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Top Ten Lies in Hamlet

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Ryan Guitard

on 28 April 2011

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Transcript of Top Ten Lies in Hamlet

( ) Top Ten Lies in Hamlet Lie 1 The biggest lie in Hamlet is Claudius'
killing of Hamlet Sr. He says that it was a serpent so he can have the crown and the queen but not pay any concequences. This is an example of a facade. This lie becomes apparent when Hamlet is talking to the ghost of Hamlet Sr. (his father). and the ghost says: " 'Tis given out that, sleeping in mine orchard/ A serpent stung me; so the whole ear of Denmark/ is by a forged process of death/ Rankly abused: but know, thou noble youth/ The serpent that did sting thy father's life/ Now wears his crown." (Shakespeare I, III, 35-40). This quotation shows that everyone has been hypnotised by the illusion of him being mournful of the kings death when really he was the one who poisoned and killed him. Lie 4 One lie that had a big impact on the story was Hamlet's lie about his mental state. Throughout the book Hamlet puts up this facade or mask to hide his true intentions of killing Claudius; this effectively convinces people that his scheming and acting out of character is purely because of him being mad. This show hamlet puts on truly convinces Ophelia and Polonius as they talk after Hamlet makes a ghostly, mad appearance they discuss why it may be and Ophelia explains that Hamlet looked, "As if he had been loosed out of hell/ To speak of horrors, he comes before me." Polonius draws from this the exact conclusion that Hamlet wanted, "Mad for thy love!" He exclaims (Shakespeare II, I, 84-87). At this point Hamlet's facade has been planted and Polonius does the work for him by immediately going to the king to tell him that hamlet is "Mad for thy love!" Lie 3 Another Lie that impacted the story was when Claudius sends Hamlet away. When he explains his reasoning to Gertrude he tells her that they, "will ship him hence: and this vile deed/ We must, with all our majesty and skill/ Both countenance and excuse." (IV. i. 30-33). This is an example of omission which is telling the entire story but leaving out one or two parts which change the nature of the story completely. Claudius omits the fact that he is sending Hamlet to England because he thinks Hamlet plans to kill him and intends to beat him to it by sending him to England to be executed. The story he tells Gertrude implies that he is trying to help hamlet and that he is looking out for his well being. Claudius' true intentions were hidden because he didnt tell her the negative parts of the story so he got off scott-free. A small Omission in something can make a big difference! Shake Spear Shakespeare Lie 6 The hardest type of lie to dispute is the out-and-out lie because there isnt even the slightest bit of truth to figure out the real story with. In the play, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are directed by the king to spy on Hamlet to see why he has been acting strangely as of late. Rosencrantz and Guildenstern may not have been the smartest characters but when Hamlet asked them, "What make you to Elsinore?/", they knew enough to say, "To visit you, my lord; no other occasion." (II.ii.270-271). This was an out and out lie because they didnt come to visit him but instead to do Claudius' bidding. The reason they lied in this way was so Hamlet had no idea of what their true intentions were, and what better way then to give him no truth in their response. Unfortunately for Rosencrantz and Guildenstern arent very good liars so Hamlet sees right through their not so clever ploy. LIES Truth Lie 5 Ophelia is more or less Polonius' puppet throughout the play so it is hard to blame her for this lie although she did indeed lie to Hamlet by keeping her intentions away from him. Ophelia is asked to "bump into" Hamlet and try and figure out why he has been acting mad lately. During this accidental meeting Polonious (Ophelia's Father) and Claudius (Hamlet's father) are spying on them to see how Hamlet reacts to Ophelia's presence. Hamlet sees through this during their convorsation and asks her "Where's your father?/ At Home, my lord." (III.i.131-133). This lie is an example of groupthink. Groupthink is a combination of many types of lies by an authority (Claudius and Polonius) and because this group is an authority Ophelia beleived that it was for Hamlet's sake and that he was mad so she did what they said and lied to him. Lie 2 One other lie which had a fairly large effect on the play is when Osric lies to Hamlet about a fight proposal; this lie is an example of deflection. The reason this is a lie is because Osric brings up that "The king, sir, hath waged with him six Barbary/ horses: against which he has imponed, as I take it, six French rapiers and poniards, with their assigns,/ as girdle, hanger, and so: three of the carriages, in faith,/ are very dear to fancy, very responsive to the hilts,/ most delicate carriages, and of very liberal conceit." (V.ii.143-148) and "The king, sir, hath laid, that in a dozen passes between/ you and him, he shall not exceed you three hits" (V.ii.160-161). These two intimate embelishments of the truth are discussed but what Osric leaves out is that Laertes' sword will be unbated and poisoned. This is the more important information but because Osric makes the rest of the duel seem so rewarding the aspect of the duel being fair is overlooked. Osric Hamlet Rewards for winning Hamlet's advantage in hits Truth Lie 7 A lie that is evident throughout the novel is Gertrude's constant lying to herself about her husband. She convinces herself that it is ok to marry Claudius within a month of her husbands death and constantly convinces herself that he is looking out for the family with his actions but worse of all she fools herself into beleiving she has not sinned. This lie to herself is known as a delusion, a delusion is when a person dissmisses things that put them in the wrong and focus on excuses which they see as facts. Gertrude is under this delusion until Act 3 Scene 4 when Hamlet reveals that she is married to the murderer of her husband and that she is heartless in her actions as well. Lie 8 Another lie that was important was when Gertrude decides to pretend she doesnt know that Hamlet isn't mad after her and Hamlet talk. When Gertrude and Hamlet talk they figure out that it would be best for Gertrude to pretend that Hamlet was still mad and that she still was on Claudius' side and when he came back from England he would deal with him. After Hamlet kills Polonius, Gertrude puts up a facade as if she had never had the convorsation and says he is: "Mad as the sea and wind, when both contend/ Which is the mightier: in his lawless fit,/ Behind the arras hearing something stir,/ He whips his rapier out, and cries, 'A rat! a rat!'/ And in this brainish apprehension kills/ The unseen good old man." (IV.i.7-12). This facade that Gertrude puts up makes Claudius completely unaware that Gertrude had spoken to Hamlet about what Claudius was up to. Lie 9 Laertes also tells a lie in the book which throws everyone off the trail of Hamlets scheme to kill Claudius. Laertes was quite worried his sister was going to be "played" by Hamlet because he is such a popular desired person, because of this he tells Ophelia a white lie. He tells Ophelia that: "For Hamlet, and the trifling of his favour,/ Hold it in a fashion, and a toy in blood,/ A violet in the youth of primy nature" (I.iii.5-7). In this quotation Laertes is telling Ophelia that she is a passing fancy and wont be around for long before he has moved on to another girl. This is a white lie because although Laertes is wrong about what he is saying he is only saying so because he is looking out for what is best for Ophelia and truly does beleive Hamlet will break her heart. Lie 10 One lie that had an impact on the play was when Fortinbras asked the king if he could bring his army through Claudius' land on the way to an invasion. Claudius agrees unaware that the invasion that Fortinbras is going to is the invasion of Elsinore. This lie is an example of an out-and-out lie because fortinbras makes his offer sound so peaceful and offers a sum of money for Claudius' troubles but in reality he was just concealing his true plan to invade. This plan turns out to be unneccasary because by the time fortinbras gets the army to invade Claudius and Hamlet are both dead and he inherintly gets the land By: Ryan
Guitard
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