Free Essays: Comparing Characters and Themes in Hamlet and Macbeth
- Length: 647 words (1.8 double-spaced pages)
- Rating: Excellent
Parallel Characters and Themes in Hamlet and MacBeth
Throughout William Shakespeare’s plays Hamlet and Macbeth
there are many similarities, along with many differences. These plays
are both Shakespearean tragedies, which often use supernatural
incidents to capture the reader’s interest, and consists of a hero that
has a tragic flaw. There are many comparative and contrasting
aspects in these plays.
The opening of Hamlet involves a supernatural, as does the
opening of Macbeth. In the first scene the ghost of his father, King
Hamlet, approaches Hamlet. Similarly, the opening of Macbeth
involves the three witches. Although the witches can be seen by
anyone they approach, the ghost of King Hamlet is only seen by
Hamlet himself, and in one scene by Marcellus and Bernardo,
Hamlet’s servants. Similarly in both plays, the main characters are
slightly suspicious of the actual powers these supernatural figures
have. As the witches use their apparent powers to tell Macbeth the
future, the ghost of King Hamlet tells Hamlet what has happened
already. Hamlet states in one of his soliloquies “The spirit that I have
seen / may be the devil” (2.2.598-599). Macbeth also has his doubts
because when the witches tell him that he will be named Thane of
Cawder, Macbeth himself had not known, but many people had. It is
possible the witches could have known. In the same matter in both
plays, the presentation of the supernatural began to lead to the final
downfall of each of the characters. In Macbeth, the three witches
cause him to think and do evil deeds. In Hamlet, if he had not seen
the ghost of his father, he would not have known that Claudius has
killed his father to claim the throne. In both instances the characters
gave into the nagging supernatural beliefs. And hence they lost their
Other characters in these plays show parallels in their plots.
Both plays have a main character that portrays the king of that
country. In Hamlet, the King of Denmark, Claudius is directly related
to Hamlet. He is his uncle, and also his mother’s new husband.
However, in Macbeth the King of Scotland, King Duncan, is not
directly related to the main character.
How to Cite this Page
|Hamlet’s Minor Characters Essay - Hamlet’s Minor Characters Hamlet It is reasonable to wonder what Shakespeare had in mind while writing Hamlet. After all, Shakespeare wasn't a philosopher or historian, or even a literary critic. He was a playwright. He didn't leave us critical essays examining his work. It is left to us to examine his work and decide for ourselves, if we care to, what Shakespeare was thinking. Did he know that he was writing a drama of deep psychological significance, a play which would eventually be viewed and read the world over, produced many times over hundreds of years, taught in schools, and thought of as one of the world's greatest plays.... [tags: GCSE Coursework Shakespeare Hamlet]||1280 words|
| Similarities and Differences Between Shakespeare´s Hamlet and Macbeth Essays - Macbeth vs. Hamlet The Shakespearean playwrights Macbeth and Hamlet are both very well-known tragedies. They have many things in common but are different in some ways. Both plays involve greed but the characters are different. There are some characters that have the same qualities such as Hamlet and Malcolm who both killed for revenge. Macbeth and Hamlet are different in character even though they both killed. The tragedies are the same in that many people are killed but the reasons are very different.... [tags: Tragedy, Revenge]|
:: 1 Works Cited
|Essay about Hamlet And Macbeth As Tragedies - In every one of William Shakespeare plays is a tragic hero, and every tragic hero has a tragic flaw. Two examples of this would occur in Hamlet and Macbeth. Both title characters possess the equalities of a tragic hero. What is tragedy. Aristotle defines tragedy: "A tragedy must not be the spectacles of a perfect good man brought to adversity. For this merely stock us" (1). Not in every play where a hero dies is considered a tragedy. Also, "Nor, of course, must it be that of a bad man passing from adversity to prosperity: for that is not tragedy at all, but the perversion of tragedy, and revolts moral sense".... [tags: William Shakespeare]||812 words|
| Essay on Hamlet vs. Oedipus - Tragedies have been a form of plays for a long time, since the Greek’s time of high power, ever since Thespis created the first form of play write with only using one actor. Plays and tragedies have come a long way since then, gradually increasing the number of actors and their role in the plays that were created. One of the most influential play writes of his time was Sophocles, who used three characters and created more realistic dramatic scenes and created one of the most influential plays of the time Oedipus Rex.... [tags: compare contrast]|
:: 1 Works Cited
| Psychological Anxieties in English Literature Essay - ... Lack of faith in God and religion caused man to develop confused conceptions in their own identities and an apprehensive anxieties as an integral part of their life to some extent was self-created leading them to live a purposefully incomplete life. An important characteristic of the modern novel is its diversity of themes and variety of themes were not prevalent during Marlowe’s Age. Doctor Faustus Theme- The play opens with the chorus which announces the theme of the play- being neither exploits of war, nor ‘dalliance’ of love, nor ‘proud audacious deeds’.... [tags: psychological tormented characters]|
:: 6 Works Cited
|Differing Versions of William Shakespeare's Hamlet Essay - Differing Versions of William Shakespeare's Hamlet TNT Britain’s Theatrical version and Ethan Hawke’s movie version of the play ‘Hamlet’ were vastly different in virtually all aspects. From the portrayal of characters in performances, the sets, paraphernalia and especially the fact that one is based in our modern world, (New York, 2000) both differ to large extents. Hamlet in the TNT’s version does not dwell on about his Father’s death in contrast to the Hamlet played by Ethan Hawke, who is constantly watching videos to reminisce about times he had with his Father.... [tags: Papers]||948 words|
| Use of Guilt and Madness in Macbeth and Hamlet Essay - Throughout Shakespeare’s greatest works there is the ever present use of guilt and madness to add depth to characters, further drama and plot and sometimes to even lengthen the work itself. From Hamlet’s constant struggle to murder his incestuous uncle to Macbeth’s sudden ability to see ghostly blood-covered daggers, it is clear to see that Shakespeare has a method to his madness. Shakespeare uses guilt as a sort of net for the humanity of his characters. Throughout Macbeth and Hamlet shakes’ characters do some deplorable things and the easiest way to help the audience stay in favor of a major character is to have them feel bad about said acts.... [tags: Macbeth and Hamlet Essays]|
:: 1 Works Cited
|Macbeth as a Tragic Hero in William Shakespeare's Play Essay - Macbeth as a Tragic Hero in William Shakespeare's Play The play ‘Macbeth’ gives us many opportunities to consider the reasons for Macbeth’s actions. In this essay I will be considering the factors that have made Macbeth behave in such a way that he goes as far as killing his King, his companions, his companions’ families and drove his wife Lady MacBeth to commit suicide. I will also be talking about the techniques that Shakespeare has used to write this play. Shakespeare uses lots of similes, which is a technique that gives the audience a direct access to the characters inner thought as the other characters cannot hear him.... [tags: Papers]||1363 words|
|Directing the Actor Playing Macbeth in Act 2 Essay - Imagine you are a director. Direct the actor playing Macbeth in Act 2 Scene 2. Shakespeare's Macbeth has been a play out of the ordinary. It was written to upset, and show life at its most cynical and brutal. It is among his darker pieces of work along with Othello, King Lear and Hamlet. It was also written to please the current King of England at the time, King James I. The play is based on real Scottish history, as King Duncan was killed by one of his kinsmen who then became King. It is set within a Scotland in which frequent wars occur.... [tags: Drama]||2681 words|
| Essay on Themes of Hamlet - Themes of Hamlet The themes within the Shakespearean drama Hamlet are several. Let us discuss in this essay some of the more commonly recognized themes. In the essay “Hamlet: His Own Falstaff,” Harold Goddard makes a statement of the two main themes of the play, namely war and revenge, relating them to the final scene: The dead Hamlet is borne out “like a soldier” and the last rites over his body are to be the rites of war. The final word of the text is “shoot.” The last sounds we hear are a dead march and the reverberations of ordnance being shot off.... [tags: The Tragedy of Hamlet Essays]|
:: 8 Works Cited
Hamlet Macbeth William Shakespeare’s Plays Many Similarities Many Differences Three Witches Many People Capture Instances Deeds
Both plays do however, have
the main character killing off the king in order to get the throne, which
ultimately results in there own death. Horatio, in Hamlet and Banquo,
in Macbeth share the same loyalty to the main characters. In both
stories these friends are more skeptical of the supernaturals than the
main characters themselves. In a meeting with the witches, Banquo
challenges them to “Speak then to me, who neither beg nor fear /
Your favours nor your hate” (1.3.60-61). In a scene where Horatio
and Hamlet witness the ghost, Horatio tries to keep Hamlet from
going with the ghost. He was even reluctant in the opening scene to
go with Marcellus to hear about the ghost.
Some themes in the plays are also similar. The way that the
weeds and flowers illustrate good and bad in Hamlet is like the way
the birds do in Macbeth. This is also true of the fair and foul theme in
Macbeth and the indirections theme in Hamlet. In Macbeth, to the
weird sisters, what is ugly is beautiful, and what is beautiful is ugly.
Through the play fair appearances hide foul realities. This theme has
a lot in common with the theme in Hamlet where the appearance
varies from the reality. In contrast, one of the main themes in
Macbeth is Manhood, while in Hamlet it is frailty, and more
specifically, the frailty of women.
It seems evident that Shakespeare used a strong, similar story
line in these two tragedies. Apparently Macbeth and Hamlet are
similar stories in numerous ways. These two plays seem different
because of the variation in story lines, but in fact are very similar due
to the parallel characters and themes.
Similarities And Differences Between Shakespeare´S Hamlet And Macbeth
11 February 2014
Macbeth vs. Hamlet
The Shakespearean playwrights Macbeth and Hamlet are both very well-known tragedies. They have many things in common but are different in some ways. Both plays involve greed but the characters are different. There are some characters that have the same qualities such as Hamlet and Malcolm who both killed for revenge. Macbeth and Hamlet are different in character even though they both killed. The tragedies are the same in that many people are killed but the reasons are very different. Macbeths need for power has caused him to lose control while Hamlets need for revenge causes him to lose his own life.
Both Hamlet and Macbeth fight for what they want and are eventually killed in the end. Something they have in common is that their journeys both start with something evil and spiritual. For example, Hamlet sees the ghost of his father in the beginning and Macbeth runs into the witches and their prophecies. These apparitions lead both of them to their horrible fates. They each have a relationship with supernatural occurrences. Macbeth acts upon the prophecies the witches give him and make him greedy for power. Hamlet feels obligated to follow the instructions of his father’s ghost. Hamlet and Macbeth both make choices that cause them to do evil and horrible things. They each end up killing a king. Macbeth seems to lose his morals because of the supernatural apparitions. Furthermore, both of their consciousness makes them second guess themselves and crazy. Their decisions make them and everyone around them mad. Lady Macbeth, for example, becomes mad because of her conscience and the evil deeds of her husband.
Another thing the plays have in common is that they both have characters that seem to go mad and lose control. While Hamlet is only acting to mislead Claudius, Macbeth’s desire and greed for more power makes him truly mad. In Macbeth, he kills the king, Duncan, so he can become the king. This shows that the play Macbeth is about greed, but Hamlet is about greed as well. In Hamlet, Hamlets uncle, Claudius kills his brother so that he can become king as well. Claudius poisons him and then marries Hamlet’s mother. Two characters that are also the same are Hamlet and Malcolm because they both kill for revenge. Hamlet wants to avenge his father’s death by killing...
Loading: Checking Spelling0%