Which Hamlet monologue is the most important

Shakespeare's Hamlet: The Most Famous Monologue in World Theater

When did Shakespeare write his tragedy?

When "The Tragicall Historie of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark" struck the stage in London with triumphant success in 1602, William Shakespeare (1564–1616) was about to reach the zenith of his career as a theater poet. "Hamlet", his longest piece with 4,000 verses, opened the series of his great tragedies ("Othello", "King Lear", "Macbeth"), the subject matter of which is borrowed from medieval sources.

What is the plot of the piece?

On the occasion of the death of his father, the Danish prince Hamlet returns to the court in Elsinore. His mother Gertrud married the presumed murderer of her husband Claudius and made it king. Hamlet is incited to vengeance by the spirit of the deceased. In order to deceive his adversaries, Hamlet goes mad. The suspicious Claudius tries in vain to get rid of him with an intrigue. The prince uses a trick to reveal him as a regicide, but hesitates to kill him. During an argument with his mother, he stabs the court master Polonius, whom he takes to be Claudius. Polonius' daughter Ophelia, who loves Hamlet, goes mad and drowns herself. Her brother Laertes, instructed by Claudius to kill Hamlet with a prepared dagger, accidentally switches weapons and dies. Gertrud unintentionally empties the poison cup intended for Hamlet and, dying, confesses to Claudius' culpability. Hamlet judges him and then himself with the bare blade.

What characterizes the character Hamlet?

Hamlet's hesitation barely moves the story forward, and in the end he fulfills his mission almost by chance: He is an introverted doubter who opposes the commandment of blood vengeance with the hope of greater justice and ultimately fails because of a corrupt world that does not allow such an intention of integrity .

This problem of appearance and true being is not only addressed in the best-known of his seven long monologues. Hamlet is a wanderer between worlds (already indicated in the first scene by the seashore, later by the encounter with the gravedigger in the cemetery); also through his feigned madness he acts in a double role. His outsider character is emphasized by striking contrasting figures: by the unscrupulous power man Claudius, the talkative hypocrite Polonius, the naive Laertes, the heroic Fortinbras and the stoic friend Horatio, his only ally besides Ophelia.

Who does Hamlet love?

His relationships with women are fraught with troubles. He condemns his mother as a whore, he casts off the pure "beautiful nymph" Ophelia out of anger over her bondage to her father and a vague disgust for the female sex. Out of disappointment with his fellow human beings, "sickly with the paleness of thought", he gets into a kind of paralysis, an indecisive and inactive "already being."

How was the drama received?

Here, "a great deed is placed on a soul that is not up to the deed," says Goethe's novel "Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship", full of respect for a sensitive hero in conflict with a world that still lacks a redeeming perspective.

The enormous success of this tragedy, which, with its length of six hours, can almost be called a dramaturgical failure, is essentially due to the fascinating title character. The first full performance took place in Stratford in 1899; the German-language premiere was in Vienna in 1773. The figure of Hamlet became particularly popular in Germany; for a long time it was considered the ideal embodiment of the German character. Friedrich Nietzsche was the first to see it as an example of a character "in which life is damaged and ultimately perishes, be it a person or a people or a culture".

With his criticism of Hamlet's paralyzing fickleness, Nietzsche fell short, because this stems from an attitude that shaped the modern understanding of the world: Truth can only be experienced in an absurd guise and does not offer a reliable basis for human action.

How did the provincial mayor's son come to London?

William Shakespeare was born in Stratford upon Avon, England in 1564. Little is known about his life. In 1582 he married Ann Hathaway, with whom he had three children.

Probably in the late 1580s he became an actor and moved to London with a traveling theater company. Among other things, with appearances in front of the English Queen Elizabeth I, he acquired a not inconsiderable fortune with which he could acquire property in his place of birth. In 1597 he became co-owner of the Globe Theater and also had increasing success with his dramas.

In 1603, King James took over the patronage of Shakespeare's troupe, which was renamed The King's Men. In 1609, the troupe acquired the Blackfriar's Theater, which, in contrast to the Globe, was covered.

In 1610 the playwright sold the shares in the theaters and returned to Stratford wealthy, where he died in 1616.

Did you know that …

"Hamlet" is the reworking of an older model? This practice was common in Shakespeare's time in the theater.

Shakespeare also became famous as a writer of sonnets?

the authorship of Shakespeare's works is controversial? Various contemporaries from Christopher Marlowe to Queen Elizabeth I are discussed as actual authors.