The Wisdom of King Lear's Fool in Shakespeare's King Lear Essay

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The Wisdom of King Lear's Fool in Shakespeare's King Lear

King Lear's fool is undoubtedly one of the wisest characters in the play. He is not only able to accurately analyze a situation which many other characters are blind to, but he is also able to foreshadow the actions of many characters and many other incidents to come. The main instruction the fool gives to the king is to beware of doing things that are unnatural, such as giving his inheritance, (splitting his kingdom among his daughters) to his daughters before he his dead. By doing this unnaturally, Lear must face many adverse consequences, such as losing his identity, self-worth, and respect from his daughters. Many connections between the fool and Cordelia, Kent
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-More clearly, the Fool is warning Lear that giving up his Kingdom (a necessity for Lear) before his time was unwise.

2. "Then 'tis like the breath of an unfee'd lawyer; you gave me nothing for't. Can you make no use of nothing, nuncle?" (I, IV, 127.)
-The Fool's question to Lear "Can you make no use of nothing…" is not really a question concerning what Lear has given the Fool, but a direct question of Lear's life. He had given away all he had to his daughters, which meant he literally had nothing. What the fool meant is that having nothing, he (Lear) cannot expect to make anything of it.
-The Fool is pointing out to Lear the obvious foolishness in giving away all he had to his two undeserving daughters.
-Ironically, Lear truly is the fool in this story, and even more ironically the Fool is one of the wisest characters.

3. "That lord that counseled thee
To give away thy land,
Come place him here by me;
Do thou for him stand.
The sweet and bitter fool
Will presently appear:
The one in motley here,
The other found out there."
(I, IV, 138.)
-The Fool is showing the error in Lear's way. He hinting that whoever put such a stupid idea in Lear's head should be punished according to Lear's future suffering.
-Also, it is possible the Fool suspects that whoever counseled Lear to make the decision to split up his kingdom among his daughters was in fact an adversary (possibly Oswald) of either Goneril or
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