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Home :: Archive :: 2002 :: January ::
Re: Pregnant Gertrude
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 13.0061  Monday, 14 January 2002

From:           John Ramsay <
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Date:           Sunday, 13 Jan 2002 11:52:19 -0500
Subject: 13.0040 Re: Pregnant Gertrude
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.0040 Re: Pregnant Gertrude

> This is a superb opportunity to explore the side of Hamlet that is
> concerned about his own ambition, security and fortune.  If we assume
> that Claudius thinks the baby is his, then Hamlet is only "nearest to
> our throne" for a strictly limited time.
>
> Plenty of Hamlet's lines demonstrate a concern with being disinherited;
> not only the "popped between the election and my hopes", but also things
> like his reference to the proverb (which he leaves unfinished): "while
> the grass grows, the horse starves."  If you were to trawl the text with
> this in mind, I bet the catch would be abundant.
>
> Anna Kamaralli

If Claudius is the father of the child, then the child could only reign
via primogeniture in place of Hamlet.

But Hamlet did not succeed to the throne by the same method.

Therefore primogeniture was not in force in Denmark at that time.

You seem to be overlooking the word 'election'.

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