Introduction: Hamlet is a famous drama written by William Shakespeare, between the year 1599- 1600. Hamlet, the lead character in the play is the prince of Denmark. There are various themes in the play. For example, the difference between appearance and reality. Prince Hamlet was torn between appearance and realities that happened in his life. The following text of Act III, scene iii of the play is analyzed: “A brother’s murder, he says, is the oldest sin and “hath the primal eldest curse upon” (Semper 79; De Grazia 83). Hamlet is the most complex character ever written by Shakespeare. The protagonist Hamlet, has an indecisive soul that prevents him from taking action without concrete evidence. But, at the same time, he cannot bring himself to do something, which is believes is morally wrong. When compared to the rest of the characters in the play, Hamlet is a man of thoughts and emotions. He is clever and displays decency in his dealing with others.
Summary: Hamlet’s father, who was the king of Denmark, died recently, and the play begins with a scene where Hamlet is grieving over his father’s death and brooding over his mother’s second marriage. Late King Hamlet’s younger brother Claudius, married Hamlet’s mother Gertrud, soon after the death of the King. Though he is angry with his mother and uncle, he is unable to act on his feelings. On a dark winter night, a ghost resembling late King Hamlet haunts the castle. Later, the ghost appears before Hamlet and declares that it is his father’s spirit. It orders Hamlet to seek revenge by killing Claudius. The ghost tells Hamlet that Claudius poisoned his father to death. In Act III, Hamlet takes advantage of a situation, and tries to figure out whether his uncle is really guilty and miserable about his father’s death. He orders a troupe of actors who visit the palace to enact a play where a king is killed by his own brother. On seeing the play, Claudius, reacts. He shows fear and leaves the theater immediately. This helps Hamlet to confirm that Claudius is guilty of the Kings death. He sees Claudius leaving the theatre to repent by praying. (Faulkner 15-105; Shakespeare, Raffel and Bloom 100-200)
Hamlet has always been a person of thoughts and does not want to act impulsively on a ghost’s order. At the same time, he is bonded by his duty to seek revenge for his father. He wants to kill Claudius, but is indecisive about his action. Hamlet then decides that pretending madness will make his task of revenge easier (Drakakis 30).
Act III, in which Hamlet enacts a play in which a king is killed by his own brother is the play within a play. While Hamlet makes a secret plot to murder his uncle, his uncle Claudius makes a secret plot to murder Hamlet. This is hidden from the readers till the end. It is not clear why Hamlet chooses not to murder his uncle on seeing him leaving the theater. He kept postponing his decisions and that cost him his life. The play enacted by Hamlet, raised his uncle’s suspicions. Hamlet has lost more than his uncle in his quest for vengeance. He lost his lover Ophelia, his true friend and his mother. The author was effective in portraying both the actual madness and faked madness of Hamlet. He was successful in revealing Hamlets inner character. The author has portrayed Hamlet as a man whose inherent fears came in the way of completing a task that was thrust upon him by his dead father. The play has action, humor, romance, suspense and tragedy. The events are well portrayed by the author.
He tries to kill Claudius, but stops, as his morals prevents him from doing so to a person who is repenting. Instead, Hamlet decides to confront his mother about her shameful act of marrying Claudius, who is responsible for father’s death. Polonius, who has been following Hamlet all the while, was hiding behind the curtain. Hamlet notices the shadow of the person behind the curtain and mistaking him for Claudius, stabs Polonius to death. Towards the end of the play, there is a long scene, in which a sword fight is arranged between Laertes and Hamlet for the sake of sports. Laertes, who grieves his father’s death, is intense on revenging, Polonius’s death. Claudius poisons Laertes’s sword and also Hamlet’s drink. However, the drink is accidently drunk by Hamlet’s mother Gertrud. Hamlet and Laertes are killed by the poisoned sword. However, before dying, Hamlet kills Claudius. Fortinbras, the king of Norway, learns that the royal family of Denmark is dead and takes power over the kingdom.
Conclusion: According to me, Hamlet is an embodiment of most humans. At times he is innocent, at times he is loving, at times he is hates, he is angry, he wants revenge, he is affectionate, sometimes he is rude. Hamlet is a man of contradiction. His indecisive nature and his conflicting thoughts, were driving him crazy from within. It is not sure, if the ghost, he saw, was real or just a hallucination of his tired mind. The ghost visited him when he was brooding over his mother’s marriage to his father’s younger brother.
De Grazia, Margreta. Hamlet Without Hamlet. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2007. Print.
Drakakis, John. Shakespearean Tragedy. London: Longman, 1992. Print.
Faulkner, William. The Hamlet. New York: Random House, 1964. Print.
Semper, Isidore Joseph. Hamlet Without Tears. Dubuque, Ia.: The Loras college Press, 1946. Print.
Shakespeare, William, Burton Raffel, and Harold Bloom. Hamlet. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2003. Print.