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Supernaturalism in Hamlet

analytical Essay
1128 words
1128 words
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According to the Oxford dictionary the word supernaturalism is defined as “(a manifestation or event) attributed to some force beyond scientific understanding or the laws of nature” 1. But for some writers it is the element that sets their stories successfully in motion.

To some it is the question of similarity between the plots of the two famous tragedies, “The Spanish Tragedy”, written between 1582 and 1592 by Thomas Kyd and Shakespeare’s Hamlet, which was written between 1599 and 1602. But if you dig deeper in, what interests most is the supernaturalism and its effects on the plays. The theme of supernaturalism was a common phenomenon in the Elizabethan or Renaissance era. It was greatly used in plays. People believed in the presence of ghosts, omens, witches and fairies and the audience usually enjoyed seeing them on stage.

The roots of superstitions or supernaturalism during the Renaissance era were based on religious beliefs and traditions. Many Elizabethan traditions were based on myths that could be lead back to the medieval period or even the Western Roman Empire. As for religious beliefs, in the Elizabethan era, the English country was dominated by Protestantism. Hence, beliefs in demons and angels were common and orthodox. This also meant that there were many theories as far as ghosts, the supernatural figures in both Thomas Kyd and Shakespeare’s play, are concerned. One related theme, and this is one other major theme in both plays, is revenge, which is confined by the appearance of one manifesting ghost. If this ghost appeared in the modern times, it would said to be a hallucination. Now, what is a ghost? Ghosts, in this text would refer to apparitions of the deceased, which have come back for revenge, these ghost...

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...ul and most unnatural murder.” He proceeds on by emotionally blackmailing Hamlet and seducing him into taking vengeance.

“O villain, villain, smiling, damnèd villain! My tables!—Meet it is I set it down, That one may smile, and smile, and be a villain. At least I’m sure it may be so in Denmark. So, uncle, there you are. Now to my word.”. [Act1, scene 5]. Shakespeare now begins his true story here, where Hamlet is much too eager to take revenge. He starts experiencing bloodlust, especially because of the hatred towards an uncle who married his mother before she could complete her grief period.

The ghost does not disappear after act 1, but makes sure that he keeps on motivating and pushing Hamlet.

Works Cited

1.[Simpson, J. A. and Weiner, E. S. C. 1989. The Oxford English dictionary.]
2. [HARTLEY COLERIDGE, Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, November 1828]

In this essay, the author

  • Explains that supernaturalism is defined as a manifestation or event attributed to some force beyond scientific understanding or the laws of nature. for some writers it is the element that sets their stories successfully in motion.
  • Explains that supernaturalism was a common phenomenon in the elizabethan or renaissance era.
  • Explains that superstitions and supernaturalism were based on religious beliefs and traditions during the renaissance era.
  • Narrates how don andrea was a courtier in the spanish court. he was not ignoble, but inferior far to the gracious fortunes of his tender youth.
  • Analyzes how kyd's play is set in motion when revenge and the ghost of andrea are sent from the underworld. the opening paragraph is an exposition necessary for the understanding of the play.
  • Opines that if thou didst ever thy dear father love, this eternal blazon must not be to ears of flesh and blood.
  • Analyzes how both writers strongly believed in the supernatural elements and hence the protagonists of the plays believe the apparitions at once.
  • Analyzes how hartley coleridge states that most of us cannot deny sorrow of losing a loved one. hamlet's depression has not made him mad, yet his mother, who was deeply in love with the deceased king, married his brother.
  • Analyzes how hamlet's madness was correlated to his confusion and naivety.
  • Analyzes how the ghost replies to hamlet, giving him a background of what or who he is. he blackmails and seduces him into taking vengeance.
  • Analyzes how shakespeare begins his true story, where hamlet is much too eager to take revenge, especially because of the hatred towards an uncle who married his mother before she could complete her grief period.
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