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Topics: Hamlet, William Shakespeare, Characters in Hamlet Pages: 2 (569 words) Published: December 17, 2013

Comparison Essay
King Lear vs. Hamlet
The concept of good vs. evil revolves around morality. In William Shakespeare’s plays, King Lear and Hamlet, the presence of good and evil has many similarities and is very comparable. The reason in which these two plays are so relatable is because they are both tragedies. Both King Lear and Hamlet have an ongoing feud within the family. Claudius in Hamlet and the sisters Goneril and Regan in King Lear have the attributes of evil, Horatio in Hamlet and Cordelia in King Lear prove the qualities of good, and Hamlet and King Lear themselves being the main protagonists, have a continuous battle with good vs. evil, both mentally and physically. These characters, when compared, are all very relatable. Claudius and the sisters Goneril and Regan are nearly the same when examined. Claudius is the plays antagonist and main villain. He is the brother to King Hamlet, second husband to Gertrude, and uncle to Prince Hamlet. Claudius obtained the throne by murdering his own brother purely out of greed and ambition. On top of murdering him, he also married the late king’s wife, Gertrude. Claudius’ treachery is driven by his sexual desire for Gertrude and lust for power. While the other men in Hamlet are occupied with the ideas of justice and revenge, Claudius’ mind is overwhelmed with the task of maintaining his rule. Throughout the play he kills who he needs too in order to hold the throne, for he only thinks about his own wellbeing. Claudius is a true sinner for he knows he has brought a curse to himself by murdering his own brother. “O, my offence is rank it smells to heaven; It hath the primal eldest curse upon’t, A brother’s murder.”-Claudius (3.3.39) He’s aware of his villainy, but instead of ending the circle of madness he’s created, his hunger for power clouds his judgment. Claudius causes is own undoing. Goneril and Regan have a similar evil atmosphere in King Lear. The two daughters are portrayed as villains from the start of...
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