Are you honest?…
Are you fair?…
For the power of beauty will sooner transform honesty from what it is to be a bawd…
I did love you once.

– William Shakespeare

Hamlet, Act 3, Scene 1. Hamlet to Ophelia, asking her if she is pure and beautiful. He says that the power of beauty is more likely to change a good girl into a whore, and adds that he used to love her. He is very insulting to Ophelia’s chastity. This is an example of dramatic irony, as Hamlet is really venting his anger towards his mother Gertrude, being disgusted by the process of love and marriage, and believing that beauty corrupts virtue. The cruel and cynical outburst to Ophelia is misdirected here, she is being used by all the men in the scene, her father Polonius, Claudius and by Hamlet, to vent his frustrations towards his mother.