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In the seventh scene of the fourth act of Hamlet, Laertes joins Claudius in order to kill Hamlet. They devise a plan to have Hamlet and Laertes participate in a fencing match, in which Laertes used a pointed blade tipped with poison. Claudius intends to infect a glass of wine with poison in the case that Laertes fails (4.7.133-162). “And for his death no wind of blame shall breathe, but even his mother shall uncharged the practice and call it and accident” (4.7.66-69). These are Claudius’ words concerning Gertrude’s knowledge of his plan. Such a phrase is foreshadowing of fate. During the match, Gertrude drinks from the poisoned cup (5.2.295-296). Laertes is also victim to fate when he and Hamlet trade swords. “Why, as a woodcock to mine own springe, Osric. I am justly killed with mine own treachery” (5.2.311-312). Neither Laertes nor Gertrude would have suffered their poisonous fate had Claudius not devised this plan to kill Hamlet.
Furthermore, Claudius would not have had this plan if Polonius had never been killed. “And so have I a noble father lost” (4.7.25). The death of Polonius is the incident that prompted Laertes to visit Denmark in search of vengeance. However, the death of Polonius would not be a factor in this fate if he had not been conspiring against Hamlet. “My lord, he’s going to his mother’s closet. Behind the arras I’ll convey myself to hear the process” (3.
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Through the character’s decisions, a divine power creates an outcome that is designed by fate. If Hamlet had never met the ghost, he would never have learned the truth about his father’s death. By this, he would have never pretended madness, causing Polonius to spy on his conversation with his mother. If Polonius had not been spying, Hamlet would not have killed him and Laertes would not have come to Denmark for his revenge. Without Laertes’ revenge, neither Laertes nor Gertrude would have died from the treachery of Claudius. Like fate, a pitcher’s job is to throw a ball from his glove; sometimes a curveball must be his choice of action in order to achieve his goal.