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Act IV Hamlet Questions

Scene 1

1. Claudius finds about Polonius’ death from Gertrude


2. The King is worried about the public opinion of such a murder and he turns to his “wisest
friends” to find Hamlet and think of a way to placate the court
3. Hamlet disposes of Polonius’ body

Scene 2

1. Hamlet tells them “the body is with the king but the king is not with the body”
2. Hamlet agrees to go with Rosencrantz and Guidenstern to see Claudius

Scene 3

1. Claudius tells his courtiers that Hamlet must not be confined because he must be sent
to England where Hamlet will be executed.

2. Hamlet tells the King that he is being eaten by worms and that they would never find
Polonius, and acts sly and clever

3. Claudius wants the English ruler to put Prince Hamlet to the death but Rosencrantz and
Guildenstern do not know this, they are just bringing the letter unknowingly.

Scene 4

1. Fortinbras sends his captain to greet Claudius to ask him if Fortinbras and his army can
travel through the country

2. Hamlet learns that the Norwegian soldiers go to fight the Poles

3. The contrast between them is that Fortinbras fights the Poles to control a small plot of
land, violently fighting for little gain while Hamlet can gain so much by taking revenge
on Claudius yet does not act on it.

Scene 5

1. Gertrude says she wont see Ophelia because she doesn’t wish to console her grief
however she quickly changes her mind because Horatio convinces her to pity her.

2. Claudius’ theory about why Ophelia is acting so oddly is that she is grieving for her
father’s death.

3. Laertes returns from France after hearing about Polonius’ death, he comes for revenge.
4. Claudius has to placate Laertes because he has brought a large mob of commonors
seeking revenge.

5. Claudius calms Laertes down by convincing him that by listening to his story all his
questions will be answered and by telling him justice will come for Polonius’ killer.