How would you describe Hamlet's relationship with his mother? What instances in the play reinforce your opinion?

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alexb2 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Perhaps the best example of Hamlet's relationship with his mother during the course of the play is the exchange in Act 1, Scene 2:

Seems, madam? Nay, it is. I know not “seems”.
‘Tis not alone my inky cloak, good Mother,
Nor customary suits of solemn black,
Nor windy suspiration of forced breath,
No, nor the fruitful river in the eye,
Nor the dejected havior of the visage,
Together with all forms, moods, shapes of grief,
That can denote me truly. These indeed seem,
For they are actions that a man might play.
But I have that within which passes show;
These but the trappings and the suits of woe.

In these lines, Hamlet makes very clear the difference between himself and his mother. Hamlet does not pretend, he truly is sad about his father's death, while is mother only has the "trappings and the suits of woe".

Hamlet's main feeling is disappointment and anger towards his mother. He believes her to be fake, a liar, and to have been trapped into evil acts by Claudius.

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Hamlet

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