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Francis B. Carpenter, Six Months at the White House, Xvi. (search)
med to crash the earth beneath him, brought him to his knees. By no means a praying man, his petition was short and to the point,--O Lord, if it is all the same to you, give us a little more light and a little less noise! Presently the conversation turned upon Shakspeare, of whom it is well known Mr. Lincoln was very fond. He once remarked, It matters not to me whether Shakspeare be well or ill acted; with him the thought suffices. Edwin Booth was playing an engagement at this time at Grover's Theatre. He had been announced for the coming evening in his famous part of Hamlet. The President had never witnessed his representation of this character, and he proposed being present. The mention of this play, which I afterward learned had at all times a peculiar charm for Mr. Lincoln's mind, waked up a train of thought I was not prepared for. Said he,--and his words have often returned to me with a sad interest since his own assassination,--There is one passage of the play of Hamlet