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A Critical Analysis of King Leer's Daughters'attraction to Edmund

Essay by review  •  September 18, 2010  •  Essay  •  578 Words (3 Pages)  •  1,215 Views

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Shakespeare' King Lear is a story of treachery and

deceit. The villainy of the play knows no bounds. Family

lines are ignored in an overwhelming quest for power. This

villainy is epitomized in the character of Edmund, bastard

son of the Earl of Gloucester.

Edmund is displayed as a " most toad-spotted

traitor." When we first see Edmund, he is already knee

deep in treachery. His need for power has already clouded

his mind to the extent that his first act is a double-

cross of his own brother. Edmund composes a false letter

to his father implicating his brother, Edgar in a plot to

kill Gloucester. Edmund then goes to Edgar and convinces

him to run away. Edgar, like his father is easily deceived,

and runs.

Edmund's evil trickery continues to increase in its

cruelty until he commits an inconceivable crime. Edmund

has reached a point in his pursuit of power that he will

stop at nothing to gain more. He writes another letter.

This one is similar to the first, except instead of

implicating his brother to his father, it implicates his

father in a plot with France to kill The Duke of Cornwall.

The King decides that Gloucester's supposed treachery

cannot be tolerated and orders that his eyes be torn out.

At this point, Edmund seems to be unequivocally evil.

This is undoubtedly false.

Two of the other characters of the play, Goneril and

Regan surely equal Edmund's ferocity in their quest for

power. Our first glimpse at the two surely begins to prove

that fact. In this scene, the King asks that each of his

three daughters profess their undying love to him before

he distributes parts of the kingdom to them. Goneril and

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