It is commonly said that if you play too close with the fire, you are
going to get burned. This generally means that if you live a dangerous
lifestyle, then you will eventually falter and suffer the consequences. In
Shakespeare's Hamlet, there are many cases where characters are killed because
they lived a murderous lifestyle. Claudius murders his own brother and is then
murdered himself. Laertes kills Hamlet but is killed himself before Hamlet dies.
Hamlet murders Polonius and Laertes avenges his father by killing Hamlet. The
lives and deaths of these three individuals are inextricably interwoven. Their
destinies are forged by the others actions. To attempt to separate the life and
death of each separate character would be impossible because their destinies are
so closely tied together. Each one's destiny is determined by the actions of
not only their life but also the reactions of others.
Claudius, King Hamlet's brother, desires to have more power than he
currently has. He devises and executes a plan to murder his brother, the king
by placing poison in the sleeping man's ear. The king dies from the poisoning,
and Claudius exclaims that the king must have been bitten by a snake and died
from the venom. "The serpent that did sting thy father's life now wears the
crown." (p 29) It is the perfect crime except that young Hamlet gets wind of
the evil deed from the ghost of his father. Hamlet is told that the only way to
put his father's soul to rest is to right the crime that was committed. So
Hamlet sets his sights on proving that Claudius murdered his father. Hamlet
devises an ingenious plan to trap Claudius. He rigs a play to portray the same
murder that Claudius commits. "You shall see anon how the murderer gets the
love of Gonzago's wife" (p 79) Claudius is very shaken by this and stops the
play. Later on, Hamlet is speaking to his mother and chasticizing her on her
inappropriate behavior.... [continues]
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(1999, 10). Hamlet: Live by the Sword, Die by the Sword. StudyMode.com. Retrieved 10, 1999, from http://www.studymode.com/essays/Hamlet-Live-Sword-Die-Sword-3811.html
"Hamlet: Live by the Sword, Die by the Sword" StudyMode.com. 10 1999. 10 1999 <http://www.studymode.com/essays/Hamlet-Live-Sword-Die-Sword-3811.html>.
"Hamlet: Live by the Sword, Die by the Sword." StudyMode.com. 10, 1999. Accessed 10, 1999. http://www.studymode.com/essays/Hamlet-Live-Sword-Die-Sword-3811.html.