation info for every important quote on LitCharts. The original text plus a side-by-side modern translation of every Shakespeare play. LitCharts From the creators of SparkNotes, something better. Sign In Sign Up. Hamlet by William Shakespeare. Download this LitChart! Teachers and parents! Struggling with distance learning? Our Teacher Edition on Hamlet can help.
Themes All Themes. Symbols All Symbols. Theme Wheel. Understand every line of Hamlet. Themes and Colors Key. LitCharts assigns a color and icon to each theme in Hamletwhich you can use to track the themes throughout the work.
Hamlet enters with the troupe of actors, instructing the First Player on how to deliver the monologue Hamlet has written for him. Hamlet laments the existence of actors who overdo their performances, as well as those who try to get the laughs of the masses rather than create a role genuinely. The First Player assures Hamlet that the troupe will practice hard and deliver a performance that makes Hamlet proud. The players all leave together. Active Themes. Appearance vs.
PoloniusRosencrantz, and Guildenstern enter. Hamlet asks if the king and queen are going to attend the performance, and Polonius says they will. Hamlet urges Polonius to hurry along after the actors and let them know, and then orders Rosencrantz and Guildenstern to follow Polonius and make sure the actors quickly get ready for their performance.An entourage consisting of the king and queen, Polonius and Opheliaand Rosencrantz and Guildenstern enters to begin the Act.
The two reply that they have not been able to find its cause.
Rosencrantz and Guildenstern leave. Polonius and Claudius then begin their plan to loose Ophelia on Hamlet and mark their encounter, hoping to find the root of his madness. They instruct Ophelia to pretend that she is simply reading a book and withdraw behind a tapestry.
After a short conversation she attempts to return some of the remembrances that Hamlet gave when courting her. Claudius and Polonius step out of their hiding place. The king states that he does not believe that Hamlet is mad because of his foiled love for Ophelia, or really mad at all, but tormented for some hidden reason.
He determines to send Hamlet on a diplomatic mission to England before he can cause any serious trouble. He consoles his daughter.
Polonius suggests in parting that Claudius arrange a private interview between Hamlet and his mother after the play that evening and Claudius agrees. Just as the play is about to begin, Hamlet instructs the players on the art of acting, telling them to act naturally and to avoid bombast.
He sets the players to their preparations and then conferences with Horatio. Horatio seats himself so as to view the king properly. The royal entourage enters. Hamlet manically chatters with Claudius, Polonius, Gertrude and Ophelia, reserving special attention for the latter, whom he sits next to and teases. Ophelia seems confused by this plot but Hamlet tells her to wait for the speaker of the prologue to explain.
The prologue is a short little jingling rhyme. The player king and queen then immediately enter the stage. The king mentions that they have been married thirty years.
The player queen expresses a hope that their love last as long over again. The king encourages the queen to remarry if he dies.
The queen protests against this notion vehemently, swearing never to love another if were to she turn widow. With this, the king falls asleep and the queen exits. This evil character creeps up to the sleeping player king and pours poison in his ear. At this, Claudius rises and orders the play to end.
He retreats with his retinue. Hamlet and Horatio laugh together, certain now that the ghost was telling the truth. After a short celebration, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern enter and tell Hamlet that he has made Claudius very angry. They also say that Gertrude has ordered Hamlet to meet her in her chamber. They then entreat Hamlet to tell the cause of his distemper. Polonius enters and entreats Hamlet again to see his mother. All exit but Hamlet.
In a short soliloquy, Hamlet reflects that he will be cruel to his mother, showing her the extent of her crime in marrying Claudius, but will not actually hurt her. Claudius gives Rosencrantz and Guildenstern a sealed envelope with orders to convey Hamlet to England and give the envelope to the king there. Polonius then enters, saying that Hamlet is going to meet with his mother, and declaring his intention to hide behind an arras and listen to their conversation.
10 Most Famous Quotations From Hamlet With Explanation
Alone, the king looks into his soul. He is deeply disgusted by what he sees.The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, often shortened to Hamlet, is one of the most powerful tragedies in English literature and is laden with some of the most popular lines ever written. Some have become English proverbs while some are often used by people in conversations. Doubt truth to be a liar. The lines simply mean that doubt whether stars are fire; or the sun moves across the sky; or truth itself be a liar; but never doubt whether I love you.
This is part of fatherly advice given by Polonius to Laertes. He is telling his son not to borrow or lend money. When you lend money you often loose not only the sum but the friend to whom you lend it.
Claudius says this line to Gertrude while pretending to be concerned about Ophelia. Brevity means concise and exact use of words in writing or speech.
Hamlet Summary and Analysis of Act 3
With time, this famous quotation has become a standard English proverb. This line about the relevance of perspective is often quoted in real life. This quote is spoken by Polonius to the audience while having a conversation to Hamlet. He thinks that Hamlet is acting mad due to his love of Ophelia. And yet, to me, what is this quintessence of dust? He first glorifies a man by praising his reason, faculty, form, movement etc. But then he adds that to him humankind is merely dust.
The quotation has been referred to umpteen times in films, serials etc. It simply says that the most important thing for a person is to be true to oneself. The phrase has become so popular that many people have printed it on their body as a tattoo. One of the most used quotes in the English language it is part of the famous soliloquy by Hamlet on the moral legitimacy of suicide in an unbearably painful world. This is the starting of the soliloquy and Hamlet wonders: to live or not to live. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.
Please enter your comment! Please enter your name here. You have entered an incorrect email address! Trending Now. Latest Posts. Anirudh - April 14, 0. Popular In Ten On Ten. Anirudh - February 9, Back to: Hamlet by William Shakespeare. Polonius is advising Reynaldo regarding his upcoming visit to Laertes. He wants him to spy on Laertes behaviour in a foreign land. He expresses all his fatherly concerns to Reynaldo.
Both of them studied together with Hamlet. Queen Gertrude asks them to go and meet Hamlet. Voltemand and Cornelius enter and inform the king about the resolve with the king of Norway and leave. After they leave, Polonius reads the letter given by Hamlet to Ophelia and further intensifies his point that his one-sided advances towards Ophelia is the source of his madness.Hamlet by William Shakespeare - Act 3, Scene 2 Summary & Analysis
Hamlet enters reading and Polonius comes across him and they converse spitefully. Rosencrantz and Guildenstern enter and Hamlet talks about the nature of the world, dreams and ambition. They inform him of the group of actors who have arrived at Elsinore.
Hamlet welcomes them. Polonius comes briefly and advices them on the nature of acting. Hamlet asks those actors to enact the speech from the Trojan war regarding the slaughter of Priam. After their recital, Hamlet asks them to stage a play called The Murder of Gonzago. Hamlet indirectly expresses his helplessness towards the revenge he wants to take and how this play will simulate the betrayal of his uncle to his father. During the staging of this play, he plans to observe his uncle and the mark of conscience on his face while watching something which re-enacts his crime closely.
Previous Lesson Act 1. Next Lesson Act 3.
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