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Character is destiny is a dominant theme that often appears in Shakespearean tragedy In the play King Lear this concept is portrayed through the characters of King Lear Gloucester and Edmund The characteristics and the roles that each of the characters have within the society of the play determine the treatment that they receive from other characters as well as their destiny In the play Lear demonstrates various characteristics that can be classified as his tragic flaws In the opening scene Lears irrational basis for distributing the kingdom between his daughters reveals that he is accustomed to hypocrisy that he is quick tempered that he is impatient and that he is unaware of human limitation By asking his daughters to publicly display their love towards him he reveals that he is accustomed to flattery This also demonstrates that he is proud of his ability to exercise his will quickly and effectively AC Bradely comments on this tragic flaw by stating that A long life of absolute power in which he as been flattered to the top of his bent has produced in him that blindness to human limitation and that presumptuous self will In the opening act King Lear also demonstrates his quick tempered nature through the disowning of Cordelia and the banishment of Kent When Lear does not hear what he expected from Cordelia he disowns her as his daughter without any rational thoughts This demonstrates that he is accustomed to exercising his will It also demonstrates that he believes that through his position as a monarch he can even command human emotions such as love In addition when Lear hears what he expects from Goneril and Regan he rewards them with a large portion of his kingdom This reveals his gullible generous and unsuspicious nature Overall Lears characteristics are revealed in the first Act of the play He is accustomed to exercising his will freely he is gullible unsuspicious and is
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