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Where is the county's page, that rais'd the watch?Sirrah, what made your master in this place?

Page. He came with flowers to strew his lady's grave; And bid me stand aloof, and so I did:

Anon, comes one with light to ope the tomb;
And, by and by, my master drew on him;
And then I ran away to call the watch.

Prince. This letter doth make good the friar's words,
Their course of love, the tidings of her death;
And here he writes-that he did buy a poison
Of a poor 'pothecary, and therewithal

Came to this vault to die, and lie with Juliet.
Where be these enemies? Capulet! Montague!-
See what a scourge is laid upon your hate,

That heaven finds means to kill your joys with love!
And I, for winking at your discords too,
Have lost a brace of kinsmen :-all are punish'd.
Cap. O, brother Montague, give me thy hand.
This is my daughter's jointure, for no more
Can I demand.


But I can give thee more:
For I will raise her statue in pure gold;
That whiles Verona by that name is known,
There shall no figure at that rate be set,
As that of true and faithful Juliet,

Cap. As rich shall Romeo by his lady lie;
Poor sacrifices of our enmity!

Prince. A glooming peace this morning with it brings;
The sun for sorrow will not show his head:

Go hence, to have more talk of these sad things;
Some shall be pardon'd, and some punished:

For never was a story of more woe

Than this of Juliet and her Romeo.

End of

Komeo and Juliet.


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THE earliest edition of 'Hamlet' known to exist is that of 1603. It bears the following title: "The Tragicall Historie of Hamlet Prince of Denmarke, by William Shake-speare. As it hath beene diverse times acted by his Highnesse servants in the Cittie of London: as also in the two Universities of Cambridge and Oxford, and elsewhere. At London, printed for N. L. and John Trundell, 1603.' The only known copy of this edition is in the library of the Duke of Devonshire; and that copy is not quite perfect. It was reprinted in 1825.

The second edition of Hamlet' was printed in 1604, under the following title: The Tragicall Historie of Hamlet, Prince of Denmarke. By William Shakespeare. Newly imprinted and enlarged to almost as much againe as it was, according to the true and perfect coppie. Printed by J. R. for N. Landure, 1604, 4to.' This edition was reprinted in 1605, in 1609, in 1611, and there is also a quarto edition without a date.

In the folio of 1623 some passages which are found in the quarto of 1604 are omitted. In our text we have given these passages. In other respects our text, with one or two minute exceptions, is wholly founded upon the folio of 1623. From this circumstance our edition will be found considerably to differ from the text of Johnson and Steevens, of Reed, of Malone, and of all the current editions which are founded upon these.


In the reprint of the edition of 1603, it is stated to be "the only known copy of this tragedy, as originally written by Shakespeare, which he afterwards altered and enlarged." We believe that this description is correct; that this remarkable copy gives us the play as originally written by Shakspere. It may have been piratical, and we think it was so. The Hamlet' of 1603 is a sketch of the perfect 'Hamlet,' and probably a corrupt copy of that sketch.

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The comprehension of this tragedy is the history of a man's own mind. In some shape or other, Hamlet the Dane' very early becomes familiar to almost every youth of tolerable education. He is sometimes presented through the medium of the stage; more frequently in some one of the manifold editions of the acted play. The sublime scenes where the Ghost ap pears are known even to the youngest school-boy, in his 'Speakers' and 'Readers;' and so is the soliloquy, "To be, or not to be." As we in early life become acquainted with the complete acted play, we hate the King, we weep for Ophelia,-we think Hamlet is cruel to her, we are perhaps inclined with Dr. Johnson to laugh at Hamlet's madness-(" the pretended madness of Hamlet causes much mirth ")—we wonder that Hamlet does not kill the King earlier,-and we believe, as Garrick believed, that the catastrophe might have been greatly improved, seeing that the wicked and the virtuous ought not to fall together, as it were by accident.

A few years onward, and we have become acquainted with the 'Hamlet' of Shakspere,-not the 'Hamlet'

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