Horatio – Hamlet’s Dearest Friend
In Shakespeare’s tragedy Hamlet there are many characters who can be accused of many sins – but not Horatio. Rightfully Hamlet compliments Horatio on his nobility and dignity; he is indeed a faithful friend. This essay will highlight this ideal friendship as part of a general consideration of Horatio.
Cumberland Clark in “The Supernatural in Hamlet” describes Horatio’s reaction when the prince intends to follow the ghost:
Hamlet addresses the spirit, which beckons him to follow it. Horatio tries to dissuade the willing Prince, for ghosts were credited with the vile intention of enticing men to their self-destruction (I.4.69-74):
What if it tempt you toward the flood, my lord,
Or to the dreadful summit of the clif
That beetles o’er his base into the sea
And there assume some other horrible form,
Which might deprive your seovereignty of reason
And draw you into madness? . . .
Hamlet obeys the Ghost’s command to follow him, ignoring the protest of Horatio, who is much relieved, on coming up with him later, to find him safe (101).
Who is the play’s historian? None other than Horatio. In the first scene Horatio gives a detailed history of what has gone before regarding King Hamlet:
Our last king,
Whose image even but now appear'd to us,
Was, as you know, by Fortinbras of Norway,
Thereto prick'd on by a most emulate pride,
Dared to the combat; in which our valiant Hamlet--
For so this side of our known world esteem'd him--
Did slay this Fortinbras; who by a seal'd compact,
Well ratified by law and heraldry,
Did forfeit, with his life, all those his lands
Which he stood seized of, to ...
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...on: Frank Cass & Co., Ltd., 1964. p.14-16. http://www.freehomepages.com/hamlet/other/essayson.htm#demag-ess N. pag.
Pitt, Angela. “Women in Shakespeare’s Tragedies.” Readings on The Tragedies. Ed. Clarice Swisher. San Diego: Greenhaven Press, 1996. Reprint from Shakespeare’s Women. N.p.: n.p., 1981.
Shakespeare, William. The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark. Massachusetts Institute of Technology. 1995. http://www.chemicool.com/Shakespeare/hamlet/full.html
West, Rebecca. “A Court and World Infected by the Disease of Corruption.” Readings on Hamlet. Ed. Don Nardo. San Diego: Greenhaven Press, 1999. Rpt. from The Court and the Castle. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1957.
Wilkie, Brian and James Hurt. “Shakespeare.” Literature of the Western World. Ed. Brian Wilkie and James Hurt. New York: Macmillan Publishing Co., 1992.
Aware that he couldn’t inform his parents towards Byron’s actions; consequently, Kenny makes an effort to find some approach to bond with Byron, yet he talks to him harshly. “I thought I told your jive little ass to shut the hell up and enjoy the damn cookies” (Curtis 82). Right after this act, a sympathetic notion is revealed by the sight of death. Initially, Byron was agitating a morning dove, throwing cookie crumbs on it. Byron saunters over and picks up the bird, “and with his hand other one gently brushed pink frosting off the dove’s chest” (Curtis 83). Kenny presented excitement "You got a bird!" (Curtis 83). Being optimistic was far from Byron’s thoughts instead, “He dropped the bird, walked over to the green-apple tree and started throwing up” and crying (Curtis 83). The description of Byron crying over the death of the bird displays compassion. This is the first moment the reader becomes aware that he cares for something beyond himself. Immediately after this scene, Byron is right back to
Horatio holds the seat of honor in Shakespeare’s tragedy Hamlet, for being the only character among the dramatis personae who is extremely close to the protagonist. Horatio’s emotional bond with the hero is paradoxically closer than that of Hamlet’s mother to the hero. This essay will examine the character of Horatio, Hamlet’s truest friend.
The idea of freedom and equality usually go hand-in-hand, especially when talking about the freedom and equality within society. As Adam Smith and Alexis de Tocqueville express these ideas within their works, it is clear to see that they both highlight different aspects of what they understand about modern society in relation to freedom and equality.
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A study conducted by Charles Rooney a member of the National Center for Fair and Open testing states that, "[More than 275 colleges and universities across the United States, acting on the belief that "test scores do not equal merit," do not use the SAT or the ACT to make admissions decisions about some part or all of their freshmen.]"
Wells, G. L., & Bradfield, A. L. (1998). “Good, you identified the suspect”: Feedback to eyewitness distorts their reports of the eyewitness experience. Journal of Applied Psychology, 83(3), 360-376.
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Throughout literature, there a character who provides a moral compass for other characters. In William Shakespeare's Hamlet, Horatio’s character seems fairly simple: somewhat of a “yes-man” to Hamlet, often agreeing with anything Hamlet says. However, at the end of the play we understand his significance, as he is one of the last survivors. This transition is unexpected because for most of the play, Horatio is a reserved character and doesn’t speak very often. Despite this, it is clear that Horatio and Hamlet’s friendship is extremely deep, and Hamlet trusts Horatio more than anybody. At first, the relationship is one of a prince and an advisor, but as the play goes on we realize they are in fact close friends. Horatio is much more than a “yes-man” to Hamlet, even though this may not be visible for most of the play. This friendship is due to three of Horatio’s characteristics: trustworthiness, loyalty, and admiration, which make him an ideal friend to Hamlet. These traits also inspire confidence in Horatio from other characters in the play. Even Shakespeare shows that he values Horatio by allowing him to survive at the end of the play.
In the play Hamlet, by William Shakespeare, the confidant Horatio is created to serve a number of different purposes. Horatio is a flat character. He is a loyal, obedient, and trustworthy companion to Hamlet. His character does not undergo any significant transformation throughout the play, except that he serves as a witness of the death of Hamlet, Claudius, and Gertrude. Horatio's role in the play seems to be as a utilitarian character that Shakespeare created in order to heighten the suspense of the play. Also for Horatio to be Hamlet's ear so as to appease the audience's ear, and to communicate the moral of the play.
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