Shakespeare's Death
Start writing a post

Shakespeare's Death

You know every time you read Hamlet you feel like you are reading it for the first time cause you keep finding new things? It's actually your brain changing the way it works. Keep reading.

Shakespeare's Death
Nazcan Turkmen

In Shakespeare’s Hamlet, there is no one saw. There is either Catholicism or Protestant, innocent or corrupted, madness or sanity, evil or good, to be or not to be… From the start Hamlet was mourning after his father’s death, later on, he sees her father’s ghost. He starts to questioning; if the ghost is an evil soul or telling the truth? His father’s ghost, Hamlet’s Ghost, explains to him how death felt like and he is in purgatory;

“Dooom’d for a certain term to walk the night,
And for the day confined to fast in fires,
Till the foul crimes done in my days of nature
Are burnt and purged away.”

But why a soul tells his own son who kills his father? Revenge is what the soul wants; a restless betrayed soul. He died not in a natural way but the worse way: Killed by his own brother.

“Thus was I, sleeping, by a brother’s hand
Of life, of crown, of queen, at once dispatch’d:
Cut off even in the blossoms of my sin,
Unhousel’d, disappointed, unanel’d,”

He was restless because of the betrayal. And he was stuck in the purgatory because he was sent off from life without heaven’s rituals.

“No reckoning made, but sent to my account”

After what Hamlet witnessed, his father’s soul is in purgatory, he thinks about the meaning of life. He does think about ending his life, to him dying can be a salvation. But that is the problem; he is not certain about the afterlife and away from all this thinking, even though he considering killing himself, he is afraid because suicide is a sin.

“O, that this too too solid flesh would melt
Thaw and resolve itself into a dew!
Or that the Everlasting had not fix’d
His canon ‘gainst self-slaughter! O God! God!”

In Act V, people around Hamlet been killed and after seeing how corrupted the society has become, is the major point for Hamlet. The famous scene where Hamlet finds Yorick’s skull and asks:

“To be, or not to be, that is the question”

A question that been asking from the very start. Questioning the world, existence, after having so much suffered; Hamlet asks himself: Is there really an afterlife, do we continue to exist, or do we stop existing? All of this occurs to Hamlet; void between life and death.

But, as I said, there is no one answer to any of the questions in this play. Even at the end of the play, we do not know if there is an afterlife, what is the meaning of death? And in the graveyard scene, it is amusing in a way, he picks up the skull of his friend and looks at that small thing left him. Is this really it? Is this what waiting for us?

But Ophelia did something Hamlet could never do. Ophelia loved Hamlet but just like in every romantic drama there was an obstacle; her father and brother who believed Hamlet only wants her to use her but she was so sure Hamlet loved her too even though, to Hamlet, she was just a sexual object.

There was a connection between this two characters: Suicide. As I just explained how Hamlet thinks about life and death, killing himself, Ophelia commits it. Now, this can not be a popular opinion because some cases they say her drowning was an accident but to others, she committed suicide. Another question with more than one answers. Now, why we can not know this for certain? Gertrude is the only person who saw Ophelia’s last moments.

“Fell in the weeping brook. Her clothes spread wide;
And, mermaid-like, awhile they bore her up:
Which time she chanted snatches of old tunes;
As one incapable of her own distress,
Or like a creature native and indued
Unto that element: but long it could not be
Till that her garments, heavy with their drink,
Pull'd the poor wretch from her melodious lay
To muddy death.”

Gertrude says it was all an accident but to some, she was only protecting Ophelia’s pride with this exaggerated story because suicide was a sin and she will be known as a sinner. We come back to the religion. From the start, the play gives you all of the clues about the answers, how it is focused on self-nature.

“>Is she to be buried in Christian burial that
wilfully seeks her own salvation?
>I tell thee she is: and therefore make her grave
straight: the crowner hath sat on her, and finds it
Christian burial.
>How can that be, unless she drowned herself in her
own defence?”

Act V Scene II starts with this question: Did she killed herself? A gravedigger who does not know the person he is burying isn’t this an odd question to ask? For the whole Ophelia’s death until this moment even we, the audiences, was sure it was an accident. Why would we think otherwise while there is no suspicion? Here, Shakespeare puts his signature again: Making people question everything they saw in this play. Make them think and see beyond.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
​a woman sitting at a table having a coffee

I can't say "thank you" enough to express how grateful I am for you coming into my life. You have made such a huge impact on my life. I would not be the person I am today without you and I know that you will keep inspiring me to become an even better version of myself.

Keep Reading...Show less
Student Life

Waitlisted for a College Class? Here's What to Do!

Dealing with the inevitable realities of college life.

college students waiting in a long line in the hallway

Course registration at college can be a big hassle and is almost never talked about. Classes you want to take fill up before you get a chance to register. You might change your mind about a class you want to take and must struggle to find another class to fit in the same time period. You also have to make sure no classes clash by time. Like I said, it's a big hassle.

This semester, I was waitlisted for two classes. Most people in this situation, especially first years, freak out because they don't know what to do. Here is what you should do when this happens.

Keep Reading...Show less
a man and a woman sitting on the beach in front of the sunset

Whether you met your new love interest online, through mutual friends, or another way entirely, you'll definitely want to know what you're getting into. I mean, really, what's the point in entering a relationship with someone if you don't know whether or not you're compatible on a very basic level?

Consider these 21 questions to ask in the talking stage when getting to know that new guy or girl you just started talking to:

Keep Reading...Show less

Challah vs. Easter Bread: A Delicious Dilemma

Is there really such a difference in Challah bread or Easter Bread?

loaves of challah and easter bread stacked up aside each other, an abundance of food in baskets

Ever since I could remember, it was a treat to receive Easter Bread made by my grandmother. We would only have it once a year and the wait was excruciating. Now that my grandmother has gotten older, she has stopped baking a lot of her recipes that require a lot of hand usage--her traditional Italian baking means no machines. So for the past few years, I have missed enjoying my Easter Bread.

Keep Reading...Show less

Unlocking Lake People's Secrets: 15 Must-Knows!

There's no other place you'd rather be in the summer.

Group of joyful friends sitting in a boat
Haley Harvey

The people that spend their summers at the lake are a unique group of people.

Whether you grew up going to the lake, have only recently started going, or have only been once or twice, you know it takes a certain kind of person to be a lake person. To the long-time lake people, the lake holds a special place in your heart, no matter how dirty the water may look.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments