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The Nature Of Kingship In Hamlet English Literature Essay

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: English Literature
Wordcount: 1459 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

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You will never say that Shakespeare’s plays are only mundane waste of ink. The manner in which Shakespeare treats the nature of kingship in “Hamlet” reflects the essential tone and themes of these works. I am going to illustrate this through this paper. Shakespeare’s plays are always influence on people, they are fascinating and truthfully, sincere and touching. Each of his tragedies shows us pure evil or eternal love: different human’s relationships that are why Shakespeare’s works are famous throughout the centuries. Time changes and people change with it, but main problems and questions are still the same. It can generally be said that this great author shows many-sided people’s relations and feelings, contradictory or high-minded actions. The purpose of the essay is to prove the thesis basic statement and analyze Hamlet’s reaction to the appearance of his father’s ghost. The paper contains such requirements as thesis, argument and content that demonstrate an awareness of complexity and contradiction in approach to the text; writing shows evidence of abstract, critical and careful original thought; thesis provides a strong, coherent critical argument that is developed through the course of the essay.

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Main question

To understand the plot and context of this play “Hamlet” clearly we should mention the period when it was written and events, which accompanied that period. According to Atchley, Hamlet expects his audience to perceive the Ghost for what it is, a diabolical manifestation on a mission to trick Hamlet into forfeiting his soul the play’s devastating/destructive conclusion supports this interpretation. In exhorting Hamlet to commit murder through an act of revenge, the Ghost plays most foully for Hamlet’s soul. The ‘piteous action’ that the Ghost makes is directed […] at Hamlet, to wring his emotions and drive him to distraction to make Gertrude think him mad. And it succeeds (2002, pg 12-14, 18). As far as I am concerned, Shakespeare is said not to be publisher of any of his plays and thus none of the original manuscripts has survived. However, during his lifetime eighteen unauthorized versions of his various plays were published in some editions by different publishers (in addition, during era of Elizabeth there were not any copyright norms or laws that could protect Shakespeare’s various works). Henry Fuseli depicted the Hamlet, who is under his father’s ghost control:

In “Hamlet”, a play in no small part pervaded by abstractions and conscious role playing, we find that the kingship is shown in terms of abstractions, contradictions and the self-conscious “playing” of the king. Hamlet lost his father, who was killed by the king. Moreover, his mother was dishonored by the same man. Thus, for the reasons given above, Hamlet’s heart was full of revenge lust. After the king was unmasked, Hamlet was betrayed and send far away, nevertheless, he returned to find the truth. At the end many people died, unfortunately, Hamlet too.

This story takes your breath and a part of your heart as Shakespeare’s works usually do. But in spite of all the things with which Hamlet professes dissatisfaction, it is said that Hamlet and heir apparent of Denmark should think about such problems in philosophical and personal terms. Because of his own carelessness he forgets about the problems of the country and the threats to its stability from within. Unfortunately, blindness and truth will never be divided without the eruption of chaos.

This picture illustrates the Hamlet’s meeting his father’s ghost. According to Atchley, the religious atmosphere in Elizabethan England and how this may have affected Shakespeare’s audience are considered, particularly the differing Catholic and Protestant beliefs concerning ghosts and the supernatural. Instead of defining the true nature of ghosts for his audiences, Shakespeare incorporates within his play both Catholic and Protestant views of the Ghost and also presents a third perspective on the Ghost, one steeped in folkloric tradition (2002, pg 5-20). Hamlet thought and supposed that his father was killed by his uncle.

Talking about the Hamlet’s reaction to the ghost that he met, I must mention that after Hamlet met his father’s ghost, his thought was to revenge. The most awful and terrifying thing for Hamlet was even not the treat of his uncle (when he killed Hamlet’s father), but the fact that mother married to his uncle. When Hamlet saw his father’s ghost he was worried, surprised and it evoked in Hamlet so many contradictory thoughts.

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The father’s ghost appeared in Act I Scenes I, IV, and V, and Act III Scene IV in the play. The ghost appeared always at night. Hamlet was really scared and terrified when he met his father’s ghost and he had doubts: is it his father’s ghost or devil. The father’s ghost told Hamlet that he was murdered by his uncle. Thus, Hamlet decided to revenge, because his father’s ghost asked him. However, Hamlet suspected his uncle in murder even before the father’s ghost appeared. Hamlet does not have any doubts. Hamlet and Goracio are the most reasonable and clever persons, whose words and thoughts are based on logical arguments and reasons. Goracio was really good and faithful friend, who helped Hamlet during all his life. In consequence, they paid for it, unfortunately.

According to Atchley’s words, the question becomes, once the Ghost has accomplished his goal by motivating Hamlet to commit revenge (and, hence, to loose his soul), why does it appear later in the closet scene and in its nightgown? The answer is to perform two functions: first, to prevent Hamlet’s convincing of Gertrude to repent; the Ghost’s appearing only to Hamlet intensifies Hamlet’s apparent madness such that Gertrude attributes Hamlet’s accusations to his insanity. Her moment of grace has passed (2002, pg 16). The theme about the reaction of Hamlet on the meeting his father’s ghost is very specific. It is obvious that Hamlet was scared and worried when he met the ghost of his murdered father. He just evoked in Hamlet feeling of confidence in that his uncle was evil and bad person (who had to be punished evidently). In addition, Hamlet was definitely embarrassed in the reason of his mother and his uncle marriage. Definitely, it can be said that “Hamlet” is complicated and mysterious world, which contains of pure love, evil and jealousy that makes people mad and obsessed. Does this play teach us something? Without any doubts, it does. It can definitely be said. This play is a mysterious world, it can be judged or understood, but never wiped off. Creations of their authors, plays include feelings, words, and dearest moments. Any way, each of us has to choose its own way, its own ending of the story and love.


According to Atchley, the counter argument is that “the Ghost tells the truth surrounding the circumstances of old Hamlet’s death, as corroborated by Claudius’ private “confession of guilt”; but a devil is capable of telling the truth if it enables him to achieve his goal (2002, pg 5-20). Shakespeare’s plays touch human feelings and relationships, first, friendship and love. That is why people are looking for the answers for their questions in Shakespeare’s creations. That is why this man is known by each of us. That is why his works leave some trace in our minds and hearts. It can generally be said that this great author shows many-sided people’s relations and feelings, contradictory or high-minded actions. His plays are heart touching, overwhelming and breathtaking. People look for answers in his plays and sonnets, because he illustrates different relationships between us, and each of it shows how people face problems and difficult questions. Therefore, Shakespeare is a great writer who created many masterpieces. He showed how cruel and liberal, evil and worrying can be our world. Moreover, I can claim that you will not be disappointed after reading his works. The entity struggle between love and betray, good and bad, life and death worries the brightest minds of humanity, including Shakespeare. Each of us eventually spends a good deal of time thinking about such problems, sooner or later our thoughts become older and more serious. Thus, we turn to great people’ words and works to be helped. Of course, thoughts can be different, but one fact is beyond doubts.


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