Gertrude, Claudius, and Hamlet: Various Perspectives of Death

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Losing a loved one can be difficult, hard, and can even drive a person insane. In Shakespeare’s play Hamlet death takes its toll on the entire royal family. When King Hamlet died, it caused Claudius to take the thrown and the hand of queen Gertrude. As soon as the King and Queen hear about how mad Hamlet has gone they discuss the idea of death and wonder if the thought of death or not mourning the made him go crazy. Claudius quotes, “When sorrows come, they come not single spies. But in battalions” (3.4.52-53). This quote symbolizes that death brings sorrow and how this is a view on death. Although mourning is common between characters in the beginning of the play, views on death become different and apparent among Gertrude, Claudius, and Hamlet. In the play Gertrude depicts her take on death as a part of life in which one needs to move on from and almost forget them as they once were. To some the circle of life is more than death; it can be way for someone to release feelings through the mourning, except that is not what Gertrude believes. Gertrude tells 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. Seek for thy noble father in the dust” (1.2.70-72). Gertrude’s words are saying for Hamlet to stop wearing black clothes and just remember his noble father how he once was, which may seem harsh but it may also be the only way in which Gertrude knows how to handle it. Another way Gertrude may handle it is through forgiveness from Hamlet. The article Acts III and IV: Problems of Text and Staging states that Hamlet says, “O, throw away the worser part of it And live the purer with the other half. Good night. But go not to my unl... ... middle of paper ... ...ited Bonnet, N.J. (2010) “The Manipulative Nature of Claudius in Shakespeare’s ‘Hamlet’.” Student Pulse, 2(02). Fly, Richard. “Accommodating Death: The Ending Of Hamlet.” Studies In English Literature (Rice) 24.2 (1984): 257. Literary Reference Center. Web. 6 Feb. 2014. Kastan, David Scott. "'His Semblable In His Mirror': Hamlet And The Imitation Of Revenge." Shakespeare Studies 19.(1987): 111. Literary Reference Center. Web. 5 Feb. 2014. Nevo, Ruth. “Acts III and IV: Problems of Text and Staging.” Modern Critical Interpretations: William Shakespeare’s Hamlet. Ed. Harold Bloom. New York: Chelsea House,1986. (53). Print. Shakespeare, William. Hamlet. New York: Dover Publications, Inc. 1992. Print Walls, Kathryn. "Shakespeare's HAMLET 1.2.35-38." Explicator 63.1 (2004): 4-6. Literary Reference Center. Web. 5 Feb. 2014.

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