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This Essay I Wrote For My English Class. It Describes The Importance Of Hamlet's Soliloquys On His Character Development.

1151 words - 5 pages

Essay Topic: Review Hamlet's soliloquies and write an essay that summarizes the development of his tragic character through these speeches.Among some of the most exemplary and insightful passages in English literature exists the Hamlet soliloquies. They produce age-old questions that man seeks to answer, yet fears to be answered. Perhaps, among these examples the point is to analyse the questions and not the answers drawn. Through Hamlet each individual may choose their own truth, while at the same time examine the questions raised by it and the answers they conclude in others. Be it resolved in this essay, that one look upon these soliloquies to discover the effect such has in the development of Hamlet's character.Hamlet's Act I Scene 2 serves to introduce Hamlet for the first time in depth. Firstly, the death motif is introduced in the opening lines of this soliloquy. Hamlet despairs at his mother's marriage to Claudius and the incestuous nature it implies. He wishes he could just melt, "O that this too too sullied flesh would melt..." Here he wishes he could commit suicide, yet we see that his nature will not allow it as he would risk damnation to do so. We see here the introduction of his philosophical traits as he would not act on impulse to take his life. From here, he goes on to describe himself as his father's son, idolizing the king as a Sun God. " So excellent a king, that was to this Hyperion to a satyr" He vents his frustration as he remembers how much his father loved his wife and yet she remarried within a single month. Furthermore, he wonders how strong women are, "Frailty, thy name is woman." Hamlet questions if his mother's tears were just for show or were really sincere. "A beast that want's discourse of reason would have mourned longer..." Secondly, he ponders on Claudius and suspects evil running deeper than the obvious incestuous marriage. "'tis an unweeded garden that grows to seed." Overall, Hamlet is introduced, his concerns examined, and anxieties are developed; Hamlet starts to glimpse "something rotten in Denmark" arising due to his father's death, and the tip of balance associated with a murder of a king in Elizabethan world view.Hamlet's second soliloquy focuses mainly on his cowardice (in his eyes that is what he views it as) and his inability to act in revenge for his father. Several character foils are developed to illustrate this trait. Firstly, he muses on the players' passion towards an unseen creation, something developed in his own mind and his apparent ease to shed tears out of his imagination. What would Hecuba mean to an actor who lived in an age entirely removed from his own? He compares himself as a "dull and muddy-mettled rascal". Secondly, he develops the image of himself being helpless, as a villain mocks him while he remains motionless. "I am pigeon liver'd and lack gall." From here he concludes that by his inaction he is allowing Claudius free reign and that he taunts Hamlet by his inaction. This...

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