Analysis of the First Soliloquy in Hamlet

Topics: Marriage, Metaphor, Family Pages: 4 (1220 words) Published: May 14, 2012
1. How does Hamlet feel at the beginning of the soliloquy?
At the beginning of the soliloquy Hamlet is clearly quite depressed and even suicidal. This is evident from the heartfelt plea that makes to die “O! that this too too solid flesh would melt”. Hamlet is painfully aware however, that his flesh is indeed solid and sturdy and shows no sign of melting into “dew” however much he desires it.

It is obvious that Hamlet resents the “Everlasting” God who “fixed his canon against self-slaughter”. This creates a difficult situation for the mourning price and his comments highlight that he is a moral, religious person who fears angering God by breaking canon law.

Hamlet’s anguish and disillusionment are conveyed very clearly when he describes the world as “weary, stale, flat and unprofitable”. As he mourns the loss of his beloved father, the “excellent…king”, this young man cannot seem to find any solace or comfort in “this world”.

By comparing the world to an “unweeded garden/ That grows to seed, things rank and gross in nature”, Shakespeare’s Hamlet vocalises his disgust and loathing for the State of Denmark after his father’s demise. The use of natural imagery, a common feature in Shakespeare’s writing, is a very effective way of conveying a mourning son’s pain after his father’s death and mother’s “speedy” marriage to his uncle.

As he vocalises his anguish and confusion, our young price is evidently overwrought, disillusioned and depressed by the state of his world.

3. How does Hamlet feel about his father?
Hamlet obviously has great admiration for his father on many levels; as a father; a husband and a leader.

In Shakespearean times, the King was the most powerful person in the land, one who should be worthy of respect, though this was not always the case as there were many corrupt and cruel leaders. Hamlet obviously had great respect for his father and this is highlighted most effectively when he describes him as “so excellent a king”.

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