Hamlet by William Shakespeare
To be, or not to be, that is the question:
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer 1750
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them. To die- to sleep-
No more; and by a sleep to say we end
The heartache, and the thousand natural shocks
That flesh is heir to. 'Tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wish'd. To die- to sleep.
To sleep- perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub!
For in that sleep of death what dreams may come
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
Must give us pause. There's the respect
That makes calamity of so long life.
This brilliant postcard features a quote from Hamlet and the worlds are written to make the shape of a skull. It is postmarked in 2015 with a 'matching' stamp from the Royal Shakespeare Company in England. On the stamp Hamlet is played by David Tennant in 2008. (He also played the 10th Dr. in the Doctor Who television series)
The scene with the monolog is from Act III and the scene with the skull is in act V. The reason they are usually shown together is they are the two most iconic parts of the play.
Great Britain stamp 2011
Royal Shakespeare Company
RSC 50 Years
To Be or Not to Be
That is the question, 1st
*The skull he is holding is of pianist André Tchaikowsky who in his will he left his body to medical research, and donated his skull to the Royal Shakespeare Company, asking that it be used as a prop on stage.