Examples Of Revenge And Justice In Hamlet

1430 Words 6 Pages
Revenge and justice are almost interchangeable. Justice is vengeance for yourself or someone else using just means to enact it.While revenge is a selfish and often cowardly cause for revenge using whatever means one deems necessary . Both motivate people to do terrible, deadly things in their name. For many, a noble quest for justice leads to a need for revenge. In Shakespeare's play Hamlet, the characters Hamlet and Laertes both seek justice for their fathers, but that justice leads them to fighting for a personal vengeance against the people who had wronged them. Hamlet wants justice for his father, old King Hamlet, by killing his murderer, his fatherś brother and current king of Denmark. Meanwhile, Laertes wants justice for his father Polonius, …show more content…
Hamlet begins only thinking about getting vengeance for his father, but his conflict becomes personal when he seeks to right the wrongs he feels his mother committed. Hamlet begins his plot attempting to save his father´s soul, and save his country from the control of a murderous king. Hamlet seeks justice because he is fighting for someone who can´t help himself. The Old King´s ghost tells Hamlet to ¨Revenge his foul and most unnatural murder¨ (I.v.31), bring his ghost out of hell, and save Denmark, making Hamlet's initial motive just because killing Claudius will supposedly help people other than himself. Hamlet turns to revenge for himself; however, when he talks to his mother. He wants to make her feel guilty for marrying Claudius, but he forgets that his original purpose was to save his father. Hamlet berates her for her decisions and punishes her for betraying his father. Hamlet only stops when the ghost tells him, ¨ Do not forget, This visitation is but to whet thy almost blunted purpose¨ (III.iv.126-127). Hamlet had transitioned to revenge because he forgot that his purpose was not to make himself feel better by hurting those who hurt him. Instead, he was supposed to save his father. Many people can not keep justice as their motive. Revenge is less noble than justice, and Hamlet turns to it to help alleviate the pain he feels from …show more content…
Laertes is straightforward and just in his initial course of action, but his plan for vengeance becomes more convoluted and treacherous as Laertes becomes more desperate. Upon learning of his father´s death, Laertes storms the castle, demanding to be ¨revenged most thoroughly for [his] father.¨(IV.v.152-153) Laertes wants justice because he wants to face Hamlet in a head on fair fight. He wants to confront Hamlet and get a full understanding of the situation before fighting him. Unfortunately, Laertes gets desperate enough to be manipulated by Claudius, causing the deaths of many people. Laertes wants to get revenge so badly that he attempts to kill Hamlet with a poisoned, sharpened foil unknowingly during a fencing match. Laertes’ need for vengeance causes him to push aside, his previously established honor, as he was formerly willing to fight Hamlet immediately. Instead, he chose long drawn, out, and deadly plan, leading to him being ¨ justly killed with [his] own treachery”(V.ii.37). Laertes was lead into treacherous murder and death due to revenge. He recognizes the mistake he made too late due to his thirst for Revenge and justice are almost interchangeable. Justice is vengeance for yourself or someone else using just means to enact it.While revenge is a selfish and often cowardly cause for revenge using whatever means one deems necessary . Both motivate people to do

Related Documents