Hamlet Study Guide

What mood is stressed at the outset of the play? Tension
Why does marcellus tell horatio to speak to the ghost? Because he is a scholar and can speak latin, which is believed to be what the ghost speaks
What current events are discussed as the men await the ghost? People working day and night, the coming conflict, and fortinbras
What possible reasons for the ghosts appearance are discussed? hidden treasure, help your countries fate, unfinished business, mourning, avenge death
what unnatural happenings does horatio equate with the ghosts appearance? assination of julius ceasar, eclipses, walking dead, meteors and comets
what is the atmosphere of the court routine that begins scene 2? Uneasy
What attitude dominates Hamlets personality in scene 2? Hamlet’s soliloquy is full of insults against his mother. Why is he so angry? -Mourning and sorrow-The queen married Hamlet’s uncle very soon after her husband’s death
How does hamelts soliloquy betray his melancholy? He feels helpless
What historical event might shakespeare be using as reference? Henry the VIII
What is Hamlet like when he is with Horatio? He is very open
What is the effect of Horatios news of the ghost? Excitement and curiosity
What is the effect of Laertes talk with Ophelia in Scene 3? She becomes rather submissive
What is the significance of polonius’ advise to Laertes? It reveals his hypocrisy
In scene 4 what facts emerge from Hamlets conversation with Horatio? Hamlet does not like the King or his attitude
How does Hamlet approach the ghost? Cautiously praying
In scene 5 why is the ghosts reminder about his descent to hell significant? Foreshadow
What is the unknowing irony in Hamlets reply to the ghost? The length of time that passes before anything actually happens
Hamlet seems genuinly horrified at the ghosts revelation. Has he had no hint of evil? He believed it to be related to his mother
What does Hamlet realize after talking with the Ghost? He is the only one still mourning his father
What change of mood occurs with Act 2 Scene 1? Pettyness-seriousness of murder to pettiness of polonius spying on his son
What news does Ophelia bring Polonius? That Hamlet is acting strange
What is the significance of the meeting between the royal couple and Rosencrantz and Guildenstern? Parallels and plotsThey ask Rosencrantz and guildenstern to try and find out what is wrong with Hamlet, why he is acting so strangely and depressed. Rosencrantz and Guildendtern are old friends of Hamlets and they promise the king & queen that they will obey and find out Hamlets problem.
Why is Fortinbras mentioned again? Because he is a foil to Hamlet
What is Hamlets reception of Rosencrantz and Guildenstern? He is welcoming and hospitable however he suspects/knows that they were sent for and ordered to spy on him by the king& queen
Why is Hamlet excited to see the players? Hamlet loves plays and theatre and he decides that this is how he will find out if claudius is guilty or not.
What is the iportance of the reference to Jephthah? Jephthah sacrificed his daughter just as Polonius is doing
What is the importance of Hamlets speech to the players? He asks for the story of Anaes tale to Dido. The story of Pyrrhus killing priam and how distraught Hecuba was to find her husband dead. Hamlets asks for this because he can relate to the story.
What emotion dominates the soliloquy that follows when hamlet is alone? guilt for not already accomplishing his fathers request
What feelings permeates the first part of act III scene 1? distrust
What meaning is given to claudius’ aside as they plan ophelia’s actions? They are evil and know it
What major philosophical points dominate hamlets soliloquy in act III Scene 1? Suicide, Church, law, life after death, Good and evil
Why is hamlet so brutal to Ophelia? He knows that she is a spy and talks to her father about him (& his view of his mother clouds his view of all women)-to keep up his madness act
Is Ophelia guilty of any of the “womanly” sins of which Hamlet accuses her of? Nope
What is the purpose of Ophelia’s remembrance of the former Hamlet? to show how much he has changed
How do Polonious and Claudious view hamlets meeting with Ophelia? Polonious believes that it might not be madness from love but still supspects so. Claudius knows it is not from his madness
What incident occurs in the scene with the players? .Hamlet instructs how to act and tells them not to overdue it with the acting and let the words speak
How does hamlet act before the play begins? He insults Polonious’ acting ability and is very rude to ophelia
What is the purpose of the scene with horatio in act 3? So Hamlet has someone to explain his plans to (for the audiences benefit)
What is Hamlet hoping to accomplish in the speech of the player queen to the player king? He wants his mom to admit how sinfull and disloyal she is
How does the perfromance temporarily shift the circumstances? king temporarily cannot contain his guilt (Hamlet has the upper hand)
What stress is laid on Hamlet’s confrontation with Gertrude? He is going to be sent to England
What extended simile does Hamlet employ with Rosencrantz and Guildenstern? He is comparing them to recorders (instruments)
What is the irony of hamlets concluding remarks in Act III Scene 2? He doesn’t actually take any action
What action does claudius take against hamlet after the play? He is going to send him to England
What is the effect of claudius’ soliloquy? He formally admits he killed his brother and feels bad but is not willing to give up what he has
What is the irony of Hamlet’s decision while Claudius is at prayer? Claudius was only fake praying
What facts emerge from Hamlets talk with his mother in scene 4? She didn’t know claudius was a murderer
What is the importance of polonius death? Hamlet is seen as a murderer and sequence of events is set in motion
What explanation does Gerturde offer for polonius murder? Madness
In what mood does Hamlet speak with Rosencrantz and Guildenstern? humorously mad
What is Claudius attitude in scene 3? determined (to find a solution to his problems)
How does Fortinbras compare with Hamlet? He is a man of action and Hamlet is not
What new insight does Ophelias grief evoke? She loved her dad even though he was a bit goofy
How is Ophelia’s madness portrayed? Through song, the true and pretended madness
What does Laertes anger show? He is a man of action
What is the function of act IV scene 6 with horatio? To give info on what has happened to Hamlet
What final plans are arranged in act IV scene 6? To poison Hamlet with a sword or drink
What is the effect of the Clowns conversation? Comic releif, juxtaposional comparison of actually clowns-gravediggers make light of the situation
How is Hamlet changed? He now follows “it is what it is”
What new philosophy motivates Hamlet? he is not weighed down and lives for the moment. Tries to make the best of the situation because if you take care of today tomorrow will take care of itself

You Might Also Like