Where in Shakespeare's Hamlet does the quotation below occur, and which character says it? Why, even in that was heaven ordinant. I had my father's signet in my purse, Which was the model of that Danish seal; Folded the writ up in the form of the other, Subscribed it, gave't the impression, placed it safely, The changeling never known. Now, the next day Was our sea-fight; and what to this was sequent Thou know'st already. (V.ii.52-59)
Hamlet says the above lines to Horatio, a close friend of Hamlet's who studied with him at Wittenberg. Hamlet is explaining to Horatio how he happened to manage to return to Denmark from England.
Prior to these lines, Hamlet explains that he was actually doomed to die in England. He accounts the story of how, while in the middle of the night at sea, he left his cabin in search of Rosencrantz and Guildinstern and found in their things a letter written by the king ordering Hamlet's death upon arrival in England, for the safety of both Denmark and England. He further accounts that he wrote a second letter commissioning the deaths of both Rosencrantz and Guildenstern instead and put the...
(The entire section contains 377 words.)
check Approved by eNotes Editorial