How did King Lear die?

Expert Answers info

David Morrison eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2017

write9,548 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Law and Politics

By the time Lear departs from this mortal coil, he's pretty much given up the ghost. Long before his physical death, his spirit was gradually worn down due to the series of tragic events set in train by his foolish decision to divide his kingdom among his daughters. It was always just a matter of time before Lear finally lost the will to live; the only question was when. The tragic death of Cordelia, the only one of his daughters who really loved him, has pushed him over the edge. The specific manner of Lear's death is not given to us, but it seems fair to assume that he's so overcome with grief at the loss of Cordelia that his aging body has completely shut down.

Further Reading:

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

D. Reynolds eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2016

write9,493 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences

Lear dies as he contemplates the body of Cordelia, who has just been brought into the room. He says:

Do you see this? Look on her. Look, her lips.
Look there, look there. O, O, O, O.

He doesn't want to accept that Cordelia is dead. In one version of the play, he dies thinking she is still alive; in another, he recognizes that she...

(The entire section contains 3 answers and 583 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now


check Approved by eNotes Editorial

Ashley Kannan eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2009

write16,848 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences

check Approved by eNotes Editorial