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CLAUDIUS

Claudius is the brother of old Hamlet,the king of Denmark,so he is also Hamlet’s uncle. After the death of old Hamlet, he became king by marrying Gertrude,old Hamlet’s wife.This remarriage is considered incestuous by all the people of Denmark and especially by young Hamlet.This remarriage has got only a purpose:history has a long tradition of people who have become an important leader by marrying a person of great power.Claudius is the murderer of his brother and he is nominated by him a <<serpent>>(act I ,scene V, v 39).The snake is used to allude to a person that is nothing (as the snake lives in the dust) but this person would do everything for himself to become a man with a lot of power.Claudius uses Gertrude to impose orders to his son Hamlet, actually Hamlet doesn’t consider Claudius. Claudius hides all his actions concerning the throne of Denmark from Gertrude, he discusses about these situations only with Polonius, his reliable adviser.Claudius is scared to death by Hamlet. He suspects that the young prince knows everything about the death of old Hamlet, so he treats him with respect pretending not to hear the offences Hamlet gives him. As Polonius asks someone to spy on his son Laertes, Claudius is using people to try to provide him with information about young Hamlet.Hamlet knows that, so he calls Claudius << a knavish piece of work>>(act III,scene II,vv 239-240) alluding to the play The Mousetrap.

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