In William Shakespeare
's play Hamlet
's mother and Queen of Denmark
. Her relationship with Hamlet is somewhat turbulent, since he resents her for marrying her husband's brother Claudius
after he murdered the King (young Hamlet's father, King Hamlet
). Gertrude reveals no guilt in her marriage with Claudius after the recent murder of her husband, and Hamlet begins to show signs of jealousy towards Claudius. According to Hamlet, she scarcely mourned her husband's death before marrying Claudius.
Role in the play
Gertrude is first seen in Act 1 Scene 2 as she tries to cheer Hamlet over the loss of his father, begging him to stay at home rather than going back to school in Wittenberg
. Her worry over him continues into the second act, as she sides with King Claudius
in sending Rosencrantz and Guildenstern
to raise the spirits of her son. Also, rather than ascribing Hamlet's sudden madness to Ophelia
's rejection (as thought by Polonius
), she believes the cause to be his father, King Hamlet
's death and her quick, subsequent marriage to Claudius: "I doubt it is no other but the main; His father's death and our o'erhasty marriage."Hamlet
II:2 In Act three, she eagerly listens to the report of Rosencrantz and Guildenstern on their attempt to cheer him, and supports the King and Polonius' plan to watch Hamlet from a hidden vantage point as he speaks with Ophelia, with the hope that her presence will heal him.
In the next act,... Read More