Hamlet Quotes Flashcard Example #49553

“The time is out of joint. O cursed spite, that I was born to set it right!”
Hamlet, now, has the burden of avenging his father’s death and is sad about the whole task ahead. The quote illustrates Hamlet’s view of the enormity of the task and foreshadows his wavering and hesitation.


“Alas, poor Yorick, I knew him well.”
Quote is about the fragility of life. Hamlet concludes that all men, happy or sad, comic or tragic, die.

Speaker: Hamlet
To: Horatio

“Frailty, thy name is woman!”
Weakness of women.
Hamlet is angry that his mother, Gertrude, has married his uncle Claudius within a month of his father’s death. The speech generalizes the attribution of weakness of character from one particular woman to womankind.

Speaker: Hamlet

“O villain, villain, smiling, damned villain!”
Hamlet is enraged when he learns a hideous and painful truth from the Ghost of his recently deceased father: the late king did not die a natural death but was murdered by his own brother, the new King Claudius. This foul deed enabled Claudius to take both the crown and Gertrude, the late king’s wife, Hamlet’s mother, as his Queen. Hamlet has been depressed the death of his father, but to learn that he was actually murdered by his own brother is devastating. This is the turning point for Hamlet, marking the beginning of his madness, whether it be entirely real or at least partly feigned. He lives for one thing, and that is revenge.
“The lady doth protest too much.”
Gertrude is saying that the Player Queen’s vows and promises are too much, too unbelievable. Gertrude may be implying that such vows as these are typical of a silly first love, and that such silliness is not part of her second marriage

Speaker: Queen Gertrude
To: Hamlet

How now? A rat? Dead, for a ducat, dead!”
Hamlet slays Polonius, whom he mistakes for the King hiding behind the arras in Gertrude’s room. Earlier, the King, realizing that Hamlet has deduced that it was he who killed his father, sent Polonius to Gertrude’s chamber. Hamlet comes storming down the hall screaming “mother, mother, mother!” Polonius hides behind the wall hanging, intending to spy on the conversation and report back to the King. The queen is terrified that Hamlet intends to murder her, however, and so cries out for help. Foolishly, Polonius also cries for help, and Hamlet, thinking the King has followed him into the chamber, thrusts his sword into the drapery and kills Polonius. In the aftermath of this mistaken murder, Hamlet seems strangely untouched by his own deed, which argues for the authenticity of his madness.

Speaker: Hamlet

“That he’s mad, ’tis true ’tis pity.”
Speaking about Hamlet

Speaker: Polonius
To: Queen & King

“The play’s the thing”
Prince Hamlet, however, has something specific in mind. To elicit visible proof of what a rather visible ghost has told him—that his uncle, King Claudius, murdered his father, the former king—the prince turns playwright. His task: to sneak a few telling lines into a play about regicide his uncle will be watching at court, and to wait for Claudius to flinch. If Hamlet’s plan works, he’ll be convinced of both the ghost’s veracity and the king’s guilt and will (theoretically) feel better about paying his uncle back in kind.

Speaker: Hamlet

“Something is rotten in the state of Denmark”
Marcellus recognizes that all is not well with the government of Denmark when he and Horatio go to tell Hamlet they have sen this father’s ghost.

Speaker: Marcellus
To: Horatio

“Brevity is the soul of wit.”
There’s no briefer way of expressing this though than Shakespeare’s; making further explanation redundant.

Speaker: Polonius

“What a piece of work is man! How noble in reason! How infinite in faculties.”
Part of the most famous of Hamlet’s speeches in the play, the quote illustrates Hamlet’s philosophical dilemma. He proclaims the goodness and beauty of man, but his father’s death and the ill-fated events make him think about whether it is all an illusion, and whether life is a meaningless sham.

Speaker: Hamlet

“My words fly up, my thoughts remain below; Words without thoughts never to heaven go.”
They express his futility in attempting to pray for forgiveness for his brother’s murder. He is unable to relinquish everything he has gained from the murder, so he has not atoned for the act. Consequently, his prayers lacks sincerity and is merely “words”

Speaker: Claudius

“Get thee to a nunn’ry”
Hamlet lashes out at the fragile and innocent Ophelia with this phrase. Ophelia has been ordered by Polonius to stop seeing Hamlet. His anger towards all women increases. In this scene, Ophelia is subjected to his rage and apparent madness, thinking it a manifestation of unrequited love.

Speaker: Hamlet

“I must be cruel only to be kind”
Let’s the audience know that his treatment of Ophelia, Polonius, Rosencrantz and Guildernstern fits into his plan for revenge of his father’s murder. In order to be kind to those who have been tainted by Claudius, Hamlet must be cruel and mad.

Speaker: Hamlet
To: Gertrude

“Neither a borrower nor a lender be.”
Father giving advice to his son.

Speaker: Polonius
To: Laertes

“Give me that man, That is not not passion’s slave, and I will wear him in my heart’ s core, ay, in my heart of heart.”
the conflict between man’s passion and his reason, especially in Hamlet, who vacillates between action and restraint.

Speaker: Hamlet

“a hit–a very palpable hit. One. No. Judgement.”
“palpable” means “sensitive to touch”
when hamlet has been hit by the poisoned tip of Laertes’ sword, he will feel it physically.

Speaker: Osric

“the Serpent that did sting thy father’s life Now wears his crown”
The ghost of Hamlet’s father speaks these lines in explaining to Hamlet that Claudius murdered him, and that Hamlet must avenge his father’s death. These lines set the stage for the basic plot int he play.
Speaker: Ghost
“O, from this time forth, My thoughts be bloody, or be nothing worth!”
Shocked and disappointed by his inability to act, Hamlet firmly resolves at the close of this scene to take action. In this soliloquy, he compares his inaction with Prince Fortinbras and his army, who are bravely fighting over a plot of land; soldiers fight and die for causes far less compelling that Hamlet’s

Speaker: Hamlet

“There’s a special providence in the fall of a sparrow.”
Hamlet refuses to delay, saying that whatever happens is God’s will, including the fall of sparrow. Hamlet appears at peace, ready to accept his fate.

Speaker: Hamlet

“To be or not to be.”
Debating with himself whether he should go through with the plan to avenge his father’s death to it ultimate conclusion, using all his capabilities, or whether he just give up and kill himself.

Speaker: Hamlet

“To sleep, perchance to dream, ah, there’s the rub.”
Speaker: Hamlet
“Though this be madness, yet there is method in’t”
Speaks about Hamlet. Hamlet feigning insanity allows him to say and do things not otherwise acceptable. everyone loos for reasons for his madness. Polonius notices that there is some order and rationality at heart of Hamlet’s madness, a “method” that will lead to revenge.

Speaker: Polonius

“method in the madness”
Polonius can see that Hamlet’s responses could not be ravings of a madman but what seem to be carefully crafted responses.

Speaker: Polonius

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *