True Character Is Hamlet

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True Character in Hamlet In William Shakespeare’s Hamlet, the theme of appearances is portrayed throughout the play. Appearances that are both true and changing show up, and as the story progresses the audience is given many different traits and characteristics that appear to be true, but may not be the actual character of certain players on the story. “Who’s there?”(1.1.1) is the very first line in the play, and can be understood in two different ways. It can be seen as Bernardo asking who is near him due to the darkness of the castle grounds, but can also be interpreted as a question fir the whole play. Many scholars have read this line, and taken the meaning as a rhetorical question, which shows that everything seen may not be true, and the actual character of the main players may not appear to be obvious. Shakespeare uses the final words, and lines leading up to the death of some of the main players, to show their true character, and to reveal themselves to the audience. This can be seen, when Hamlet shows that he reveals that he truly wants himself to die a noble prince, Claudius reveals his true self to the audience as the murderous villain that he is, Laertes also shows his true character in his final moments by making things right and tries to retain his honor and nobility. In the case of Laertes, as he dies he shows regret for what he did. In the events leading up to his demise, Laertes is corrupted by Claudius and his evil motives. He is seduced by Claudius, and since Laertes is a man of action, he is manipulated into seeking revenge against Hamlet. Claudius convinces him that Hamlet is behind the death of both his father and sister and his rage gets the best of him. “He is justly served./It is a poison tempered by himself./ Exchange forgiveness with me, noble Hamlet./ Mine and my father’s death come not upon thee,/ Nor thine on me.”

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