What¡¦s the significance of the ending in King Lear?

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Basically, King Lear is a story about loss and restoration. Through the whole play, the original order is being disturbed, but they are all restored later in the ending of the play. This very ending as well as all this restoration fully displays the prevailing Elizabethan views of nature and order.

The Elizabethans viewed nature as order. It consisted of a universe in which there was an established hierarchy; everything had its own relative position. In Heaven, the Divine Being, the stars, and planets were all above. On earth, the king was at the head of the class structure, with the nobles next, and on down to the peasantry, and beneath them were the lowliest humans: beggars, lunatics, and so on. When this order was disturbed, things were considered unnatural or "monstrous."

In King Lear, however, we see this nature is terribly disturbed, having the whole country left in chaos. First, the bonds within the society are broken and needs to be formed and reshaped. Bonds that are broken include those relations between King Lear and Cordelia, between Lear and Kent and also between Gloucester and Edgar. Then, the political order is also disturbed. So is the patriarchal order.

Lear broke the order between father and daughter when he failed to see Cordelia ¡ ¦s good nature ¡V her love for him. He then once again broke the order between him and Kent by expelling him. Instead, he trusted his evil daughters, divided his kingdom to them and expected to remain the title of the ¡ §king. ¡ This at all is a disturbance of order. Then, the king ¡ ¦s downfall to the lunatic once again is against the order. Beside King Lear, Gloucester also broke the order. He was misled by his ¡ §natural ¡ son, Edmund, and tried to kill his legitimate son, Edgar. What ¡ ¦s more, he mad Edmund his heir, which is supposed to be Edgar ¡ ¦s position.

Fortunately, all this disorder is restored in the end of the play. f

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