Goneril is the personification of cruelty and vindictiveness. In order to get half of the kingdom, the eldest daughter of King Lear first tries to convince him of her love, and after conceiving the cold-blooded murder of her father. The atrocities are more suited to her character, because, as Shakespeare depicts, all her cares are impregnated with flattery. Goneril is bloodthirsty, which is clearly demonstrated by an episode with the old man Gloucester. In the image of Goneril, it is embodied a challenge to the traditional foundations, according to which daughters are obliged to respect fathers and obey them. Perhaps, it was the discrepancy between Goneril’s character and the times caused her mental anguish. She is passionately hungry for power, but, having achieved her goal, she refuses it. Goneril voluntarily loses the battle, preferring to sacrifice the crown, but not a close person.
Goneril in the Essays