The Death Of Young Hamlet


The death of Hamlet was caused by a number of reasons, many of which were his own fault. Although this may be disputed it is a fact that this was a tragedy, but aside from the obvious reasons (the trap set by Claudius and Laertes) there were steps leading up his death which could have easily been avoided.

Probably Hamlet's most tragic flaw is that he becomes too involved in his thoughts, it is his tendency to ponder upon the possible outcome of every situation and scenario that he faces in his life. Imagine playing a game of basketball with a friend and whenever that friend touches the ball he runs through every possible outcome of every action he could take. Well by the time he takes his first dribble (depending on weather or not your running with real ballers) its stolen and your opponent has just run up the score by two more points. This game of basketball is Hamlet's life. The ball is in his court he has possession, but he doesn?t act when he has the opportunity to put Claudius away for good, allowing Claudius to get back in the game. With a more than worthy opponent that was a fatal mistake which would eventually cause Hamlet his life. It seems at times Hamlet would torture himself thinking too in depth about things which greatly displeased him;

She married. Oh most wicked speed, to post
With such dexterity to incestuous sheets.
It is not, nor it cannot come to good.
But break, my heart, for I must hold my tongue.
(Hamlet, Act1, Scene 2, lines 156 ? 159)

This leads him to the brink of madness and he seems to place little value on his own pathetic life.

Hamlet's faith is another cause of his death, his faith in the ghost, his faith in himself and his faith in his Religion. Upon being told of the ghost, he has some hope that his father might still be alive, but upon further investigation he realizes that this is his fathers spirit and the ghost tells Hamlet that Claudius was responsible for his death. Since Hamlet already has Hatred in his heart towards Claudius for the over hasty and incestuous marriage to his mother this is easy for Hamlet to swallow. He wants to believe the ghosts story so he vows revenge on Claudius for his fathers murder;

O villain, villain, smiling damned villain!
My tables ? meet it is I set it down
That one may smile, and smile, and be a villain;
At least I?m sure it may be so in Denmark.
So uncle, there you are. Now to my word:
It is ?Adieu, adieu, remember me.?
I have sworn?t.
(Hamlet, Act 1, Scene 5, lines 106-112)

Hamlet should now put these words into action. In those times your word was everything, swearing allegiance to the ghost means that he now has to go revenge his father?s ?foul and most unnatural murder?(as put by the ghost, Act 1, Scene 5, line 25). But later on in the play Hamlet allows himself to get carried away in his thoughts once again, he begins to put more faith in himself testing the credibility of this ghost that he?s seen. Hamlet comes up with a plan to see if the ghost is genuine or if it is a fraud;

I know my course. The spirit that I have seen
May be a devil ? and the devil hath power
T?assume a pleasing shape. Yea, and perhaps,
Out of my weakness and my melancholy,
As he is very potent with such spirits,
Abuses me to damn me. I?ll have grounds
More relative than this. The play?s the thing
Wherein I?ll catch the conscience of the king.
(Hamlet, Act 2, Scene2, lines 551 ? 558)

Hamlet's plan works as well as he expected and the kings actions prove him to be as guilty as sin. Hamlet now has the go ahead, the death of Claudius should be immanent. On the way to his mothers bed chamber he comes upon Claudius who is unaware of his presence. Hamlet could have killed Claudius right there, but put off his revenge because he thought that Claudius was praying. If Hamlet killed Claudius while he was confessing his sins he believed of course since it was the teachings of the church that Claudius would go to heaven;

Now might I do it pat, now is a ? praying,
And now I?ll do?t ? and so a goes to heaven,
And so am I revenged.