When Laertes is informed about his father's death, he's living in France. He returns to Denmark seeking revenge on whoever killed his father.
Laertes breaks into Elsinore Castle with armed men and forces his way into the King and Queen's chambers. He confronts Claudius, sword in hand, and demands to know what happened to his father. Claudius attempts to diffuse the situation with a calm, non-confrontational demeanor, but Laertes demands an answer to his question.
LAERTES: How came he dead? I'll not be juggled with:
To hell, allegiance! Vows, to the blackest devil!
Conscience and grace, to the profoundest pit!
I dare damnation. To this point I stand,
That both the worlds, I give to negligence,
Let come what comes; only I'll be revenged
Most thoroughly for my father. (4.5.140-146)
Claudius manages to calm Laertes down for the moment, but before he can tell Laertes the circumstances of Polonius's death, Ophelia enters the scene. She sings and dances, talks nonsense, and is clearly mentally unbalanced....
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