Shakespeare Has Many Ways Of Introducing His Heroes. Take The Opening Act Of One Play And Show How Shakespeare Creates His Character And Establishes His Qualities.

1408 words - 6 pages

In William Shakespeare's "Hamlet", the main character is introduced in a number of ways. In Act I of the play, Hamlet is mainly established by his words and actions, and his predicament. They portray Hamlet's loyalty, intelligence, courage, his concept of morality and ability to express himself. These qualities are also shown through the drama of the play, such as the soliloquies.One of the main qualities portrayed within Hamlet's character by Shakespeare, shown by his predicament and his words and actions, is his ability to express his feelings about situations. One way he does this is by his intelligence and his clever way with words; another key quality in his character. As the former King - Hamlet's father - is dead, his Uncle, Claudius, marries Hamlet's mother and takes the place of the King of Denmark. Hamlet is disturbed by this incestuous marriage and he displays his disgust with it in front of the King. When Claudius refers to Hamlet as "my son", he retorts:"A little more than kin, and less than kind."This sharp remark allows Hamlet to be rude to Claudius in a clever and subtle way. He shows his disgust at now being Claudius' nephew and stepson - "a little more than kin" - while also suggesting that he is not kindly disposed towards him. Another clever retort towards Claudius is made a second time, when the King asks Hamlet why he is so depressed:"Not so, my lord, I am too much in the sun"With this clever pun, Hamlet again shows his disgust at being Claudius' son as well as his nephew. He also suggests that he is so upset about the situation that he wants to die and to be literally out of "the sun". This demonstrates Hamlet's ability to use his intelligence and express his feelings about the King. Furthermore, he says this to the King in front of the whole court, humiliating and under-cutting the King for everyone to hear. This disgust and anger would be portrayed to the audience by Hamlet's bitter tone.Another way Hamlet expresses his feelings is by his sense of decorum, as he has a strong opinion of what is proper for a King and fit for a nation. Hamlet believes that other countries will judge Denmark solely on their impression of her king. He condemns Claudius, in front of Horatio and Marcellus, for being a drunkard. He is disgusted with the King's drinking habits and parties and believes that this makes other countries label the state of Denmark a country full of drunkards:"Makes us traduced and taxed of other nationsThey clepe us drunkards and with swinish phraseSoil our additions"Hamlet further confirms this opinion by comparing the situation to a fatal flaw in an otherwise good man. Men who are great can be made disreputable because of one weakness. He compares the great man to Denmark and suggests that Claudius is it's fatal flaw.Hamlet also expresses himself effectively in a soliloquy in which he compares his father to the current King and articulates his concept of morality. Again, Hamlet's hatred for Claudius is demonstrated....

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