The Overpowering Emotions of Hamlet and Antony in Hamlet and The Tragedy of Antony and Cleopatra by Shakespeare

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The Overpowering Emotions of Hamlet and Antony in Hamlet and The Tragedy of Antony and Cleopatra by Shakespeare Two of the most the most complicated characters in Shakespeare’s plays are Mark Antony, in The Tragedy of Antony and Cleopatra, and Hamlet, in The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark. They share many similarities, but also have notable differences. The biggest trait that they have in common is the effect that their emotional state of mind has on their actions. Antony and Hamlet are overcome by their emotions and lose their objective reasoning power. They are both irrational and disorientated in the decisions they make. Hamlet differs from Antony on a personal level. This is to say that his mood does not shift as sporadically as Antony’s, and his melancholia is present throughout the entire play. Antony, on the other hand, has mood swings that take him from love to anger in short periods of time. The biggest difference between the two is the speed of their actions. Antony has many different affairs throughout the play and wastes no time carrying them out or thinking about them. Hamlet’s revenge on Claudius is his sole task in the play, and it takes him months to accomplish. Another clear distinction is that there is a theme of madness in Hamlet that is not as evident in Antony and Cleopatra. The question of Hamlet’s madness, or ‘Antic Disposition’, is one of the most debated in English literature. Antony’s mental state, on the other hand, is never questioned, but he is still very irrational. Love is a key theme. There is a question of love in Hamlet, but it does not play such an important role. Both characters are obsessive and delusional; all of these factors cause their inevitable deaths. Hamlet and... ... middle of paper ... ...nts after declaring he will wage war on Caesar, “Tis one of those odd tricks which sorrow shoots out of the mind” (IV.ii.13-14). Antony’s mood fluctuation creates spontaneity in him. He is very unpredictable. He lets his emotions make his decisions instead of his mind. This is his tragic flaw. He makes decisions without considering their consequences. Antony has an inner struggle between his love with Cleopatra in Egypt, and his duties as a leader of Rome. Antony makes the mistake of letting the two interfere with each other. A prime example of this is his marriage to Octavia. He marries her for the good of Rome, and to patch up his unstable friendship with Caesar. He does this without any consideration to Cleopatra. He fails to even inform her of it. Cleopatra finds out from a messenger, and appears to be heartbroken.

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