The role of ophelia in william shakespeares hamlet

The death of Ophelia's father leaves her mentally unstable and in a state of madness that eventually leads to her own death.

role of ophelia in hamlet

She exits after bidding everyone a "good night". Through Ophelia we witness Hamlet's evolution, or de-evolution into a man convinced that all women are whores; that the women who seem most pure are inside black with corruption and sexual desire.

There are only two female characters in the play Hamlet - Gertrude, Hamlet's mother and Ophelia, daughter of Polonius. It emphasizes the poisoned body politic and its affects on the innocent.

Like Gertrude, young Ophelia is childlike and naive.

importance of gertrude in hamlet

In Ophelia's next appearance, [4] she tells Polonius that Hamlet rushed into her room with his clothing askew and a "hellish" expression on his face; he only stared at her, nodding three times without speaking to her. As commented upon by critic A.

She has chosen one, and her choice seals her fate.

ophelia quotes

His personality is highly complex, but through Ophelia the audience are perhaps better equipped to begin understanding it. She is not involved with matters of state; she spends her days engaged in needlepoint and flower gathering.

Does hamlet love ophelia

The operatic version simplifies the plot to focus the drama on Hamlet's predicament and its effects on Ophelia "The greatest triumph was reserved for Susan Mountfort, a former actress at Lincoln's Inn Fields who had gone mad after her lover's betrayal. It is through her that the audience learn the depth of his sorrow, confusion, the extent of his sense of betrayal by Gertrude and his resulting distrust of women, and can better understand his tragic flaw. Name[ edit ] Unlike virtually all Hamlet characters, Ophelia's name is not Danish. Even though her love for Hamlet is strong, she obeys her father when he tells her not to see Hamlet again or accept any letters that Hamlet writes. Polonius immediately decides to go to Claudius , the new King of Denmark and also Hamlet's uncle and stepfather, about the situation. Mary Catherine Bolton later Lady Thurlow — as Ophelia in , opposite John Philip Kemble 's Hamlet In productions of Hamlet[ edit ] While it is known that Richard Burbage played Hamlet in Shakespeare's time, there is no evidence of who played Ophelia; since there were no professional actresses on the public stage in Elizabethan England , we may assume that she was played by a boy. Her frailty and innocence work against her as she cannot cope with the unfolding of one traumatic event after another. Bradley, Shakespearean Tragedy She has no way to reconcile the contradictory selves her men demand that she be and still retain an equilibrium. As commented upon by critic A. She is very young, and has lost her mother, possibly at birth. Hamlet realises he is being spied upon. I think that even in his cruel treatment of Ophelia, she makes him a more sympathetic character. Ophelia reveals much about Polonius, whom it is important that the audience have an understanding of.

She returns the love shown to her by Polonius and Laertes tenfold, and couples it with complete and unwavering loyalty.

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The Role of Ophelia in William Shakespeare's Hamlet Essay