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Hamlet Play Essay, Research Paper

The Play Hamlet by William Shakespeare is arguably his finest tragedy ever

written. The characterizations of the cast are odd shaped pieces that fit

perfectly in this puzzle of confusion and anger. The contrasts and comparisons

between and within the characters paint a colorful picture of tragedy and

betrayal. Three characters that display intricate characteristics are Polonius,

King Claudius, and Hamlet. Polonius is a confused man filled with nothingness.

He is just a shell of a person who will agree with those who overpower him. His

mind is disillusioned and distraught. Throughout the play, until he is killed,

he believes that Hamlet is acting crazy because Hamlet loves Ophelia, Polonius’

daughter. "This is the very ecstasy of love?As oft as any passion under

heaven That does afflict our natures." It is these characteristics that

lead him to his death. Following orders by the king, Polonius hides behind a

curtain to spy on Hamlet. Unfortunately, Polonius spoke at the wrong time and is

killed for spying. Polonius was just a pawn that meant nothing. "Thou

wretched, rash, intruding fool, farewell!" King Claudius is a conniving

man. He is the brother of the previous king, King Hamlet. Claudius’ devious mind

and horrible actions were the cause of King Hamlet’s death. "?With juice

of crushed hebona in a vial And in the porches of [King Hamlet's] ears did

pour?." However his stone cold mind frame soon melted to fright as he saw

a reenactment of his action in a play put forth by Hamlet, the son of King

Hamlet. "Give me some light. Away!" Soon after, Claudius’ devious mind

began working again to plot Hamlet’s death. Backfiring with his plan, he quickly

picks up where he left off with another scheme to eliminate Hamlet. Leartes, the

son of Polonius, whom was killed by Hamlet, comes to their land. Claudius relays

the bad news and gets Leartes to vow vengeance. Through all of the scheming and

treachery, The king’s true face is shown and is killed. Hamlet is a clever and

intelligent man; however, in every tragedy there must be a tragic hero, and

Hamlet is the tragic hero. Confused about his father’s mysterious death, Hamlet

is trying to find some answers. Surprisingly, those answers came from a ghost.

It was the Ghost of his father. Being a religious man, Hamlet was weary about

the validity of the ghosts claims that Claudius killed Hamlet’s father. Hamlet

had a witty plan to put on a play depicting his father’s death in front of King

Claudius. With King Claudius reaction, Hamlet knew that his father was murdered,

and began thinking of ways to avenge his father’s death. Being slightly devious

himself, Hamlet planned to catch Claudius in his own treacherous web. He could

not just run him through at that time because of his religious beliefs. However,

his part as the tragic hero kicked in and died soon after killing Claudius.

"O, I die, Horatio! The potent poison quite o’er-crows my spirit."

Overall, Hamlet was an ideal tragedy. What made it ideal was the characteristics

of the characters and the way that they all became intertwined throughout the

play. Hamlet was the strongest character, mentally and ethically. Although

Hamlet did not come out on top, he completed his life’s work and is in a better


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