Comparing Gertrude And Ophelia In William Shakespeare's Hamlet

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William Shakespeare’s play, The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, is one of the most influential plays of all time. It has been retold numerous times in multiple genres due its popularity. Set in Denmark, the kingdom mourns the death of King Hamlet. Prince Hamlet returns from school to find his mother, Gertrude, marrying his uncle, Claudius. The ghost of Hamlet’s father reveals that he was murdered by Claudius. Hamlet feels the need to avenge his father’s death. Ophelia overcome with grief at the death of her father, Polonius, kills herself and Gertrude’s death by the poisoned cup of Claudius. Shakespeare uses Gertrude and Ophelia to exemplify the themes of grief, betrayal, and compassion.
The women of Hamlet endure the loss of ones close to their hearts, but grieve in …show more content…

Gertrude talks to Hamlet, “Good Hamlet, cast thy nighted color off, / And let thine eye look like a friend on Denmark. / Do not forever with thy vailèd lids” (1.2.68-70). She speaks to Hamlet worried and distraught about his well-being because she sees him in this erratic state. She uses dictions of “vailèd lids” to accentuate that he needs to open his eyes from the madness. Gertrude tone displays her love for Hamlet that will not cease. She illustrates her concern for Hamlet showing that even though she has betrayed his father and him, that she still loves and is full of compassion for Hamlet. “Polonius speaks to Ophelia telling her, “That hath made him mad./ I am sorry that with better heed and judgment. (2.1.111-112). Polonius apologies for the result of his action to Ophelia as his decision to keep her from Hamlet is what he thinks is the cause of his madness. Polonius response to his daughter, which changes from his possessive tone to an understanding one, shows that he sees her compassion and love for Hamlet furthermore to her choice of obedience to Polonius over her compassion for

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