Hamlet He was great man and prince, with great potential and virtue. Another person whose virtue parallels that of Hamlet was Laertes, the son one of the Courtiers in Claudious’s court. Both of these men also share the trait of impulsiveness, achieving spontaneous reactions when angered. In Laertes this revealed in his return to Ellisenore after his father’s death. He returns with fire in his veins and revenge seething from his breath ready to kill the king.
“To Hell, Allegiance! Vows, to blackest devil!”. In Hamlet this is seen in his rash reaction in stabbing Polonious with his rapier. In thinking it was the king behind the aras, he lashes out and kills Polonious. In both cases the men have been willing to commit regicide in order to attain revenge for the loss of a father. Both Laertes and Hamlet firmly associate themselves with their families.
Laetres highly respects his father and loves him very much. Similarly Hamlets conveys this by comparing his father to “Hyperion” a sun god. “This visitation Is but to whet thy almost blunted purpose” They both share a strong but different love for Ophelia. Laertes departing of advice onto Ophelia concerning her relations with Hamlet can be explained as a wish for safety, emotions and virtue which he considers to be at threat by Hamlet, “But you must fear, his greatness weighed, his will is not his own”. With Hamlet it can be clearly seen in the scene of Ophelia’s funeral where he declares his love for her and his distress of the departure of her soul, “forty thousand brothers could not with all their quantity of love make my sum!”. Just before this both Hamlet and Laertes jump in her grave for a scuffle, without even a consideration.
This is also an example of the two characters rashness. In comparing Hamlet to the other youths of the play, Horatio and Fortinbras we find two predominating traits come to air. Horatio the scholar, a man of thought and intellect. Fortinbras the soldier, a man of action and pride. Horatio is the scholar who sees the world through the eyes of a scholar. Views things with cool and logical manner. Everyone recognizes this.
When the ghost appeared before him and the other men, they urge him to talk to the ghost. In this there is double plot as it asserts Horatio’s intelligence and it proves that Hamlet is not just seeing things. Even Hamlet acknowledges his objectiveness by confiding in him and charging him to reveal the truth at the end of the play. “There are more things in Heaven and Earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.” Fortinbras is the soldier, than man of action whom acts without thought to the consequences. He did not realize the consequences of invading Denmark until his Uncle reign him in. “we have to writ to Norway, uncle of young Fortinbras – Who impotent and bed-rid, scarcely hears of his nephew’s purpose to suppress his further gait”.
Hamlet also sees then upon crossing paths with Fortinbras’s army en route to battle of a small piece of land. “The imminent death of twenty thousand men, that for a fantasy and trick of fame”. Hamlet sees Fortinbras reactions as rash, letting men die for his own pride and fame, but he also acknowledges the virtue of action. A tragedy from Hamlet is that he is of both these traits, he is a man of thought and a man of action. It is his thoughts that hinder his purpose of revenge thus conscious does make cowards of us all”, and his action with thought that cause him trouble with the murder of Polonious which Hamlet’s mother comments ” O’ what a rash and bloody deed this is!”.
When trying to use but one of these noble traits he still stumbles in his attempts of revenge so much so, the ghost has to return to spur him on.” This visitation is but to whet thy almost blunted purpose”. In the tragic end, Hamlet falls, the man with so much potential and greatness, a man of thought and action falls from grace with the “wholesale” slaughter in great hall of castle Ellisenore proving his theory that all born of dust is corruptible “. O, that this too too sullied flesh would melt!”. English Essays.