Hamlet Questions 1) What is the nature or condition of the state of Denmark throughout the time of the play? Find as many references as you can to this, citing at least three, from three different parts of the play. The condition of Denmark under Claudius that affords occasion for the warlike activities of Fortinbras, and Denmark is getting corrupted because of politics and supernatural phenomena.
Holding a weak supposal of our worth, . . .
. . . hath not fail'd to pester us with message.
Importing the surrender of those lands
Lost by his father."(Act I Scene II)
Due to the deceased Hamlet, Claudius was left in charge to rule, and after Hamlet’s spirit haunted the castle, a lot of supernatural activities had been believed which costed the lives of a lot of people.
“Good Hamlet,…….through nature to eternity” (Act I, Scene II)
Denmarks condition slowly gets better as Hamlet tries to overthrow Caludius from his power.
“Set me stoops…..bear a wary eye.” (Act V, Scene II, http://shakespeare.mit.edu/hamlet/full.html) 2) Why does Hamlet feel it necessary to put on a play in order "to catch the conscience of the king?" (Act II, sc 2) What concerns him that he feels that this is necessary?
Hamlet is going to have the players perform a play called "The Murder of Gonzago". He is going to tweak it a little so it matches exactly what Claudius did to his father as well as how he scored with Gertrude afterwards. If Claudius reacts strongly to the play, Hamlet will be sure the
Ghost was telling the truth. “Whats Hebuca to……kindles vilian! O! Vengenace!” (Act II, Scene II) 3) Why does Hamlet direct Ophelia to "Get thee to a nunnery?" (Act 3, sc1) What concerns him that he feels this is necessary?
Hamlet exercises his abilities to play act. Hamlet begins this scene with adoration and heartfelt happiness to see Ophelia. But, being in a crucial position not to trust anyone, Hamlet becomes skeptical and quizzes Ophelia's reactions and honesty. “Get thee to…Wheres your father?” (Act III, Scene I)
4) Having confirmed, at least in his own mind, the guilt of Claudius, why does Hamlet not kill
Claudius when he has the opportunity in the chapel? (Act 3, sc 3) Would he be justified in doing so at this point?
At that moment when he sees Claudius he finally has the chance to kill him. After stretching the task ages and ages, finally Claudius is in front of him, but he does not want to kill him because he believes he is asking God for forgiveness. He wants Claudius to go to hell and if he kills him while he is praying, then Claudius will be sent to heaven. That is why he waited to kill Claudius.
“Now might I do it……thy slicky days.” (Act III, Scene III)
5) Who does Hamlet believe he is stabbing behind the arras in his mother's closet? (Act III, sc 4)
Given the decision that he has made in the chapel (previous scene), why should he now feel that this action is warranted?
Hamlet believes that he is stabbing Claudius who hides in his mother’s closet and as he didn’t kill him before in the chapel, he felt like it was the perfect time to kill him so he withdraws his sword and slides it through the closet, where he thinks Claudius is hiding. “How now! a rat? Dead, for a ducat, dead! Makes a pass through the arras” (Act III, Scene IV).
Hamlet thinks it was the king but after he slides the sword he asks his mother to confirm whether it was the king or not.
“Nay, I know not: Is it the king?” (Act III, Scene IV) 6) Why does Claudius send Hamlet to England? (Act IV, sc 3) For what purpose does he enlist
Rosencrantz and Guildenstern? How do we learn this?
Claudius sends him because he starts to feel that Hamlet knows that he killed his father, so, he thought if he sent him to England he'll get rid off him foreve, and they also sends
Rosencrantz and Guildenstern to kill Hamlet.
“I have sent to seek…….or not at all.” (Act IV,