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Hecate
Allusion
Act 3,
Scene 2
Lines 236-241

An explanation of the allusion to Hecate in Act 3, Scene 2 of myShakespeare’s Hamlet.

Lucianus

Thoughts black, hands apt, drugs fit, and time agreeing —
Considerate season else no creature seeing.
Thou mixture rank, of midnight weeds collected,    
With Hecate's ban thrice blasted, thrice infected.    
Thy natural magic and dire property,
On wholesome life, usurp immediately.

Hecate was a Greek goddess associated with witchcraft and the moon. She was a significant figure for Shakespeare: in addition to this line in Hamlet, he refers to her in Macbeth, King Henry VI, Part 1, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and King Lear.