The Character of Claudius in Shakespeare's Hamlet

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The Character of Claudius in Hamlet Although he has committed several grave crimes, not least of which is the murder of his own brother, it must also be remembered that Claudius is a competent statesman and an accepted King. "The people of Denmark are not in rebellion against him, nor is the court" (Freeman 73). Indeed the court has "freely gone with this affair along" and supported both his accession and his marriage to Gertrude. He also averts an invasion by Young Fortinbras by clever statesmanship and diplomatic intervention through Fortinbras's uncle, the King of Norway and we also see that he is skilled in manipulating his courtiers, amongst whom the only dissenting voice is that of Hamlet. His love for the Queen, also, is deep and all-consuming. Hamlet's condemnation of it as "incest" is not, it seems, the general opinion of the court and Claudius himself confesses to Laertes that "As the star moves not but in his sphere..I could not but by her." Condemned as a drunkard by Hamlet, we never see Claudius in a state of confusion, or in anything othe...
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