Themes and issues
The range is from god-like to bestial, ‘Hyperion’ to ‘satyr’, Hamlet’s father and uncle as he sees them; from virginal Ophelia to Gertrude in her sexual fall; from the jester ‘wont to set the table on a roar’, affectionate play-fellow of the child Hamlet, to Yorick’s skull. Man is ‘the paragon of animals’, yet he is ‘this quintessence of dust’.
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