Write an opinion essay discussing Hamlet’s character and attempting to explain through Hamlet’s characteristics and emotional condition why Hamlet does not avenge his father’s murder immediately upon learning of the murder from the dead king’s Ghost.
Hamlet, the titular character of Shakespeare’s famous play, is a complex and multi-faceted individual whose motivations and actions have been the subject of much debate and analysis. One of the most intriguing aspects of Hamlet’s character is his delay in avenging his father’s murder, despite being urged to do so by the Ghost of his deceased father. In this essay, I will argue that Hamlet’s character and emotional condition are key factors in explaining why he does not take immediate action.
One of the key characteristics that contributes to Hamlet’s delay in avenging his father’s murder is his introspection and self-doubt. Hamlet is a deeply contemplative and reflective character who is constantly questioning the nature of reality and his own motivations. This introspection leads him to doubt the veracity of the Ghost’s claims and to question whether it is truly his father’s spirit that he has seen, or whether it is some kind of trick or deception. Furthermore, Hamlet is deeply conflicted about the idea of avenging his father’s murder, and is wracked with guilt and self-doubt about his ability to take the necessary action.
Another important characteristic that contributes to Hamlet’s delay is his emotional instability. Throughout the play, Hamlet is plagued by intense emotional turmoil and is often in a state of depression and despair. This emotional instability is further exacerbated by the news of his father’s murder and the revelation that his uncle, King Claudius, is responsible for the crime. Hamlet’s emotional state makes it difficult for him to take decisive action, as he is consumed by feelings of grief, anger, and betrayal.
Finally, Hamlet’s moral and ethical code also plays a role in his delay in avenging his father’s murder. Hamlet is a deeply moral and ethical character who is deeply troubled by the idea of taking revenge and spilling blood. He is tormented by the idea that his actions will only lead to more violence and suffering, and is unable to reconcile this with his sense of justice and righteousness. This internal conflict further contributes to his delay in taking action.
Hamlet’s character and emotional condition are key factors in explaining his delay in avenging his father’s murder. His introspection and self-doubt, emotional instability, and moral and ethical code all contribute to his inability to take immediate action. Despite these obstacles, Hamlet ultimately finds the inner strength and resolve to take revenge on his uncle in the end, however, his delay shows the complexity of his personality and the depth of his thoughts.
Shakespeare, W. (n.d.). Hamlet.
Crowther, J. (n.d.). Hamlet: Character Analysis.