Hamlet: by the numbers

Hamlet

So here’s the numerical breakdown…

  • 3728 total lines; longest of all plays and thus longer than the average (play: 2768; tragedy: 2936)
  • No scene is the shortest of its kind in the Canon
  • Act Two, Scene Two is the longest of its kind in the Canon (544 lines)
  • Act One: 852 lines; longer than average (play: 582; tragedy: 659)
  • Act Two: 663 lines; much longer than average (play: 567, tragedy: 606)
  • Act Three: 895 lines; longest of all plays, and thus much longer than average (play: 576; tragedy: 644)
  • Act Four: 643 lines; longer than average (play: 560, tragedy: 547); longest of the tragedies
  • Act Five: 675 lines; longer than average (play: 484, tragedy: 478)
  • 1030 lines of prose (27.33% of total lines, which is about average of plays: 26.32%; more than average in tragedy: 16.44%]); compare with The Comedy of Errors: 13.31%, Titus Andronicus: 1.39%, The Taming of the Shrew: 20.82%, 1HenryVI: 0.37%, 2HenryVI: 16.64%, 3HenryVI: 0.14%, Richard III: 2.89%, Love’s Labor’s Lost: 35.08%, The Two Gentlemen of Verona: 26.81%, A Midsummer Night’s Dream: 19.75%, Romeo and Juliet: 14.18%, King John: 0.0%, The Merchant of Venice: 21.79%, Richard II: 0%, 1HenryIV: 44.7%, 2HenryIV: 50.36%, HenryV: 40.89%, Merry Wives: 88.20%, As You Like It: 56.12%, Much Ado: 77.78%, Caesar: 7.47%, and Twelfth: 64.44%)
  • 183 rhyming lines (4.91% of total lines, which is lower than average [play: 8.35%; tragedy: 5.09%]; compare with Comedy: 20.10%, Titus: 2.42%, Taming: 3.93%, 1HenryVI: 9.79%, 2HenryVI: 3.16%, 3HenryVI: 5.37%, Richard III: 7.55%, LLL: 40.86%, 2Gents: 35.08%, Midsummer: 43.5%, Romeo: 16.61%, King John: 6.19%, Merchant: 5.16%, Richard II: 18.95%, 1HenryIV: 1.04%, 2HenryIV: 2.32%, HenryV: 1.80%, Merry Wives: 3.79%, As You Like It: 10.87%, and Much Ado: 2.43%, Caesar: 0.41%, and Twelfth: 6.09%)
  • 20 scenes; about average for plays (21); less than average tragedy (24)
  • 34 characters; about average for plays: 36; less than average tragedy: 39)

Check out our “by the numbers” breakdown as an infographic!

Twelfth Night: By the Numbers (jpeg; thumbnail)

[download the pdf (4 Mb)]

Also, the below graphic gives a representation of which characters appear in what scenes in the play.

Hamlet: breakdown of which characters appear in what scenes
Hamlet: breakdown of which characters appear in what scenes

 

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