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Hamlet – English Coursework - What incentives does Hamlet have to kill Claudius, and why do you think he does not do so immediately?

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Hamlet - English Coursework What incentives does Hamlet have to kill Claudius, and why do you think he does not do so immediately? 'Revenge his foul and most unnatural murder.' Hamlet's aim in the play is to revenge his father by killing the man who murdered Old Hamlet; the man in question is Claudius, the new King of Denmark. The task is complicated by the fact that this man was Hamlet's uncle but now his father, through the marriage of his mother Gertrude. Hamlet realises his fate early in on the play when he is informed by Horatio that he has seen the ghost of Hamlet's father, Old Hamlet. The ghost then informs Hamlet of his demise and how his own brother betrayed him, 'The serpent that did sting thy father's life now wears his crown'. The ghost tells Hamlet of his death and refers to Claudius as a serpent, a sly slithering creature sneaking up on people, he shows his loathing of his brother and gives an early view of Claudius as an evil man. At the time revenge was commonplace and killing the King, notably the highest man in the society, would be accepted on valid grounds. ...read more.


Hamlet hates Claudius, 'Remorseless, treacherous, lecherous, kindles villain!' Hamlet shows his disgust and loathsome feelings about Claudius. But Hamlet believes that if he kills Claudius he would become just as bad, 'do this same villain send to heaven', saying he would be a murderer. Hamlet is a philosophical thinker he doesn't like killing, he is a thinker rather than a doer, 'Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, or to take arms against a sea of troubles', Hamlet is constantly struggling with the thought of killing Claudius. He doesn't know whether to kill him or not, he is focusing all his energy on the thought to do it rather than just doing it. 'And now I'll do't - and so 'a goes to heaven' he is convincing himself he doesn't have to kill Claudius right now although he knows will have to. Hamlet uses the excuse that Claudius will go to heaven instead of hell because Claudius is praying at the time; this is a cop out as he knows this isn't the reason why he doesn't kill him but another postponement. He would rather have never been born than have the burden of killing Claudius, 'O cursed spite, that ever I was born to set it right!' ...read more.


His words are emotionless, short and blunt showing that he has no feelings anymore for Ophelia, which would deeply hurt her. Hamlet's abuse is constant and brutal constantly implying she is a promiscuous woman, all this is unfair because she is not, 'Lady, shall I lie in your lap?' Hamlet's constant cruelty and Hamlet killing her father drives Ophelia mad which leads to her suicide and Hamlets growing depression. Hamlet has even more to think about which postpones his plans and action to kill Claudius. Hamlet's main incentive for killing Claudius is simple, Claudius murdered his father. This is a big enough incentive for killing Claudius. There are a number of reasons he does not get on and do it the greatest being his depression. Hamlet depression has many sources but the greatest originally coming from the death of his father. If Hamlet's depression was non-existent then Claudius' death would have been a lot sooner, Hamlet is a very clever man and without depression a plan would have been made and Claudius would be dead with little fuss. Hamlet has the means and the motive to do it and he knows this, 'Sith I have cause, and will, and strength, and means' Hamlet would kill Claudius as his incentives are great, he just needed time to overcome his depression and understand himself. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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