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King Lear Essay

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King Lear Essay Shakespeare wrote many great tragedies, and one by far may have bee "King Lear". A King worried about his old age decides to divide his kingdom amongst his three daughters to whom love him most. By doing this all that Lear wants is to keep his title of king and to be able to live with his daughters. Another tragic hero of this play is the Earl of Gloucester. The Earl has two sons one named Edgar and the other son an illegitimate bastard named Edmund. this play is not only seen as a tragedy in itself, but also a play that includes two tragic heroes and four villains. It is felt that a tragic hero must not be all good or all bad, but just by misfortune he is deprived of something very valuable to him by error of judgment. We must acknowledge ourselves with the tragic hero and that what happened to him may happen to us. Lear is foolish and arrogant, it is true, but later he is also humble and compassionate. ...read more.


This is said by the fool because the fool believs that Lear has grown old and with his age he has gained no wisdom, for he had given all to his daughters who's love was not really for him but for their own well being. The Earl of Gloucester another one of the tragic heroes of this play also falls in a burden just as Lear did for Gloucester had trusted the love of his illegitimate son Edmond. Edmund "The Bastard" is told secretly from his father of a letter containing that French invading troops had landed on Dover and that he was going to help the king. After knowing this Edmund flees to the Duke to tell him of what a betrayal his father has been towards the Duke. Edmund the bastard he is betrays his fathers trust and rats him out to the Duke. Taken to the Duke on the account of treason Gloucester has his eyes poked out all because of the selfish act caused by his bastard son Edmund. ...read more.


A tragic hero gains insight through suffering. Neither Lear nor Gloucester realizes he has committed an error until he has suffered. Lear's suffering is so intense that it drives him mad; it is on the desolate health that he fully realizes his mistake in giving the kingdom to his two savage daughters and disowning the one daughter who loves him. It is not until Gloucester has been blinded that he learns the truth about his two sons. These two characters learn to endure their suffering. When Gloucester's attempt to commit suicide fails, he decides to bear his affliction until the end. In his madness Lear learns to endure his agony. Later, when he knows he is to be imprisoned, he maintains this misfortune with a passive calmness. He has grown piritually through painfully achieved self-knowledge and through Cordelia's love. Tragedy in King Lear is not only seen through itself but, also through the character of the King and other characters. The Play of King Lear is a great tragic play that many tragedies try to compare to but to me this play of tragedy is the best one yet. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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