And now the saddest of all the plays by Shakespeare, King Lear.
Of all the tragedies, King Lear is hard to take. It is not because of the gore (it has some) or because of the other tragic qualities of banishment and betrayal. It has to do with an old man experiencing something similar to dementia being completely destroyed by his own daughters who he has given everything. It is sad because the villains do not all die. In Hamlet, everyone dies. In King Lear, Albany lives on although he has done evil to main character as much as any other character.
This play is very dark. It is sad. It is hard to read because of the emotional pain that Lear goes through. It features very memorable characters like the fool, who is at one point the only advisor Lear will listen to, but who provides very good counsel. It has some wonderful quotes in it. “How sharper is serpents tooth.” and my all time favorite Shakespearean quote. “Poor Tom’s acold.”
Ah King Lear perhaps I should have left you for the end.