Seeking Vengeance in Hamlet
Revenge causes the downfall of many persons. Its consuming nature causes one to act recklessly through anger rather than reason. Throughout Hamlet, revenge is a dominant occurrence resulting in tragic events. The characters in the play, Hamlet, Laertes, and Fortinbras, all seek to avenge the deaths of their fathers. The play Hamlet, by William Shakespeare, is primarily a tragedy of revenge as many of the characters seek vengeance leading to chaos.
At the beginning of Hamlet, the audience is already aware of a tragedy when the King of Denmark dies. The death of Hamlet’s father, King Hamlet, is the source of all Hamlets' want for revenge throughout the entire play. As the play progresses, Hamlet has an encounter with his father's ghost, leading Hamlet to believe that his uncle Claudius is responsible for his father's death, "And so I am revenged. That would be scann’d:/ A villain kills my father; and, for that,/ I, his sole son, do this same villain send/ To heaven." (act 3, scene 3). In this quote, Hamlet states that since he is his father's only son, it is up to him to avenge for his father's murder. These triggers led Hamlet to plan to kill Claudius while Claudius is sinning so Claudius' soul will go to hell. Every tragic event throughout the play can be traced back to Hamlet trying to seek revenge for the death of his father.
As the plot develops, the audience is aware of Hamlet’s constant desire to kill Claudius. Suddenly, Hamlet in an act of revenge tries to kill his Uncle Claudius standing behind a curtain. He succeeds however the man behind the curtain turned out to be Lord Polonius. After the death of Polonius his children go mad. Ophelia, his daughter, goes insane and drowns. Leaving Claudius son, Laertes’, fumed for revenge as it is emphasized when his family members are killed. This leads him to want to kill Hamlet in order to satisfy his desire for...