Vengeance Is a Poisonous Desire

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Vengeance is a Poisonous Desire Vengeance is the strongest emotion that any person can experience. This powerful emotion can strike anyone at any time in their life, causing the strong desire for revenge. A theme in Hamlet is an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. In William Shakespeare’s Hamlet, it is apparent that the main characters believed in an eye for an eye but are opposed to turning the other cheek. The characters of Claudius, Hamlet, and Laertes all feel the need to exact revenge. They each have a poisonous desire to take the law into their own hands, seeking vengeance, which ultimately led to an unfortunate end for each of them. Shakespeare used the supernatural, multiple plot twists, irony, and distinctions between social classes to convey the theme of vengeance being a poisonous desire. Shakespeare skillfully uses the character of the ghost to more clearly understand the manifestation of one’s mind or thoughts. This helps the reader or audience to more clearly understand the depths of emotions that drive the characters to seek vengeance. The character of the Ghost sets the stage for revenge when he says to Hamlet “So art thou to revenge, when thou shalt hear.”(1.4.8). Shakespeare does not make it clear if the ghost real or just a figment of the imagination from a distraught son. The use of the ghost in the image of the beloved King helps to showcase the thoughts of the characters that something really is rotten in Denmark. Hamlet was told to avenge his father’s death when the Ghost said that he had been murdered. “The serpent that did sting thy father’s lifeNow wears his crown” (1.5.38-39) and “Upon my secure hour thy uncle stole, with juice of cursed hebenon in a vial” (1.5.61-63). What was Hamlet to do when he found out that his new stepfather, who is also his uncle, is the man who poisoned his father? The evidence he received from the

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