Religion In Hamlet

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Hamlet is a tragic play written by William Shakespeare in the early 1600s. In the beginning of the play, Prince Hamlet was called back to Denmark to attend his father’s funeral. Upon his arrival, he encountered the surprising news of the marriage of his mother to his uncle, King Claudius. Shortly after his return to Denmark, a ghost, said to be Hamlet’s father visited him. During the scene with the ghost, the mystery behind his father’s dead begins to unfold. However, as the audience of the play, we are unsure of the reality of this statement until Hamlet showcased a play within the play of what the ghost had revealed to him. While watching the play, King Claudius became outraged due to the penetrating level of guilt he felt. After he put a …show more content…
The play begins with a heinous sin against God and humanity. That is, the unlawful killing of another person. From this sin on, the characters only commit more immoralities that build upon this crime. According to Bevinton in Peter Iver Kaufman’s article, “Hamlet’s Religions,” Claudius is “a textbook case of the unregenerate sinner, incapable of extricating himself from his damnable predicament despite his knowing precisely what he would have to do to save his soul” (Kaufman, 429). This theme is enhanced in Claudius’s speech, because the original sin that inflicted the plot of the play is confessed by the king himself. Claudius begins his speech by proclaiming his that “offence is rank” and that he cannot ask God in prayer for the forgiveness of the crime he committed against his brother (3.3.40-42). He bluntly states, “of those effects for which I did the murder, /my crown, mine own ambition and my queen. /may one be pardoned and retain th’ offence?” (3.3.54-56). By this point of the play, Claudius realizes the seriousness of his crime and begins to suggest he will be cursed because of it. Because of the king’s selfish mentality, he plans to destroy the curse, Hamlet, by the same act of sin committed against his brother, King Hamlet. He plans to send Hamlet to England, where he will provide the King there a set of instructions that state "the present death of Hamlet. Do it, England" (4.4.30).Claudius suggests that Hamlet poses as a threat to him when he stated, "like the hectic in my blood he rages" (4.4.61). According to Jane Coyle, Claudius seeks to send Hamlet “into the afterlife, much as he did with his brother” (Coyle, 2011). A theme that coincides with the theme of sin, but that is considered inferior to those in this soliloquy is the pervasiveness of death. As stated earlier, the killing of another person is a sinful act against God and

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