Rhetorical Devices In Hamlet's First Soliloquy

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Hamlet’s first soliloquy occurs in Act 1, scene ii. Before giving this monologue, Hamlet is faced with the difficult truth of his dad being murdered in cold blood. The soliloquy reveals Hamlet’s true feelings about his new “father” that his mother has married. Some thematic issues revealed in Hamlet’s soliloquy are religion and reprisal. After giving the monologue, the reader learns about Hamlet’s hatred towards Claudius. Throughout Shakespeare’s drama, “Hamlet,” he uses very sophisticated and artful diction. In Shakespeare’s first soliloquy, he is very graphic and straightforward with the meaning behind his distressed demeanor. “Oh, that this too, too sullied flesh would melt, Thaw, and resolve itself into a dew,” affirms Hamlet’s graphic, artful diction used to describe the way he feels about his mom, Gertrude, marrying his father’s brother, Claudius. The hatred of Claudius stems back earlier in Hamlet’s life, his father’s death. At the time of giving the soliloquy, Hamlet does not know that Claudius is the one who killed his father; so one can imagine his puzzlement after he finds out. The theme of hatred and resentment quickly boil…show more content…
Hamlet says, “How weary, stale, flat, and unprofitable seem to me all the uses of this world! Fie on ’t, ah fie! 'Tis an unweeded garden that grows to seed,” and he is describing his life to that of an overgrown, uncared for garden. That quote is also a way Hamlet tied imagery into his speech, calling for the reader to imagine a messy, untidy garden as Hamlet’s outlook on life. Hamlet also uses the words “incestuous sheets” as metonymy when describing the marriage of his mother and Claudius. Hamlet’s metaphor, “My father’s brother, but no more like my father than I to Hercules,” indicates that Claudius is like his brother just about as much as Hamlet is like Hercules. Hamlet’s various poetic devices provide for a more in depth description for the

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