Hamlet Act 2 Questions

How much time has passed between Act 1 and Act 2? A couple of months
What is Polonius telling Reynaldo to do? What does this tell up about Polonius and his way of thinking and acting? He sends him to spy on Laertes while he’s in France. He wants Reynaldo to drop Laertes’ name and then ask (subtly) if Laertes has been engaging in certain naughty behaviors.
Why does Ophelia come to see her father in the middle of ACT II, SCENE 1? How do both Polonius and Ophelia interpret Hamlet’s visit? Hamlet has visited Ophelia and acted strangely. He was wearing his shirt open, had a sock all folded down, grabbed Ophelia and stared longingly at her, sighed deeply, and stared at her all his way out the door. Ophelia and Polonius take this to mean that Hamlet is insane, gone mad because she rejected her love.
What is Polonius’ response to what Ophelia tells him? Where are they going? When Ophelia tells Polonius of Hamlet’s strange behavior Polonius responds by telling Ophelia that he will tell the King Claudius of their suspicions. Polonius then displays a guilty response, by saying that he had gone too far in forcing Ophelia to so abruptly deny Hamlet, and felt sorry for how his suspicions had played out.
What is the relationship between Rosencratz and Guildenstern and Hamlet? Why do Claudius and Gertrude bring those two to court? The three men have been friends since their childhood. Ros. and Guild. are brought to court because Claudius and Gertrude want to know what’s wrong with Hamlet. They think that he will open up to his friends because they assume he trusts his friends.
We’ve now had several different explanations of Hamlet’s madness: love (2.1.86, 103), his father’s death (2.2.8), and that plus “our o’erhasty marriage” (2.2.57note Gertrude’s awareness of impropriety). Are people content with these explanations? no, but it should be enough to make a person depressed and sort of go crazy. Coping with all of that loss would be difficult and the with the marriage…
What results have come from Cornelius’ and Voltemand’s trip to Norway? Has Claudius’ use of diplomacy rather than war been justified? What will Fortinbras be doing next? Can we expect to see him in Denmark after all? Why? They tell him that they aren’t going to war; it was justified; next Fortinbras had vowed to obey his uncle and in result was given money and pay for soldiers to go against the Polack instead. Yes they will be coming to Denmark
How effective is Polonius as a bearer of news? How convinced are Claudius and Gertrude that Polonius has found the answer? How do they plan to test this answer? Does Polonius’ plan sound like his normal way of operating (2.2.163-68)? He is good at bearing news and people listen to him, but he has trouble getting to the point.
Immediately following the discussion of the plan, Hamlet appears. Wouldn’t this be a good time to try out the plan? Do they? After discussing the plan, Hamlet appears. This wouldn’t be a good time to try out the plan because Polonius has only heard of Hamlet’s behavior second-hand and has not seen such madness for his own. Polonius is the only one that speaks to Hamlet after their discussion and simply tries to investigate and observe on his own before the conversation.
How does Hamlet behave when he enters? Does Polonius think he is mad? Is this the way we would expect Hamlet to act after Ophelia’s description in 2.1? Why does he call Polonius a fishmonger? (It may help to know that fishmongers’ wives, and daughters, apparently because of the fish, were assumed to be extremely fertile and thus able to conceive easily and thus the connection in 2.2.185-86.) When Hamlet acts fed up and a little annoyed when he enters and first talks to Polonius and plays on the words Polonius uses to speak with him. After Hamlet calls Polonius a “fishmonger”, Polonius has an aside where he seems to have already decided that Hamlet is far gone and is convinced he is right about the connection to Ophelia. I had expected Hamlet to act more distraught and sad, instead of sarcastic and angry as he is acting for Polonius. Hamlet called Polonius a “fishmonger” because Hamlet believes Polonius is being a pimp of Ophelia and is manipulating her against him.
How does Hamlet behave initially with Rosencrantz and Guildenstern (through 2.2.216-66)? Is it different from the way he just acted with Polonius? How does Hamlet change when he realizes that the two were sent for by Claudius and Gertrude? When Hamlet first speaks with Rosencrantz and Guildenstern he continues to behave with word play throughout the conversation as he had with Polonius. Once Hamlet is told that Rosencrantz and Guildenstern were sent for by Claudius and Gertrude he begins to explain how well he had already suspected their double crossing behaviors and continued interrogating his friends as to why they had betrayed him in the first place. At first before their confession, Hamlet was acting with a suspicious intent as though he already knew Rosencrantz and Guildenstern were betraying him.
What is unusual about the speech Hamlet begins to recite (2.2.430-44) and the First Player continues (2.2.448-498). How is its style different from that of the surrounding lines of Hamlet? Why is its subject matter appropriate? (See Note 2 to line 430.) Do lines 461-62 echo anything from or about the play Hamlet? Why can’t the First Player finish the speech? it is a connection to his grief, Hamlet wants the players to do a particular play for him (the mousetrap), hamlet is going to add some lines into the play to try to see if Claudius looks guilty when he watches the play scene when a man murdering his brother
Read Hamlet’s third soliloquy carefully (2.2.526-82). How does he use the player’s response to show how different his own position is? Is the comparison justified by what we have seen happen in the play? He complains that he hasn’t acted on his vengeance. Why hasn’t he? Why does he need the play? What will he learn from it? he is in a low moment, he has watched the actors show a part of his grief and he sort of freaks out. If it were hamlet he would drown the stage in tears and show way more emotion. He says that he should have just killed Claudius and not procrastinated.