King Lear

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Cordelia’s Description of Lear: Act 4, Scene 4

KINGLR-9F7C0F

Act 4, Scene 4 opens with these words by Cordelia:

Alack, 'tis he: why, he was met even now
As mad as the vex'd sea; singing aloud;
Crown'd with rank fumiter and furrow-weeds,
With bur-docks, hemlock, nettles, cuckoo-flowers,
Darnel, and all the idle weeds that grow
In our sustaining corn. A century send forth;
Search every acre in the high-grown field,
And bring him to our eye.

What effect does Cordelia’s speech have?

Select ALL that apply.

A

It helps emphasize a dominant theme in the play: the relationship between the internal world and the outer, natural, world.

B

It conveys the difficulty Cordelia has with squaring the father and king she knew with the man she is now describing.

C

It suggests that Cordelia is still bound to Britain, despite the fact that she is now Queen of France.

D

It re-confirms Lear as a tragic figure by representing him as a travesty of a king.

E

It indicates that the natural world is willing to help Lear evade the daughter he is ashamed to see.