Hamlet Questions and Answers
by William Shakespeare

Hamlet book cover
Start Your Free Trial

Why does Claudius suspect Hamlet "puts on his confusion" in Act III of "Hamlet"?

Expert Answers info

Carter Westfall eNotes educator | Certified Educator

briefcaseTeacher (K-12)

bookB.A. from University of the Western Cape, South Africa


calendarEducator since 2014

write1,246 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences

Claudius's question is directed at Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, two of Hamlet's childhood friends, whom he has instructed to monitor the prince's behavior. He seeks a report from the two about what they have heard from, and perceived of, the young prince.

Hamlet has been acting quite strangely. After his father's untimely passing, the prince has withdrawn himself and become quite moody. He has been behaving in an irrational manner and has consistently spoken in ambiguous terms. Furthermore, he seems to be overwhelmed with grief, but the king suspects there is more to his conduct than just sorrow for his father's death. Claudius, however, cannot quite put his finger on what is really eating Hamlet.

The king does suspect, though, that a reason for Hamlet's odd behavior might be his obsession with Ophelia, Polonius 's beautiful daughter. He has learned from his adviser that Hamlet has constantly been in conversation with her and has stated his affection. He has written her letters and given her...

(The entire section contains 2 answers and 596 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now







check Approved by eNotes Editorial

ms-mcgregor eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2006

write1,918 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Science






























check Approved by eNotes Editorial