Character Comparison: Gertrude and Ophelia

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Jannie Britton ENGL 1102/TR8 14 October 2014 Character Comparison of Gertrude and Ophelia In the play Hamlet, Gertrude and Ophelia have some similarities and differences. Gertrude, the queen, the mother of Hamlet, is a protective mother, but I also feel like she is wicked person. Ophelia, Hamlet’s love interest, is young, foolish, and underestimated. They both love the handsome Hamlet. Gertrude and Ophelia both love Hamlet, although, they love Hamlet in different ways. Gertrude, his mother, loves Hamlet in a motherly way. Gertrude married Claudius, which is Hamlet’s uncle, and also the brother of Gertrude’s deceased husband and Hamlet’s father. Gertrude shows her love at the beginning of the play by begging Hamlet to “cast thy nighted colour off” (1.2.68) in an attempt to bring him out of two months of mourning. This shows her love for him in that she is concerned about his emotional state and desires for him to continue his growth as a person. Gertrude shows her love by also saying “Let not thy mother lose her prayers, Hamlet. I pray thee stay with us, go not to Wittenberg” (1.2.321). I feel like Hamlet thinks his mother is crazy and has no feelings about her, because she married Claudius right after his father’s death and did not mourn of her husband’s death. Ophelia, his secret desire, loves Hamlet in an intimate and soul mate way, but is persuaded against her love by her father, Polonius, and her brother Laertes. Laertes does not approve of Hamlet when he says, “…ere you list his songs, or lose your heart, or your chaste treasure open” (1.3.30-31). After Laertes warns Ophelia to fear losing her virginity, she replies by telling him not to lecture her, “Whiles, like a puffed and reckless libertine, Himself the primrose path of dalliance treads, and recks not his own rede” (1.3.48-50). She is able to rebuke her brother to some extent, but when her father
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