Angels and ministers of grace, defend us!
Be thou a spirit of health or goblin damned,
Bring with thee airs from heaven or blasts from hell,
Be thy intents wicked or charitable,
Thou comest in such a questionable shape
That I will speak to thee: I’ll call thee Hamlet,
King, father, royal Dane: O, answer me!
Let me not burst in ignorance, but tell
Why thy canonized bones, hearsed in death,
Have burst their cerements; why the sepulchre,
Wherein we saw thee quietly inurn’d,
Hath oped his ponderous and marble jaws
To cast thee up again. What may this mean,
That thou, dead corse, again in complete steel
Revisit’st thus the glimpses of the moon,
Making night hideous, and we fools of nature
So horridly to shake our disposition
With thoughts beyond the reaches of our souls?

– William Shakespeare

Hamlet, Act 1, Scene 4. On the third appearance of the Ghost, a confused Hamlet’s initial response is to pray to the heavenly angels for protection. He conjectures that it could be an evil spirit brandishing hell fire. But the Ghost dressed in full armor reminds him so much of his father, that he starts to trust it. He addresses it as Hamlet, King and father. He demands to know why the Ghost has burst from his father’s grave to terrify their night and shake them with thoughts beyond their understanding. Foreshadowed here is the considerable influence the Ghost will have on Hamlet in later scenes.