Essay about Chaos in King Lear - as Reflec

1003 Words Oct 17th, 1999 5 Pages
A device which Shakespeare often utilized to convey the confusion and chaos within the plot of his plays, is the reflection of that confusion and chaos in the natural environment of the setting, along with supernatural anomalies and animal imageries. In King Lear, these devices are used to communicate the plot, which is summarized by Gloucester as: …This villain of mine comes under the prediction: there’s son against father. The King falls from bias of nature: there’s father against child. (Act 1, Sc.1, 115 - 118) The “bias of nature” is defined as the natural inclination of the world. Throughout the play King Lear, the unnatural inclination of nature, supernatural properties and animal …show more content…
In the mock trial held by Lear, along with Edgar, the Fool and Kent, Lear remarked Goneril and Regan as dogs: The little dogs and all, Tray, Blanch, and Sweetheart, see, they bark at me. (Act 3 Sc. 6, 65 - 66) At this Edgar responded by supporting Lear with his depiction of his daughters as dogs by singing a hymn about heinous canines: By thy mouth or black or white, Tooth that poisons if it bite, Mastiff, greyhound, mongrel grim, Hound or spaniel, brach, or lym, Bobtail tike, or trundle-tail, Tom will make him weep and wail; For, with throwing thus my head, Dogs leapt the hatch, and all are fled. (Act 3, Sc. 6, 69 - 76) Aside from the evil sisters being comparable to nothing but canines, Edmund is also depicted as an animal of slimy deeds as Edgar called him “A most toad-spotted traitor” (Act 5, Sc. 3, 166) while he was challenging Edmund to a duel as Poor Tom. The usage of the supernatural, chaos in nature and animal imageries to represent the disorder in the state of England and the characters in King Lear by Shakespeare is very extensive, in that almost all incidents and characters are compared to or depicted with some form of natural characteristic. By reflecting the chaotic properties of the plot in nature, Shakespeare endears the situation to the audience by illustrating it with a more familiar quality. The usage of supernatural anomalies and superstitions strengthens the

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