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. If Hamlet Could Tell His Story

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Jennifer Sudwal AP Literature Stucken; Period 1 November 12, 2008 "Had I but time... O, I could tell you / But let it be. Horatio, I am dead" (5.2.306-08). Hamlet speaks these words as he is dying in the final scene of Shakespeare's play Hamlet. He is not able to tell of what he went through ever since he discovered his mother, the queen, married his uncle right after his father's, the late king's, death. Hamlet discovers that Claudius, his uncle, murdered the king in his sleep when the ghost of his dead father confronts him. Hamlet pledges to seek revenge for his father's death, following his filial piety, but faces many difficulties after doing so. If Hamlet had the ability to continue to tell his story he would express the inner complications he suffered as he became the target of deception by family and friends, the intense hatred he felt for his mother's marriage which resulted in his own rejection of Ophelia's innocent love, and the struggle between the man he was and the man he swore to become in order to murder the king. Hamlet became distrustful and rightfully so because those he had trusted were deceiving him. First of all, not only did Claudius usurp the throne to which Hamlet had been next in line to, but he also boldly told Hamlet: We pray you, throw to earth This unprevailing woe; and think of us As of a father: for let the world take note You are the most immediate to our throne; (1.2.106-09). ...read more.


Hamlet is extremely upset by her doings and completely disapproves. He is disgusted and lets his mother know exactly how horrible it makes him feel. Furthermore, Hamlet continues to rant at her asking "O shame! where is thy blush? Rebellious hell, / If thou canst mutine in a matron's bones, / To flaming youth let virtue be as wax, / And melt in her own fire" (3.4.82-5) The hurt that he feels is a lot stronger at the idea of his mother sharing vows and bed with his uncle than at the idea of his uncle killing his father. Because his mother is so much closer and dearer to him it makes it even more disturbing that she would commit an act like this which Hamlet would never have seen coming and these strong emotions surpass those he feels toward Claudius and therefore distracting him from his duty to seek revenge on him. As a result, he begins to act rudely towards Ophelia, telling her "if thou wilt needs marry, marry a fool; for wise men know well enough what monsters you make of them. / To a nunnery, go; and quickly too" (3.1.33-5). His attitude may be due to his antic disposition but Hamlet goes as far as to misbehave with her and speak very badly to her even when there is nobody around. His mother's selfish act leads him to develop distaste for women and as a result he taunts Ophelia repeatedly insulting her and calling her a whore. ...read more.


(4.4.33-34). Ever since he pledged to seek revenge he avoided the act and made up excuses to prevent having to commit murder. It is not in Hamlet's nature to take anyone's life because it goes against his own morals and the person he is. He continued to go through this internal struggle up till the moment he himself was dying and is impassioned enough at the sight of his mother dying to finally act against Claudius, fulfilling his filial piety for his father and mother at the same time. If Hamlet was given the chance to finish telling everything he wanted to say, he would explain the different experiences he went through after his father's death and his mother's marriage to his uncle. He became disillusioned when his uncle, mother and friends betrayed him and lost trust in those who were close to him. In addition he lost his love Ophelia due to his own negative feelings toward women which he developed after learning about his mother's remarriage. He pushed away his loved ones in the process of seeking revenge, and still had difficulty convincing himself to kill Claudius because it went against the type of person he was. Hamlet had sworn to forget everything and focus on the murder he needed to commit but instead he remained a scholar at heart and avoided following through. Hamlet would explain and advice others to think thoroughly before committing oneself to any act and to remain truthful and honest to close family and loved ones in order to prevent losing them at any cost. Sudwal 1 ...read more.

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