Hamlet Act IV and V

What two things does Claudius admit to being worried about, when Gertrude reveals Hamlet has struck Polonius dead? 1. Hamlet may kill him 2. the people will be upset if he punishes Hamlet for Polonius’ death
What punishment does the King decide he will bring upon Hamlet? Exile him to England
To what purpose do you infer Hamlet is hiding the location of the body from Guildenstern and Rosencrantz? He knows R & G will bring him in front of the king and Hamlet wants to be face to face with the king
Why is Hamlet being so difficult towards his two former friends? What things does he compare them to? Difficult to them because he thinks that R & G are just really pawns- do whatever king says; they’re sponges soaking up the favors of the king (metaphor)
What reason does Claudius give for not acting with swift and bloodthirsty justice against Hamlet? Hamlet is much loved by Denmark
What is the literal and implied meaning of Hamlet in line 31, “Nothing but to show you how a king may go a progress through the guts of a beggar”? circle of life- the beggar can technically eat the remnants of the king—a king is no better than a beggars excrement
What’s the irony in Hamlet’s answer to the King’s question, “Where is Polonius?” verbal irony- tells king to go look for Polonius in hell
What’s the King’s plan to be rid of Hamlet forever? Who will aid him, and why? King is going to send a letter with R & G before Hamlet gets there – demanding that the king of Norway kill Hamlet as a repayment
Upon what errand does Fortinbras send the Captain of his army? to go meet the king and make sure that Norway can still cross through Denmark
To what purpose is Fortinbras invading this small plot of land in Poland, according to the Captain? for pride – the land doesn’t have any advantages
In Hamlet’s soliloquy ending this scene, what parallel does he make between the coming battle and his own internal conflict? he sees that Fortinbras is willing to die to avenge his father’s loss of land- so Hamlet must be willing to die to avenge his father’s death(Fortinbras and Hamlet are foils)
What is the subject of Ophelia’s songs, that she sings about in her madness to the King and Queen? Songs talking about fathers burial- she lost her virginity to a man who left her
Why does Claudius claim he has acted foolishly (“greenly”) in his hasty and secretburial of Polonius? because Laertes has secretly returned from France and will want to know what happened& because Ophelia has gone insane
What’s Laertes meaning in the line, “That drop of blood that’s calm proclaims me bastard” addressed to the Queen? if he acts calmly, he’s dishonoring his father’s murder- he isn’t supposed to be calm
Explain the irony behind Claudius’ invocation of protection “There’s such divinity that doth hedge a king…” against Laertes. there doesn’t appear to be any divinity that saves Hamlet (dramatic irony- we know that Hamlet has been saved)
Whom does Laertes swear he will revenge, and at what cost? lex talionis (if your father was killed, you shall avenge your fathers death, even if it means your own damnation)– (Hamlet feels he needs to have proof of his fathers death)
What does the King proposition, to sooth Laertes’ temper for now, and further his own ends Laertes gathered men to judge king to see if king was truly responsible for the death of Polonius – if he’s responsible, Laertes can be king
What has happened to Hamlet en route to England? What does he wish Horatio to do? Hamlet was captured by pirates and wants Horatio to deliver letter to king and Hamlet
What two reasons does the King give to Laertes for not dealing immediate justice to Hamlet for killing Polonius, and ostensibly pursuing the King’s life? 1. “I couldn’t kill hamlet becuase it would upset Gertrude too much” & he ‘loves’ Gertrude2. The people of Denmark love Hamlet to much & king is afraid of what they might do
What does Hamlet’s letter to the King reveal? that he is going to return to court tomorrow; how he escaped is unknown
What plot does the King hatch with Laertes? the king will set up a dual in which Laertes will accidentally stab Hamlet with a poisoned blade (will look like an accident)
Why does Claudius mention Lamord? because Lamord once praised Laertes fencing ability in front of Hamlet who became jealous
What backup plan does Claudius create? he is going to fill a cup with poison so when Hamlet during the duel gets thirsty, he can drink from the poison cup
What has happened to Ophelia? How did it happen? she has drowned; she was standing on a tree limb which broke & her clothing filled with water, pulling her down underwater
What literary technique is used?… “But long it could be to that her garments heavy with drink pulled the poor wretch to her muddy death.” personification
How can what happened to Ophelia be read as something other than an accident? the queen describes that she never fought to get out of the water which implies a suicide
What are the two gravediggers arguing about, in regards to Ophelia?What else do they say (about Hamlet)? – arguing about in regards to Ophelia if she should receive a christian burial- the grave diggers say that Hamlet has gone to England to get better but if he doesn’t, that’s okay because all of the people of England are crazy too
What friend of childhood does Hamlet discover in the graveyard? Why does Hamlet feel his “gorge rises at it”? he sees Yorick- the court jester from King Hamlets time and seeing the physical aspects of death repulses him
What does the Doctor reveal were the concessions made for Ophelia regarding her burial? Why were these concessions made? the king has forced the Church to give her certain funeral rights such as wreaths, flowers, and a burial on Church grounds
What service has Ophelia been denied? the funeral mass- the requiem
Why do Hamlet and Laertes end up grappling? they both fight over who has a greater grief for Ophelia’s death- Hamlet says he loved Ophelia more than 40 thousands brothers could (hyperbole)
How did Hamlet discover the plot against him on the ship? He stole papers, read them, and found out he was supposed to be killed
How does Hamlet get the better of his letter bearing executioners? he forges the letter form the King saying the barers of the letter (R & G) are to be killed
What time limit is Hamlet up against? he knows that when news returns that R & G have died, that he king will again have to act- (he needs to act before the king does)
What similarity does Hamlet remark between himself and Laertes? they both want to avenge their fathers death and their sister or mother’s destroyer
How does Hamlet make a fool of Osric? he twists his words around and mocks his speech
What is the King’s wager? Who represents the French, and who the Danish? Laertes will not have more than 3 hits against Hamlet – the wager horses and swords
Horatio tries to argue Hamlet to avoid the contest. What’s Hamlet’s logic in going anyway, despite his misgivings? he figures that God can decide who can die
How does Hamlet try and appeal to Laertes? Hamlet says he never meant to hurt Laertes, it was his madness that caused his actions
Why does the King’s bet favor Laertes? because Laertes is supposed to be the better swordsman
What does the King propose to do if Hamlet makes an early hit? the cannons will be fired and they will drink a toast to Hamlets health (ironic because the drink has poison in it)
Why does Gertrude drink? Why can’t the King stop her? she drinks to celebrate Hamlet’s 2nd hit & the king cannot stop her because it will reveal the plan
How are both Laertes and Hamlet wounded? Laertes strikes Hamlet with the poisoned blade but the blades get switched and Hamlets strikes Laertes as well
What’s Hamlet’s final revenge on the King? he stabs him with a poisoned blade and makes him drink the poisoned drink
What is Laertes’ dying wish? admits Claudius’ plan to Hamlet and forgives Hamlet of his and his father’s murder
Why does Horatio take the poisoned cup against Hamlet’s wish? in an old roman tradition, he wishes to follow Hamlet in death
Why does Shakespeare pair Hamlet’s death with the moment Fortinbras is returning from victory? fortinbras and Hamlet are foils and because they both have achieved victory over their father’s death- fortinbras lost land- hamlet is able to recover his fathers dignity
To what purpose has the Ambassador from England just arrived? to let us know that R & G are dead
Who can the reader infer, from Horatio’s last remark, will be the next ruler of Denmark? that Fortinbras will rule and Hamlet will be buried like a soldier
3 major motifs 1. incest2. death3. misogyny (hatred of women)
___ people are killed are killed in the play – ___ people die 7 people are killed – Polonious- R and G- King- Queen…8 people die (Ophelia is the one that is not killed)

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