The Sweetness Of Revenge The Tradgedy Of

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The Sweetness Of Revenge: The Tradgedy Of Hamlet P Essay, Research Paper English 2322.231November 19, 1998 The Sweetness of Revenge:The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark Ay, that incestuous, that adulterate beast, with witchcraft of his wit, with traitorous gifts,——- O wicked wit and gifts, that have the power so to seduce! ——-won to his shameful lust the will of my most seeming-virtuous queen… I made to her in marriage; and to decline upon a wretch whose natural gifts were poor to those of mine. ( Ghost of Hamlet’s father I:v William Shakespeare, 40) The tragedy of Hamlet, one of William Shakespeare’s most controversial tales, touches on many of the trials and tribulations of the Middle Ages. Incest within the royal families, murder, betrayal, sex, violence,

and criminal insanity are all contained in this story. The knowledge of one’s own strength in mind and body is revealed through the thoughts, words and actions of the main character, Hamlet. How he struggles with his inner demons affects all those around him. Not only does it bring death upon himself, but also death upon everyone closely related to him. The story of Hamlet has been described as a “rich and complex work of art that conveys different meaning to different generations” (Jump 11).Hamlet’s father dies suddenly and Hamlet is appalled to find that his mother Getrude, the Queen of Denmark, is to wed his late father’s brother, his Uncle Claudius. Hamlet suspects some sort of foul play here on the part of Claudius, since he is so quick to wed with Hamlet’s

mother, but has no proof to back it up. Deep in his own depression, the hatred towards Claudius grows with immense passion. An apparition appears to Hamlet in the form of his father and convinces him that it was Claudius who was responsible for his death. Hamlet plots revenge but soon realizes, “he is the prince of philosophical spectators; and because he cannot save his revenge perfect, he declines it altogether. So he scruples to trust the suggestions of the ghost, contrives the scene of the play to have surer proof of his uncle’s guilt, and then rests satisfied with this confirmation of his suspicions, and the success of his experiment, rather than acting upon it. Yet he is sensible of his own weaknesses, and tries to reason himself out of it” (Bloom 17). Thus begins the

pull within Hamlet of reality and insanity. After being plunged into anguish at the thought of his father being replaced in his mother’s affections by someone else, Hamlet appears to have weaned himself from her and to have fallen in love with Ophelia, the daughter of King Claudius’ most trusted advisor Polonius (Jump 53). She warns him against treason against Claudius because she loves him so (Empson 133). The significance of his attentions to Ophelia are ones of deceit. Everyone now believes him to be a madman. Ophelia deeply believes that Hamlet will marry her one day and she is torn between her love for Hamlet and the loyalty to her brother, Laretes, and her father, Polonius, who have warned her that Hamlet is dishonest in his words of love. During an altercation between

Hamlet and Gertrude, Hamlet stabs and kills Polonius by accident assuming him to be Claudius. Hamlet is upset at first but his insanity overwhelms him and his sorrowness is soon replaced by madness. Although he is upset greatly by this, the ghost appears to him and tells him to concentrate on the revenge on Claudius. After the ghost of his father appears this time, Hamlet accuses himself of being tardy and lapsed in time. This appearance of the ghost of his father and Hamlet’s recognition of being reluctant to do what the ghost says pushes him over the edge of sanity and Hamlet decides then and there that he will surely dispose of Claudius in a timely fashion. The death of Polonius and Hamlet’s growing insanity prompts Claudius to send for Hamlet’s head and Ophelia is