Revenge And Revenge In Hamlet

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Revenge and Shakespreare Revenge is defined by the Merriam-Webster dictionary as ”to avenge (oneself or another) usually by retaliating in kind or degree.” Many pieces of literature use revenge as a primary plot point but one of the most famous works of literature about revenge is “Hamlet”. “Hamlet” is a story that completely focuses on the act of revenge. It is about a prince who contemplated avenging his father by killing his uncle. There are two main characters that driven by revenge in the play. These characters are Hamlet and Laertes. They are two young men that have had their family members murdered by people that were close to them. While these characters are similar in their backgrounds they are very different in their view of revenge…show more content…
They notice that it looks a lot like the dead king and decided to bring Prince Hamlet to encounter it. At this point the ghost finally starts to talk to someone. He informs Hamlet that he was murdered by his brother Claudius and cannot go to Heaven until the crime that was committed against him has been answered for. Hamlet is surprised by this news. He swears to complete the Ghost’s request and he makes the guardsmen who saw him talk to the Ghost to swear to secrecy. After this experience Hamlet is conflicted about killing Claudius. He at first has doubts if Claudius is even guilty of killing Hamlet. He sets a play includes a scene that resembles the way that Claudius killed King Hamlet. Claudius leaves the theater at that moment and Hamlet has his confirmation. Even with this confirmation he still hesitates to kill Claudius. He gets an opportunity when Claudius is trying to pray in his room but he does not because he believes that Claudius might go to heaven if he dies while praying. Hamlet tells himself that he would wait until Claudius is doing something sinful before he killed him. From this moment Hamlet decides to “To put an antic disposition on. (1.5.190-192)” and pretend to be mad. He does this so that his uncle does not suspect his plot. He also does this so he can have more time to put off killing Claudius. Even with proof Hamlet cannot commit himself to killing…show more content…
When Hamlet accidentally kills Laertes’s father, Polonius , Laertes immediately returns to Denmark from France where he was studying at college. He storms King Claudius’s castle with a mob. He desires revenge and does not waste any time before trying to get it. When Claudius convinces him that he is innocent in his father’s death he immediately agrees with Claudius’s plan to get revenge on Hamlet. While Hamlet is hesitant Laertes is brash and impulsive. He even states that in his confrontation with King Claudius “Let come what comes, only I 'll be revenged Most thoroughly for my father.” (4.5.148-154) Laertes does not do much thinking when it comes to avenging his father. The opposite is said about Hamlet who spends too much time contemplating whether he should avenge his father. They both were in the same situation but went about it very differently. In the final confrontation between Claudius, Laertes and Hamlet their colliding motives leads to the death of each person. So even if one is slow and methodical or brash and quick Shakespeare is trying to show through this play that revenge does not lead to a good outcome whatever way it is approached. In conclusion even though their methods were different Hamlet and Laertes are both characters motivated by the same desire for revenge. This desire has a different effect on the two characters

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