Hamlet- Suicide

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William Shakespeare's Hamlet- Signifying Death
Regardless of a person's age or literary preference it is undeniable that William Shakespeare had a flair for composing dramatic tragedies. Tragedy, when evident is a powerful underlining theme which portrays the qualities of the human capacity. In one of Shakespeare's most brilliant plays, Hamlet, tragedy is portrayed through the protagonist's constant contemplation of suicide. Shakespeare often alludes to powerful images of death by using pathos and bereavement in life to be inconsequential. In the play, Hamlet, William Shakespeare produces a tragedy which illustrates the suggestion of suicide and the imagery of death as solutions to problems through Ophelia's demise, the minor characters reflection upon death, and most importantly the protagonist Hamlet.

Firstly, the castle of Elsinore is notable for its evocation of place where it initially begins to shape Ophelia's character and create Ophelia's imagination beyond her life of limitations. It is undisputable the love Ophelia and Hamlet once shared in their past relations. This is clearly evident when Hamlet jumps out from hiding at the graveyard and expresses his feelings for Ophelia proclaiming his love. "I lov'd Ophelia: forty thousand brothers could not, with all their quantity of love, make up my sum. What wilt thou do for her?" (5.2. 270-72) Although Polonius, Ophelia's father, instructs her to never see Hamlet again and to never trust his promises, she continues to honour Hamlet's love and defend him to her father; "My Lord, he hath importun'd me with love in honourable fashion" (1.3. 110-11). Since, Ophelia is dependent on her father, and the men in her life; she now finds herself alone after his sudden death, which causes her grief and unhappiness (4.5.11-13). Ophelia's distracted behaviour gives the impression that some great unhappiness has befallen her (Ibid). Claudius suggests it is a result from her father's death; "Conceit upon her father" (4.5. 43). Ophelia's abrupt behaviour shows the nature of her mind and her songs suggest tragic irony, since it is paradoxical to the Ophelia that is introduced at the beginning of the play; a sweet and innocent young girl, who obeyed her father and brother (1.3.90-98).

As stated from Hamlet, it shows Ophelia's change in behaviour after her father's death.
To-morrow is Saint Valentine's Day, all in the morning betime, and I a maid at your window, to be your Valentine. Then up he rose, and donn'd his clothes, and dupp'd the chamber-door, let in the maid, that out a maid never departed more. Indeed, without an oath, I'll make an end on't: by gis and by Saint Charity, alack, and fie for shame! Young men will do't, if they come to't, by cock they are to blame. Quoth she, before you tumbled me, you promised me to wed (4.5.46- 61). Ophelia's behaviour shown above connotes her state of mind through her songs. Now that she is ill, she makes sexual references to her past relationship with Hamlet, a relationship that she was unable to keep while she was kept in confinement by her father (4.5.55-59). Ophelia enters a phase of insanity and the pressure she endures foreshadows her forthcoming death (4.5.16-20). The pressure she starts to suffer from causes her to become incoherent and she is unable to function without the commands of her father (4.5.66-71). Shockingly, Gertrude announces the death of Ophelia is committed by means of drowning in the river (4.7.164- 65). Encircling the river, the area is lined with willows, wild and crow flowers, nettles, daisies and long purples (4.7.170). Above the river, willows hang suspended from the tree branch down towards the water which can suggest her attempt to commit suicide by hanging (4.7.173). Despite Ophelia's death being argumentative, the willows hanging from the tree branch symbolize love forsaken and remembrance (4.7.169). Ophelia's death can be a symbol of remembrance and in memory of Polonius...
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