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TOPIC: Another question: Hamlet and Gertrude scene

Another question: Hamlet and Gertrude scene 6 years 5 months ago #1762

Please forgive me for bringing up another question related to the regained site. I have been using it mainly to see the side by side modern translation since the school only provided me with the New Folger's edition.

How does Hamlet know about the letters to England? In Act I Scene iv, Hamlet mentions them to Gertrude at the end of the scene (line 225-228 in our edition). The only other mentioning of them is the previous scene when Claudius tells R and G to take Hamlet to England. It seems plausible that Hamlet was hiding and heard the conversation.

However, it brings up another problem. That would mean Hamlet knew Polonius would be hiding in the drapes. So why stab him if he knew it was Polonius? The text doesn't support the idea that Hamlet thought it was Polonius, but thought it was Claudius.

You have been most helpful and I hope to continue more discussion as I work through this play with my seniors.
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Another question: Hamlet and Gertrude scene 6 years 5 months ago #1763

When a king sends some envoy to a neighboring king, there are bound to be letters. That's not hard to figure out. Hamlet would quite simply have known there would be letters, and when he had the chance, he looked for them and changed them. He doesn't need to have overheard them talking about the letters.

And no, Hamlet did not know it was Polonius behind the drapes. He hoped it was the king. Everything about his behavior suggests so.

BTW, for a nice resource regarding modern translation, you might try the No Fear Shakespeare edition: http://www.amazon.com/Hamlet-No-Fear-Sh ... 213&sr=8-1
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Another question: Hamlet and Gertrude scene 6 years 5 months ago #1765

Thanks. I have used the No Fear version but try to figure things out on my own when possible. Nothing like self discovery.
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