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King Lear

             King Lear's actions throughout the play have substantial consequences. His spontaneous decisions and his inablity to accept the truth from others causes his downfall.
             Though the actions of others do cause harm to him, he is mainly responsible for his downfall because of his own misdeeds. Lear claims he is, " . . .a man / More sinned against than sinning" ( Shakespeare 3.2.62-63) but evidently his oversight and poor personality makes him believe so. Therefore, Lear sins more than he is sinned against because he banishes Kent, banishes Cordelia and gives away everything he owns.
             Lear's ignorance forces him to banish Kent because he refuses to hear the truth from anyone. He does not appreciate it when someone points out an action of his that is wrong. Kent states, "When majesty falls to folly, / Reserve thy state, / And in thy best consideration check / This hideous rashness." (Shakespeare 1.1.167-169) Kent tries to convince Lear that Cordelia does love him but Lear fails to see this. He becomes angered and banishes him: "If on the tenth day following / Thy banished trunk be found in our dominions, / The moment is thy death." (1.1.200-202) This decision by Lear eventually is curtailed. Kent is loyal and faithful to Lear and tries to make Lear realize his wrong decisions. If Lear did not have to be so ignorant towards Kent, he would have seen the evil demise of Goneril and Regan. However, one action committed by Lear allows Goneril and Regan to use him; but actually Lear is the one who sins first.
             When Lear gives away his land to his two daughters, he does wrong against himself. He gives away all his worldly power and human dignity and loses his identity.
             This is evident when he questions, "Does any here know me? / This is not Lear, / Does Lear walks thus, speak thus? / Where are his eyes? Who is it that can tell me who I am?" (1.4.234-236) By giving away everthing he owns, he gives away his title as King and leaves himself with nothing.

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