The Theme Of Revenge And Moral Corruption In Hamlet

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In the tragedy play Hamlet written by William Shakespeare the Prince Hamlet of Denmark is called to seek revenge on Claudius by King’s Hamlet apparition. Claudius has murdered his own brother to steal the throne and has seized power over the state of Denmark. In this journey of Hamlet trying to find retribution for Claudius's sinful acts Shakespeare expounds themes regarding revenge and moral corruption. In the play Shakespeare depicts how Hamlet’s path to revenge and the complexity of taking revenful action leads more often than not to moral corruption. This is primarily depicted with Hamlet who experiences moral degradation as he struggles to take action against Claudius. Revenge leads Hamlet to act both irrational and rational that Shakespeare …show more content…
For instance, Hamlet slips quietly into Claudius’s room while he confesses his murder and states, “a villain kills my father and for that/I his sole son do this same villain send to heaven” (3.3.80-83). In this quote Hamlet draws his sword to avenge the death of his father. This displays his revenge regarding the king who murdered the old king Hamlet and the corruption within the royal family. Hamlet seeks retribution for his father’s unrighteous death by the sinful hands of Claudius and attempts to purify the state of Denmark by removing Claudius from power. The complexity of Hamlet’s revenge is seen in this scene with Hamlet unable to kill Claudius. Hamlet seems ready to put his desire for revenge into action but is unable to kill Claudius. On the surface, it seems that Hamlet waits wanting a more radical revenge. This displays the moral corruption of Hamlet who wants Claudius to have a worse fate than his father. In addition, the complexity of revenge and the moral corruption of Hamlet can be depicted when Hamlet decides to not kill Claudius while he is praying when he states, “when he is drunk, asleep, or in his rage/or in th’ incestous pleasure of his bed… then trip him that his heels may kick at heaven/and that his soul may be damned and black as hell” (3.3.94-97). In this scene Hamlet completely oversteps morality in trying to damn his opponents soul as well as kill him. Hamlet’s revenge has caused him to face moral degradation by seeking to cause more suffering for Claudius than he may deserve. Hamlet extends the bounds of christian morality seeking to cause eternal damnation towards his uncle. In Hamlet’s eyes of revenge his desire to damn Claudius is fair: his father was murdered without having his soul cleansed. Thus, Hamlet feels Claudius deserves the same fate his

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