Deception, Revenge, And Alllying Themes In William Shakespeare's Hamlet

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Apocalyptic Hamlet
In the development of the storyline of Hamlet, William Shakespeare develops underlying themes of deception, revenge, and betrayal through the characters and scenarios of the 1601 play. Under the New Historicism literary criticism, Shakespeare is concluded to have been connected to the Catholic resistance and, under this conclusion, the religious aspects of Shakespeare’s knowledge of the Catholic beliefs is evident throughout the play. An interesting aspect that can be drawn from Hamlet is the idea that the apocalyptic fall of the world will lead to the salvation of all fundamentally good people. This theme is also seen in Shakespeare’s the Tragedy of Julius Caesar with the fall of Caesar and Marcus Brutus, and Shakespeare’s
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The reason Horatio refrained from killing himself was simply to recount the events that happened preceding Fortinbras arrival in Denmark, resulting in Fortinbras ordering his men to take the bodies and give Hamlet the funeral of a fallen hero (Shakespeare 5:2:401,403-405,407). This ending scene can be seen as having a sorrowful tone, however the use of Horatio as the “storyteller” is important because it leads to Hamlet being saved. Horatio’s importance to the play isn’t obvious by his words, but by his frequent presence as witness (Halverson 67) and one can agree that Horatio is similar to the heavenly being that invisibly watches from a distance, writing down everything that occurs and exhibiting truth and justness (Halverson 63, 64). This is important to the Catholic and Protestant belief in the means that the innocent are saved in the Second Coming. The Christian Bible states, “another book was opened, which is the book of life... And the sea gave up the dead in it, Death and Hades gave up the dead in them, and all were judged by what they had done” (Revelation 20:12-13) and specifies that those who practices worldly behaviors such as anger, jealousy, and promiscuity have no place among the saved (Galatians 5:19-21). Horatio acts as the Book of Life for the dead royal family and nobles. In the statement, “So …show more content…
Aware of the high tension between the Church of England and remaining Catholics in the early 16th century, Shakespeare’s Hamlet could be interpreted similarly by Protestants and Catholics as a warning against religious and civil agitation. The foreboding return of King Hamlet from Purgatory, the rapid fall of Denmark, and the use of the character Horatio as a silent, but attentive witness (Halverson 67), Shakespeare created a then-modern twist of the classic Greek Tragedy, using the combination of Catholic and Protestant beliefs of the Apocalypse to create a story expressing the agitation amidst the English people in the rising popularity of the Church of England and the fall of the prevalence of the Catholic

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