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What is the device used in Hamlet, Act 1 Scene III, line 63?"Give thy thoughts no...

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gina66 | Student, Grade 11 | eNotes Newbie

Posted October 25, 2010 at 2:37 PM via web

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What is the device used in Hamlet, Act 1 Scene III, line 63?

"Give thy thoughts no tongue / nor way unproportional thoughts his act."

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jagtig | Salutatorian

Posted September 28, 2009 at 6:16 AM (Answer #1)

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Here's a list of literary techniques which you can be working on while I do the same. Good Luck. I can't read the play for you, but these are all represented.
Overstatement

blank verse

Parody

Pathos

personification

Plot twist

Poetic Justice

Unreliable narrator

Breaking the fourth wall

Quibble

Stream of consciousness

Overstatement

blank verse

Parody

Pathos

personification

Plot twist

Poetic Justice

Unreliable narrator

Breaking the fourth wall

Irony

Quibble

Story within a story

Word play

Literary devices taken from Wikipedia article of the same name.

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jagtig | Salutatorian

Posted September 28, 2009 at 7:42 AM (Answer #2)

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And a few more:

Just look them up in Wikipedia to see what they mean.

Dramatic visualization,
Irony,
• anacoenosis:
• commiseration:
• rhetorical question
• syncatabasis
Pathetic fallacy

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clairewait | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted October 25, 2010 at 8:20 PM (Answer #3)

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There are a couple of devises used in this line on both a small scale and on a large scale.  First, there are two figures of speech (personification and metaphor) working together.  In this speech of fatherly advice, spoken by Polonius, "Give thy thoughts no tongue nor any unproportioned thoughts his act," he is simply reminding Laertes to think before speaking and acting.  Here, "thoughts" are personified into having a "tongue" and ability to act.  The use of the word "tongue" is also a metaphor for speech.  In other words, Polonius is saying, Don't always say what you are thinking and don't be too quick to act on your thoughts.

The bigger picture however, proves this quote to also be ironic.  The very advice that Polonius gives his son just before Laertes leaves for school, is not put into practice by the old man himself.  This could very well be one argument for why Polonius meets an untimely and early death.

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jagtig | Salutatorian

Posted September 27, 2009 at 11:19 PM (Answer #5)

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verse or "blank verse" is a way in which a playwrite can bring emphasis and power to the statements of his actors. Shakespeare uses it frequently, especially where Hamlet's soliloquies (solitary speeches) are concerned.

The play-within-a-play, which is a device which is not unique to Hamlet, though some think it is, was used with great effect.

The use of the ghost to denounce Claudius and Gertrude, and urge on Hamlet to effect his "dull revenge," might be considered a "literary technique."

The tragic romance of Hamlet and Ophelia is skillfully woven into the prevailing revenge tragedy.

That may be a few.

 

 

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luannw | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Senior Educator

Posted October 25, 2010 at 8:28 PM (Answer #6)

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Since Shakespeare has Polonius giving something non-living (thoughts) the quality of a human (tongue), the literary device is personification.  Personification is the giving of human attributes to non-human things.  Polonius is telling Laertes, in these lines, to keep his thoughts to himself rather than vocally share them with others.

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jagtig | Salutatorian

Posted September 28, 2009 at 6:00 AM (Answer #7)

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Here's a list of literary techniques which you can be working on while I do the same. Good Luck.
Allegory - a symbolic representation
i.e. The blindfolded figure with scales is an allegory of justice.  
Alliteration - the repetition of the initial consonant. There should be at least two repetitions in a row.
i.e. Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers. 

Allusion – A reference to a famous person or event in life or literature.
i.e. She is as pretty as the Mona Lisa.

Analogy - the comparison of two pairs which have the same relationship.
i.e. shoe is to foot as tire is to wheel
Assonance - the repetition of similar vowel sounds in a sentence.
Climax - the turning point of the action in the plot of a play or story. The climax represents the point of greatest tension in the work.
Foreshadowing - hints of what is to come in the action of a play or a story
Hyperbole - a figure of speech involving exaggeration.   Imagery   irony,
Metaphor - A comparison in which one thing is said to be another.
i.e. The cat's eyes were jewels, gleaming in the darkness.
Metaphor Activity
Metaphor Writing Assignment
As Slippery as an Eel: An Ocean Unit Exploring Simile and Metaphor   motifs,
Onomatopoeia - the use of words to imitate the sounds they describe.
i.e. The burning wood crackled and hissed.
Onomatopoeia Help
Writing: Onomatopoeia
Oxymoron - putting two contradictory words together.
i.e. bittersweet, jumbo shrimp, and act naturally paradox
Personification - is giving human qualities to animals or objects.
i.e. The daffodils nodded their yellow heads.

Pun - A word is used which has two meanings at the same time, which results in humor.
Simile - figure of speech involving a comparison between unlike things using like, as, or as though. i.e. She floated in like a cloud.   symbols

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