The kingdom, the throne, and a wife like Gertrude. The only option before Gertrude is to apportion her love between Hamlet and Claudius and live in a house divided and prevent if possible, the house being destroyed. She now adores and loves her husband and son at their respective levels. She has no other option, except to walk on the razor’s edge and hope for the situation to improve. Similar is the hope of Gertrude. She is perhaps hoping that with the passage of time, Hamlet will mellow down, and his attitude towards his uncle may soften.
In an effort to get at the truth, Hamlet speaks very rudely to his mother, but even in that situation of utmost provocation, Gertrude maintains her calm. Hamlet’s famous condemnation about women indicates what venomous feelings he has for women in general. “Frailty, thy name is the woman!” (1.2) Hamlet reprimands his mother thus:
“Such an act
That blurs the grace and blush of modesty,
Calls virtue hypocrite, takes off the rose
From the fair forehead of innocent love,
And sets a blister there, makes marriage vows
As false as dicers' oaths; O, such a deed,
As from the body of contraction plucks
The very soul and sweet religion makes
A rhapsody of words.”(3.4)
. Gertrudes Decision in Marrying Claudius.
Gravlee, Cynthia. Review (Untitled). South Atlantic Review, Vol.46, No.2 (May, 1981), pp.119-122 Published by: South Atlantic Modern Language Association
Shakespeare, William: Hamlet
Werstine, Paul.The Texual Mystery of Hamlet. Shakespeare Quarterly, Vol.39, No.1 (Spring, 1988) pp. 1-26. Published by: Folyer Shakespeare Library, in association with George Washington University
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