Essay by captainunderpantsHigh School, 12th gradeC, February 2014

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Religion during Shakespeare's time was becoming faint. The reformation of the churches was taking place as madness struck Europe. Religion is often described as binding men and unifying people; from the Anglo-French 'relegate'. The prefix 're' meaning again and 'gate' to bind together. Shakespeare did exactly this by bring people together and giving his sermon in the act of plays instead of storytelling like a pastor would. Shakespeare wrote his plays during the time of Elizabeth I, who was Protestant and outlawed Catholicism. He tried to reform religion with his own work by reminding people what was most important. His plays serve as a reminder to express values such as the Ten Commandments, The Holy Trinity and the Seven Deadly Sins. Authors don't solely write to entertain their audience but to educate and influence them. Shakespeare uses his plays as a method to convey his religious values to the audience.

He tries to teach them that going against God's will result in dire circumstances. In Hamlet we see the biblical allusions within the play itself including: The Ten Commandments, The Seven Deadly Sins and the Trinity. The Ten Commandments are recurrent in Hamlet. Laertes lets the reader know that he's consciously breaking the sixth and ninth commandments by stating, "And yet it is almost against my conscience". (5.2.324) He breaks the commandments "Thou shalt not murder" and "Thou shalt not bear false witness." This shows us that Shakespeare is directly speaking to the audience and telling them what the commandments are, in a way like a preacher would during his story. Shakespeare is using the original bible as a reference of what he believes people should know. In a comparable state, Ophelia's father, Polonius, is counseling his daughter about trusting people who look like they are righteous. He also advises...