Passage Analysis of Hamlet

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Shaneeza Rooplall 4U01 December 10, 2012 Passage Analysis Act I Scene II – King speaks to court In this passage, Claudius the new king of Denmark speaks about the fallen king Hamlet whose tragic death has become a shock to the kingdom. Shakespeare go through many themes such as, corruption, power hungry and appearance vs. reality. Firstly, I would like to show how Corruption is shown in this quote. Claudius is putting aside the death of his brother to announce the marriage of him and his sister in law and future wife Gertrude. This is corrupting the mind of young Hamlet, which they think is making him go crazy. “Yet so far hath discretion fought with nature That we with wisest sorrow think on him Together with remembrance of ourselves. Therefore our sometime sister, now our queen, Th' imperial jointress to this warlike state, Have we—as ’twere with a defeated joy, With an auspicious and a dropping eye, With mirth in funeral and with dirge in marriage, In equal scale weighing delight and dole— Taken to wife.” This shows corruption when Claudius is saying that even though his brother past away he still has to move on with his life and mourning wouldn’t help Denmark retrieve its natural appearance. Also, Claudius would do anything for power and he will do whatever it takes to get the crown and Gertrude’s heart. Deception is portrayed when Claudius decides to balance out the mourning of Denmark to announce his marriage to his brother’s wife, Gertrude. This can mean that Claudius thinks it’s wise to mourn him while also thinking about the well-being of the people of Denmark and himself. In that he marries his former sister-in-law, the queen, with mixed feelings of happiness and sadness. Even with these mixed feelings they still decide to go on with this decision of marriage even though it makes Hamlet very unhappy, which they think makes him go crazy.

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