Gertrude-character sketch-weak v. strong : LUSENET : Kenneth Branagh's Hamlet : One Thread

In a report, I am examining the character of Gertrude. The promt is: Is Gertrude a strong, ambitious, manipulative woman? Is she a weak woman who is incomplete without a strong man? Or does she fall somewhere in between?

In my opinion, she is a weak character who is dependent upon men. I started asking questions like is she a powerseeker? fake out of greed? gullible or vulnerable? I qualified my assertions that she is in fact frail, dependent, and manipulated. Then I looked up the name Gertrude and it means: the strength of a spear. What a contradiction to all my previous thought! So then i decided to look up all the other names in the play. The only other one found was Claudius meaning: effeminate and foolish. Hamlet was said to mean: village, of no help what-so-ever. Do you have any ideas about this contradiction??

-- Lindsey S (, February 16, 2003


Ya know what....I have that same exact prompt to write an essay on...I know yours has probably been turned in already but if you can i would like you to email me with your ideas and i can give you some of mine! Thanx alot!!

-- Nikki (, April 25, 2003.

i believe that Gertrude is a weak person. It seems that she wants order and consistency in her life. CLaudius easily controls her in many ways. she wants to believe whatever she thinks will make everyone happy. i am currently doing an essay about of Gertrude is weak-willed, a truth that no one can deny. As for the meaning of her name, maybe Shakespeare was poking fun at her, or even women as a whole.

-- lumi hindi (, January 25, 2005.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ