William Shakespeare's Hamlet, through the heroism and nobility of its hero, his superior power of insight into, and reflection upon, his situation, and his capacity to suffer the moral anguish which moral responsibility brings, is considered one of the greatest pieces of literature ever written. Throughout the play, Hamlet, through both soliloquies and actions, displays these characteristics, which make Hamlet such an important and intriguing individual.
Hamlet's heroism and nobility displayed throughout most of the play, classify Hamlet as a tragedy that "towers above other plays of its kind." The main reason Hamlet is considered honorable and noble is because of the audience's sympathy for Hamlet. At the beginning of the play, he has just lost his father, and immediately his mother and uncle marry. Hamlet's anguish is justifiably explained when Gertrude states, "If it be/ why seems it so particular with thee?" Hamlet responds, "'Seems' madam? Nay, it is." Hamlet is obviously upset about the death of his father and circumstances of the marriage between Gertrude and Claudius. This situation intends to evoke sympathy for Hamlet from the reader. The sympathy becomes more significant in Act I, Scene 5, when the Ghost appears to Hamlet. The Ghost tells Hamlet that he, King Hamlet, is "Doomed for a certain term to walk the night/And for the day confined to fast in fires/ Till the foul crimes done in my days of nature / Are burnt and purged away," and that Claudius, "in the porches of my ears did pour/ The leprous distilment." Thus, King Hamlet's murder, due to the high esteem kings are held to as a "divine ru...
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...knowledging his Christian ideals. Hamlet shows a wonderful capacity to deal with moral anguish from moral responsibility, an important theme in Hamlet, which helps create the play as one of the greatest pieces of literature ever written.
Helen Gardner is correct in her statement that the reason Hamlet is such a great piece of literature, especially when compared to other tragedies, is because of the nobility of Hamlet, his insight and reflection on his situation, and Hamlet's ability to deal with his moral anguish. Shakespeare creates the elaborate character of Hamlet and the many aspects of his character not only through Hamlet's actions, but more importantly through his soliloquies. Hamlet has secured its place in literature as one of the greatest plays ever, because of Shakespeare's complicated and intriguing character, Hamlet.
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