Hamlet Supernatural Elements

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SUPERNATURALISM IN HAMLET:

Ghost or supernatural plays an important role in the plays written during Renaissance or Elizabethan age. The Elizabethan age greatly believed in the super natural. The presentation of ghosts, fairies, witches, portents, omens uncommon happenings, disturbances in nature was quite and common phenomenon on the Elizabethan stage. It was a traditionally recognized instrument in the dramatic art. People liked to see the supernatural elements on the stage and fully enjoyed them. Shakespeare possibly yielded to the demands of the people and gave them what they wanted. Shakespeare makes an effective use of these popular superstitions and beliefs of his time. But unlike his contemporaries, his use of the supernatural is neither crude nor gross, nor is it extraneous to the action of he plays. According to Moulton, “Supernatural agency has a place in the world of Shakespeare.” In “hamlet” the supernatural appears in the form of the ghost. In the first act, five hundred and fifty lines out of the eight hundred and fifty lines are concerned with the ghost. Therefore, it may be said that if we remove it, the play falls to pieces. The ghost in Hamlet has at least a three fold dramatic significance. It contributes to the general tragic atmosphere of the play, it motivates the entire action of the play, and it shows up the character and derives home a certain moral effect. First, in this play, Shakespeare has introduced the supernatural element in order to createatmosphere of mystery, horror and suspense It diffuses an atmosphere of awe through which tragedy becomes more impressive The appearance of the ghost in Hamlet chills our blood with horror, or to be more correct, with, terror. Horatio does not believe in ghosts but the appearance “horrors him with fear and wonder.” This introduction of the dead king in the first scene immediately creates an atmosphere which is a forewarning that unnatural deeds are either to take place or to be disclosed....
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