Laertes Transformation In Hamlet

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Many of the characters in William Shakespeare’s critically-acclaimed novel Hamlet transform drastically throughout the play. Whether it be the rational but grievingly vengeful Hamlet becoming borderline mentally unstable, level-headed Ophelia also losing her mind, or even Claudius feeling triumphant and victorious in securing the throne for himself but then becoming paranoid over his obvious guilt, most (if not all) of the characters in Hamlet are not the same people they were initially once you reach the back cover of the novel. One character who stands out in his transformation is the fiery and passionate Laertes, the brother of Ophelia. Laertes, like Hamlet, is grieving over the death of his father. In his anguish, he is oblivious to the fact that Claudius is just using him as a pawn in his iniquitous plan to…show more content…
Throughout the last two acts of the novel, we see Laertes change from an impulsive instigator into a more wise and rational person who realizes he is in the wrong. After he first learns of his father’s death, Laertes is seething due to his misery, and consequently, strives for immediate retaliation. Contrastingly, at the conclusion of the duel scene, he is downcast over his looming death and the fact that he has caused Hamlet’s death, while also being ashamed of how quick he was to murder. Though to some, Laertes may be a seemingly insignificant character, it is Laertes affliction (as a result of his father’s death) that ultimately drives the novel to its grievous climax. Albeit tragic, if the end scene would not have happened, Laertes would not have had the opportunity to discover that he was wrong, and thus change. In spite of the fact that shortly after this revelation he dies, he was still given the chance to see his own shortcomings before his own death, ask for forgiveness for them. The fact that he does put his pride aside and ask for absolution proves that he was never evil, but instead was a grieving soul who sought comfort and peace in
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