WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE HAMLET
Eli Readers is a beautifully illustrated series of timeless classics and specially written stories for learners of English.
Prince of Denmark
In this reader you will find: - William Shakespeare and the Elizabethan Theatre - Hamlet in the 20th and 21st centuries - Glossary of difficult words - Comprehension and extension activities including Key (KET) activities - Final test
HAMLET - PRINCE OF DENMARK
After Hamlet sees his father’s ghost, he begins to act in a strange way. He now knows the terrible secret of his father’s death and must decide what to do. Many people think he’s become mad. Is it true? Will he do what his father’s ghost asks? And what about love? Will he lose Ophelia’s love for him? Read the play and see how Hamlet’s life changes and how it changes the lives of the people around him.
PRINCE OF DENMARK WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE
ELT A 2
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READERS | THEATRE
2 Scene 1
In front of Elsinore Castle, Denmark. [Enter Horatio and Marcellus, an officer.] m a r c e l l u s . Horatio, do you think it’ll come again tonight? h o r a t i o . My dear Marcellus, I told you before, I don’t believe in ghosts*! I think you were dreaming the other night when you were with Bernardo. m a r c e l l u s . You’re wrong, Horatio. Bernardo saw it too. Look, it’s coming! [Enter ghost.] m a r c e l l u s . Can you see it, Horatio? Isn’t it like our dead King? h o r a t i o . You’re right, Marcellus, this ghost is very like our poor dead King. I’ll try to speak to it, even if I’m afraid of it. Ghost, why have you come here this night? m a r c e l l u s . Oh no! It’s going away. Maybe it’s angry. h o r a t i o . No! Wait! Speak to us! [Exit ghost.] m a r c e l l u s . Do you believe me now, Horatio? h o r a t i o . Yes, the ghost of our dear King, dressed for war. I’m afraid this means something bad is going to happen to Denmark. When our dear, dead King, Hamlet, won the war against Norway, he took a lot of their cities. Now, the young Prince* of Norway, Fortinbras, wants to make war with Denmark to win them back. I must tell young Hamlet. Maybe the ghost will speak to him. ghost
prince the King’s son
Stop & Check 1
Complete these questions about Act 5 with a word or expression from the box. Then, match the questions to the right answers.
who (2) • what • where • whose • why • how • what kind of a _____ Who did the skull that Hamlet spoke about in the ■
graveyard belong to?
■ _____ grave was the man preparing? ■ _____ stories did Yorick tell Hamlet’s father? ■ _____ did Hamlet find in Rosencrantz's jacket? ■ _____ did the King put the poison? ■ _____ did Gertrude die? ■ _____ did Hamlet kill Claudius? ■ _____ will become King of Denmark?
a b c d
Yorick. Fortinbras. with Laertes' sword. Ophelia's.
2 3 4 5 6
e f g h
into a glass of wine. a letter. funny ones. because she drank the poison.
Answer the following questions.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
Did you like the play? Why/Why not? Were you surprised by how it ended? Why/Why not? Who did you feel most sorry for in the play? Why? Who did you like best? Why? Who didn’t you like? Why? Which part of the play did you like best? Do you think Hamlet was really mad? Why?/Why not?
Unscramble these verbs from Act 5.
DFNI 1 WNKO 2 KATE 3 LETL 4 RWTEI 5 LALF 6 GEFROIV 7 ASY
F _I N D _ __ K___ T___ T___ W____ F___ F______ S__
Grammar 4 Complete the sentences with the Past Simple of the verbs in exercise 3. found some skulls. The men in the graveyard _______ 1 Horatio _______ Hamlet away from the graveyard. 2 Hamlet _______ Horatio must be strong at the end of the play. 3 Hamlet _______ Yorick as a child. 4 Gertrude _______ after drinking the wine with poison in it. 5 The King _______ Laertes to wait a little more. 6 Laertes _______ Hamlet in the end. 7 Hamlet _______ another letter to the King of England.
The story of Hamlet is one of Shakespeareâ€™s most famous tragedies, and itâ€™s very sad at the end. Change the story so that there is a happy ending and write your ideas below.
_______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________
William Shakespeare and the Elizabethan Theatre William Shakespeare: Life and Works William Shakespeare was born in Stratford-upon-Avon, England in April, 1564. He was the eldest son of a big family; he had seven brothers and sisters, but three of them died when they were still children. William loved reading and studied Latin writers at a school near his home. Then, in 1582, he got married to Anne Hathaway, who was 26, eight years older than he was. They had three children. In 1584, Shakespeare left Stratford and went to London, where he started working as an actor. Then, he became a playwright* and wrote for a drama* company called The Lord Chamberlain’s Men. In 1559, this company built the Globe Theatre where people went to see his plays. He wrote most of his plays between 1589 and 1613. The first plays he wrote were historical, usually about English history. Then he moved on to comedies about love. Finally, he wrote his great tragedies like Hamlet. Some people say that Shakespeare got the idea for Hamlet from a very old Scandinavian story called Amleth. Many playwright a person who writes plays
people also believe that Kronborg Castle in the town of Helsinger, Denmark, is ‘Elsinore’ in Hamlet. Elsinore is actually the English name for Helsinger. Everybody loved Shakespeare’s plays and he became very popular. You can find all different kinds of people in his plays, from kings to cooks, and his stories are often about family problems between father and child, brother and sister, or husband and wife. Shakespeare was different from most playwrights because he was both an actor and a playwright and wrote many more plays than the others. After many years in London, in 1613, he went back to his hometown, Stratford-upon-Avon, where he died in 1616 at the age of 52. drama a story acted on stage
The Elizabethan Theatre This period*, known as the Golden Age, was a time of new ideas and new learning, Elizabeth I was Queen of England and she enjoyed drama very much, like the ordinary people of that time. At first, plays were performed* in the streets. Then, in 1567, the first English theatre was built in London, and was called The Red Lion. These large, open-air theatres were made of wood and had no roof. They were built in a circle with the stage in the centre. The plays were performed during the day and the people could sit around three sides of the stage to watch it. There were very few things on stage and there was no curtain.
Playwrights and Drama Companies All playwrights in the Elizabethan period were men. Drama companies paid playwrights to write a play, but the playwright only received the money for the first show. After that, the play belonged to the theatre company and the playwright made no more money from it. Most playwrights wrote two plays a year. The members of these drama companies were men only, so all parts for women were played
by young boys in womenâ€™s clothes. The actors worked six days a week and changed the play every two days. Since costumes were expensive, actors, above all those with a less important part, often wore their normal clothes on stage. Each company performed between thirty and forty new plays a year.
Task â€“ Internet Look on the Internet. Try to find three examples each of Shakespeare's tragedies, comedies and historical plays, then complete the table below. Tragedies
What kind of play do you prefer? Give reasons. period a time in history
perform act, do