In Hamlet, Prince of Denmark
, Lord Polonius is Lord Chamberlain of the royal Danish court, dutiful servant of all kings, dutiful father of Laertes and Ophelia
As Laertes is saying goodbye to his sister, Polonius enters the stage and interrupts their private chat in act i, scene 2, lines 59 to 85:
- Polonius: Yet here, Laertes? Aboard, aboard, for shame!
- The wind sits in the shoulder of your sail,
- And you are stay'd for. There; my blessing with you!
- And these few precepts in thy memory
- See thou character. Give thy thoughts no tongue,
- Nor any unproportion'd thought his act.
- Be thou familiar, but by no means vulgar.
- The friends thou hast, and their adoption tried,
- Grapple them to thy soul with hoops of steel;
- But do not dull thy palm with entertainment
- Of each new-hatch'd, unfledg'd comrade. Beware
- Of entrance to a quarrel; but being in,
- Bear't that the opposed may beware of thee.
- Give every man thine ear, but few thy voice;
- Take each man's censure, but reserve thy judgement.
- Costly thy habit as thy purse can buy,
- But not express'd in fancy; rich, not gaudy;
- For the apparel oft proclaims the man,
- And they in France of the best rank and station
- Are most select and generous in that.
- Neither a borrower nor a lender be;
- For loan oft loses both itself and friend,
- And borrowing dulls the edge of husbandry.
- This above all: to thine own self be true,
- And it must follow, as the night the day,
- Thou canst not then be false to any man.
- Farewell; my blessing season this in thee!
- --oOo-- -