Literary Relations and Allusions

Allusions to Hamlet


Canto 3.3.66-67
And what's the
Roman Republic to me, or I to the Roman Republic?

Hamlet 2.2.543-44
What's Hecuba to him, or he to Hecuba,
That he should weep for her?


Canto 5.8.164-65
After all perhaps there was something factitious about it;
I have had pain, it is true; have wept; and so have the actors.

Hamlet 2.2.535-41
O, what a rogue and peasant slave am I!
Is it not monstrous that this player here,
But in a fiction, in a dream of passion,
Could force his soul so to his own conceit
That from her working all his visage wanned,
Tears in his eyes, distraction in his aspect,
A broken voice, and his whole function suiting
With forms to his conceit?


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Allusions to Matthew Arnold

Canto 3.9.182-189
Mild monastic faces in quiet collegiate cloisters:
So let me offer a single and celibatarian phrase, a
Tribute to those whom perhaps you do not believe I can honour.
But, from the tumult escaping, 'tis pleasant, of drumming and shouting,
Hither, oblivious awhile, to withdraw, of the fact or the falsehood,
And amid placid regards and mildly courteous greetings
Yield to the calm and composure and gentle abstraction that reign o'er
Mild monastic faces in quiet collegiate cloisters.

Stanzas from the Grand Chartreuse 169-174, 193-210
We are like children rear'd in shade,
Beneath some old-world abbey wall,
Forgotten in a forest-glade,
And secret from the eyes of all.
Deep, deep the greenwood round them waves,
Their abbey, and its close of graves!
. . . . .
O children, what do ye reply?---
`Action and pleasure, will ye roam
Through these secluded dells to cry
And call us?--but too late ye come!
Too late for us your call ye blow,
Whose bent was taken long ago.

Long since we pace this shadow'd nave;
We watch those yellow tapers shine,
Emblems of hope over the grave,
In the high altar's depth divine;
The organ carries to our ear
Its accents of another sphere.

Fenced early in this cloistral round
Of reverie, of shade, of prayer,
How should we grow in other ground?
How can we flower in foreign air?
--Pass, banners, pass, and bugles, cease;
And leave our desert to its peace!'

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