King Lear: The Forest Of Truth

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 12th grade September 2001

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The Forest of Truth Perhaps Joni Mitchell said it best with "You don't know what you've got till it's gone"�. This statement is true in regards to King Lear's character in the play King Lear by William Shakespeare. In the beginning of the play King Lear decides to abdicate his duty as ruler of Britain and divide it amongst his daughters with the biggest plot of land going to the daughter that loves him the most. His plan backfires and this opening scene begins a cycle of insanity and poverty. Lear's loss of power triggers the process of awareness which leads to his re-evaluation of himself and his daughters.

King Lear the ruler of Britain, was among the most powerful men on the earth at that time. The power attached to the word king itself is unsurpassable, Lear is at the top of the social hierarchy, a messenger from God born into to power.

Everyone in Lear's eyes are subordinates, servants if you will. He has known power all of his life, he never had to beg for anything, he just spoke and whatever he wanted would be there. When his powers disappeared he had to struggle to cope with it. His decline in power all sprouts from a foolish attempt at happiness he decided that he would enjoy all of the perks that came with being regal but suffer none of the hardships and problems that come along with it. So he decided to make his daughters profess their love publicly and the one that loved him the most would receive the biggest plot of land. Regan and Goneril two of his three daughters as a result of a "˜technicality' are given all of his assets and his power, in return for a promise to take care of...