In the play “Hamlet” by William Shakespeare, there are a variety of contributing elements to the tale of tragedy, but one thing is absolutely necessary: the ghost of King Hamlet. The ghost of King Hamlet is so crucial to “Hamlet” on so many levels that it accounts for most problems, directly or indirectly, connected with the drama.
The pale specter’s mysteriousness generates many of Hamlet’s behaviors, such as his delay, and it also projects the image of Hamlet’s lunacy. It is most importantly, it supplies the narrative: Hamlet seeking revenge for his father’s murder. The question that was introduced at the start of the play, with the appearance of the king’s ghost on the battlements, was answered when Hamlet went to battlements after a brief game of follow-the-leader.
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At this point, King Hamlet’s visage speaks to Hamlet, advising him not the most famous lines from the play, but those with the most significance. Here, King Hamlet reveals his true identity as a deceased king to his son. It is shown that King Hamlet died as a result of a treacherous betrayal by his own beloved brother. With this revelation, the tale is set in motion with Hamlet seeking to avenge his father’s untimely death and Claudius’ assassination.
Another aspect of Hamlet is illuminated when we learn about his new understanding of the murderous Claudius. Hamlet’s so-called “procrastination” is illuminated with the revelation from the apparition. Because the prince was unaware of his father’s real identity, he could be either King Hamlet or a devious imposter sent by Satan himself to induce him to commit an act of unpardonable evil. To verify the spirit’s claims, Hamlet set out on a journey to test their validity.
As a result, half of the play has Hamlet traveling around looking for evidence, yet he comes up empty-handed. It wasn’t until after the actors had come that he considered an idea to test the veracity of the things going through his mind. Here Hamlet decided “the play is the thing; to catch the King’s conscience.” He did so, proving Claudius’ involvement in his father’s murder and validating the identity of the ghost as really his father.
Madness is a major element in most of Shakespeare’s plays, and Hamlet is no exception. In Romeo & Juliet, insane love was an important element of the tragedy. Banquo’s ghost dabbled his hands in Macbeth’s blood as well. His guests witnessed a mad look on Banquo’s face after only seeing him through Macbeth’s eyes. This occurred with Banquo as well, but to a lesser extent.
The appearance of the ghost in Hamlet did not completely form Hamlet’s reputation as insane. At first, he was not the first and only person to see this ghost of King Hamlet. Only with Horatio, Marcellus, and Barnardo’ testimonies did Hamlet learn about this apparition. The idea that Hamlet was crazy didn’t come until after their second encounter. After their initial conversation with the spectre, Hamlet compelled his three accomplices to swear not to speak about it.
Instead of sweeping across Denmark in the King’s absence, no one was aware of the ghost’s existence. So comes the second encounter of Hamlet with the ghost. This time it happens in Queen Gertrude’s “closet,” where Hamlet is pleading with his mother to stop blaming Claudius because to Claudius’ evil deeds. His father’s form re- Appears before him, warning him not to harm his mother for a second time as he was about to completely sell his speech to Gertrude.
The Queen stood in confusion as Hamlet carried on a conversation with his father, for she had no way of seeing her ex-husband. This persuaded Queen Gertrude that Hamlet was genuinely insane and that his strange notions were genuine. “Hamlet” would not be nearly as popular if it weren’t for the mad appearance of Hamlet and his recognized procrastination. Certainly, there is little meaning and impact in the tale without its intricate plot.
William Shakespeare’s Hamlet is a play written between 1599 and 1601, during the reign of King James I. The tragic tale of how Prince Hamlet executes revenge on his Uncle Claudius for murdering his father (King Hamlet), marrying Gertrude (his widowed mother, King Hamlet’s wife), and ascending to the throne is told in the play, which takes place in Denmark. The fatal flaw (Hamartia) of protagonist Hamlet may be interpreted as his delay in executing vengeance.
Hamlet had numerous chances to avenge his father’s death throughout the play, but something always seemed to stop him. There are many reasons why Hamlet delayed taking action: whether it was because he feared the consequences of killing, perhaps he doubted the ghost, or it could be that Hamlet didn’t want to hurt his mother. It’s also possible that Hamlet didn’t believe in violence as a renaissance Prince and didn’t desire to use force against anyone.
The idea that Hamlet was acting like a ghost is useless, as discussed above; it appears to be disproven by the Big Bang and quantum physics. The most complex of these theories, but also the one which narratively makes the most sense after reading his soliloquy (which we’ll get to later), is that Hamlet was delaying due to psycho-emotional conflict. This theory is somewhat more viable than the preceding two since there are distinct reasons given for Hamlet’s delay in killing Claudius.
Whatever the case may be, it is clear that Hamlet delayed avenging his father’s death, resulting in Gertrude, Laertes, Polonius, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern’s deaths as well as his own; this procrastination – no other factor was considered – is unquestionably Hamlet’s tragic flaw. The ghost appeared at the start of the play.
Nobody knew who, or what the specter wanted. Horatio was the one who had to communicate with the ghost: “If you are privy to your nation’s destiny, which, fortunately, may be foreseen, O speak! Or if you’ve hoarded upabank in life and extracted treasure from the ground for which spirits are said to frequently walk in death. Speak of it; stay and speak about it” (Shakespeare 1). Hamlet was unsure whether or not the ghost was an evil spirit according to his religious beliefs.
Hamlet performed a play in which the murder of his father was re-enacted to see whether Claudius was guilty of murdering his father and, more importantly, to identify the ghost. This play, known as the murder of Gonzago, was directed by Hamlet in which Horatio would observe Claudius’ reaction. If Claudius became hesitant, Hamlet would know that the ghost spoke the truth: “I’ll have grounds / More relative than this – it’s all about the theater; / In which I’ll catch King Lear’s conscience” (Shakespeare 2. 2).
Claudius’s reaction, according to Horatio, was hesitant, and Hamlet now knew that Claudius was guilty. Hamlet was a very religious man. This is demonstrated in the prayer session: “Now might I do it smoothly; now he is praying; / And now I’ll do it. And so he goes to heaven; / And so am I revenged. That would be scanned: a villain murders my father; and for that, / I, his only son, send this same evildoer to heaven.” (Shakespeare 3.3 77-82) This passage informs the reader that Hamlet is extremely devout; he is afraid of what would happen if he killed him.
The last reason is that Hamlet did not want to hurt his mother. Hamlet didn’t want to upset his mother, particularly after the ghost of Hamlet’s father warned him against harming her in any way. “Will speak daggers to her, but use none” (Shakespeare 3. 2). This showed Hamlet’s commitment to defending his family.
He spoke to her in a brusque manner on several occasions, but he never subjected her to any sort of physical abuse. Hamlet did not want to kill Claudius because he wanted his mother to experience the pain of losing another loved one. Sigmund Freud, a renowned scholar, goes even further than this and characterizes the problem as “the Oedipus Complex.” According to Freud, Hamlet is in love with his mother. Incest was not legal in Shakespeare’s time.
Hamlet’s desire to follow in his uncle’s footsteps was undeniable; that is, to get rid of the husband so he may have Gertrude for himself. If this is true, Hamlet can’t act because he’s battling with his subconscious; he understands that what he wants is morally wrong, and if he went through with it, he’d be no better than Claudius. With the death of Hamlet’s mother at the end of the play, Freud continues the metaphor by implying that Hamlet has only been able to murder Claudius at its conclusion. As a result, there is no more need for Claudius; therefore, Hamlet may finish his vengeful quest.
Hamlet’s fatal flaw throughout the performance is his delay in avenging his father’s death. The majority of specialists agree that Hamlet’s procrastination makes sense when seen in light of the “Oedipus Complex,” although certain critics believe he merely thinks too much. He wants the King’s assassination to be flawless. Claudius has to go to hell. The public must be informed about Claudius’ guilt.
Hamlet’s inaction leads to the death of all important characters, as well as the play’s overall conclusion. The deaths of most significant figures are caused by Hamlet’s excessive time planning and insufficient time doing; thus, making the King’s murder more complicated than previous murders he has committed. This procrastination is ultimately accountable for the majority of key characters’ deaths and the entire play’s conclusion. If Hamlet had taken action at the start of the drama, there would be no play at all.
It’s only when everyone else is dead, including himself, that he doesn’t comprehend that he shouldn’t have waited so long. He understands the repercussions of his delay; all his pent-up rage erupts and takes revenge on the King. However, it appears that this is not truly vengeance but rather a final tragic blunder in lifeless hesitation.
Hamlet is undoubtedly one of the most disputed characters ever written by William Shakespeare. Since its debut, critics have differed in opinion regarding Hamlet’s fundamental nature due to his complexity in character. More significantly, since it was first identified, procrastination, which was Hamlet’s most obvious flaw, has been the subject of intense debate.
According to Freud’s Oedipal Complex theory, which considers Hamlet to be in love with his mother, some experts say that procrastination is caused by “Oedipal Complex.” A similar argument may be made based on the fact that Hamlet is given many chances to kill Claudius, but he always passes them up, even when ordered to do so.
As a result, it’s quite probable that Hamlet unintentionally allows Claudius to survive in order to offset Hamlet’s inclination toward his mother. Others believe he isn’t given the chance to exact revenge on his father’s death until the proper moment because he is frequently preoccupied when such a scenario arises. In any case, Hamlet’s delay in achieving justice suggests a fractured mental condition that results in an unfavorable conclusion not just for Hamlet but also for those around him.
Claudius kills Hamlet’s father, king Hamlet, and his own brother to gain access to the throne by marrying Gertrude, mother to Prince Hamlet. Claudius’ scheme is successful, and Hamlet is forced to choose whether or not to kill his uncle in order to avenge his father’s death (Burnett 49). Because he is aware of the fact that if he kills Claudius, his friends will avenge him by killing him, Hamlet is put in an impossible situation that eventually leads him to procrastinate.
Claudius is also a member of his family, and so the king retains the throne and crown, and murdering him would be treasonous. Hamlet, on the other hand, has been driven to seek vengeance for his father’s death by an overwhelming desire to do so, exacerbated by the sight of his father’s ghost instructing him to kill Claudius (Johnson 265).
Hamlet, on the other hand, is unsure if the apparition is real. He is perplexed as to whether it was a deceased father’s spirit or simply an evil spirit. “Be a healthy or goblin- damned spirit, bring with you heavenly air or hellish flames; your intentions are good or evil, you come in such a suspicious form,” Hamlet says (Johnson 262).
Hamlet is left with a tough decision to make, which ultimately forces him to choose between upholding ethics or defending his father’s reputation (Neal 1). Hamlet finds making such a choice difficult, and he thinks about it for a long time before coming to the conclusion that Claudius should be assassinated (Burnett 53).
Hamlet is drawn to his mother Gertrude, but Claudius’ presence hinders the prospect of intimacy with her. Hamlet is afraid that if he kills Claudius, there will be a space in which they can become closer.
Hamlet’s fear of such a calamity leads him to deceive himself into delaying the death of Claudius by acting pious. He starts by looking into whether or not Claudius was responsible for his father’s murder, not so much out of a desire to discover the truth as to pass the time away. Once he is certain that Claudius killed his father, he begins a holy duty to kill him, but even when presented with an opportunity, Hamlet finds an excuse not to do so (Burnett 52).
Hamlet first attempts to kill Claudius during a prayer. Hamlet claims that it isn’t religious to murder someone while they’re praying, thus he avoids doing so. The only time when Hamlet does not waver in his desire to kill is after killing Polonius in the bedroom with Gertrude and stabbing the man behind the curtain. Unfortunately, it turns out that Polonius was the man behind the bedroom curtain (Neal 1). Hamlet may have stabbed Polonius impulsively in the presence of his mother, who still held a possessive grip on him. Hamlet is capable of postponing murdering Claudius in all other situations because he lacks an emotional motivation comparable to his mother at that time.
Good vs. evil
Hamlet is a noble and educated prince who, through his deceptive nature, has damaged his mind. Hamlet focuses his thinking on evil, which leads to him being distrustful of everyone around him and doubting every decision he makes (Johnson 262). Hamlet is an admirable human being who believes in high moral values and despises evil, yet the loss of his father drives him to embrace evil. He tries repeatedly to suppress his honour and the continual battle between his intellect and conscious derails his progress.
Consequences of procrastination
Hamlet’s procrastination has numerous ramifications, ranging from far-reaching to immediate, thus many people around Hamlet are adversely impacted (Johnson 264). Hamlet is initially able to hide his real love for Ophelia, delaying the ideal time to confess his true affection for her. Hamlet goes out of his way to identify with a lunatic and irresponsible personality at the expense of Ophelia’s devotion and adoration. He does not value or adore her as much as he should have done (Burnett 55).
Hamlet rejects Ophelia in order to preserve his role, and this causes her heartbreak, which leads to Ophelia’s insanity and suicide. He insults those he claims to care about, such as his mother. The madman act of Hamlet piques Rosencrantz and Guildenstern’s interest; they keep asking him about the play’s logic in order to discover the hermit’s long-term goals (Neal 1).
However, the hermit is not pleased with their inquiries and he grows increasingly suspicious of them, culminating in fury when he finds out their true intentions. He holds this against them for a long time before ordering their death in England as a result of his accumulated hatred and malevolence. When Hamlet defers to kill Claudius, Polonius gets himself into danger by being stabbed in Gertrude’s bedroom on suspicion that he is Claudius.
Hamlet’s procrastination might have been attributed to his attachment to his mother, his mentality, or even all of the above. The truth is that Hamlet’s recurring deferment of responsibilities ultimately led to the deaths of most of those around him. His desire to be a wicked person inclined him to a distinct form of thinking that paved the way for him to embrace evil and lead him down the road towards death.
People react in a variety of ways when confronted with a difficult circumstance. This depiction of a perplexed man whose thoughts and emotions prevent him from completing what he has to do is shown in Hamlet by William Shakespeare. In various situations throughout the narrative, characters are placed under severe tests that they must face on impulse without giving it any thought whether their actions are moral or illegal.
We observe procrastination, flashes of rage, and vengeance in the play. Though these emotions are natural for the human mind, they can be poisonous and self-destructive to those who act on them. Those who react immediately on impulse are termed “instant responders,” whereas those who take their time to think about things and resolve their problems with time are known as “fast responders.”
It’s almost like having a quarrel in one’s head. You know you have a duty to complete a task on the other side of yourself, but the other half balks and tries to persuade you that it will eventually get done, just not right now. This is a huge issue that we constantly see in Hamlet’s story. Though we may consider procrastinating as a little transgression against objects, failing to act promptly might have much more serious consequences in certain cases.
In a sense, it goes against your rational mind since you know that by not acting right away, more damage may be done. Hamlet has the chance to kill his father’s murderer and hesitates before doing so because he wants to think it over some more. “Now I could do it nicely; now he is praying; And now I’ll do it. So he goes to heaven; and so am I revenged.”
“The thought would be sann’d; My father is murdered by a villain; and, I, his only son, send this same villain to heaven.” (Shakespeare. Act III, Scene iii) In the finest tradition of rationality leading to irrationality, Hamlet has gazed too deeply into whether or not the moment to act is correct that he now ‘scorns’ to act. “There is no good or bad except that it is made so by thinking.”