For Hamlet, what are some good quotes from the play (with act, scene and line references) that resemble how other characters don't see Hamlet's real character?The thesis of my essay is based off...

For Hamlet, what are some good quotes from the play (with act, scene and line references) that resemble how other characters don't see Hamlet's real character?

The thesis of my essay is based off of a quote: "Everyone sees what you appear to be, few really know who you are. 

Urgent! My exam essay is due June 25th, 2012.

Asked on by josilyn16

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billdelaney's profile pic

William Delaney | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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In Act I, Scene 2 of Hamlet, Gertrude says

Good Hamlet, cast they nighted color off,

And let thine eye look like a friend on Denmark.

Do not for ever with thy vailed lids

Seek for thy noble father in the dust.

Thou know'st 'tis common; all that lives must die,

Passing through nature to eternity.

When Hamlet replies

Ay, madam, it is common,

She asks

If it be,

Why seems it so particular with thee?

Thereupon Hamlet replies in a long speech beginning

Seems, madam! nay it is; I know now "seems."

And you could quote his entire answer because it relates to what he seems versus what he really is.

Hamlet's own mother doesn't understand him.

Polonius thinks Hamlet is behaving strangely because he is in love with his daughter. See Act 2, Scene 2 where the old man is saying

Your noble son is mad.

Mad call I it; for to define true madness

What is't but to be nothing else but mad?

Later in Act 2, Scene 2, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, on Claudius' orders, are trying to sound Hamlet out. They think his problem is that he is too ambitious (possibly plotting against the King).

Rosencrantz says

Why then, your ambition makes it one. 'Tis too narrow for your mind.

But Hamlet contradicts him:

O God, I could be bound in a nut shell and count myself a king of infiinite space, were it not that I have bad dreams.

My line references probably wouldn't match yours.

There is also an interesting interview between Hamlet and Claudius in Act 4, Scene 3, where Claudius is totally baffled by Hamlet's words and thinks he is mad.

Sources:

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