Hamlet: Act III questions

Hamlet: Act III questions
1. In what line does Claudius allude to his crime (regicide) for the first time? What does
his deed have to do with cosmetics?
2. Name three references to beauty and/or cosmetics in scene i. Why does this motif
dominate this particular scene?
3. Hamletʼs famous “To be or not to be” speech has traditionally been interpreted as a
contemplation of suicide; however, think about what would happen to Hamlet if he took
revenge “as swift as thoughts” on the king and slew him. Wouldnʼt that be a suicidal
act? Wouldnʼt Hamlet be arrested and executed for regicide (ironic), losing any chance
of securig the throne for himself? “These things must be done delicately,” as the
Wicked Witch of the West said. Examine the soliloquy from both perspectives: Hamlet
is suicidal or Hamlet is frustrated by his limited options in the revenge department.
Which is more likely the motivation for the soliloquy and why?
4. Why is Hamlet so cruel to Ophelia both in scene i and in scene ii (i.e., at the play).?
5. Whatʼs interesting &/or ironic about Hamletʼs apparent love for the theatre and his
admiration for the players?
6. Hamlet is preying on Claudius while he is praying in scene iii. :) Why does Claudius
realize itʼs not enough to be sorry he killed his brother? What greater sin does Hamlet
commit when he decides not to kill his uncle at that moment (think: blasphemy)?
7. List five things that you can conclude about Hamletʼs personality/character based on
the exchange between his mother and himself in scene iv. (Donʼt forget to cite the
lines on which your conclusions are based.)