An Analysis of Queen Gertrudes Position in King Hamlets Death




Usually in a playwright, one of the author\'s objectives is to keep the viewer or reader confused or disconcerted about certain events in the plot. Certain characters in a play or story that have concocted covert schemes to perhaps murder or frame somebody, may have confusing effects on the viewer. Depending on the way the plan was developed in the plot the viewer may have to stop and ask themselves; who was involved; who was killed or framed; what events actually transpired; and what events happened after the murder. The viewer/reader is always trying to understand the events that have just recently taken place, or events that will take place in the play. Being careful not to miss anything the viewer/reader may overlook a fact that has slipped by them and unknowingly they relegate the major facts that will help them solve the mystery below those that are irrelevant to the topic. Sometimes in cases like this, the characters that are not guilty of the crime are mistaken for those who actually committed the crime, and vice versa. In some cases, a possible character is suspected of the crime and nothing more. In William Shakespeare\'s Hamlet King Hamlet is murdered and the perpetrator is clearly defined, whereas one is not. Queen Gertrude, Hamlet\'s wife is in question of being a plotter.
It is definite that King Hamlet\'s death was a premeditated plot, however it is not certain whether or not Queen Gertrude is an accomplice or not. The assumption that Gertrude does not know about her husband\'s murder can be heavily supported by factual details and just as well, the other side of the fence can be supported too. Although Gertrude does not actually say in words that she knew about Hamlet\'s murder, several events that take place will lead the reader/viewer to believe that the Queen is just as guilty as Claudius (Hamlet\'s murderer).
King Hamlet\'s death was a prearranged plot against Hamlet by Hamlet\'s own brother Claudius. Claudius contrives a way to kill Hamlet while he is in torpor in his own garden. Claudius would then clandestinely pour poison in the King\'s ear, killing him instantly. Claudius now aggrandizing his greatness rises to power as the new king. The people of Denmark oblivious to the treason of the estate now blindly follow the new king, Claudius. However one night in Denmark, the ghost of Hamlet appears to talk to his son, prince Hamlet to warn him of the treason that is at hand. However, in the ghost\'s description of his murder was there no mention that the Queen had any part of it. The ghost had only instructed that Hamlet avenges his father\'s murder by killing Claudius, and he leaves Gertrude to heaven. Now furious and aware of what he is dealing with, Hamlet is determined to get revenge for his father.
Queen Gertrude does not claim to be unaware of the murder she is just assumed to be unaware to the murder. The reader/viewer\'s first inclination the she is not a part of the plot is when the ghost appears at night and speaks to Hamlet. The apparition discusses with Hamlet the distress he is in and how his own brother murdered him. "Revenge his foul and most unnatural murder…but howsomever thou pursues this act, taint not thy mind, nor let thy soul contrive against they mother aught. Leave her to heaven…" (I.v.84-85). But in this quote does the ghost not talk about revenge on the wife, Gertrude. In addition, when recalling the fact that Gertrude remarried after two months of her husband\'s death, she is thought to be an accomplice. However, even Hamlet himself says "as if an increase of appetite had grown… frailty, thy name is woman" (I.ii.145-146). In this soliloquy, Hamlet is referring to his mother\'s sex life. As if her appetite for sex had grown and that women need men to survive. Moreover, this is the reason that Gertrude remarried so quickly, not that she plotted against her husband so she could marry another. Another point is that during Hamlet\'s time of madness (to determine the truth of the ghost) Claudius and Polonius plot against Hamlet. First, to eavesdrop on his conversations and then to rid of Hamlet