Polonius: A Fool in Shakespeare’s Hamlet Essay examples

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Polonius: A Fool in Shakespeare’s Hamlet
Hamlet is the most popular of Shakespeare’s plays for theater audiences and readers. It has been acted live in countries throughout the world and has been translated into every language. Polonius is one of the major characters in Hamlet, his role in the play is of great interest to scholars. Parts of Hamlet present Polonius as a fool, whose love of his own voice leads to his constant babbling. Scholars have been analyzing the character of
Polonius for centuries, and his role in Hamlet will continue to be analyzed for centuries to come. Scholars believe that Shakespeare created Polonius as a fool because of his foolish dialogue throughout the play.
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Scholars believe that the advice Polonius gives to his son is simple, an when looked at in full context, is foolish and selfish. After
Laertes returns to Paris, Polonius send his servant Reynaldo to Paris to spy on Laertes and question his acquaintances. Polonius says to Reynaldo: At “closes in the consequence”-ay, marry- He closes thus: “I know the gentleman. I saw him yesterday,” or “th’ other day”
(Or then, or then, with such or such), “and as you say, There was he gaming, there
(o’ertook) in’s rouse, There falling out at tennis”, or perchance “I saw him enter such a house of sale”- Videlicet, a brothel- or so forth. See you now Your bait of falsehood take this carp of truth; And thus do we of wisdom and of reach, With windlasses and with assays of bias, By indirections find directions out. (2. 1. 61-75) 3 By spying on Laertes,
Polonius is showing the audience and the reader, that he does now trust him. After giving
Laertes a speech on how to behave, Polonius still feels that he has to spy on his son. Joan
Hartwig comments on Polonius’ plan to spy on his son: “A machiavellian schemer who takes his plotting to absurd proportions, Polonius pursues ‘indirection’ for its own sake.
His efforts to discover Laertes’ reputation in Paris assume that Laertes will not follow his earlier advice; thus, the later words become a comic reduction of his previous sermon to his son” (Hartwig 218). Another

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