Thomas Kyd and William Shakespeare are closer than many may think. Both have written a version of the ancient 10th Century Scandinavian legend of Feng and Horwndil, who lived in Jutland and performed many of the same deeds as Hamlet does in the Shakespearian version. An earlier version of the same story, the Ur Hamlet, written around the 1590's, which was later attr...
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An Elizabethan audience would have perceived both sets of ghosts differently. This audience would have seen revenge and Andrea more gently as they do not initially appear to any of the characters and are used more as a dramatic device in place of a chorus. The ghost in Hamlet would have created an air of confusion and mayhem, as it appears in a highly superstitious way. The audience would have almost have been scared and ready for a good fright with the inclusion of the ghost.
The characters in the texts react in a similar way to the audience would have. In Hamlet they are initially frightened by the appearance of a supernatural entity, and think that there is evil forthcoming. In The Spanish Tragedy, no one has any contact with the ghosts, but they are still affected by the death of Andrea and seek to take vengeance for this unnatural act.
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