Loyalty As Depicted In Shakespeare's Hamlet

1067 Words5 Pages
Hamlet essay draft 3 As text transcends time it allows responders to engage with values despite the shift in context. Shakespeare’s tragedy Hamlet is considered to be of distinctive and enduring value as the play reflects humanitarian concerns that are still of relevance to today’s contemporary audience. Through the study of the actions and inactions of the characters in Hamlet the notion of loyalty draws upon one’s decline in their morality and identity as the individual seeks revenge in attempt to find justice for another. The textual value of Hamlet allows us, the contemporary audience in understanding how the actions of individuals affect others within their society which is prevalent since the Elizabethan era. These universal ideas expressed…show more content…
Elizabethans gathered the belief of God appointing kings through the divine rights of kingship and held the belief that if such chain was broken corruption would unfold. The idea of corruption is introduced in the opening of the play through the setting of the unstable political state of Denmark, reflected through the imagery of “Something is rotten in the state of Denmark”. This foreshadows the corruption that is evident through Claudius’ actions of taking the throne by breaking the divine right of kings. Through the dialogue between the ghost and Hamlet, the ghost conveys, “The serpent that did sting thy father’s life, now wears this crown.” The biblical allusion of the serpent characterises the demonic nature of Claudius and his corruptive actions of killing King Hamlet in order to achieve his personal fulfilment in attaining the throne. The ghost refers to Claudius as an “incestuous adulterate beast” reinforcing his cruel actions in striving to achieve Kingship. As a contemporary audience, one can conclude that the corruption that is the state of Denmark is due to ones immoral deeds as supported by the critic Bertram Joseph stating that the “hypocrisy” in relation to Claudius was viewed as a particularly serious flaw during the Elizabethan era hence, reinforcing the imagery of the “unweeded garden” to parallel the chaos and corruption that was taking place in

More about Loyalty As Depicted In Shakespeare's Hamlet

Open Document