Hamlet Act 2

“Your bait of falsehood take this carp of truth.” speaker: Poloniustalking to: Reynaldoliterary device: metaphorexplanation: Reynaldo is going to plant a lie about Laertes so that people will either be like “omg liar go away” or “omg I saw him do that!” and he’ll know if it’s true or not
“That hath made him mad.” speaker: Poloniustalking to: Opheliaexplanation: he runs straight to the king to tell him that Ham’s love for O drove him insane
“Why then ’tis none to you; for there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so. To me it is prison.” speaker: Hamlettalking to: Rosencrantz & Guildenstern explanation: he wishes for less knowledge & more ignorance but they don’t understand; they take him really literally; “it” is Denmark
“What a piece of work is man, how noble in reason, how infinite in faculties, in form and moving, how express and admirable in action, how like an angel in apprehension, how like a god!…Man delights not me–nor women neither, though by your smiling you seem to say so.” speaker: Hamlettalking to: Rosencrantz & Guildensternexplanation: whoa people are so complex; I don’t even like people; how can they do such bad things? because there isn’t a real good or bad tbh
“I am but mad north-north-west. When the wind is southerly I know a hawk from a handsaw.” speaker: Hamlettalking to: Rosencrantz & Guildensternliterary device: metaphorexplanation: he’s only going to act insane at calculated times but other times he’ll be sane; don’t be alarmed if I start to get crazy; metaphor of wind conveys “certain times” (goes right over their heads)
“You shall do marvell’s wisely, good Reynaldo, before you visit him, to make inquire of his behavior.” speaker: Poloniustalking to: Reynaldoliterary device: irony (he died spying)explanation: he’s making Reynaldo spy on Laertes bc Polonius is the worst; his tragic flaw is being a spy
“What forgeries you please: marry, none so rank as may dishonor him, take heed of that, but, sir, such wanton, wild, unusual slips as are companions noted and most known to youth and liberty.” speaker: Poloniustalking to: Reynaldoexplanation: shows Shakespeare’s understanding of human nature bc kids do stupid things; he’s saying plant the seed a little bit that Reynaldo is terrible just to see if people will stand up and say that he’s not terrible, but don’t say that he’s too terrible (because THAT would be terrible)
“And then, sir, does ‘a this–‘a does–what was I about to say? By the mass, I was about to say something. Where did I leave?” speaker: Poloniustalking to: Reynaldoexplanation: he doesn’t really lose his train of thought, he just wants to make sure R is paying attention and tell him that this is really no big deal keep it all lowkey
“By indirections find directions out; so by my former lecture and advice shall you my son.” speaker: Poloniustaling to: Reynaldoexplanation: you find the truth by telling lies (for sure)
“My lord, as I was sewing in my closet, Lord Hamlet, with his doublet all unbrac’d, no hat upon his head, his stockins fouled, ungart’red, and down-gyved to his ankle, pale as his shirt, his knees knocking eachother, and with a look so piteous in purport as if he had been loosed out of hell to speak of horrors–he comes before me.” speaker: Opheliatalking to: Poloniusliterary device: periodic sentenceexplanation: she’s freaking out bc Ham is in love with her so life is hard
“Mad for thy love?” speaker: Poloniustalking to: Opheliaexplanation: has love got him lookin’ so crazy right now?
“My lord, I do not know, but truly I do fear it.” speaker: Opheliatalking to: Poloniusexplanation: idk if Ham loves me but omg he might wouldn’t that be bad!
“Come, go we to the King. This must be known, which, being kept close, might move more grief to hide, than hate to utter love.” speaker: Poloniustalking to: Ophelialiterary device: slant rhyme & coupletexplanation: he’s crazy in love! let’s go tell the king so he’ll love me
“Heavens make our presence and our practices pleasant and helpful to him!” speaker: Guildensterntalking to: king & queen (but really the heavens)literary device: apostropheexplanation: God help us
“What it should be, more than his father’s death, that thus hath put him so much from th’ understanding of himself, I cannot dream of.” speaker: Claudiustalking to: queen & Rosencrantzliterary device: dramatic ironyexplanation: “you killed his dad of course he’s crazy” -us
“And I do think, or else this brain of mine hunts not the trail of policy so sure as it hath us’d to do, that I have found the very cause of Hamlet’s lunacy.” speaker: Poloniustalking to: Claudiusexplanation: I know why Ham is crazy!
“My news shall be the fruit to that great feast.” speaker: Poloniustalking to: Claudiusexplanation: no no my information will be the dessert bc I have stuff to say
“Therefore, since brevity is the soul of wit, and tediousness the limbs and outward flourishes, I will be brief. Your noble son is mad: mad I call it, for to define true madness, what is’t but to be nothing else but mad? But let that go.” speaker: Poloniustalking to: king & queenliterary devices: irony (he’s not being brief) & inverted syntax (emphasizes mad)explanation: Hamlet is crazy (in case you didn’t already hear me mention it to everyone ever)
“More matter with less art.” speaker: queentalking to: Poloniusexplanation: get to the point man
“That he’s mad, ’tis true, ’tis true ’tis pity, and pity ’tis ’tis true–a foolish figure.” speaker: Poloniustalking to: king & queenliterary device: repetition (makes him sound pompous)explanation: Ham is REALLY crazy
“Take this from this, if this be otherwise.” speaker: Poloniustalking to: king & queenexplanation: you can chop off my head if I’m wrong about Ham being crazy in love
“Fell into a sadness, then into a fast, thence to a watch, thence into a weakness, thence to a lightness, and by this declension, into the madness wherein he now raves, and we all mourn for.” speaker: Poloniustalking to: king & queenliterary device: anaphoraexplanation: Ham spiraled into madness and it makes me really sad but I’m super psyched to be able to tell you this
“Mark the encounter: if he love her not, and be not from his reason fall’n thereon, let me be no assistant for a state, but keep a farm and carters.” speaker: Poloniustalking to: king & queenexplanation: his daughter is bait & if Ham can turn her down then he’ll accept that he’s wrong
“Let her not walk i’ th’ sun. Conception is a blessing, but as your daughter may conceive, friend, look to’t.” speaker: Hamlettalking to: Poloniusliterary device: play on wordsexplanation: he’s telling Polonius that Ham and Ophelia had a relationship but Polonius isn’t getting it because he just thinks Hamlet is crazy
“Into my grave.” speaker: Hamlettalking to: Poloniuscontext: “Will you walk out of the air, my lord?” -Poloniusliterary device: foreshadow
“How pregnant sometimes his replies are! a happiness that often madness hits on, which reason and sanity could not so prosperously be deliver’d of.” speaker: Poloniustalking to: [aside] but Hamlet is thereexplanation: Ham is making sense but he’s insane? sometimes the craziest people are the wisest; the most reasonable people miss the most important things
“Happy, in that we are not over-happy, on Fortune’s cap we are not the very button.” speaker: Guildensterntalking to: Hamlet & Rosencrantzliterary device: personification of fortuneexplanation: we’re chillin
“You are welcome; but my uncle-father and aunt-mother are deceived.” speaker: Hamlettalking to: Rosencrantz & Guildensternexplanation: he knows that Claudius sent them to spy but he’s not mad at the spies
“Let them be well us’d, for they are the abstract and brief chronicles of the time. After your death you were better have a bad epitaph than their ill report while you live.” speaker: Hamlettalking to: Poloniusexplanation: art imitates life; of course he’s crying–he’s living his role
“We’ll ha’t to-morrow night. you could for need study a speech of some dozen lines, or sixteen lines, which I would set down and insert in’t, could you not?” speaker: Hamlettalking to: first playerliterary device: foreshadowexplanation: da da daaaaaaaaaaaa
“What’s Hecuba to him, or he to Hecuba, that he should weep for her?” speaker: Hamlettalking to: soliloquy literary device: chiasmus (inverted syntax)explanation: how can these actors cry for characters that don’t even exist while I can’t even act on this revenge plot and my dad died
“He would drown the stage with tears, and cleave the general ear with horrid speech, make mad the guilty, and appall the free, confound the ignorant, and amaze indeed the very faculties of eyes and ears.” speaker: Hamlettalking to: soliloquyliterary device: hyperbole & synecdocheexplanation: actors rock!!!!!!!!!!!!
“Unpregnant of my cause, and can say nothing; no, not for a king, upon whose property and most dear life a damn’d defeat was made.” speaker: Hamlettalking to: soliloquyliterary device: alliterationexplanation: it’s like I feel nothing for my dad but I really wanna kill his murderer so why can’t I
“Am I a coward?” speaker: Hamlettalking to: soliloquyliterary device: rhetorical questionexplanation: yep
“For murther, though it have no tongue, will speak with most miraculous organ.” speaker: Hamlettalking to: soliloquyliterary device: personification of murderexplanation: murder is pretty bad
“The spirit that I have seen may be a dev’l, and the dev’l hath power t’ assume a pleasing shape, yea, and perhaps, out of my weakness and my melancholy, and he is very potent with such spirits, abuses me to damn me.” speaker: Hamlettalking to: soliloquyexplanation: what if the ghost was a devil and I kill my uncle for no reason!!!!!!!!!
“More relative than this–the play’s the thing wherein I’ll catch the conscience of the king.” speaker: Hamlet talking to: soliloquyliterary device: coupletexplanation: muah ha ha

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